Ryan Spackman selected as NOAA Team Member of the Month
September 2, 2015
Dr. Ryan Spackman, a research scientist at ESRL's Physical Sciences Division, was selected as September 2015 NOAA Team Member of the Month. Ryan is recognized for leading the CalWater 2015 field campaign this past winter to sample atmospheric rivers (ARs) that develop over the Pacific Ocean and bring rain to the west coast. His expertise in airborne science missions was invaluable for the numerous critical decisions throughout the campaign to make the best use of NOAA R/V Ronald H. Brown, and aircraft from NOAA, DOE and NASA, often on tight deadlines and affected by ocean currents and weather. It was vital to sample ARs during their various stages of development, and Ryan successfully budgeted flight hours and hundreds of dropsonde launches, without knowing in advance how many AR events might occur. He led the planning, coordination, and execution of complicated flight plans for up to four aircraft per day, often in coordination with the Ron Brown. Ryan also handled numerous media interviews, enhancing the public's knowledge of NOAA programs and assets. He accomplished all this with incredible energy, persistence, attention to detail, and good humor. Ryan's leadership inspired teamwork across OAR, NWS, NESDIS, and our partner agencies, resulting in unprecedented measurements that improve our understanding of AR evolution, and eventually will lead to more accurate forecasting for these potentially extreme winter weather events that may trigger west coast flooding.