Recognition of Laurel Hansen Entomology Scholarship

Author: Kurt Treftz, Cascade Pest Control

Samantha Dilday, Terry Whitworth, Laurel Hansen, Kurt Treftz and Faye Whitworth.
Photo: WSPMA, Samantha Malong

Cascade Pest Control is pleased to be a part of spearheading the establishment of the Laurel Hansen Entomology Fund & Scholarship at Washington State University. With over 30 years of fighting pests in the Seattle area, Cascade knows the importance of the partnerships between research and practice. So, when Cascade owner Kurt Treftz saw an opportunity to honor the five decades long career of Dr. Laurel Hansen, he was delighted to be a driving force for this scholarship and endowment.

Treftz has known Dr. Hansen for over forty years. During that time, she was a consistent source of advice, information, and education. She taught 51 years at Spokane Falls Community College and as adjunct entomology professor at WSU. Now, her legacy of scholarship and partnership with the pest control industry will continue into the next generation.

The scholarship is funded by pest control operators around the state as they give back to honor the woman who gave so much to them – in scholarship, research, and hands-on training. The Entomology Department at Washington State University administers the annual award that is open to all WSU students, faculty, and staff.  

The augural recipient of the Laurel Hansen Entomology Scholarship is Samantha Dilday, a PhD student at Washington State University. Her research focus is the odorous house ant (also known as a sugar ant or tiny black ant), a known problem in the urban areas of the Pacific Northwest and a clear point of connection between research and the pest control industry.

Kurt Treftz was honored to be part of the ceremony to present Dilday with the scholarship and recognize her achievements as well as Dr. Hansen’s. The reception included members of the pest control industry, academia, Dr. Hansen, and scholarship recipient Sam Dilday.

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