Chapter News
May 2006


The Asheville Chapter of the American Meteorological Society held its sixth meeting for 2005-2006 in the Meteorology Lab, Robinson Hall, University of North Carolina at Asheville (UNCA), at 7:00 pm on Tuesday, May 2, 2006. Eleven people attended the meeting.

Business Meeting

Old Business

The Vice President of the Chapter, Mike Cuevas presided at the meeting. The treasurer's report was read and approved. The March meeting minutes were read and approved.

New Business

Susan Tarbell, Secretary of the Chapter, discussed the next meeting to be held at the Colburn Earth and Science Museum in Asheville, in late June. There will be a tour of the new Atmospheric Science Exhibit at the museum.

Guest Speaker

Mike Cuevas introduced the speaker for the evening: Mr. Bruce Burleson, GIS Manager, at the Air Force Combat Climatology Center, in Asheville, NC. He served as a topographic engineer in the Army and worked with Defense Mapping Agency now called the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA). His topic was "Introduction to Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Applications."

Mr. Burleson started off with a quote from Dr. Roger Tomlinson, considered the "Father of GIS." "A Geographic Information System stores spatial data with logically linked attribute information in a GIS storage database where analytical functions are controlled interactively by a human operator to generate the needed information products." Spatial is a position on the earth's surface. Geospatial Information and Services (GI&S) is the broad reference to all disciplines related to spatial information to include GIS, photogrammetry, remote sensing, multispectral imagery, cartography, mapping, charting, geodesy, surveying, terrain analysis, etc.

At the Air Force Combat Climatology Center, GIS is used to visualize, manage, and analyze data; to display data from disparate sources; as a link between map features and tabular data; and for internet applications. The data is received from multiple sources such as: tornadoes from National Climatic Data Center; roads, counties, and towns from ESRI (industry leader of GIS modeling and mapping software and technology); and digital terrain elevation data from the NGA. Maps can be made by using GIS.

Bruce then showed various slides of analyzed data. A tracking analyst is designed to load, display, and analyze temporal event data. Temporal event data can be either real-time or fixed-time (historic, planned, modeled data). Tracking temporal data is divided into four segments: dynamic, discrete, stationary, and change. Dynamic data is something that moves such as planes, vehicles, animals, satellites, and storms. Discrete data is something that "just happens" such as crimes, lightning, accidents, or winning a NC lottery. Stationary data stands still but records changes such as weather stations or traffic sensors. Change is population growth for instance. Even while data "ages," it is possible to symbolize the data to see how old it is while replaying the data, and/or viewing real-time data.

Replay looks at temporal data in a straight line, which starts at time A and ends at time B. However, you can then use the "temporal offset" function to move data in time so it overlaps each other and can be viewed at the same time. Mr. Burleson gave an example of hurricanes in three years, 1994-1996. The analyst can then symbolize each event or multiple events. For instance, the Air Force uses "Operational Climatic Data Summary" (OCDS) data quite frequently. This product is put out by the Air Force Combat Climatology Center and is very important for the deployment of our troops to places such as Iraq or Afghanistan.

After questions from the audience, the meeting was adjourned by Mike Cuevas.---Susan A. Tarbell.


The Southwest Pennsylvania Chapter of the AMS is proud to announce the results of the annual election with Jonathan Jennings voted as President, Joel Hoffman as Vice President, Matthew Owens as Treasurer, Michael Allen as Secretary, and Kyle Olmstead as Historian. Chapter Advisor, Dr. Chad Kauffman, announced the election results at the annual end-of-the-year banquet on May 4, 2006. At a prior meeting, a slate of nominees were voted upon by the entire chapter body. All nominees were pre-approved by a set of academic guidelines and participation requirements with a promise to represent the organization well.

Upon appointment, an Educational Outreach Committee was formed on May 5, 2006. Katie Mercadante, Joshua Eachus, Amanda Smith, Kevin Lowrie, and David Kraeer will all participate in the effort. Reaching out to the community is an important goal for this year's executive board and appointing these energetic individuals will provide the needed ability to complete this goal. Students will not only visit the local elementary and high schools to discuss topics like tornadoes, fires, and floods, but they will also bring organizations (e.g., Boy & Girl Scout troops) onto the California University campus in order that they may earn merit badges.

A charitable event called the American Cancer Walk takes place in many U.S. cities. This year, five students from the Southwest Pennsylvania Chapter of American Meteorological Society helped organize a local walk on May 6. Not only did they help support the search for a cure for cancer, but they also played an important role in setting up for the festivities and volunteering time. Their efforts directly impacted the Pittsburgh community.

May 16, 2006 marked the beginning of the Annual Storm Intercept trip for our chapter. For eleven days, ten students traveled through 'Tornado Alley' chasing storms under the guidance of Dr. Jaime Mitchem. Daily weather briefings, quizzes from Dr. Charles Doswell's writings on 'chase etiquette,' and a journal explaining all we did were completed by students. With rapidly changing atmospheric conditions, forecasting teams became familiar with Nowcasting techniques through available radar imagery, NOAA weather radios, and the Storm Prediction Center (SPC) discussions. All these activities provided important educational information for our chase.---Michael J. Allen.


The Central Illinois Chapter of the American Meteorological Society (AMS) met on May 2, 2006 at the Maverick Steak House in Decatur, Illinois. 19 people attended the meeting.

Presidents Report

Mike Kruk, chapter president, relayed that our application for Chapter of the Year was submitted on April 20, 2006. He also relayed that outreach activities by Chris Miller Warning Coordination Meteorologist of the Lincoln Weather Service Office and by efforts by the CIAMS Education Committee over the last several months, has resulted in the chapter gaining 6 new members. Mike also presented information from a National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) representative who contacted him regarding the posting of a NASA newsletter on the chapter's web site. Mike passed the information around for other members for comment. Action regarding the posting of this newsletter will be decided later this month.

Treasurer's Report

Llyle Barker, reported that as of May 2, 2006, thirty-four full members, one associate member, and one student member have paid their dues. Total dues income as of May 2, 2006 is $516.00: Fund activity since the past meeting included reimbursement for the 3/16/06 speaker's meal and a deposit of dues payments. The General Funds balance is $1574.81. No conference fund actions have been made since the last meeting. Prior to voting, during this May 2 meeting, three additional full members paid their dues.

Education/Public Outreach

On April 29th, Mike Spinar, Sam Shea, and Leslie Ensor of the CIAMS Education Committee administered the weather portion of the exam for the State Science Olympiad Competition held in Urbana, IL. The committee worked with the Lincoln Weather Service Office to draft the exam. The committee will be preparing the weather portion of the National Science Olympiad exam, and administering it at the National Competition that will be on May 20, 2006 in Bloomington, Indiana.

Upcoming Meetings

The next meeting of the CIAMS will be held at the Beef House in Indiana, Thursday, July 20th, 2006. This will be our annual meeting with the Indiana Chapter of the AMS.

The annual election was conducted by Mike Kruk and Tom Bellinger, CIAMS president and present-elect of the Chapter, respectively, with membership verification by the CIAMS treasurer, Llyle Barker.

Annual Election Results, 2006 - 2007 Officers
President - Tom Bellinger (was President-Elect for 2005-2006)
President Elect - Ernie Goetsch
Secretary - Ed Shimon
Treasurer - Mary Schoen-Peterson
By Mike Spinar and Nancy Westcott

Jay Searles, graduate of the University of North Dakota and the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, past forecaster for the National Weather Service, and current broadcast meteorologist, presented a talk entitled "The Ins and Outs of TV Weather". Jay gave his personal assessment of the field of broadcast meteorology. He discussed the competitive nature of the field and the impacts that competitiveness has on job searches and performance. In addition, he spoke on the unique role of television meteorologists as "station scientists", responsible for educating the public about earth science systems in a condensed and time-dependent format. This education initiative is being pushed strongly by the AMS at the national level. As this new role is adopted by stations in several important markets, professional meteorologists will need to adapt. Jay pointed out that there is some room for improvement in weather broadcasting in several respects: work remains to be done to balance personality with technical skill, profit with quality, and entertainment with information. Stations that can do this successfully and make a solid commitment to their weather segment will be able to "win the market with weather."


After questions the meeting adjourned around 9:00 PM.---Nancy Westcott.


The Chicago Chapter of the AMS held its annual May banquet meeting with Dr. David Houghton, Professor Emeritus University of Wisconsin-Madison, as the featured speaker with his presentation on "Global Warming - Fiction, Facts, Uncertainties, Challenges and Impacts".

Dr. Houghton began his presentation by explaining the challenges of dealing with climate change. One has to understand the science before relating the issues to the non-scientific community. Climate change has a wide range of impacts across the whole planet. Dr. Houghton noted that the history of climate change could be traced to 1896 in Sweden with a carbon dioxide warming theory due to coal burning. A number of unconvinced people in regards to climate change say that the global warming theory remains unproved and that if the weather folks can't predict what the weather will be like next week, how they will know what the weather will be like in fifty years!

Dr. Houghton then brought up the facts about global warming. He showed a graph of the global - mean surface temperature anomaly from the years 1880 to 2000 that illustrated an increase of 0.2C per decade with a more sustained increase in the last 25 years. Various other graphs showed the global mean temperature is increasing with 2005 being the warmest recent year, globally. He also stated that possible abrupt changes in the Gulf Stream and the melting of glaciers and ice sheets don't figure in the model input for the prediction of climate change.

Dr. Houghton mentioned the human influences on the atmosphere the last 100 years and the uncertainties that go along with it such as future emissions scenarios and impacts in agriculture throughout the world. Population, economy, technology and land use (agriculture) are the driving forces of human impact on climate change. Dr. Houghton showed a chart of the 2004 portions of carbon dioxide emissions in which the United States and China were responsible for over a third of the world's emissions. Climate change impacts on the environment and humans include terrestrial ecosystems such as agriculture and forests, ocean systems with respect to sea levels, human systems in regards to energy and human health. Then there's atmospheric systems impact on climate change which include more floods, droughts and extreme weather.

Dr. Houghton concludes his presentation by saying that climate change is a very complex issue. Many countries are falling short of their goals concerning the environment and global warming. Humans are changing the earth and atmospheric conditions. Anthropogenic climate change has scientific basis.---Kevin Kraujalis.


May 18, 2006

This meeting started with a lunch at the Town and Country Kitchen in east Norton. The 13 members, one being new, arrived in spurts, due to road construction, office meetings, etc. The lunch was followed by a business meeting, then a presentation by President Dave Floyd/GLD, outlining new means of receiving radar data in the field, such as when chasing storms. His talk centered on remote access to data using GRLevel2 and GRLevel3 software. Many members present thought the relatively inexpensive GRLevel2 software could be a good learning tool in NWS offices, especially since radar cross sections were so easy to produce and manipulate.

Call to order. The meeting was called to order at 1:28 PM. New Secretary Tim Burke/DDC read the minutes from the 1/25/06 meeting, and the minutes were accepted as read. These 1/25/06 minutes were prepared by outgoing Secretary Mike Lammers/GLD.

Treasurer's report. Vice President Christina Hannon/LBF gave the treasurer's report for Treasurer Matt Masek/LBF, who was unable to attend. The chapter treasury balance was $1347.61 at the last meeting, 1/25/06, and as of May 17, 06 was at $830.50. There were several expenses since the last meeting, and some dues came in, but the details of the treasury were not available at the writing of these minutes.

Old Business. A report was given by Matt Gerard/DDC on the status of the upcoming HP10 conference to be held in Dodge City, October 4-6, 2006. The location will be at the Dodge House Hotel and Convention Center, on the west side of Dodge City. A call for papers had been sent out, and 1 abstract had been received as of May 18th. Two prominent Key Note speakers have been confirmed, and two more are being worked on. Another Key Note speaker is being sought for the Thursday evening banquet, with one lead already being followed up. Matt showed the design chosen for the conference theme and t-shirts; it was popular by most members and will be the background for our conference registration page. This conference page will be a link off our chapter webpage,, and should be posted by June 15th. Discussion around the Student paper/presentation contest centered on separating the competition into two categories, one for undergraduates and one for graduates. The prize money for will be divided, and at least given to each 1st place winner. If there are a large number of submissions, a 2nd place may be awarded; this will be determined shortly before the conference. The chapter also discussed having a section of the conference for storm chasers, with perhaps a late evening video swap Thursday evening, after the banquet.

There was good support for a pre-conference workshop, probably at the WFO DDC office, mainly for NWS personnel, focusing on new approaches to AWIPS, IFPS, and operations. The logistics of hosting this workshop (time) will have to worked out, and surrounding offices will be notified and invited.

New Business. President Dave Floyd led a discussion on membership. We currently have 44 members, mostly from the NWS. Members should make an effort to recruit new members, especially from sources outside the NWS, such as media meteorologists, professors, emergency managers, etc. Our chapter by-laws state that a quorum at our chapter meetings will consist of at least one-half the current members. Since our meetings typically draw much fewer than one half of our members, perhaps our definition of what makes a quorum needs to be revised, so matters can be voted on and accepted at a meeting. Pres. Dave Floyd will send out an email vote on this issue. Another question that arose was whether or not our chapter was tax-exempt. Dave was going to check with Aaron Johnson/GID and/or Bruce Entwistle/GLD on our tax-exempt status.

Adjournment. The meeting adjourned at 2:09 PM. A next meeting date/place was tentatively set for late July or early August in Hays. Secretary Tim Burke volunteered to try to set up this meeting, and notify all members when this has been arranged. (Our VP, Christina Hannon, will be on her honeymoon at that time!)

Summary The High Plains Chapter of the AMS met for lunch on May 18th, 2006 at the Town and Country Kitchen in Norton, KS. There were 13 members in attendance, with one new member present. The lunch was followed by a business meeting. After the meeting, President Dave Floyd/GLD gave a presentation, outlining new means of receiving radar data in the field, such as when chasing storms. His talk centered on remote access to data using GRLevel2 and GRLevel3 software. Many members present thought the relatively inexpensive GRLevel2 software could be a good learning tool in NWS offices, especially since radar cross sections were so easy to produce and manipulate.

The meeting flowed smoothly, with the main topic of conversation being the upcoming High Plains 10 conference in Dodge City, scheduled for October 4-6, 2006. A good conference is being lined up, with a reasonable price of $60 and all events at one hotel/convention center. This year's theme is "Severe Weather in the High Plains" - all types. Two keynote speakers are firmed up, Dr. Paul M. Markowski from Penn State University and Dr. David M. Schultz of CIMMS/University of Oklahoma. Other keynote speakers are being solicited. We are once again sponsoring a student presentation contest, with a sizable cash award for each of two categories, graduates and undergraduates. The conference will run from Wednesday afternoon, all day Thursday, and Friday morning, leaving Wednesday morning and Friday afternoon open for travel time. There will be a banquet Thursday evening, a video swap session late Thursday, and a challenging forecast contest the DDC staff is putting together. WFO DDC is also putting a workshop together for NWS personnel, to be held either before or during the conference. This workshop will center on AWIPS, IFPS and operational issues. A very novel conference t-shirt has been designed, which should be a hit with storm chasers. All conference information will be updated via our chapter website, Registration information should be posted by the end of June.

The next meeting was tentatively set for late July or early August in Hays.---Dave Floyd and Tim Burke.


On the evening of Wednesday, May 31st, the night before the official start of Hurricane Season 2006, we were very fortunate to have Mr. Stacy Stewart (Senior Hurricane Specialist / Warning Coordination Meteorologist) from the Tropical Prediction Center speak to our group in downtown Houston. His discussion centered about the history of tropical cyclone formation and track data. He utilized this data to better understand the recent upswing in Atlantic/Gulf basin hurricane frequency, and most importantly, tropical cyclone intensity. Mr. Stewart made it a point to state that, not only have the number of hurricanes increased in the past few years, but that the number of major hurricanes (Category 3 - 5) have had the most significant jump!

Mr. Stewart presented many slides of a statistical nature that displayed the frequency of all hurricanes along a normalized curve that went back into the pre-satellite years of the 1940s. All of his slides pretty much ended on one major point: There is no reason at this time to believe that this season will be any different than in recent years in terms of heightened hurricane frequency!

Mr. Stewart used various methods to drive home the fact that this season will once again be very active from explaining the currently-favorable near-neutral ENSO pattern which aids in a favorable environment for hurricane formation and their continued existence to explaining the Tropical Prediction Center's total Accumulated Cyclone Energy index (A.C.E.) which, by the way, was pegged at over 260% above normal during last year's season!

One key point that stands out was the mention that no 2005 hurricane that directly affected the U.S. was a Cape Verde storm, or of African origin. Of the many reasons for this was the environment these Ivory Coast waves were encountering as they made their way into the Atlantic. Increased vertical wind shear (at all levels) aided in keeping these waves just that, waves, while not allowing a closed circulation to ever develop in their westerly evolution. Of course, global conditions were of such a nature that the typical Hadley Cell circulations, along with the subtropical high positioning, allowed tropical cyclones to form in the Gulf of Mexico / Caribbean basins or originate in the Eastern Pacific and traverse within the westerlies across Mexico into the western Gulf. This is very bad news in the sense of hurricane preparedness. Cape Verde storms are typically better forecasted storms due to their longer tracks versus a storm which forms in the Gulf, very close to the lives of millions TPC is trying to protect!---Patrick Blood.


Southern California and the "Perfect Drought"

Two factors contribute to coastal Southern California's high sensitivity to drought. First, the region receives low and highly variable annual precipitation totals. The 1895-present average is only 17" with 14 of those years receiving less than 10" of rain. Moreover, local water supplies are insufficient to meet demands even during "normal" rainfall years. The area relies upon one of the world's most elaborate and efficient aqueduct systems to import water from other regions. What happens if Southern California and the source regions of water importation all experience a prolonged drought simultaneously?...A "Perfect Drought"... Dr. Glen MacDonald, chair of the geography department of the University of California at Los Angeles, shared his research on this subject to the Los Angeles chapter at their annual May banquet.

MacDonald mapped out the region's water sources which includes runoff from the Sierra Nevada winter snow pack via the California and Los Angeles Aqueducts and flows from the Colorado River. A drought which simultaneously impacts Southern California along with the Sierra Nevada and Sacramento River region, the southwest Rocky Mountains and Colorado River Basin is of great concern. This regional drought would be amplified today due to the exceedingly high water demands from the massive population growths in Los Angeles, Las Vegas and Phoenix.

Southern California's Aqueduct System

A perfect drought scenario has occurred, most recently during the 1987-1991 period (see figure). During this period, Southern California precipitation and the flows of the Sacramento and Colorado River systems were below average. The synoptic pattern for this drought and many other "perfect droughts" include a strong blocking ridge over the West with the polar jet stream well to the north of the region. A correlation between La Nina conditions and the synoptic scale blocking pattern was discovered. Water management agencies like the Metropolitan Water District (MWD) of Southern California have planned for and are effective at dealing with droughts in the 3-6 year range. However, a perfect drought across the West lasting up to a decade or even longer could be quite problematic.

Geographic extent of the 1990 drought across the Southwest using the Palmer Drought Severity Index

Being that empirical precipitation data only extends back about 125 years, MacDonald and his research team turned to tree ring data (dendroclimatology) to ascertain the frequency of perfect drought scenarios over the last several centuries. Trees in and around Southern California and the Sacramento and Colorado Rivers were analyzed and allowed for reconstruction of the precipitation records back to the 16th century. Narrow tree rings indicated low precipitation and decreased river flows while wider rings were indicative of wet years. A comparison between the tree ring data and actual precipitation totals over the most recent decades showed a positive and accurate correlation.

Tree Ring Sampling

MacDonald's data showed that perfect drought conditions prevailed in the late 1500's, late 1700's and mid 1800's. His research proved that prefect droughts are a natural and expected phenomenon in the West once or twice a century. Although research is still underway to determine the cause of the long period widespread drought, MacDonald found a correlation with the negative "cool phase" of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO). This pattern tends to lock in La Nina conditions across the eastern Pacific which often produces a blocking pattern and drought conditions for parts of the West. MacDonald concluded his presentation by indicating that some data suggests that warming of the earth resulting from less volcanic activity and increased sun spots favors a negative phase PDO pattern and the corresponding drought conditions.

*No approval for use of maps or pictures was given-I just grabbed them off the web (public domain)…---Rick Dickert.


GBM Minutes 5-3-06
Start Time: 7:03pm
Attendance: 36

Ryan Andrew Eric Rich Joe End Time: 7:58pm---Laura Ballard.


Meeting Minutes-May 2, 2006

Mr. Jeff Last, Warning Coordination Meteorologist with the NWS office in Green Bay, conducted his annual Storm Spotter Training to an enthusiastic group at the U.W.G.B. Christie Theater. Trained storm spotters play an important role with the NWS. They act as "eyes" in the field and provide vital information used in weather warnings, etc. Subjects covered by Mr. Last included, storm spotter basics, ingredients and development of thunderstorms, identifying types of thunderstorms, tornadoes, safety issues, and reporting procedures. A short quiz and questions and answers wrapped up the night.

In local chapter business, newly elected officers were introduced. The results of the election are as follows:
Advisory Council: Gary Austin, Gary Baier, Dave Miller
Secretary: Brian Hulse
Treasurer: Peg Zenko
Vice President: Jim Brey
President: Steve Meyer
On a personal note, this is my last PCAMS meeting minutes. It has been a pleasure to be associated with such a fine group of folks, and such an active AMS chapter. My family and I will be transferred to the Ft. Worth, TX area in the spring, and hopefully I will find an active group in that area. The storm chasing should provide to be quite interesting in North Texas.---Dale Walker.


PSUBAMS Soars to New Heights in 2005-2006

During the past year, the Penn State Branch of the American Meteorological Society has seen a dramatic increase in the quality of meetings and activities as well as the number students attending them. Membership and enthusiasm have risen significantly, which seems fitting for the largest and arguably the finest meteorology program in the nation.

Dr. Michael Mann, of Penn State, spoke about the role of El Niño in climate change. A recent Penn State graduate, ENS Matthew Glazewski, of NOAA Corps, educated his former peers on his position in the NOAA Corp. Dr. Andrew Kleit, professor of Energy, Business, and Finance, introduced a new forecasting competition that puts meteorologists and business majors head to head in a competitive market. Richard Grumm, of the National Weather Service, joined his fellow snow lovers and spoke about ensemble forecasts in winter weather prediction. Elliot Abrams, Senior Vice-President and Chief Forecaster for AccuWeather, presented a spin on the weather - its role in the American Revolution. Keith Westerledge, of The Weather Channel, spoke to a large group of students about broadcast meteorology. To round out the plethora of speakers, Brigadier General David L. Johnson, Director of the National Weather Service spoke about NWS and told students what they need to do if they want a job with the NWS in the future.

Along with these distinguished speakers PSUBAMS hosted an internship meeting to help students further their education outside of Penn State and a graduate school meeting for those preparing themselves for further study in the field.

As an ice breaker in the early fall, PSUBAMS organized an outing to a nearby minor league baseball game that served as a meet the faculty event. A date auction was held to raise money for charity. This event proved to be very successful as we had many members volunteer to auction themselves off and get to know new people. PSUBAMS also runs two competitions that serve as fundraisers, a t-shirt design and photo contest. Winners of the photo contest were featured in the PSUBAMS annual calendar that was for sale for all students and faculty during the holiday season. In the spring, the winning T-shirt design was printed on t-shirts that were sold at the end of the semester.

PSUBAMS worked hard to obtain funding from the Penn State University Park Allocation Committee to send 10 students to the 2006 annual AMS conference in Atlanta. Many other students obtained other funding sources (AMS grants, etc.) at the urging of the PSUBAMS officers, and nearly 30 Penn State students in total attended the annual meeting. There were several hundred Penn State alumni there as well, and many purchased PSUBAMS calendars left over from December. We displayed our poster at the annual meeting as well. We hope to continue sending many Penn State students to the annual meeting each year.

The newly elected PSUBAMS officers for 2006-2007 are:
President: Racheal Bliley (Senior)
Vice President: Andrew Hagen (Junior)
Treasurer: Beth Russell (Senior)
Secretary: Bryan Oshinski (Senior)---Andrew Hagen.


Meeting Minutes
Thursday, May 11, 2006

The meeting was called to order by chapter president Brian O'Hara at 5:32 pm PST. He welcomed the attendees and thanked them for coming.

Speaker 1:
Davis Zhu presented his research on air pollution in Cache Valley, UT. He found that the valley is ammonia-rich in the winter and nitrate-rich in the summer.

Weather briefing:
Phillip Marzette then gave the evening's weather briefing.

Speaker 2: Brian Brong, fire weather program leader at the National Weather Service Forecast Office in Reno, discussed the outlook for the upcoming fire weather season. He began by looking at last year's snow pack and drought and compared the results with this year's snow pack and drought. He concluded the potential of fires on the desert southwest, flooding due to the high flows in rivers and streams, and that the La Niña may weaken during the summer.

Officer reports:
There were no officer reports this meeting.

Committee reports:
There were no committee reports this meeting.

Unfinished business:
Brian O'Hara mentioned the submission of application to the AMS for consideration of "Chapter of the Year" or "Honor Roll" status. He will find out the results in October.

The attendees discussed the collecting cloud photos and photos of other types of weather phenomena. It was agreed that these photos could be used in the creation of a weather calendar that the chapter could do research for, and sell annually, as a fundraising project. Brian Billings will post on the chapter website the call for cloud photos from the public. More details (picture selection, binding, cost, etc.) of the weather calendar will be discussed at the September meeting.

New business:
Brian O'Hara announced that the National Weather Service Reno is having an Open House on Saturday, May 20, 2006 from 11:00am to 5:00pm PST. This event is open to the public and they will be releasing the daily weather balloon at 4:00pm.

Brian O'Hara discussed the possibility of a presentation about the Visualization Laboratory at DRI either during the summer or fall. Brian Billings explained that the Visualization Lab is a state-of-the-art 3-D lab. Check the website for more information:

Dr. Melanie Wetzel invited the students to attend the Northern Nevada Local Chapter for a presentation by Hal Klieforth entitled "The Classification of clouds and its Importance to Mesoscale Meteorology". This meeting will be held Tuesday, May 16, 2006 at 6:00pm. She also mentioned that students are welcome to attend the Local Chapter's picnic lunch on Sunday, June 4, 2006 at Manzanita Park.

The next chapter meeting will be Thursday, September 14, 2006 from 5:30-7:00pm PST.

The meeting was adjourned at 6:38 pm PST.---Serena Chew.


The Smoky Mountain Chapter of the AMS met on May 22nd at 6:30 pm in downtown Knoxville at the TVA west tower. Terry Twine (Lead Engineer in the River Scheduling group at the Tennessee Valley Authority) gave a presentation on scheduling the TVA reservoir system, followed by a tour of the River Forecast Center. After the presentation, everyone met at Barley’s Taproom in the Old City for dinner.---David Gaffin.


Minutes from the May 2006 meeting

Following a barbecue in the backyard of the NWS office, those attending moved to the Chanhassen WFO conference room to attend to important agenda items.

The draft constitution was unanimously referred back to the committee. The committee was asked to create a bare-bones constitution, and a separate publication consisting of the by-laws. The revised documents are expected to be voted upon at the first meeting (September 2006), following their publication in the newsletter.

We spent time evaluating what we did over the past year, and how we could improve upon that in the coming year. These suggestions were adopted:

1) Meetings are to be held the 3rd Tuesday of each month September through May.

2) Most meetings will be held either at the University of St. Thomas or the NWS office in Chanhassen. This provides for geographic diversity and both facilities have great audio visual hookups as well as high-speed Internet connectivity.

3) The May meeting will be a planning meeting for the following year.

4) Tentative meetings and locations for the 2006-07 year:
A. September - Le Cordon Bleu (arranged by Jonathan Cohen). The speaker is expected to be KSTP meteorologist Patrick Hammer who will talk about his forecasting experience on the West Coast (Seattle and Sacramento).
B. October - Meteorlogix - hosted by Jim Foerster
C. November - WFO - storm-chaser presentation (it's their off-season).
D. December - tour of a Twin Cities media station.
E. January - Steak 'n' Ale in Bloomington - topic to be announced
F. February - open location and topic - location probably WFO or University of St. Thomas
G. March - hopefully leverage speaker from the Des Moines Severe Weather Conference - location probably WFO or University of St. Thomas April - open
H. April - location and topic still to be determined
I. May - barbecue and planning meeting at the WFO
NOTE: one of the unscheduled meetings might be at the University of Minnesota- St. Paul. One of the speakers might be from the Climate Group.

5) The Speaker Committee's chair remains Kevin. Please send ALL suggestions to him at

6) Shelby reviewed a 3-year plan for the Twin Cities AMS, and offered her view that we were very much on track. Nice job!

7) Other suggestions that the new officers should consider including
A. Developing an operating budget
B. Issuing press releases about meetings
C. following up an member Anthony Stender's offer to write a column for each newsletter

We concluded our business by voting in a slate of officers for 2006-2007. They (and their e-mail addresses at are
President - Chris Bovitz (president)
Vice President - Shelby Winiecki (vicepresident)
Secretary/Treasurer - Lori Bovitz (sectreas)
Newsletter editor - Kurt Scholz (newsletter)
Chair of Speaker's Committee - Kevin Huyck (speakers)
---Rich Naistat.


OUSCAMS Meeting #13
Tuesday May 2, 2006

---Christy Wall.


May Newsletter


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