Article by Rick Shanklin
Warning Coordination Meteorologist, WFO Paducah, KY
WFO Paducah, KY Conducts Extensive Customer Service Workshops
WFO Paducah, KY conducted a set of 4 customer service workshops on November 6 in Sikeston, Missouri, November 8 in Carterville, Illinois, November 13 in Princeton, Kentucky and November 15, in Evansville, Indiana. In one of the largest ever WFO customer service feedback efforts, these 4 workshops were attended by more than 200 from a very broad spectrum of the NWS customer community. The participants included but were not limited to agriculture, aviation, congressional staff, emergency managers, firefighters, fire weather/forestry, general public, hydrology interests, law enforcement, local, state, and federal government, manufacturing plants, media, medical, schools, transportation, and utility companies.
The day long sessions were structured with 4 primary components; a review session of NWS products and services, a break-out group session (8 similar interest groups), a panel discussion, and a winter weather session. The main objective of the workshops was to obtain feedback on all of WFO Paducah’s existing products and services and determine any additional needs. The objective was soundly met and as a result required extensive work following the workshops to assimilate and summarize thousands of feedback data points and remarks. An action item spreadsheet is being formulated from the feedback and will be utilized to steer future WFO Paducah products and services. The action item spreadsheet will be made available for all to see.
The workshops, which have been in the works for a couple of years, required hundreds of hours of commitment for WFO Paducah staff. Each of the workshops required 10 to 12 WFO Paducah staff members. However, the workshops, which represent the foundation of why we exist as an agency, were well worth the effort and were very appreciated by our customers. In the words of Larry Koerber, Henderson County, Kentucky Emergency Management Director; "I am blown away that we have a federal agency that is so eager to listen to those it serves".
Dave Blanchard (far right in background), Aviation Program Leader at WFO Paducah, meets with a group of pilots and other aviation interests during a break-out session at the Nov. 15, 2007 customer service workshop in Evansville, Indiana.
A group of 80 NWS customers at the Nov. 13, 2007 Princeton, Kentucky customer service workshop listen to WFO Paducah Forecaster, Christine Wielgos during a products review session.
WFO Paducah, KY Conducts NOAA-FEMA course in Cape Girardeau, Missouri on November 28-29, 2007.
The NOAA-FEMA course was conducted by Rick Shanklin (Warning Coordination Meteorologist), Pat Spoden (Science Operations Officer), Mary Lamm (Service Hydrologist), and Mark Hasheider (City of Cape Girardeau Emergency Management Director) on Nov. 28-29, 2007.
Participants gather during an exercise session of the NOAA-FEMA Course, "Hazardous Weather and Flooding Preparedness"; a course designed for EMs and other officials.