After serving in the Navy during World War II, Bill graduated from The University of Georgia in 1950 with a bachelor’s degree in Entomology. Since graduation he has been continuously associated with the pest control industry in three different capacities – a regulatory official, a member of the industry and as a consultant and teacher in the pest control industry.
Immediately after graduation in 1950, Bill began working with the Georgia Department of Entomology as Assistant State Entomologist. He was appointed State Entomologist in 1955 and served in that capacity until 1964 when he resigned to join Getz Services. Bill worked with Getz as Vice-President and Technical Director until 1974. In 1974, he became director of Stephenson Services, a division of Stephenson Chemical Company.
The Georgia Structural Pest Control Act was passed in 1955 and Bill served as the first chairman of the Georgia Structural Pest Control Commission. He served on the Commission until he left state service in 1964. As director of the Entomology Division of the Georgia Department of Agriculture he was also responsible for the enforcement of this law. He was one of the organizers of the Association of Structural Pest Control Regulatory Officials and served one term as chairman.
Bill has served as President or Chairman of the following professional organizations: National Pest Management Association, Georgia Pest Control Association, Georgia Entomological Society, Georgia Council of Entomology, Georgia Plant Pathology Association, Southern Plant Board and Pi Chi Omega. In addition Bill was inducted into the PMP Pest Control Hall of Fame in 2011, the GPCA Hall of Fame, and was also named as one of the 80 most influential people in the pest control industry of all time.
Bill’s iconic career has allowed him to meet many people in the industry from all over the world and he has trained tens of thousands of pest management professionals.
Sarah, Bill’s bride of 69 years passed away in September of 2016. When Bill was inducted into the PMP Hall of Fame, Sarah was quoted as saying “He absolutely deserves it, “I went to enough meetings with him I feel like I could be an entomologist. It was a great life.”
2020 marks several milestones in Bill’s career:
- 96th birthday in August
- 70 years in the pest control industry
- 65 years since the Structural Pest Control Act was passed
- 65 years since the first Georgia Structural Pest Control Commission Meeting