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Spider Woman

Pete Springer/OPB

Lewis & Clark biology professor Greta Binford — whose research focuses on spiders — has been named Oregon Professor of the Year. Several years ago, Binford was the subject of a lenghty New Yorker article focused on her passion for research and her penchant for hunting spiders in basements. In addition to her insatiable curiosity about arachnids, the arachnologist has a passion for teaching. She sees spiders as vital to understanding larger concepts.

We are surrounded by them. There’s probably one within 10 feet of you. If they went away, we’d be overrun by insects…I feel really passionately about biodiversity and people understanding what it is and why it’s important.

This isn’t the only honor Binford has received for her work with spiders. Earlier this year, an Australian spider species was named after her. It’s called the Austrarchaea binfordae.

Are you passionate about biology? How about spiders? What would you like to ask Greta Binford about her work?


  • Greta Binford: Associate professor of biology at Lewis & Clark College
awards lewis and clark college science teacher

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OPB | Broadcast: Nov. 28, 2011