The NWS Office (between radar and lake) and WSR-88D radar in Johnston with Saylorville Lake in the background.

Station Digest

Office History
Mission and Staff
The Des Moines Area
Photo Gallery
Tours and Outreach

Office Mission

The NWS Warning and Forecast Office (WFO) Des Moines serves the central half of Iowa, providing warnings, watches, and forecasts for the protection of life and property per our Mission Statement.

Image depicting area of responsibility of NWS Des Moines.

NWS Des Moines area of responsibility (County Warning Area)

Our office collects weather observations and issues public forecasts, watches, warnings, advisories, and other weather-related products for 51 counties in central Iowa. We also issue terminal aerodrome forecasts for five local airports, fire weather forecasts for government and commercial interests, and have a full-service hydrology program. We have 24 staff members, including ten full-time forecasters and four data acquisition personnel. Our equipment includes a WSR-88D Doppler radar, 14 NOAA Weather Radio transmitters, and dozens of river gauges and automated surface observation sites. We also maintain an active public outreach program, including cooperative weather observers, trained storm spotters, and CoCoRAHS observers, as well as interacting with the general public at local events. Our office maintains close involvement with local scientific organizations (such as the National Weather Association and various groups affiliated with Iowa State University), media outlets, and law enforcement and emergency management personnel (including the state emergency operations center).

Office Staff

    NWS Office
  • Management and Support Staff
    • Ken Harding - Meteorologist-in-Charge
    • Warning Coordination Meteorologist (Vacant)
    • Science and Operations Officer (Vacant)
    • Jeff Zogg - Senior Service Hydrologist
    • Shane Searcy - Information Technology Officer
    • Robert DeRoy - Data Acquisition Program Officer
    • Gail Boeff - Administrative Support Assistant
    • Darren Gregory - Electronics System Analyst
    • Chris Southerlin - Electronics Technician
    • Electronics Technician (Vacant)
  • Meteorologists
    • Craig Cogil - Senior Forecaster
    • Rod Donavon - Senior Forecaster
    • Miles Schumacher - Senior Forecaster
    • Brad Small - Senior Forecaster
    • Roger Vachalek - Senior Forecaster
    • Mindy Beerends - General Forecaster
    • Aubry Bhattarai - General Forecaster
    • Frank Boksa - General Forecaster
    • Jim Lee - General Forecaster
    • Ken Podrazik - General Forecaster
  • Hydro-Meteorological Techs (HMT) and Meteorologist Interns
    • Brad Fillbach - HMT
    • Allan Curtis - Meteorologist Intern
    • Kurt Kotenberg - Meteorologist Intern
    • Kevin Skow - Meteorologist Intern is the U.S. government's official web portal to all federal, state and local government web resources and services.