UCAR Board of Trustees Meeting Site - February 2000

Secretary's Report

Board of Trustees Meeting
11-12 October 1999
Boulder, Colorado

The duly-convened meeting of the UCAR Board of Trustees was held in the Walter Orr Roberts Board Room,
Fleischmann Building, Boulder, Colorado. Present for all or portions of the meeting were:

L. Fisk, University of Michigan (Chairman)
R. Anthes, President, University Corporation for Atmospheric Research
O. Brown, University of Miami
L. Donner, Princeton University
D. Houghton, University of Wisconsin
L. Hutton, MacArthur Foundation
C. Leovy, University of Washington
P. Malanotte-Rizzolli, MIT
J. Paegle, University of Utah
D. Skaggs, Aspen Institute
J. Snow, University of Oklahoma
D. Thomson, Pennsylvania State University
M. Tolbert, University of Colorado
G. Vali, University of Wyoming

Counsel and Corporate Officers:

G. Austin, Holland & Hart
L. Carney, Holland & Hart
W. Dabberdt, Associate Director, NCAR
J. Fellows, Assistant Secretary & Vice President for Corporate Affairs and Director of UOP
S. Friberg, Assistant Secretary, UCAR
K. Schmoll, Vice President, Finance & Administration, UCAR
R. Serafin, Director, NCAR

National Science Foundation:

R. Corell, Assistant Director, Directorate for Geosciences
J. Huning, Facilities Coordinator, UCAR & Lower Atmospheric Facilities Oversight Section, ATM
C. Jacobs, Head, UCAR & Lower Atmospheric Facilities Oversight Sec., ATM
J. Moyers, Acting Division Director, ATM
J. Prendeville, Program Coordinator, UCAR & Lower Atmospheric Facilities Oversight Section, ATM


M. Austin, Program Manager, Visiting Scientist Programs, UOP
M. Blackmon, Director, Climate & Global Dynamics Division, NCAR
R. Brasher-Alleva, Director, Budget & Planning, NCAR
E. Brennan, Multimedia Systems Administrator, NCAR
D. Carlson, Director, Atmospheric Technology Division, NCAR
R. Chinman, Director, Information Infrastructure Techn. & Applications, UOP
E. Comedy, Assoc. Vice President, Human Resources & Employee Rel., UCAR
A. Cooper, Director, Advanced Study Program, NCAR
L. Curtis, Office of Development & Government Affairs, UCAR
S. Dickson, Director, Special Projects & Internal Audit Systems, UCAR
J. Dye, Acting Director, Mesoscale & Microscale Meteorology Division, NCAR
B. Hobson, Corporate Affairs, UCAR
D. Fulker, Program Director, Unidata Program Center, UOP
A. Kellie, Director, Scientific Computing Division, NCAR
D. Kellogg, Executive Assistant, Directors' Office, NCAR
K. Kelly, Chief Librarian, Information Support Services, NCAR
B. Kuo, Director, COSMIC, UOP
M. Marlino, Director, Prog. for Advancement of Geosciences Education, UOP
M. Miller, Director, Budget & Finance, UCAR
S. Montgomery-Hodge, Executive Assistant, UCAR President's Office
C. Rasmussen, Editor, UCAR Communications
K. Sawyer, Director, Joint Office for Science Support, UOP
C. Schmidt, Director, Office of Development & Government Affairs, UCAR
T. Spangler, Director, COMET, UOP
B. Valent, Executive Assistant, Finance & Administration, UCAR
R. Ware, Director, GPS Science and Technology Program, UOP
L. Warner, Manager, UCAR Communications
S. Warner, Executive Assistant, Corporate Affairs
D. Wilson, Director of Treasury Operations, Finance & Administration, UCAR


A. Burke, Lewis-Burke Associates
M. Burnham, Lewis-Burke Associates
R. McPherson, Executive Director, American Meteorological Society
R. Greenfield, Director, Public Policy Program, American Meteorolog. Society



The Board convened in Regular Session. Chairman of the Board L. Fisk called the meeting to order at 9:15am. After he welcomed Trustees and guests, it was moved, seconded, and passed to adopt the agenda as presented.


In Secretary R. Smith's absence, J. Fellows, Vice President for Corporate Affairs, asked for approval of the minutes from the July Board of Trustee's meeting. It was regularly moved, seconded, and passed to adopt the minutes as submitted.


Treasurer L. Hutton presented the Consolidated Statement of Funding and Expenditures for eleven months, ending on August 31, 1999. She noted that we have received the majority of FY99 funding from NSF, and that the General Fund continues to increase, benefiting from a very positive investment climate. The balance in the investment portfolio is being changed per recommendations by the Board in July. Further diversification is being done by investing more in the global and international arena. Hutton also reported that UCAR has an increased number of higher risk projects this year, and as a result the prespending and overspending are being watched very closely.

It was regularly moved, seconded, and passed to receive the report of the Treasurer.


Chairman Fisk updated the board on the following issues:

  • Legislative activities: Fisk said that, in his opinion, this community has positively influenced Congressional action this budget cycle, especially related to NSF and NASA allocations—and that we should "keep it up."
  • Code Assessment Panel: UCAR/NCAR responded to this report, and is now writing a strategic plan for large-scale simulation in response to one of the report's recommendations..
  • NRC Ranking Study: This may be pursued in the Spring of 2000. UCAR may have a role in the preliminary information gathering and implementation decisions prior to the survey development.
  • COSMIC: Fisk reported that, due to the nature of possible financial risk involved, the Board urged UCAR to proceed cautiously with this project, and wishes to hear status updates at each Board meeting.
  • AMS/UCAR Congressional Fellowship: At the request of the AAAS, UCAR made the concession to drop UCAR from the Fellowship title and call it the AMS Congressional Fellowship. UCAR will continue, however, to be involved in the activity, and will be a co-sponsor along with the AMS.
  • 40th Anniversary Celebration and Forum: Next year will be UCAR/NCAR's 40th anniversary, NSF's 50th, and HAO's 60th anniversary. The Forum discussions at the Members' Meeting will kickoff event of a year-long celebration.
  • Advocacy Activities: The focus in the upcoming months will be on educating the presidential candidates. The AMS and UCAR will jointly prepare a "awareness document" for candidates' use, and to help them understand weather and climate issues. A somewhat longer document will be prepared for the next Administration's transition team.


J. Moyers, Acting Director of ATM/NSF, reported on the following items:

  • Selection of Margaret Leinen (U of Rhode Island) as the new Geosciences Assistant Director. She will begin her new position in January 2000.
  • Search process for ATM Director: The search committee will pare down the applicant list in early November and, a selection will likely be made before the end of this year. The selection will be done in consultation with R. Colwell and Leinen.
  • The NSF FY2000 budget: NSF's FY2000 budget of $3,910M is an increase of 6.5% over FY99, with Research and Related receiving a 7.1% increase ($200M) and MRE 5.5%. Moyers pointed out that $240M of Research and Related's budget are earmarked funds, and that the MRE account received an additional $10M for HIAPER and $36M for terrascale computing.

C. Jacobs, Head of UCAR and Lower Atmospheric Facilities Oversight Section/ATM, gave a brief overview of the recent NCAR Code Assessment panel review and report. He said that the reviewing panel convened to evaluate the effectiveness of NCAR's codes to addres climate and mesoscale weather problems, and to ensure performance and scalability on a variety of computational platforms. The panel recommended, among other things, that NCAR develop a vision for computational science leadership in support of it's science mission, addressing issues of hardware plans, and software development and practices. The panel asked that NCAR strengthen its computational science technologies by re-examining the mix of computational scientists and applied mathematicians.

R. Serafin, Director of NCAR, outlining NCAR's response to the panel report, said that NCAR will continue to provide the necessary leadership and service in high performance computing and simulation for the university community, and will lead in addressing the challenging problems in atmospheric and related sciences.

O. Brown (U of Miami) said that the panel is talking about shifting paradigms—that we need to take the lead in this changing climate. Some Board members, however, cautioned that in the quest for code development and speed that they not lose sight of the science being done.


UCAR President Anthes, after noting that his complete report is on the web, reported on the following UCAR activities and issues:

  • NCAR Director Search: The search committee, chaired by J. Klemp (MMM/NCAR), hopes to announce a new director by February/March 2000. The position, with a soft closing date of 1 October, has been widely advertised and the committee has been pro-active in seeking applications.
  • Plans for the 40th Anniversary: The 40th anniversary events for the upcoming year were outlined, beginning with the UCAR Forum at the Members' meeting the following day and ending with the Member Representatives' banquet in October 2000.
  • Finance and Administration activities: Y2K planning is on schedule and continency plans are being developed; Mesa Lab refurbishment is progressing; the construction of Boulder Research and Administration Network (BRAN) is progressing; UCAR's FY2000 Indirect Rate Proposal was approved by NSF in record time, and early next year F&A staff are slated to move to a different site because of scientific divisions' need for space at Foothills lab.
  • SOARS update: This highly successful program, in its fourth year, had 24 students this past summer participating in the ten-week summer internship component of SOARS. A video featuring SOARS proteges and mentors will be ready for broadcast and classroom use early in 2000.


NCAR Director R. Serafin reported on the current NCAR projects and activities, including the following:

  • HIAPER: This advanced airborne research platform was appropriated $10M in FY2000 from NSF's MRE fund. The award schedule was outlined with the final RFP to be issued in March 2000 and the award recommendation to NSF by the following August. A website was developed to allow the scientific community to monitor the progress of this acquisition and can be found at http://www.atd.ucar.edu/dir_off/hiaper/index.html.
  • Supercomputing Update: A history of supercomputing was given, culminating in the most recent acquisition in August, an IBM RS/6000 SP ("blackforest"). This acquisition is the first step in the move toward clustered computing and the "blackforest" will be available for production computing by early October.
  • NCAR FY2000 Program Plan: The preliminary plan was prepared at the FY99 level and focused on changes within the broad framework, including among others fundamental research, advanced observing facilities, and human dimensions and social impacts. The final plan will be due Spring 2000.
  • ACD Director Search Process: G. Brasseur, will step down as ACD Director the first of January 2000 to take the position of Director at the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Hamburg. A search committee, chairred by S. Solomon (NOAA), has been selected and the position will be advertised in a number of pertinent publications.

Following Serafin's report, Fisk asked that the following Resolution of Appreciation for be moved, seconded, and passed by acclamation.

Resolution of Appreciation for Robert J. Serafin

WHEREAS, Bob Serafin has announced his decision to step down as Director of NCAR on February 1, 2000; and

WHEREAS, this will mark Bob's 26th year at NCAR and 10 years as NCAR's Director; and

WHEREAS, during his tenure, he has tirelessly advocated and promoted NCAR's interests and accomplishments, expanding the program in atmospheric and related sciences and supporting the development, acquisition and deployment of state-of-the-art facilities in service to NCAR and the broader university and research related community;

WHEREAS, his keen mind, his leadership skills, and his superb grasp of the scientific and administrative complexities of this organization, and indeed of the whole of the geosciences' discipline, have clearly advanced our communities' resources and capabilities;

NOW, THEREFORE, LET IT BE RESOLVED, that the members of the Board of Trustees, along with the UCAR staff who have worked so closely with Bob, express to him their deeply felt thanks for his leadership these past ten years as Director of NCAR and wish him all the best in the years ahead.

God Speed, Bob!


UOP Director J. Fellows gave a brief update on each of the following programs:

  • COMET - 10th anniversary and web-based training program
  • PAGE - Geosciences Digital Library and Virtual Exploratorium activities
  • VSP - postdoc opportunities for the coming year.
  • JOSS - Indian Ocean Experiment (INDOEX), Mesoscale Alpine Project (MAP), CODIAC data management system, Aerosol Characterization Experiment (ACE)
  • Unidata - Huge growth in Internet Data distribution
  • Suominet - has been funded!
  • IITA - helping UCAR adapt to new information technologies


Anthes reviewed the schedule for the Forum, the co-chairs of the four groups, and the white papers based on the BASC report. Fisk encouraged the Board members to participate in the discussion groups. The outcomes from these groups will be used to help focus and structure the survey being distributed to universities next year.

The Board convened in Executive Session from 4:30pm to 5:30pm. (The minutes are kept in the corporate offices.)

Tuesday, 12 October


A. Burke, Lewis-Burke Associates, updated the Board on the status of FY2000 federal budget appropriations for science funding agencies. Getting the $10M to start the HIAPER aircraft is a very positive "card" for the atmospheric sciences, Burke said, noting that there seems to be Congressional support for basic research. Fellows related that G. Asrar, Associate Administrator of Earth Sciences at NASA, was convinced that the Earth Sciences money for NASA was restored because of the community support and communication with Congress which UCAR spearheaded through "action alerts" and other efforts on behalf of the science.

Burke reviewed the areas of upcoming legislation that she and her staff will be racking:

  • Database protection issue
  • NWS competition with the private sector
  • Federal acquisition regulations - this ensures compliance not only with OSHA laws, but also environmental and other regulations the Clinton administration is proposing.
  • A-110 regulations "Public Access to Federally Funded Research Data": the scope of these regulations have been reduced. Over 12,000 letters were received from the community commenting on the impact of these regulations.


D. Thomson read the Committee's charge:

For the purpose of potentially recommending modified, discipline-wide recruitment methods for graduate study programs, the committee is asked to begin a study including examination of the following issues:

  • Traditional study paths of selected academic, government service and industrial professionals;
  • Factors motivating students to various professional study programs and career tracks;
  • Whether or not presently changing employment opportunities should motivated significant changes in academic programs and recruitment for them;
  • Whether or not an organized effort should be made to attract students from "non- traditional" fields and institutions to the atmospheric and oceanic sciences.

The Board discussed what kind of studies and statistics are presently available and if there is some way to combine a survey with a present study. The Board agreed to approach AMS about including a questionnaire with the next AMS curriculum guide survey being distributed in January or February 2000. The subcommittee will continue working on defining the scope of the survey on student recruitment.


SOARS Director T. Windham introduced and showed the new SOARS video which is targeted to middle- and high-school age students. The Board gave Windham additional suggestions and material to be included in the video.


Chairman Fisk introduced the following Resolution for Dr. John Firor, giving him the new title of NCAR Senior Scientist and Director Emeritus. The Board moved, seconded, and passed this resolution by acclamation.

Resolution of Appreciation for John W. Firor

WHEREAS, John Firor has served UCAR and NCAR with distinction and grace for 38 years. During those years, he has served as Director of the High Altitude Observatory, Director of NCAR, Executive Director of NCAR, and later as the Director of NCAR's well-respected Advanced Study Program. John is an internationally regarded expert on public policy issues related to the atmospheric sciences—particularly climate change and sustainable development.

WHEREAS, John's clear mind, keen perceptions, and warm sense of humor

have guided the organization well, and provided a role model for countless scientists and administrators. Specifically, his steady influence and wise counsel over the years have helped to weave societal concerns into the fabric of NCAR science.

NOW, THEREFORE the Trustees of the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research with great pleasure on the 12th day of October 1999 recognize John's accomplishments and confer on him the title of Senior

Scientist and NCAR Director Emeritus. We offer our sincere gratitude for his work over the years, and expect continued association for many more. John has distinguished himself, and thus, this organization through his association with it.

Thank you, John!

Former Chairman of the Board, J. Snow, stated that this is his last Board meeting. For the past 26 years, he has been a committee member, a Members' Representative, or a Board member. Chairman Fisk thanked Snow for his years of service and expressed the Board's gratitude for his many contributions.


The Meeting adjourned at 10:45am.

~ End of Draft Minutes ~


Minutes approved by:


Ronald B. Smith


Minutes prepared by:


Susan J. Friberg
Assistant Secretary

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| Advocacy for Science |

| Nominating Committee Report |

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