North Central Branch Newsletter

June Newsletter from NCB President Mark Boetel

The 2021 North Central Branch Meeting is Nearly Here! The North Central Branch (NCB) meeting will be held as a virtual conference that will take place June 21-23.  You will not want to miss this uniquely diverse, engaging, and entertaining conference!

Dr. Louise Lynch-O’Brien (Program Chair), Mark Asplen (Local Arrangements Chair), Becky Anthony (ESA Central), and the Executive Committee have been working very hard during the past several months to plan an exceptional NCB meeting experience I believe people will be talking about for years to come!  

In addition to exciting scientific content, other highlights will include a plenary keynote presentation on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, a self-care seminar, a keynote address on Native American involvement in the natural sciences, a distance-oriented teaching workshop/demonstration, an interactive “Backyard Blacklighting and Brews” evening social event, and an interactive event on fireflies hosted by the University of Nebraska State Museum.  We are also pleased to announce that entomologist Zack Lemann, who has appeared on NBC’s The Tonight Show, will present “Insect Cuisine for the Everyday Entomologist”, an engaging insect cooking demonstration in which he will prepare “Crispy Cajun Crickets” and “Odonate Hors d’oeuvres.”

The conference will also include nearly 100 presentations of traditional scientific content in student paper and poster competitions, regular ten-minute presentations and posters, and six scientific symposia.  Other traditional content will include live sessions of the Entomology Games, the NCB Awards Ceremony, business meeting, and the President’s Report.

One key aspect of the Business Meeting will be a membership vote on two proposed amendments to our Branch Constitution and By-Laws, so we need your attendance and participation.  For more information on the proposed changes, visit

NCB 2021 Registration Still Open!  If you have not yet registered for NCB 2021, what are you waiting for? Registration is free to all ESA members, and registering for one branch meeting provides access to online content from all four virtual branch meetings held this year.  

Event Moderators Needed! To ensure the success of our NCB-ESA meeting, we need volunteers to serve as Event Moderators to introduce speakers and monitor the chat box and participant audio.  Moderators are needed for the following events:

  • Live Q&A with On Demand Presenters:  Monday, June 21, 2021: 10:30 AM - 11:30 AM CST
  • Workshops:  Monday, June 21, 2021: 2:00 PM - 5:00 PM CST
  • Special Guest:  Monday, June 21, 2021: 5:00 PM - 6:00 PM
  • Coffee & Mindfulness:  Tuesday, June 22, 2021: 8:00 AM - 8:45 AM CST
  • Coffee and Yoga:  Wednesday, June 23, 2021: 8:00 AM - 8:45 AM CST 

If you would like to moderate a session, please contact Program Chair Dr. Louise Lynch-O’Brien at

Entomology Games Team Entries Still Welcome! The Entomology Games Committee (EGC) has been diligently working to make this year’s live virtual running of the Games an enjoyable event.  EGC Chair Ellen Klinger sent an invitation out to all of the NCB departments that have historically entered teams for this event a few weeks ago, but you can still enter a team if done so by June 14th!  Assistants and judges are also needed for the Games event.  If interested in entering a team or volunteering to help, please contact Dr. Klinger soon as possible at

Volunteers Needed – make the NCB Your NCB! Volunteering is a great way to get socially and functionally plugged in to the operations that make the NCB run well.  It’s also helpful with staking out your path to future leadership roles within the Branch and ESA as a whole.  Another benefit of service roles is that they are positive additions to a CV or promotion dossier for individuals pursuing employment opportunities or career advancement.

President-Elect Mary Gardiner still needs help filling several NCB committee positions.  If interested, please contact her at soon to find out more about the available opportunities! 

2020/2021 NCB Officers & Branch Meeting Contacts:
President:      Mark Boetel (
President-Elect:      Mary Gardiner (
Past-President:      Andy Michel (
Secretary-Treasurer:      Erin Hodgson (
Governing Board Representative*:     John Ruberson (
Member-at-Large:      Clint Pilcher (
Member-at-Large:      Laura Campbell (
Member-at-Large:      Kayla Perry (
Student Affairs Chair & Student Member-at-Large:    Aleksandra Dolezal (

I look forward to your attendance and participation in our June 21-23, 2021 Virtual NCB meeting!

Best wishes,

Mark Boetel
2020/2021 NCB President

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