Weather Discovery Center welcomes new Hall of Fame inductee

PUNXSUTAWNEY — The Punxsutawney Weather Discovery Center is preparing to welcome its ninth inductee into the National Meteorologist Hall of Fame, Fred Gadomski, the host and co-producer of “Weather World,” a 15-minute nightly weather magazine program produced by the Penn State Weather Communications Group.

He will be inducted at 12:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 2 — Groundhog Day — at the Weather Discovery Center, Punxsy.

“When I was a youngster, age 10 or 11, I began taking observations of the weather,” he recalled. “My older brother had been interested in the weather, and I think that may have sparked my interest. He moved on to other things, but in my case, the spark led to a bonfire.

“Some people, when bitten by the weather bug, need to scratch the itch for the rest of their lives,” Gadomski said. “I am, obviously, one of those people.”

Airing since 1983, “Weather World” is available to 3.3 million homes via the Pennsylvania Cable Network (PCN) and WPSU-TV.

In addition, he is a founding member of the Weather Communications Group, which for 25 years, provided daily weather analyses and forecasts for publication in The New York Times.

A native of New Bedford, Mass., Gadomski earned a B.S. in meteorology from the University of Massachusetts-Lowell. He also holds an M.S. in meteorology from Penn State, where he specializes in teaching weather analysis and forecasting.

In 1994, Gadomski won the Wilson Award for Outstanding Teaching in the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences at Penn State.

He has been a member of the American Meteorological Society Board of Broadcast Meteorology and the Board on School and Popular Meteorological Education.

In 2003, Gadomski was presented the American Meteorological Society’s award for Outstanding Service by a Broadcast Meteorologist and was named broadcaster of the year by the Pennsylvania Association of Broadcasters.

He has appeared on the “Today” show, “NBC Nightly News,” “CBS Evening News,” “ABC Evening News,” “Good Morning America,” National Public Radio, Fox News and numerous other national broadcasts to provide expertise in explaining weather-related information.

Since 1981, Gadomski has been an instructor at the Penn State Department of Meteorology, where his research interests include short and medium-range weather forecasting; development of Web-based meteorological workstations for weather forecasters; and communication of weather information to the public and science education through television and other media.

When asking about a particular weather event — in his personal or professional life — that remains in his memory, Gadomski said, “My most memorable weather event occured just a few days after Groundhog Day in 1978.

“I was a college student in Massachusetts when the Great Southern New England Blizzard of Feb. 6-7 struck,” he said. “It was a magnificent storm — 30-plus inches of snow,  wind gusts over 60 miles an hour, six- to eight-foot drifts, thunder, lightning ... everything a growing meteorologist could want in a winter storm. I still get chills thinking about it.”