Chesterton Tribune



Dunes State Park naturalist Brad Bumgardner hired by Indiana Audubon

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Former Indiana Dunes State Park interpretive naturalist, Brad Bumgardner, has been named the new executive director for the Indiana Audubon Society (IAS).

Bumgardner--who starts with the society this month--will be the statewide organization’s first executive director, IAS said in a statement released this week.

Bumgardner began his career with DNR at Pokagon State Park, near Angola, and was most recently the head of the interpretive services at Indiana Dunes State Park, where he was instrumental in creating the hugely successful and award-winning Indiana Dunes Birding Festival.

Bumgardner, himself a superb birder, quickly became a key player in the Northwest Indiana birding community, and did much in Nature Center programming to promote birding as a family activity.

The Connersville-based Indiana Audubon Society, founded in 1898, is the oldest conservation organization continuously operating in Indiana and predates the formation of the National Audubon Society.

“Bumgardner will lead the society as it focuses on inspiring a new generation of conservationists statewide, through its stewardship programs in education, conservation, and citizen science initiatives.” IAS President Jeff Canada said.

“Indiana Audubon is a great organization, and its goals and vision couldn’t be any more important right now,” Bumgardner said. “Growing up as a camping kid around the state, I got the opportunity to see all the great resources that we’ve protected, but I also saw potential. I see the opportunity to get the word out on what Indiana Audubon is doing, and how nature enthusiasts can learn why these places, including IAS’s own Mary Gray Bird Sanctuary, are so important to birds and other wildlife.”

Bumgardner previously served as IAS president from 2012-14 and currently serves on the board of the Northwest Indiana Migratory Bird Association. He will work out of Chesterton, where he lives with his family.

To learn more about the Indiana Audubon Society and to search for programs near you, visit


Posted 7/14/2017





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