Industry legends, past Hall of Fame inductees, family and friends of the pest management industry and esteemed guests turned out on the eve of NPMA’s PestWorld 2009 for the black-tie event to celebrate the careers of the PMP Hall of Fame Class of 2009: Joe Thomas, Sandee and Al Burger, Motokazu Hirao and Jacques Hess.
Held at The Orleans Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, the 2009 PMP Hall of Fame banquet drew more than 150 invited guests. The evening began with a cocktail hour where old friends reminisced and shared memories.
The Hall of Fame honors those who demonstrate superior dedication to the industry.
Following dinner, PMP magazine publisher George Casey welcomed everyone and introduced the event’s sponsors — Michael Weisburger of PlanetPCO and Andy Linares of Bug Off Pest Control Center. PMP Editorial Director Frank H. Andorka Jr. took the stage next, and officially started the inductions for the Class of 2009.
After a short video history of their careers, each inductee took the stage to receive their award and say a few remarks. Thomas, CEO of Arrow Exterminators, noted the strong support from his family as the reason for his success; while the Burgers, retired owners of “Bugs” Burger Pest Control, urged those in attendance to treat their employees with respect.
Hirao, from the Japanese Pest Control Association, expressed his gratitude for the influence the U.S. pest management industry has had on his career. Geoffrey Hess, grandson of this year’s posthumous inductee Jacques Hess, shared some heartwarming memories of his grandfather.
The PMP Hall of Fame honors those who have demonstrated superior dedication to the pest management industry through leadership, education and service. Inductees are chosen by their peers through voluntary nominations, and one winner is appointed posthumously by the magazine’s staff. In addition, PMP Hall of Fame inductee names are permanently displayed on a plaque in their honor at Purdue University’s Smith Hall in West Lafayette, Ind.