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NGI News

MSU NGI Researcher and Geosciences Faculty Member Named President of National Weather Association

January 31, 2022

Kathy M. Sherman-Morris
Photo by MSU's Office of Public Affairs.
Kathy M. Sherman-Morris, a Northern Gulf Institute Researcher and a veteran Mississippi State professor of geosciences, is the new president of the National Weather Association, a nationwide professional association supporting and promoting "excellence in operational meteorology" since 1975.

Sherman-Morris's duties as president of the NWA board of directors is a one-year term through this December. She served as 2021 president-elect and will continue on the board of directors as past president in 2023.

"The National Weather Association is a premier agency for excellence in weather forecasting, weather research and weather communication," said John Rodgers, professor and head of MSU's Department of Geosciences, noting the organization is a leader in meteorological academic research, weather forecasting and credentialing of broadcast meteorologists.

One in three of today's on-air broadcast meteorologists is a graduate of MSU's nationally recognized broadcast meteorology program.

"The NWA Seal of Approval is one of the most sought-after broadcast meteorology credentials, and a large number of our broadcast meteorology majors apply for it. MSU's Dr. Sherman-Morris will be an excellent president because of her background in weather, natural disasters, and interactions of weather and society. She also is a leading scholar on how the public interprets forecasts, especially those members of the population with disabilities," Rodgers said of Sherman-Morris's research in the communication of weather information and individual response during extreme weather.

"I believe the NWA is such a valuable organization for people whose careers revolve around weather because of its focus on excellence in operational meteorology, which involves generating and disseminating weather forecasts to provide for the many uses of weather information," said Sherman-Morris, who also is an interim assistant dean for academic affairs in MSU's College of Arts and Sciences.

As president, her duties include setting the agenda and presiding over NWA meetings, communicating with key partners regarding the weather enterprise and organizing the annual meeting.

A native of the Lehigh Valley area of Pennsylvania, Sherman-Morris is the former director of the distance learning program for the Department of Geosciences, MSU's largest distance education program.

NGI is a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Cooperative Institute, a partnership of six complementary academic institutions and NOAA addressing important national strategic research and education goals. Mississippi State University leads this collaboration, partnering with the University of Southern Mississippi, Louisiana State University, Florida State University, Alabama's Dauphin Island Sea Lab, the University of Alabama in Huntsville, and NOAA scientists at various laboratories and operational centers in the Gulf of Mexico region. For more information, please visit

Part of MSU's College of Arts and Sciences, information about the geosciences department is available at For more details about the College of Arts and Sciences, visit

By Sarah Nicholas