Gab at the Lab: Bob Rabin

Bob Rabin, Research Scientist


Background:Ph.D.., Meteorology, Université Pierre et Marie Curie, Paris, France
M.S., Meteorology, McGill University, Montreal, Canada
B.S., Meteorology, McGill University, Montreal, Canada
Experience:Bob is originally from Evanston, Illinois, near Chicago. He was inspired to pursue a career in meteorology by significant weather events in his early years. During the 1965 Palm Sunday tornado outbreak, Bob watched as developing storms formed overhead, unaware at the time that the Weather Bureau storm survey included recommendations from NSSL detailing a prototype Doppler radar. He was fascinated yet again when a tornado struck Topeka, Kansas, and near home in 1966. And, of course, he was influenced by big snowstorms in Chicago, like the blizzard of 1967. Bob enjoyed following the career of Harry Volkman, the first meteorologist to issue a tornado warning on air. He would eventually earn his own meteorology degrees from McGill University in Montreal. Later, he would travel to Paris, France for his the Universite Pierre et Marie Curie, where his thesis was “Diagnosing changes in temperature/moisture profiles using Doppler radar.”
What He Does:Bob has been with NSSL for many years, and has watched the Lab’s history unfold. He has been a contributor to many scientific studies and research papers. In 1979, Bob was part of the Severe Environmental Storm and Mesoscale Experiment, which sampled Southern Plains storm activity at different scales of motion. Over the next few years, his research focused on uses of Doppler radar to estimate winds in the clear air, and on the effects of landscape variations on convective clouds. In 1989, Bob was detailed at the Space Science and Engineering Center in Madison, Wisconsin, which led to on-going collaboration with scientists at the Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies. Today, Bob is working to develop GOES-R and the next generation of NOAA/NASA geo weather satellites. He is also responsible for diversity outreach activities at NSSL, and has mentored students at schools nationwide, including Iḷisaġvik College, a two-year tribal college in Barrow, Alaska. Bob is also enrolled as a student there, studying the Inupiaq language. In February, Bob was selected to receive the 2016 EEO/Diversity Award for Exemplary Service from NOAA’s Office of Oceanic & Atmospheric Research.
Trivia: Bob loves to spend time outdoors in all weather conditions, and enjoys sprinting, biking, hiking, and Nordic skiing. He is also a yoga instructor. During his time in Montreal, he was a hockey goal judge at McConnell Arena, home of McGill hockey. He enjoyed many years of playing basketball with NSSL’s “Hall of Fame” squad at the YMCA, which occasionally included notables such as OU’s J.C. Watts.