National Weather Service Honors Paonia Volunteer Weather Observer



National Weather Service Honors Paonia Volunteer Weather Observer
With Thomas Jefferson Award

Recognizing outstanding service and years of dedication, NOAA’s National Weather Service has named Paonia, Colorado, resident Robert Lund as a 2011 recipient of the agency’s Thomas Jefferson Award in the Cooperative Weather Observer program. The award is the agency’s most prestigious, and only five are presented this year to deserving cooperative weather observers from around the country.

Robert Lund recieves Thomas Jefferson award 
Mr. Robert Lund (center) recieves Thomas Jefferson Award from Doug Crowley (right) 
Meteorologist In Charge and Becky Klenk (left) Cooperative observer manager.

“Satellites, high-speed computers, mathematical models, and other technological breakthroughs have brought great benefits to the Nation in terms of better forecasts and warnings. But without the century-long accumulation of accurate weather observations taken by volunteer observers, scientists could not begin to adequately describe the climate of the United States,” said Doug Crowley, Meteorologist In Charge of NOAA’s Grand Junction National Weather Service office. Crowley presented the award to Mr. Lund the evening of October 14, during a Farm Bureau annual meeting at the Delta county fairgrounds in Hotchkiss. There were approximately 50 people in attendance, including friends, family and media. Also in attendance was Data Acquisition Program Manager John Kyle and Hydrometeological Technician Becky Klenk of the Grand Junction NWS office.

             Lund assumed the Paonia observing site on October 3, 1973, recording daily temperature and precipitation data, including snowfall and snow depth, to the Grand Junction forecast office. His reports have provided important data to forecasters and hydrologists and climate scientists. Over the years, Mr. Lund has provided almost 14,000 daily reports to the National Weather Service.


Thomas Jefferson Award 

            Many historic figures have maintained weather records, including Benjamin Franklin, George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. Jefferson maintained an almost unbroken record of weather observations between 1776 and 1816, and Washington took weather observations just a few days before he died. The Jefferson and Holm awards are named for these weather observation pioneers.

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