Interview with Sarah Thomas-Clark

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Why the pest management industry?

The pest management industry is a great industry with deep traditions. My family has always been in the industry. My grandfather Jim, owned Mid-Hudson Pest Control, my Uncle George, owned Thomas Pest Control and my father, Craig owned Craig Thomas Pest Control. I was always known in school as the "pest control kid."

Did you always know you wanted to be in the pest management industry?

No. I went away to college at St. Rose for Spanish Education and moved home after one semester. I continued my education at SUNY Dutchess and received an Associates Degree in Social Studies Education. That summer, I realized my heart was in the pest management field and I switched my major to Organizational Communication, where I received my Bachelors at SUNY New Paltz. That was the best choice I ever made!

What is your least favorite pest?

Rodents. I know, you would think I would be immune to them, but it is a phobia of mine. I have come a long way after attending Bobby Corrigans, "Rodent Academy" in New York City. We had to travel thru NYC looking for rodents, rodent harborage areas and areas prone to rats. I saw a few and I think it helped!

What is your favorite pest?

Bed Bugs. Bed bugs were one of the first insects I truly learned about from their biology and methods to treat. I just find them very intriguing and I love going out on bed bug jobs, too. It's probably fitting I have a bed bug scent detection dog and bed bugs in vials throughout my home to train our dog. People think I am crazy to have bed bugs in vials in my kitchen, dresser drawers and living room, but it is second nature to me.

What is one thing you enjoy about your job?

Everyday is different, I enjoy waking up to go to work!

I met my husband, Bill in the pest management field. Everyday we get to go to work together and together help our business prosper.

How do you feel as a woman in a male dominated profession?

It is truly exciting to see more and more females in the pest management industry. When I attend conferences, the number of females in attendance is growing. I have created many friendships with females who are following their fathers and grandfathers footsteps, like myself. In 2009, I received the Professional Women in Pest Management Scholarship to continue my career in pest management. I look forward to breaking this misconception.

What do you do in your spare time?

I enjoy traveling, one of the perks of my job. The pest management industry has terrific educational meetings that have brought me to San Diego, San Antonio, Las Vegas, Sarasota and beyond. I also enjoy going to my family lake house on Lake Sacandaga, its just beautiful.

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