Lower Mississippi River Forecast Center Hydrologist-in-Charge David Reed (Photo: LMRFC)
(June 23, 2011) -- Veteran National Weather Service hydrologist David Reed has been selected as the recipient of the 2011 Max A. Kohler Award.Presented by NWS Southern Region director Bill Proenza, this prestigious award is given annually to honor individuals for sustained superior performance and distinguished accomplishments in support of the National Weather Service Hydrologic Services Program.
Reed is currently serving as the hydrologist-in-charge of the National Weather Service's Lower Mississippi River Forecast Center in Slidell, La. He launched his National Weather Service career at the Office of Hydrological Development, in Silver Spring, Md. in 1979, and transferred to the West Gulf River Forecast Center in the mid-1980s.
Beginning in 1988, he served as the Southern Region's deputy regional hydrologist before returning to the West Gulf Center as the first development and operations hydrologist in 1993. He was appointed to his current position in 1995.
Between 1995 and 2011, Reed led his team through a host of major flood events including those spawned by Tropical Storms Allison and Isidore and Hurricanes Georges, Lili, Frances, Katrina, Gustav and Ike. The 2005 Katrina event presented significant leadership challenges in terms of keeping the office running and dealing with the numerous personal hardships affecting himself and his staff.
The Slidell office has also played a central role in providing critical river crest forecasts and updates for the National Weather Service emergency management partners, the media and the public during this spring’s historic flooding along the Lower Mississippi and Atchafalaya Rivers.
"Whenever Reed was involved in forecasting major floods, he invariably placed the National Weather Service's goal of delivering quality, timely river and flood forecasts as his highest priority," said Proenza. "His experience and strong work ethic have consistently provided the best possible hydrological services to the citizens in his area of responsibility."
Included in his numerous contributions to the National Weather Service Hydrologic Program, he developed the course "Basic Hydrology – A Primer for Meteorologists" in 1993. Since then, the primer has served as an invaluable tool in the training of new hydrologists and meteorological interns.
Reed also established annual tri-agency meetings with the U.S. Geological Survey, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Tennessee Valley Authority. These meetings led to increased coordination and communication during high impact floods and droughts.
The Kohler Award is named in honor of internationally renowned hydrologist Max A. Kohler, who served as Director of the National Weather Service Office of Hydrology from 1972 through 1973.