Peter McAvoy

Adjunct Professor, Environmental Attorney, Water Policy Consultant
Water Policy Consultant


Peter McAvoy is the former Director of the Center for Water Policy at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee’s School of Freshwater Sciences. Under the sponsorship of the Brico Fund, a philanthropic organization based in Milwaukee Wisconsin, McAvoy worked with the University’s Chancellor and senior faculty at the School of Freshwater Sciences to establish the Center for Water Policy. He also serves as an Adjunct Professor at the School and Brico Senior Fellow for Law and the Environment teaching a water law class and works with partners from the private sector, government and the academic community to shape new water resource policies and programs for Wisconsin and the Great Lakes Region, including the effective implementation of the landmark Great Lakes Compact.

During his career Peter McAvoy has held a number of senior management and consulting positions with federal, state and local governments and the private sector on air, land and water quality issues and has served on numerous advisory committees and boards. He served as Vice President of the Sixteenth Street Community Health Center’s Department of Environmental Health administering programs for reducing the health risks for children who are exposed to environmental hazards and under his leadership the Health Center was instrumental in developing public and private sector partnerships that are revitalizing Milwaukee’s Menomonee River Valley and the Kinnickinnic River Corridor.

Earlier in his career McAvoy was the Great Lakes and Pacific Regional Administrator for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s U.S. Coastal Management Program. He served on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency/State Department’s international negotiating team that resulted in major revisions in the U.S. / Canada Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement, for which he received EPA’s Bronze Medal for his technical management and legal support during the negotiations. He also served as the Governor of Wisconsin’s lead person on developing acid rain, protections for the Great Lakes and soil conservation legislation in the 1980’s.


JD, Marquette University, 1975
MS, Environmental Studies/Urban & Regional Planning, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1972
BS, Resource Development, Michigan State University, 1968