Profile for Thomas Volk

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Thomas Volk

University of Wisconsin-La Crosse

Specialty area(s)

Mycology, Plant Pathology, especially Forest Pathology

Brief biography

Tom Volk is a Professor of Biology at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. He teaches courses on Mycology, Medical Mycology, Plant-Microbe Interactions, Food & Industrial Mycology, Advanced Mycology, Organismal Biology and Latin & Greek for Scientists. His internet web page, Tom Volk's Fungi <> has a popular "Fungus of the Month" feature, and an extensive introduction to the Kingdom Fungi. Besides dabbling in mushroom cultivation, Tom has worked on the genera Morchella (morels), Cantharellus (chanterelles), Hydnellum (a tooth fungus), Armillaria (honey mushrooms) and Laetiporus (chicken of the woods, or sulfur shelf), as well as several medical mycology projects, prairie mycorrhizae, mycoprospecting, and fungi involved in coal formation. He also has conducted fungal biodiversity studies in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Alaska, and Israel. Having lectured in 35 states so far, Tom is a popular speaker at many amateur and professional mycological events throughout North America, including many NAMA and NEMF forays.

Current courses at UWL

Mycology, Medical Mycology, Plant-Microbe Interactions,Organismal Biology, Latin & Greek for Scientists,


Teaching history

Mycology, Medical Mycology, Plant-Microbe Interactions, Intro Bio 105, Organismal Biology, Genetics Labs, Advanced mycology, Food & Industrial Mycology, Plant Biology, Biology Capstone, Graduate Seminar. 

Professional history

August 1996-present   Professor of Biology, University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.  Twenty students have earned Master of Science degrees in my lab.  Sabbatical Awarded May 2009- August 2010. 

Postdoctoral Research Mycologist with Dr. Harold H. Burdsall, Jr., USDA Forest Products Lab, Madison Nov. 1989‑August 1996

Postdoctoral Research Associate with Dr. Thomas J. Leonard, University of Wisconsin- Madison, June 1988-December 1989

Ph.D., Botany (minor Genetics) University of Wisconsin‑Madison 1988 with T. J. Leonard  "Experimental Studies on the Morel"

Bachelor of Science in Botany: Ohio University, Honors Tutorial College, Athens, OH, June 1980, Phi Beta Kappa, "With Highest Honor" 


Research and publishing

about 35 papers in various mycological areas.



Tom Volk, Biology, was named President of the Mycology Society of America. The Mycological Society of America is a scientific society dedicated to advancing the science of mycology - the study of fungi of all kinds including mushrooms, molds, truffles, yeasts, lichens, plant pathogens, and medically important fungi.

Submitted on: July 25, 2017