Richard S. Zack, associate professor of entomology and director of the M.T. James entomological collection, earned the 2010-2011 Sahlin Faculty Excellence Award for Instruction. He is best known for his creativity and energy in teaching one of the most popular undergraduate courses at WSU Entomology 101: Insects & People. It is a general education option science course that enrolls 250 students. Zack has garnered many teaching honors, including the Western Region Award for Excellence in College and University Teaching in the Food and Agricultural Sciences and the Distinguished Achievement Award in Teaching of the Entomological Society of America at both the Pacific Branch and National levels. At WSU, he received the 2002 Marian E. Smith Faculty Achievement Award and the Outstanding Faculty Member (Teaching) Areté Award from the Interfraternity and Panhellenic Councils. He was recognized as one of the Top Five Instructors at WSU nominated by the students in a survey conducted by the Daily Evergreen newspaper.
In his role as curator and director of the M.T. James Entomological Collection, Zack reaches more than 1,200 elementary and high school students throughout the Pacific Northwest each year. He is recognized as a “masterful teacher” who motivates and engages his students.