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2020 Speakers

Is Cancelled

You can take any class you like!
Schedules will be available at the convention!

2020 Is Cancelled

Classes subject to change due to speaker availability

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Jay Heselschwerdt is the state honey bee inspector for East Tennessee, Board Member of Midwest Master Beekeepers, Past President of his local bee club, 4H leader for the local youth bee club, and speaks at many conferences, colleges, and clubs.

​Jay will tell you that he has no welfare bees, meaning that he has never chemically treated his hives. He also does not feed sugar water to his bees. His honey bees survive due to natural beekeeping practices.

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Chris will be talking about how to build up your hive faster so your honey bees will have a better chance at surviving.

Chris Kinser is a third-generation beekeeper with 20 years' experience. He graduated from the University of Tennessee where he received a bachelor's degree in fine arts. Chris and his wife own Kuenzer Honey Farms where they market honey as well as unique and custom tools for beekeeping not offered anywhere else.



Vera came into beekeeping with a strong background in animal health and nutrition.
Previously, she worked on developing and testing probiotics (direct-fed microbials) for agricultural animals and studying metabolism and mitochondrial energy production in animal cells.
Since 2012, as a co-founder and CTO of Strong Microbials, Vera continues to research questions of nutrition, metabolism, and health in honeybees and other animals.



Being a veteran beekeeper, Howard has seen a lot of changes in beekeeping in East Tennessee. He helped change beekeeping for the better when he was the state representative from 1994-2000.


Come hear him talk about how to keep your honeybees healthy today and in the future.



Michael is the go-to man for anything happening in Tennessee from Johnson City to Memphis. Talk about busy as a bee. Any honeybees in, coming in, or passing through Tennessee, Michael knows about it and has inspected them.

Michael is always a pleasure to listen too and full of information.



Kent Williams is a professional queen breeder in south Kentucky. His work is his life passion. He is also a great teacher with a lot to share.  If you have an interest in raising queens to sell or just for yourself, you will learn a lot from Kent.



Andrew will be discussing the common mistakes of new beekeepers. Last year he drew such a large crowd that we had to bring more chairs into his room. We have planned ahead this time as well as allotted him more time to talk.

Bring your notepad and pen to not miss out on any of this important information he comes to share. 



Shannon Trimboli is a beekeeper, wildlife biologist, and author. She lives in south-central Kentucky where she is active in her state and local beekeeping communities. In 2016, she started Busy Bee Nursery and Consulting which specializes in plants and habitat consulting services for honey bees, native pollinators, and wildlife conservation. In 2017, she was named the Beekeeper of the Year for the Kentucky State Beekeepers Association. Her first book, Plants Honey Bees Use in the Ohio and Tennessee Valleys, was published in 2018.



Lisa Powers is a fourth-year beekeeper and will be speaking on the do's and do not's of the first year beekeeping.

Lisa will be sharing her experiences and talking about what it takes to get your honey bees into the second year and beyond.

If this is going to be your first year or even your second year. Lisa has a lot of helpful information on what the first year is like and how to manage it.



We all love to talk about honey bees but, Joel Hausser really loves to talk about honey bees. Joel is a guy you'll see and hear at local clubs and different state beekeeping events speaking on the benefits of beekeeping and the importance of helping the honey bees and pollinators. He is a joy to listen to and always full of information and a few bee jokes.



Andrea Mountain Boger will explain why she has used the Flow Hive in her operation for the last two years. She answer the questions everyone has: Does it work? How does it work? Is it really that easy

Andrea is a beekeeper in East Tennessee, and a member of Bee Friends Bee Club. She will be a joy to hear speak on the new Flow Hive.



Michele will explain the ins and outs of the laws that are here to help beekeepers. Michele has helped many local beekeepers and bee clubs. If you need any information in your quest to help change the laws in your area to help beekeepers she can head you the right direction. She'll be here to discuss issues and answers questions. 



Bella Donna is a Holistic Healthcare Practitioner, Apitherapist, Herbalist, and Beekeeper.


Bella is a recent transplant from central Arizona to the east coast. She brings with her a background in Oriental Medicine and Aromatherapy as well as Africanized beekeeping.  Bella has lifelong experience with natural healthcare including products of the hive, and will be sharing with you the incorporating of apitherapy into Holistic Healthcare for yourself, your family, your friends, your customers and your clients.



Dr. John A. Skinner is the retired professor, Extension Apiculturist and Extension Coordinator from UT. He served Tennessee and beekeepers for many years and developed the Tennessee Master Beekeeper classes.


Dr. Skinner has a Ph.D., from the University of California, Davis with a Major in: Entomology, emphasis: apiculture, pollination.



Dr Dewey M. Caron Emeritus Professor of Entomology; Wildlife Ecology, Univ of Delaware; Affiliate Professor, Dept Horticulture, Oregon State University. Retired 2009 and moved to Portland area to be closer to grandkids. Dewey remains active writing for newsletters and giving Active in Master Beekeeper training in OR, CA and a EAS Master Beekeeper certification. Represent WAS on Honey Bee Health Coalition.



Frederick (Freddy) Proni, is an EAS Certified Master Beekeeper and is the North American Area Manager for Veto-pharma (the makers of Apivar) who also serves the North Carolina State Beekeepers Association (NCSBA) as Second Vice-President. He is a former full-time beekeeper, with an extensive background in business, who has thirty years of combined experience in honey production, commercial honey brokering/packaging, and queen rearing. In addition to being a managing partner of the Proni Honey Bee Company,



Michael Young, Mbe, lives in Northern Ireland. A Georgia Master Beekeeper and keeper of bees for over 35 years he is also a professional chef/teacher. In the year 2000, Michael Founded the Institute of Northern Ireland Beekeepers. Michael is the instigator and founder of the Welsh Honey Judge Program that started at the Young Harris Beekeeping Institute in 2000. Michael is skilled in many areas of apiculture including beeswax modeling, encaustic wax painting, mead making and cooking with honey. In 2008 Michael was awarded the title of Member of the British Empire, MBE, for his services to apiculture and conservation. 



Cricket Aldridge is the founder of the Arizona Backyard Beekeepers and the Arizona Honeybee Festival. Cricket absolutely loves helping bees and those who keep them. From relocating Africanized hives and re-queening them, to helping beekeepers maintain their own hives, her goal is to make beekeeping seem as do-able as it really is. Hang around her long enough and you’ll be a beekeeper too.



Randy McCaffrey has been a beekeeper for ten years and has done approximately six hundred live removals of feral colonies from structures at that time.  Randy became interested in bees when his brother asked him to help with a hive removal.  He found it fascinating and jumped in with both feet.  Since he is also a construction specialist the cut-outs were a natural fit for him.  YouTube has become a good platform for him to entertain, educate, and inspire others who may be interested in beekeeping.



Jason Bragg is from Calvin, West Virginia and owner/operator of New River Honey Bees. Jason is a member of the West Virginia Queen Producers Co-op and Vice President of the Heartland Honeybee Breeders Cooperative. Jason runs a small queen breeding program in central West Virginia, where he selectively breeds for locally adapted queens with survivor genetics. Trained and proficient in both honey bee instrumental insemination and honey bee drone semen cryopreservation, Jason's goal is to breed and maintain a healthier, more fit honey bee population with greater mite and disease resistance!Jason Bragg is from Calvin, West Virginia and owner/operator of New River Honey Bees. Jason is a member of the West Virginia Queen Producers Co-op and Vice President of the Heartland Honeybee Breeders Cooperative. Jason runs a small queen breeding program in central West Virginia, where he selectively breeds for locally adapted queens with survivor genetics. Trained and proficient in both honey bee instrumental insemination and honey bee drone semen cryopreservation, Jason's goal is to breed and maintain a healthier, more fit honey bee population with greater mite and disease resistance!



Dr. Russo will introduce the audience to the diversity of local pollinators in the eastern US, and discuss the potential hazards and benefits of agricultural systems to pollinator conservation.



Blue Ridge Honey Co. is a family business, owned and operated by Bob & Suzette Binnie, located in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Northeast Georgia.

Bob began commercial beekeeping in 1981 in Oregon & has been involved in commercial beekeeping in 10 states. Bob is a past President of the Georgia State Beekeepers Association (2008 and 2009). He is a past President of the Northeast GA. Mountain Beekeepers Association.

He was voted the 2003 Georgia State Beekeeper of the Year by the Georgia State Beekeepers Association.



Chris Davis ventured into beekeeping due to mine closures. Chris's wife Staci grew up around bees and her father kept hives for pollination of his crops. Her father actually talked Chris out of keeping bees in 1999 because of all the work and expense involved


In 2017 I bought my wife 10 hives off Knoxville Honey Company and split to 100 colonies. We are currently running 200 colonies and running 130 queen mating nucs for queen sales this year.


 Our motto is “Whatever it Takes” I personally feel that if you really want to do this and make a living at it and your hearts in the right place it can be done.

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Virginia has been awarded four gold medals at the World Honey Show for Best Honey in the World.
2005 in Dublin, Ireland, 2009 in Montpellier, France and 2013 in Kiev, Ukraine and 2015 Deajeon, South Korea.

Virginia is a third-generation beekeeper, and with her husband Carl, they manage more than 400 colonies of bees plus their queen yard.



Anthony Mowery lives on his ranch in East Tennessee and makes the Drink of the Viking Gods. Mead is a great by-product of honey bees. Anthony is working on building and opening his own Meadery and restaurant with his wife.

Anthony started making mead 6 years ago and won the first time he ever competed (2019 Honey show).

Learn what mead is and how to make the drink of the gods with Anthony. He will teach you about the passion he has and the one you soon will.



Clint Gay has spent time in the commercial yards and at bee events all over North America in the effort to help beekeepers.

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