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September 2004

Random profile: Inger Gallo

Every other month, Staff Notes Monthly spotlights a stochastically chosen staff member. This month we profile Inger Gallo, an administrative assistant in the Research Applications Program.

Inger Gallo.

Molding young minds at the Mesa: Inger’s relationship with NCAR started in junior high school, when her class took a field trip to the Mesa Lab. “I knew I wanted to work here,” says Inger, who grew up in Boulder.

Years later, she does. Inger has been an administrative assistant in RAP for eight years. She started at the reception desk, where she greeted visitors and dealt with space management, maintenance requests, mail, and supplies. Her job evolved over the years, and today she’s involved primarily in direct project support. She continues to work on space management and ergonomics, something she became interested in during her former job at StorageTek.

Inger’s favorite aspect of her work is the science, which she soaks up by proofreading reports, talking to scientists and engineers, and reading the various project Web sites. She enjoys supporting the science because she believes very strongly in what NCAR does. “There’s so much that really makes an impact,” she says, citing projects she works on such as weather modification experiments, airport turbulence and windshear warning systems, surface transportation weather programs, and the development of a digital library on societal impacts.

All things foreign: As much as she likes NCAR, she can’t deny that a dream job lurks in the back of her mind. “My dream is starting over at age 18 and going to college to be a cultural anthropologist or sociologist,” says Inger, who reads Smithsonian Magazine cover-to-cover. “I enjoy reading about how indigenous people are reviving their language and culture.”

Her interest in cultural anthropology might stem in part from her own background. Inger’s parents emigrated from Norway so her father could attend Michigan Technological University. When she was eight years old, he got a job at IBM and the family moved to Boulder. Inger speaks Norwegian fluently and goes back every few years to visit family. She’d like to organize a Norwegian conversation table at NCAR over lunch.

In addition to her Norwegian connection, Inger is interested in all things foreign. She collects postcards from around the world, many sent to her by NCAR staff on field projects, and she stores hundreds in shoeboxes at her house. “When I find some time, I’ll organize them by country. I see each card as a little window into that society,” she says.

Family and free time: Inger shares her Lafayette home with her 13-year-old son, J.P., and their cat, Gracie. J.P. attends Casey Middle School, the same school Inger attended as a child. In their free time, they hike, ski at Eldora, and visit the Denver Museum of Nature and Science. Like his mom, J.P. is interested in science and aspires to be an engineer and inventor.

Inger and J.P. like to travel. J.P. has been scuba diving in Cozumel, and despite Inger’s asthma, she’d like to give it a try. This year they settled on a trip to New Mexico where they spent three days exploring Carlsbad Caverns. Plans for next year include a trip to Norway to see family and explore new parts of the country. “I’d like to go north this time,” Inger says. “The Nidaros Cathedral in Trondheim has long been on my list.”

• Nicole Gordon

Also in this issue...

A COSMIC project

Up-the-Hill Races, more popular than ever

Hiking up, diving down

Clues in an ancient lakebed

A computing ambassador

Warren Washington receives Vollum Award

Short takes

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