Florence Dunkel, Associate Professor
Florence Dunkel received her B.S. in Zoology, M.S. in Zoology (second major in secondary teaching)
and Ph.D. in Entomology with a minor in Zoology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her first
two years were at Downer College, now part of Lawrence University, Appleton WI. She has received the
AAUW Marie Curie Postdoctoral Award, the Lindbergh Award, the National Academy of Sciences Visiting
Scientist Award to the People’s Republic of China, the Distinguished Achievement Award of Lawrence
University, and the Andersons Research Award (NC213) for management of grain quality and security in
world markets. She has also received 2 regional teaching awards from the Entomological Society of America.
Her research area was initially with Protozoa, freshwater, then entomopathogenic protozoa and insect
commensals. Since 1966, she has conducted research on natural (botanical) and other non-synthetic,
non-commercial pest management techniques for insects. After 17 years at the University of
Minnesota-Twin Cities, Dunkel took the headship of Entomology at Montana State.
Since 1989, Dunkel has taught ENTO 102, Insects and Human Societies. This is now a University Core
Course in Contemporary Issues in Science. This course was a natural response to her extensive collaborative
research programs that seemed to blossom in China, Korea, Morocco, Rwanda, and Mali. It was Dr. David Sands,
during an introduction in 1989, who first explained why this internationalization had happened to Dunkel.
“It is an obvious result of Dunkel’s growing up in a tri-lingual household. She was immersed in a
cross-cultural environment from the beginning.” Dunkel is the first person in her father’s and mother’s
family to speak English as a first language.
Dunkel is currently the project investigator for 3 collaborative grants with Malian institutions,
primarily the University’s Institute of Agriculture and the counterpart of the USDA. She launched the
Mali undergraduate “extern program” in 2000 at MSU after 6 years of collaborations with the IPM CRSP-Mali.
Now this system of undergraduate mentorships in Mali is underway at partner institutions, Virginia Tech
(Blacksburg, VA), University of St. Thomas (St. Paul, MN), Chief Dull Knife College (Lame Deer, MT), and the
University of Califirnia at Davis. She and the MSU faculty also partner with the same institutions to provide
training for the Malian scientists and professors who are launching the Agribusiness Entrepreneurial Incubator
Center of Mali. Do greet these seven amazing Malians when you see them on campus.
Florence with Dr. Gamby, the Director of
Fruit and Vegetable Research for Mali
Dunkel also teaches ENTO 480 Natural Products and ENTO 500 Plant-Insect-Human Interactions. Content for
these courses is strongly influenced by her collaborative research with Malian scientists. Free times are
occupied with her 3 children, 4 grandchildren, and 5 step-grandchildren and their parents. With her husband,
Robert E. Diggs, she enjoys working on grants and being a subsistence farmer (raising all their own vegetables
and some fruit, organically) and, in the past, raising dairy goats. Dunkel enjoys playing the piano and