University of South Florida

College of The Arts

University of South Florida

USF Art Professor Bradlee Shanks Rides Out Hurricane Michael in a House He Built

Monday, October 15, 2018

selfie photo of Bradlee Shanks in a yellow raincoat

Bradlee Shanks, USF professor in printmaking and drawing, hunkered down in his hurricane-resistant house off the coast of the Florida panhandle as Hurricane Michael passed over the area last week.

Despite the power of the category 4 storm, Shanks' reinforced Dog Island home held strong.

He constructed the home himself in 2003 with special structural considerations to withstand forces of nature.

Shanks' story received national and local media attention in the days following the storm. 

It is documented in an article in the USA Today Network and a phone interview with Brian Williams of MSNBC.

While Shanks' house was fortunate to have withstood the hurricane, other homes on the island, largely vacation homes, received catastrophic damage.

Press coverage

MSNBC: Dog Island resident: I don't regret my decision to stay during Hurricane Michael

Tallahassee Democrat (USA Today Network): The Dog Island holdout: USF prof's 'Cat-5' house stands strong against Hurricane Michael

Northwest Florida Daily News: Dog Island resident assesses damage after Hurricane Michael

Apalachicola Times: Dog Island resident stays behind as Michael nears