Kelsey Florek

Data Science,
and Public Health.

A passion for applying creative approaches towards improving health in our communities

Starting from a fascination with host-virus interactions and a desire to improve the world around me I have sought out a career in microbiology where I am currently a Senior Genomics and Data Scientist at the Wisconsin State Laboratory of Hygiene (WSLH). Borne out of a love for data I specialize in developing and implementing cloud based solutions to solve complex genomic and biological questions. My work involves a combination microbiology, bioinformatics, statistics, and software development and I spend most of my time applying novel computational methodologies and building genomics and data analytics capacity both within the WSLH and the greater public health community.


A few notable projects that I have supported include a repository of containerized applications StaPH-B Docker Builds; a toolkit of software and workflows for public health bioinformaticians StaPH-B ToolKit; and a dashboard for displaying SARS-CoV-2 genomic surveillance in Wisconsin WI SARS-CoV-2 Genomic Dashboard. You can find most of my work on github . These projects include a variety of technologies including AWS, Terraform, Nextflow, Python, R, Bash, Nodejs, Docker, as well as a variety of genomics, machine learning, and evolutionary biology tools.


To further the advancement bioinformatics in public health I am is a steering committee member of StaPH-B a consortium of public health bioinformaticians committed to addressing the barriers affecting genomics in state public health laboratories. My work involves working closely with the Association of Public Health Laboratories and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to develop pathways towards enhancing the public health workforce and improving access to data insights.

In my spare time I enjoy creative ventures such as watercolor painting, photography, and board games along with active hobbies like hiking and roller skating.