The Anchorage Chapter of the American Meteorological Society, which was originally founded in 1941, provides Anchorage and its surrounding communities with information regarding important and fascinating weather topics. The chapter's mission has been the development and dissemination of the knowledge of atmospheric and related oceanic and hydrologic sciences and the advancement of their professional applications. Additionally, our chapter provides the community with a social and scientific point of contact from meteorological, hydrological, and other related scientific interests.
One of the chapter's strengths is its diverse membership. Our chapter has members from civilian government agencies, the military, the private sector, universities, local schools, and the local community.
Since its re-establishment in 1996, our chapter has held many meetings, all of which included a guest speaker from a weather-related field. Some memorable past speakers include Lt. General Norty Schwartz, Commander of the Alaskan Command; Dr. Jim Simpson, Director at the Scripps Institute of Oceanography; Mr. Pat Poe, Director of the FAA Alaska Region; Jack Kelly, Director of the NWS; Dr. Ants Leetmaa, Director of the CPC; and Mr. Kent Johnson, Manager of the Canadian Mountain Meteorology Center.
Our chapter has also enlisted numerous local guest speakers who have given weather-related presentations to the community.
The Chapter Member of the Year Award is our way of recognizing the chapter member who has contributed the most to improving our chapter and who has had a positive influence within the chapter and the local community. This award, given to a nonexecutive committee member, is presented during the final meeting of the season. The winner is recognized for his/her efforts and is given a plaque and prize.
Participation in community activities is an important part of the chapter outreach program. Some activities include involvement in the Alaska Science & Engineering Fair, school talks, and tours of weather facilities. Awards, such as NOAA Weather Radios, are presented to all science fair winners courtesy of chapter sponsors and through the use of membership dues.
One of the most anticipated activities of the chapter each season is the Annual Forecast Contest. Anyone can participate in the contest. Winners receive prizes donated by local businesses.
Our chapter was recently asked to act as the regional hub for evaluating the AMS/Industry Minority Scholarships. Our chapter helps with the collection and initial screening process of the scholarship applications. The chapter is committed to assisting Alaska's science students in furthering their education.