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August 7, 2020

Four Atmos alumni receive AMS recognition

In addition to the prestigious honors earned by Professors Jim Hurrell, Sue van den Heever and Russ Schumacher, four graduates from the atmospheric science program – John Knaff, Walt Petersen, Eric A. Smith and Xubin Zeng – received recognition this year from the American Meteorological Society.

John Knaff, a CIRA colleague and NOAA scientist, was selected for an Editor’s Award “for providing multiple rigorous, timely, and constructive reviews across three AMS journals, and also for contributing consistently excellent reviews over a period of many years.”

Walt Petersen, deputy manager of the Science Research and Projects Division at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center, has been elected a fellow. Those considered for fellowship “have made outstanding contributions to the atmospheric or related oceanic or hydrologic sciences or their applications during a substantial period of years.”

Florida State University Professor Eric A. Smith was chosen for the Verner E. Suomi Technology Medal “for innovative technological achievements that fundamentally changed the use of satellite observations in meteorology and hydrometeorology.”

University of Arizona Professor Xubin Zeng, who also received the 2018 Outstanding Alum Award, was selected for the Charles Franklin Brooks Award for Outstanding Service to the Society. He is honored for “skillful and effective service in senior leadership roles that has materially improved the Society’s meetings and other activities.”

“In my 51 years with the department, I have never seen such an annual group of department awards from our professional society!” said University Distinguished Professor Emeritus Tom Vonder Haar, an AMS Honorary Member, Fellow and Charney Medal winner.

View the complete list of 2021 AMS award winners here.