Previous Speakers

Dr. Dick Rogers, Entomologist/Manager
Bayer Bee Care Center, Bayer CropScience, North Carolina

Dick has been keeping and studying honey bees, and has been a professional Entomologist for 40 years. During the 1980’s he received his Masters of Science degree in Entomology/IPM from McGill University in Montreal, Canada. He was a member of the Canadian Association of Professional Apiculturist for many years, and is now a current member of the American Beekeeping Federation.

After many years as a beekeeper/consulting entomologist/contract researcher, and as an extension entomologist/apiculturist, Dick started with Bayer in 2009 as a Principal Scientist/Entomologist in Ecotoxicology. He is now Entomologist/Manager of the Bayer Bee Care Center for North America where he is both an internal and external resource and educator on bees and apiculture. He works to identify, develop and evaluate tools, products and management for protecting and improving honey bee health.

Dick got into beekeeping in 1973 after taking an introductory course from the late Gerry Smelter. Gerry worked for Agriculture Canada at the local research station and was a leading educator and mentor for beekeepers in eastern Canada. Dick’s other apiculture and entomology mentors were Harold Specht, and the late Edel Karmo and Vernon Vickery. In those early days, Dick and other beekeepers in eastern Canada, bought package bees from the southern US every spring and then killed them off in the fall after honey harvest. After the introduction of the honey bee tracheal mite, and then Varroa mite, into the US in the mid-1980s, the Canada/US border was closed to bee imports so they then learned how to winter honey bees. Dick started keeping bees because of his pure fascination with this social insect, plus his small scale honey production and pollination service helped pay his way through university.

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Katie Lee

Midwest Tech-Transfer Team Leader
Bee Informed Partnership

Katie received both a BS in Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior and a MS in Entomology from the University of Minnesota. She was introduced to honey bees during her last semester as an undergrad when she took a class on social insects with Dr. Marla Spivak. Marla asked her to work in the U of MN Bee Lab over the summer, and has been enthralled with bees ever since.
Katie is currently part of the Midwest Bee Team for Bee Informed Partnership and is based out of the University of Minnesota. She works with commercial migratory beekeepers in North Dakota and Minnesota to help them monitor pest and disease levels. Her main interests are bee breeding, Varroa, disease ecology, and extension work.

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Chris Harp
Bee Doctor

Chris Harp is an organic beekeeper, beekeeping teacher, and “Bee Doctor”. He and fellow beekeeper, Graci St. Clair Rice, co-founded in 2005. HoneybeeLives’ beekeeping classes have been taught at The Pfeiffer Center for Biodynamic Agriculture, The Sustainable Living Resource Center, The Commons Brooklyn, New England Farms and at the HoneybeeLives Apiary in New Paltz, NY.

Harp’s naturalist and biodynamic methods, and unique hive designs, have developed from his years of working with, and listening to, Honeybees, as well as having studied with Gunther Hauk at the Pfeiffer Center.

Harp has been tending his own hives for twenty-four years, and now tends approximately 200 colonies in locations in New York and Connecticut for both individuals and organizations. Harp is a consultant on hive health for troubled colonies and concerned beekeepers.

Chris Harp has served on the Board of Directors for the Catskill Mountain Beekeepers’ Club, and is currently on the advisory board of the Ulster County Beekeepers Association. He was a consultant for the CNG (Certified-Naturally-Grown) Apiary Standards for their Certification Program and the ensuing publication Handbook for Natural Beekeeping.

Harp’s work as a “Bee Doctor” comes from a deep caring and concern for the fragility of the Honeybee population, and a profound respect for the structure of their collective lives and their impact on the health of Mother Earth. Harp’s goals are focused on the wellbeing of the colonies he nurtures, and through teaching others he raises the awareness of and caring for these amazing creatures.

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Tom Seeley is a Professor and Chairman in the Department of Neurobiology and Behavior at Cornell University.   His current work focuses on swarm intelligence; see here for more information.  His latest book is Honeybee Democracy .

Professor Seeley’s talk, “Honey bee in the wild,” will describe how honey bees live in the wild, compare this to how they live as colonies managed by beekeepers, and will explore the consequences for the bees of these different ways of life.


Elizabeth Capaldi Evans is an Associate Professor of Biology and Animal Behavior at Bucknell University whose research interests include studies of the insect brain, of honeybee biology including harmonic radar, and native bee distributions in PA.  Click here for more information.  Her latest book is Why Do Bees Buzz? Fascinating Answers to Questions About Bees.  More information about the book is available at this link.

Dr. Evans’ talk, “Learning about Bee Learning,” will review bees as model animals for understanding general principles of learning and why this information is essential for beekeepers, as well as recent research about how environmental factors (global change, pesticides, and diseases) influence bee behavior and the future of beekeeping