Kenneth Raffa presented with “academic family tree” artwork at retirement celebration

Entomology professor Kenneth Raffa was recently joined by his colleagues and former graduate students to celebrate his retirement after more than 30 years on the UW–Madison campus.

At the ceremony, Raffa was presented with an “academic family tree” by his colleagues. The illustration, created by Jacki Whisenant, showcases the graduate students who were trained in Raffa’s lab, with their names in chronological order in the tree’s main branches, with the earliest students at the base of the tree. Raffa’s former postdoctoral associates are indicated by drawings of the insects that they focused on. The gift was borne from an idea developed by Nathan Havill, Rich Hoffstetter and Kimberly Wallin, all former students of Raffa.

Click to enlarge.

Raffa first joined the entomology department in 1985 as an assistant professor. Among many other awards, he earned several honors from CALS:

  • Glenn Pound Outstanding Researcher Award from CALS, 1991
  • Robert G.F. and Hazel T. Spitze Land Grant Faculty Award for Excellence in Combined Research, Teaching and Outreach, 1999
  • Beers-Bascom Professorship in Conservation, 2010 – 2015

Raffa called it “an incredibly moving gift” and reports that the illustration will proudly hang in his home office.