This article relies too much on references to primary sources. (May 2012) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
|Founder||Charles Franklin Brooks|
|Headquarters||Boston, Massachusetts, United States|
|Primarily United States|
|Keith L. Seitter|
|Subsidiaries||Local and student chapters|
|Affiliations||American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Institute of Physics, American Society of Association Executives, Bookbuilders of Boston, Council for Agricultural Science and Technology, Council of Engineering and Scientific Society Executives, Commission on Professionals in Science and Technology, Intelligent Transportation Society of America, Renewable Natural Resources Foundation, Society for Scholarly Publishing|
The American Meteorological Society (AMS) is a non-profit scientific and professional society that promotes the development and dissemination of information and education on the atmospheric and related oceanic and hydrologic sciences and the advancement of their professional applications.
Founded in 1919, the American Meteorological Society has a membership of more than 13,000 weather, water, and climate scientists, professionals, researchers, educators, students, and enthusiasts. Some members have attained the designation Certified Consulting Meteorologist (CCM), many of whom have expertise in the applied meteorology discipline of atmospheric dispersion modeling. To the general public, however, the AMS is best known for its "Seal of Approval" to television and radio meteorologists.
The AMS publishes nine atmospheric and related oceanic and hydrologic journals (in print and online), issues position statements on scientific topics that fall within the scope of their expertise, sponsors more than twelve conferences annually, and offers numerous programs and services. There is also an extensive network of local and student chapters, some of which organize regional AMS conferences.
The AMS headquarters is located at 45 Beacon Street off the Boston Common in Boston, Massachusetts. The headquarters building was built by the famous Boston architect Charles Bulfinch as the third Harrison Gray Otis House in 1806 and was purchased and renovated by the AMS in 1958, with staff moving into the building in 1960. In 2012, the AMS purchased the building next door at 44 Beacon Street, also designed by Bulfinch. The AMS also maintains an office in Washington, D.C. at 1200 New York Avenue NW.
The AMS runs two certification programs concerning broadcast meteorologists and consulting meteorologists, respectively. Many Certified Consulting Meteorologists (CBMs) practice as forensic meteorologists.
The AMS Seal of Approval program was established in 1957 as a means of recognizing television and radio weather forecasters who display informative, well-communicated, and scientifically sound weather broadcast presentations. The awarding of a Seal of Approval was based on a demonstration tape submitted by the applicant to six members of a review panel after paying an application fee. Although a formal degree in meteorology was not a requirement to obtain the original Seal of Approval, either appropriate military training or the minimal requirements of undergraduate meteorology courses, including at least 20 semester college credits appropriate for a meteorology major, must have been taken before applying (ensuring that the forecaster has at least a minimal required education in the field). There was no minimum amount of experience required, but it was recommended that applicants had some previous experience in weather forecasting and broadcasting. It is worth noting that many broadcasters who obtained the Seal of Approval did in fact have formal degrees in meteorology or related sciences and/or certifications from accredited university programs. Upon meeting the core requirements, having the seal, and working in the field for 3 years that broadcaster may then be referred to as a meteorologist in the broadcast community.
As of February 2007, more than 1,600 Seals of Approval had been granted, of which more than 700 are considered "active." Seals become inactive when a sealholder's membership renewal and annual seal fees are not paid.
The original Seal of Approval program was phased out at the end of 2008, but, still remains very relative as a certification today. Many traditional seal holders are experienced, long-time meteorologists and are still highly respected in the profession.
Note: The NWA Seal of Approval is issued by the National Weather Association and is independent of the AMS. The National Weather Association is another premier weather organization for trained professional weathercasters and in many cases, meteorologists.
The original Seal of Approval program was revamped in January 2005 with the introduction of the Certified Broadcast Meteorologist (CBM) designation. This certification introduced a 100-question multiple choice closed-book examination as part of the evaluation process. The questions on the exam cover many aspects of the science of meteorology, forecasting and related principles. Applicants must answer at least 75 of the questions correctly before being awarded the CBM designation. While original seal holders do not have to have a degree in meteorology or a related field of study to be upgraded, new applicants for the CBM must hold at least a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in meteorology, atmospheric sciences, or a related field of study from an accredited college or university.
CBMs may retain their certification and display the CBM logo only so long as they pay their membership and renewal fees each year and show proof of completing certain professional development programs every five years (such as educational presentations at schools, involvement in local AMS chapter events, attendance at weather conferences, and other activities of the like). The only experience requirement is a nominal three consecutive days, for the purpose of filming demonstration tapes (this contrasts with the NWA's seal, which requires at least two years full-time experience, but allows those who do not have meteorology degrees to apply).
The first person to receive the CBM seal was WRAL's Greg Fishel. As of February 2017, over 750 CBM seals had been awarded to broadcast weather forecasters, either upgraded from the original Seal of Approval or granted to new applicants.
The American Meteorological Society offers several awards in the fields of meteorology and oceanography. Selected awards follow:
Atmospheric Research Awards Committee
The American Meteorological Society is a prolific publisher, including many books and monographs. The AMS publishes the following scientific journals, consistently ranked at or near the top of their fields in impact factor.:
The society produces the following scientific databases:
The AMS organizes authoritative conferences, symposia, and fora in its fields of expertise. Its main assembly is the American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting and some conferences occur concomitantly. Other recurring conferences, many of which are held jointly (either simultaneously or successively), include:
Additionally, the AMS co-hosts conferences led by other organizations and holds various non-recurring conferences.
As a means of promoting "the development and dissemination of information and education on the atmospheric and related oceanic and hydrologic sciences and the advancement of their professional applications", the AMS periodically publishes policy statements on issues related to its competence on subjects such as drought, ozone and acid deposition.
The following AMS members served as presidents of the society during the listed periods: