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2010 Severe Weather Symposium

This page is for archival purposes only.

Join Emergency Managers, Storm Spotters, Media, Meteorologists, and Weather Enthusiasts for Douglas County Emergency Management's Annual Severe Weather Symposium. The event will be held 7:00 a.m. – 12:45 p.m. on Saturday, March 20, 2010 at the Lawrence Arts Center, 940 New Hampshire in Lawrence, Kansas.

The Symposium is for Storm Spotters, but is open to the public. This day is designed to train and expand your knowledge in advanced storm development, spotter safety, and the importance of spotter reports. The presentations will include incredible storm videos; experts in the field from the National Weather Service and the private sector, and will conclude with a Round table discussion with local television meteorologists.

Guest Presenters include: Greg Carbin, Warning Coordination Meteorologist - SPC; Brandon Ivey, The Storm Report & Storm Chasers; Brian Barjenbruch, Journeyman Forecaster - WFO Topeka; Matt Elwell, Chief Meteorologist - Channel 6 Weather / Lawrence.

The fee for the Symposium is $15.00, which can be sent to: Douglas County Emergency Management, C/O Jillian Rodrigue, 111 East 11th St., Unit 200, Lawrence, KS 66044. The registration deadline is: Friday, March 12th, 2010.


Symposium Speaker: Greg Carbin

Greg Carbin

"What Does a 10 Percent Chance of a Tornado Mean?"
Greg Carbin is the Warning Coordination Meteorologist (WCM) at NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Prediction, Storm Prediction Center (SPC) in Norman, Oklahoma. Since 1996, Greg has performed as a severe weather outlook forecaster, fire weather forecaster, mesoscale meteorologist and lead forecaster at the SPC. Prior to starting his career with the NWS in Charlotte, North Carolina in 1993, Greg worked in the private sector in New York and Vermont. He earned a B.S. degree in Meteorology from Lyndon State College in 1985 and has also completed graduate course work at the University of Oklahoma while an employee of the NWS. Greg has been involved in annual scientific evaluations conducted at the SPC and the National Severe Storms Laboratory (NSSL) since 2000. In his role as the spokesperson for the SPC, Greg has conducted live and taped interviews as well as print media interviews on tornadoes and severe weather for major national and international media including: CNN, ABC, NBC, CBS, National Geographic, The Discovery Channel, NPR, Granada Television (UK), Chicago Tribune, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, USA Today, Christian Science Monitor, AP and Reuters.

Symposium Speaker: Brandon Ivey

Brandon Ivey

"Stormchasing - Life on the Road"
You might say that the fascination of weather has always been in Brandon Ivey's blood, although he first caught the passion for severe weather and tornadoes after the April 26, 1991 tornado outbreak in Kansas and Oklahoma. At the age of 16, Brandon documented his first tornado near Burrton, KS on May 25th, 1997. He is represented by Breaking News Video Network, supplying video and reports of extreme weather to national media outlets and works locally with KWCH-TV in Wichita. In 2006, Brandon earned his Broadcast Meteorology Certification and in ‘07, and a degree in Geosciences through Mississippi State University. In the spring of 2009, Brandon got the opportunity to work with the Discovery Channel's 'Stormchasers' series as the lead forecaster for the TIV team. You can catch him out chasing this spring live at

Symposium Speaker: Brian Barjenbruch

Brian Barjenbruch

"Forecasting Severe Convective Weather: Impacts of the Near Storm Environment"
Brian Barjenbruch is a forecaster with the National Weather Service in Topeka, KS. Prior to arriving in Topeka, he served as a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Springfield, MO. Brian grew up in rural east central Nebraska with wonderful opportunities to observe and study the weather long before his formal education. He attended college at Valparaiso University in Indiana for two years before moving on to complete his Bachelors degree in Meteorology at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln. He then went on to obtain is Masters degree from the University of Nebraska as well. Brian has always been active in meteorological research, performing studies on the Grand Island tornadoes of 1980, impacts of boundary interactions in tornado development, atmospheric instability parameters, tornado development within squall lines, and several other topics. He also enjoys storm chasing in his free time, and holds a particular interest in severe weather forecasting, radar warning operations, and how thunderstorms interact with their local environments.

Matt Elwell

"Hyper-Local Coverage: A Multi-Media Approach"
Matt was born in nearby Leavenworth, Kansas and has called the Sunflower State his home for most of his life. He graduated with a bachelor's degree in atmospheric science from the University of Kansas. It was during his time at KU that it became clear to him that teaching people about the weather and forecasting were his two main passions, and broadcasting seemed to be the best fit. Matt moved to Billings, Montana to start his broadcast career with the NBC affiliate. While forecasting in the mountain west was extremely challenging, he found himself in the mountain during his time off. In December 2006, Matt and his family moved back to Kansas to take a job with 6NEWS as a meteorologist for Sunflower Broadband providing a hyper-local weather forecast for their cable subscribers. When he's not spending time with his wife and two daughters, you might find him on the golf course, fishing at some of the local lakes, or just out watching the weather.

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Roundtable Discussion Participants


Special Thanks

Douglas County Emergency Management would like to give a special thanks to:
  • Wyandotte County Emergency Management for providing the printing of flyers and brochures.
  • Paul Davis Restoration for providing refreshments.
  • Aman Reaka for designing the flyers and brochures.
  • NWS Topeka for the use of the radar imagery.

Past Symposiums