Kenneth A. Farley is a noble gas isotope geochemist and Professor of Geochemistry at the California Institute of Technology. He holds the W. M. Keck Foundation professorship and is the chairman of the Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences at Caltech. Farley specializes in the study of the accumulation of cosmic dust on seafloor sediments through analysis of the presence of Helium-3 and in the isotopic composition of mid-oceanic volcanic island basalts. Farley earned a B.S. in chemistry at Yale University in 1986 and his Ph.D. in geochemistry at the University of California, San Diego in 1991 under the guidance of Scripps Institution of Oceanography geochemist Harmon Craig. In 2000, to recognize the innovative and potentially beneficial nature of his research, Farley was awarded the National Academy of Science Award for Initiatives in Research.