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Dave Applegate, Ph.D.

Currently exercising the delegated authority of the Director, U.S. Geological Survey.

As Associate Director for Natural Hazards, Dave Applegate oversees the geologic hazard and coastal and marine programs of the USGS and coordinates the hazard response and planning activities for the bureau.

Dave Applegate is the Associate Director for Natural Hazards. In that role, he leads USGS hazards planning and response activities and oversees the Coastal & Marine Geology, Earthquake Hazards, Global Seismographic Network, Geomagnetism, Landslide Hazards, and Volcano Hazards Programs. He co-chairs the interagency Science for Disaster Reduction working group and co-leads the Department of the Interior’s Strategic Sciences Group. Applegate came to the USGS in 2004 as the first Senior Science Advisor for Earthquake and Geologic Hazards. 

In addition to his USGS duties, Applegate is an adjunct full professor in the University of Utah's Department of Geology and Geophysics. He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the Geological Society of America and is a past president of the Geological Society of Washington.

Prior to joining the USGS, Applegate spent eight years with the American Geological Institute federation of geoscience societies, where he directed science policy and served as the editor of Geotimes. Applegate has also served with the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources as the American Geophysical Union's Congressional Science Fellow and as a professional staff member.

Education and Certifications

  • Ph.D. in geology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

  • B.S. in geology from Yale University

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