Personnel who have graduated, finished their programs, or completed their service to the project
Postdoctoral Researchers and Graduate Students
Lauriana Gaudet will be a Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Atmospheric Sciences Research Center starting in the late summer working under Dr. Kara Sulia and Dr. Chris Thorncroft. Her Ph.D. work focuses on identifying sensitivities of high-impact weather events to cloud microphysics through forecast ensembles. She is looking forward to combining her numerical weather prediction expertise with machine learning techniques to address AI2ES goals associated with winter weather prediction. Lauriana anticipates earning her Ph.D. in Atmospheric Sciences during the summer and earned her B.S. in Atmospheric Sciences at Lyndon State College.
Undergraduate Research Assistants
Chris Cepin is an undergraduate student studying meteorology at NC State University. She plans to attend graduate school and afterwards work with the National Weather Service as a Warning Coordination Meteorologist. Her main area of interest is information dissemination to the public, but she is motivated to work in a variety of topic areas depending on where she can be of help. She is working on developing a model that can interpret input images of roadways and other sites in New York as having types of precipitation and amounts of visibility using Machine Learning.
Grant Eckstein is an undergraduate student at the University of Oklahoma pursuing a bachelor’s degree in computer science. His research focuses on convective initiation prediction using deep learning. His position is funded by Cooperative Institute for Mesoscale Meteorological Studies (CIMMS).
Nathan is a student at Iowa State University, where he is majoring in meteorology, with minors in economics and geographic information systems. This summer, he will be working on training, evaluation, and verification of machine learning models for the Warn-On Forecast System (WoFs), a high-resolution model for severe weather forecasting. Outside of meteorology, he greatly enjoys reading, playing video games, running, and spending time with friends and family.
Vincent Ferrera is a rising senior undergraduate student at the University of Delaware. He is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Meteorology and Climate Science, with minors in physics and computer science. This summer, he is undertaking a group project as an intern with the AI2ES, which is taking part in the 2022 NWC REU program. The goal of this project is to evaluate and/or increase trust in automatically generated labels derived from visibility and precipitation data from Mesonet images, which will be used to improve winter storm prediction. Outside of his appetite for weather, he has a knack for music, performing in his college’s marching band, and likes to dive into sports analysis.
Conner Flansburg is a student at the University of Oklahoma, where he is studying computer science. This summer he is working with Dr. Diochnos, and together they are researching how current machine learning models are affected by poisoning attacks. They are particularly interested in examining how models meant to predict rare events (such as tornados) will perform when noise is introduced.
Joshua Friesen is an undergraduate student studying software engineering and mathematics at Fresno Pacific University. His work in the AI2ES program is focused on the research and development of XAI techniques that better understand models trained with multi-band data. In his free time he enjoys playing volleyball, tennis, and piano.
Kayla Hoffman is an undergraduate student at San Jose State University pursuing a B.S. degree in Meteorology with a concentration in Climate Science. She is currently in the REU program within the AI2ES division and will be starting her senior year at SJSU. Her project focuses on estimating convective updraft characteristics from radar using machine learning.
Andrew Justin is a Research Assistant at the University of Oklahoma currently working on the automated detection of fronts via machine learning. He has a passion for coding, storm chasing, and severe weather forecasting. His position is funded by NOAA.
Noah Lang is an undergraduate student at Valparaiso University, where he is pursuing bachelor degrees in meteorology and mathematics. His research project focuses on utilizing machine learning to improve thunderstorm prediction in the Warn-on Forecast System.
Kaelia Okamura is an undergraduate senior at San Diego State University studying Applied Mathematics with a double minor in Statistics and Linguistics. Her work with AI2ES will focus on predicting winter weather using AI and ML. She is excited to be part of this diverse winter weather group and looks forward to learning more about and applying these AI and ML methods to her work with NYS Mesonet images in order to more accurately predict winter weather within this area. Her position is funded byNOAA Cooperative Science Center in Atmospheric Sciences and Meteorology (NCAS-M).
Joshua Pan is an undergraduate atmospheric science student at Cornell University, where he is conducting research with idealized atmospheric general circulation models. In the 2021 AI2ES REU program, he is applying machine learning methods to diagnose visibility and precipitation types from New York State Mesonet camera images. His leisure pursuits include cycling, skiing, and PC flight simulators.
Jordan Robinson is an undergraduate student at Rhodes College majoring in Physics. He graduated the valedictorian at Memphis Catholic High School. He is currently working with AI2ES as a research student, focusing on using machine learning techniques to improve 0-3hr hail forecasts.
Colin Willingham is currently a participant in the REU program under the AI2ES division. He is starting his Senior year at OU and plan on getting his MBA in the dual degree program that OU sponsors with the Gene Rainbolt School of Business, so that he will finish in an additional year. His position is funded by NOAA.
External Advisory Board
Dr. Bill Gail
Global Weather Corporation
Discipline: Weather applications for business
Sector: Private industry
Dr. Gail is co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of Global Weather Corporation, a provider of precision forecasts for weather-sensitive business sectors, and was the 2014 President of the American Meteorological Society. He was previously a Director in the Startup Business Group at Microsoft, Vice President of mapping products at Vexcel Corporation, and Director of Earth science programs at Ball Aerospace. Dr. Gail received his undergraduate degree in Physics and his PhD in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University, where his research focused on physics of the Earth’s magnetosphere. During this period, he spent a year as cosmic ray field scientist at South Pole Station.
Dr. Gail is a Fellow of the American Meteorological Society and a lifetime Associate of the US National Academy of Sciences. He was the co-chair of their 2017 Earth Sciences Decadal Survey, served on their Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate, and has participated on many prior National Academies committees including the 2012 review of the National Weather Service and the 2007 Earth Sciences Decadal Survey. He serves or has served on a variety of other editorial, corporate, and organizational boards including the US Commerce Data Advisory Council. His book Climate Conundrums: What the Climate Debate Reveals About Us was released in 2014, and his opinion pieces have been published in The New York Times, USA Today, and elsewhere.
Dr. Nicol Turner Lee
The Brookings Institution
Discipline: AI and Ethics
Dr. Nicol Turner Lee is a senior fellow in Governance Studies, the director of the Center for Technology Innovation, and serves as Co-Editor-In-Chief of TechTank. Dr. Turner Lee researches public policy designed to enable equitable access to technology across the U.S. and to harness its power to create change in communities across the world. Her work also explores global and domestic broadband deployment and internet governance issues. She is an expert on the intersection of race, wealth, and technology within the context of civic engagement, criminal justice, and economic development.
Chevron Energy Technology Company
Discipline: Metocean, Ocean engineering
Dr. SID BouKABARA
Dr. Boukabara is a principal scientist at the NESDIS’s Center for Satellite Applications and Research (STAR). His main scientific activities include leading technology maturation projects and in particular exploring new numerical approaches such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) to improve the Nation’s usage of satellite data in NOAA’s prediction systems. He is co-chair of the NOAA AI executive committee, helping establishing a NOAA-wide AI strategy and the NOAA AI Center. Dr. Boukabara received the Ingénieur degree in electronics and signal processing from the National School of Civil Aviation (ENAC), in Toulouse, France (1994), the M.S. degree from the National Polytechnic Institute of Toulouse, France the same year and the Ph.D. degree in remote sensing from the Denis Diderot University, Paris, France (1997).
Dr. Jerald. “Jerry” Brotzge
Dr. Brotzge is a Research Scientist and Program Manager of the New York State Mesonet at the University at Albany. Dr. Brotzge brings decades of experience working with data networks and research-to-operations (R2O). Dr. Brotzge leads a team focused on the collection, quality control, archival and dissemination of high-quality environmental data for the state of New York. Collecting over one million observations per day, the NYSM system includes innovative atmospheric, snow, and vertical profiling sensors, and efforts are now underway with local NWS and national NOAA research centers to integrate these new data into operations. Dr. Brotzge’s research has concentrated on the development and improvement of weather observing systems, forecast products, and R2O applications