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Ken Graham, Director of NHC, named Director of National Weather Service


Ken has a really good handle on day-to-day operations of NWS offices and should make a fine Director of NWS. The previous director, Louis Uccellini, had a primary interest in computer models and, to my knowledge, had never worked in a NWS field forecast office.

It is somewhat concerning that they are moving the NHC director out just as hurricane season begins. Uccellini retired at the beginning of the year, so there was plenty of time to make a decision. That said, selections for NWS Director typically take quite a bit of time.
 
NOAA's original director, Robert White, had a background in meteorology. Since 1975, NOAA has never had a director that knew anything about real-time meteorological operations. That is still true today and it is true of NOAA's entire top management.

NWS, most of the time since the 1950's, has had theoreticians and researchers as directors (Cressman, Halgren, Uccellini) and military (Friday, Hayes, Kelly) and no leaders who understood the demands of operational NWS meteorology and the pressures on field offices.

Ken is exactly what the NWS needs at this time. If NOAA will allow him to do his job, he will be an outstanding leader of the organization and will make it, once again, a superb asset for the nation.
 
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