The Weather Channel has established a scholarship in honor of Max Mayfield, who retired as director of the National Hurricane Center this week. The Max Mayfield Scholarship was announced by Ray Ban, executive vice president of meteorology science and strategy at The Weather Channel, during an honorary breakfast for Mr. Mayfield sponsored by the World Economic Club and held in Miami on Wednesday, January 3.
Mr. Mayfield was with NHC for 35 years, culminating with a seven-year tenure as the center's director. To recognize outstanding contributions during his time as NHC director, Mr. Ban paid tribute to Mr. Mayfield and announced that a scholarship had been established in his name. The following day, The Weather Channel aired interviews with Mr. Mayfield taped by TWC On-camera Meteorologist Jim Cantore as an additional tribute.
"Mr. Mayfield has been a guiding force for us in our commitment to keeping America ahead of the storm – not only because of the work he did to advance hurricane forecasting but also because of his leadership as a communicator of vital information that could help saves lives," said Mr. Ban.
The Max Mayfield Scholarship in Weather Forecasting will be administered by the American Meteorological Society. The $2000 scholarship, to be awarded each of three years, will be part of the AMS Named Undergraduate Scholarship Program. It will be awarded to a full-time student entering his/her final year of undergraduate study in the atmospheric or related oceanic and hydrologic sciences. Selection will be made by the AMS Executive Committee based on recommendations from the AMS Committee of Judges for Undergraduate Awards. The first recipient of the Max Mayfield Scholarship in Weather Forecasting will be announced in May of this year.
Among the actions for which Mr. Mayfield has been praised is his behind-the-scenes efforts in calling government officials and warning them about Katrina two days before it struck which is widely credited with reducing the loss of life, especially in New Orleans. Soon after, ABC News named him its Person of the Week, and the National Association of Government Communicators honored him as its Communicator of the Year.
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