Cecilia Bitz, incoming chair of the Department of Atmospheric Sciences.
Cecilia Bitz, incoming chair of the Department of Atmospheric Sciences.

The UW College of the Environment is pleased to announce that Cecilia Bitz has been named chair of the Department of Atmospheric Sciences, effective July 1, 2019.

Cecilia is a professor of atmospheric sciences and studies the role that sea ice plays in shaping the climate in high latitudes. She is actively engaged in research on improving prediction of Arctic sea ice and sea ice data assimilation, investigating wave-ice and coupled air-sea-ice interactions that control large-scale climate. She has served as associate director of atmospheric sciences, the director of the UW Program on Climate Change and leads several projects funded by the National Science Foundation and the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration.

“The Department of Atmospheric Sciences and its community are exceptional and I am excited to have the opportunity to work closely with Cecilia to help maintain the rich and rigorous research and education programing in the department within an environment that welcomes and supports all faculty, staff, and students.” said Lisa Graumlich, dean and Mary Laird Wood Professor at the College of the Environment.

The College would also like to thank Dale Durran for his service as the outgoing chair.

“Dale has been a dedicated advocate for the department over the course of his career” Graumlich said. “And I am particularly appreciative of his work as chair to make the department, the College and the UW a more diverse, inclusive place; his advocacy of rigorous learning experiences for undergraduates; and his passionate articulation of the important role of research within world-class universities.”

Finally, thanks are due to the advisory search committee for their outreach to the atmospheric sciences community, energy and thoughtfulness, including Ka-Kit Tung (Professor, Applied Math), Becky Alexander (Associate Professor, Atmospheric Sciences), Timothy Essington (Professor, Aquatic and Fishery Sciences) and Kathryn Stout (Director of Finance and Administration, College of the Environment).