Ken Bradbury became the Director of the Wisconsin Geological and Natural History Survey (WGNHS) in 2015. Ken joined the Survey in 1982 as a hydrogeologist after completing his PhD in geology at UW–Madison. Prior to that, he earned a bachelor’s degree at Ohio Wesleyan and a master’s degree at Indiana University, both in geology. His research in Wisconsin has contributed to important insights into flow through fractured rocks, transport of viruses in the subsurface, wellhead protection, regional hydrogeology, and recharge processes.
As the Director and State Geologist, Ken provides leadership, direction and coordination for planning, implementation and evaluation of Survey programs, working with Assistant Directors Pete Schoephoester and Sushmita Lotlikar.
Ken grew up on a dairy farm in Indiana. He and his wife live outside of Oregon, Wisconsin, where their two children grew up. Ken often bikes to work in Madison, weather permitting, and enjoys hiking, camping, and cross-country skiing. He has completed the Birkebeiner ski marathon 30 times and hiked the entire Appalachian Trail in 1978.
Over the past 30 years, Ken has become a leader in communicating technical information for water policy and management decisions. As Survey Director, he continues to manage and review technical work by Survey staff and lead projects including our Chequamegon-Nicolet work for the US Forest Service, the nitrate initiative work for the Wisconsin DNR, the Bayfield County Atlas project, and our USGS funded StateMap projects. Find out more about Ken.