Minutes of the High Plains AMS/NWA Chapter Meeting

June 20, 2007

A small but lively group of 9 chapter members met for lunch, a meeting and a presentation on Wednesday, June 20th, at the Attitudes Restaurant in Norton, KS.  We started with lunch ordered from the menu, then proceeded to the business meeting.  Jonathan Finch, from the Dodge City WFO, presented a briefing on two historic tornadoes: 1) the 40th anniversary of the June 23rd, 1967 tornado that flattened Garden City, KS; and 2) the 60th anniversary of the June 8th, 1947 tornado that devastated Sterling, Colorado.  Jon’s talk included pictures, facts, and meteorological synopses of each event.  Jon also explained his website, www.bangladeshtornadoes.org, as an excellent source for historic tornado data, where he has chronicled over 600 tornado cases to date.

Call to order.
  The meeting was called to order by President Rick Ewald/GID at 12:35 PM.  Secretary Tim Burke/DDC read the minutes from the 4/18/07 meeting, which were accepted as read.. 

Treasurer’s report.  Treasurer Matt Masek/LBF reported 2 members had paid dues since our last meeting, and with $1.12 in interest, our current checkbook and ledger both stand at $2600.30, of which $700 is earmarked for the Jim Johnson scholarship.

Old Business.  The first annual Jim Johnson Scholarship was awarded to William L. Friesen, of Meade, KS.  He will be attending Tabor College in Hillsboro, KS starting this fall semester.  He will be majoring in Chemistry and Physics, as well as Secondary Education, with future plans of becoming a high school science teacher.   More information and a picture can be viewed on our web site, www.highplains-amsnwa.org.

New Business.  It was shared with those attending that Mike Umscheid of the DDC WFO had received the NOAA Employee of the Month award for June.  Mike issued the tornado warning for Greensburg, KS on May 4th, undoubtedly saving hundreds of lives due to the 26 minute lead time.  Mike has humbly accepted all this worthy attention, but graciously acknowledges the team work involved with fellow employees, news media, the spotter network, as well as county and city emergency personnel.  

Plans for the 11th High Plains conference in Hasting, NE on August 16-17th are coming along fine.  Four keynote speakers are lined up:  John Davies of Wichita, KS; Ron Przybylinski (SOO, NWS St. Louis), Dr. Peter Lamb (Director of CIMMS), and John Ogren (Deputy Director of NWS Central Region).  Conference information can be accessed via our website, and registration instructions will be posted soon.  The Call for Papers went out with a suspense date of July 20th, and everyone is encouraged to submit an abstract.  A meeting designed primarily for NWS members will be held Wednesday afternoon at 1 PM at the GID (Hastings) WFO, with suggested topics of FXc-Graphicast and supporting a remote IMET, such as in the Greensburg post-tornado situation.  GID SOO Rick Ewald will send an invitation email message out to all area SOO on this.

Adjournment.  The meeting adjourned at 1:10 PM.  The next meeting will be held during the 11th High Plains conference.

Rick Ewald, President
Tim Burke, Secretary