Committee Membership Information

Study Title:

The Future of Arctic Sea Ice Research and Forecasting: A Workshop

Primary Board:

Study Director:


Jacqueline A. Richter-Menge - (Co-Chair)
Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory

Jacqueline Richter-Menge is a Research Civil Engineer at the Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL). Ms. Richter-Menge has focused her research activities towards developing a more comprehensive and quantitative understanding of the Arctic sea ice cover, addressing both dynamic and thermodynamics processes. As part of the NOAA contribution to Study of Environmental Arctic Change (SEARCH), Ms. Richter-Menge currently leads a multi-agency team establishing an Arctic network of autonomous in situ sea ice thickness and mass balance observatories. She coordinates this network with similar ocean and atmosphere efforts and international programs. Ms. Richter-Menge graduated with a Master of Civil Engineering from the University of Delaware and has been with CRREL since 1981. In association with her research, Ms. Richter-Menge has gained significant first-hand Arctic experience leading or participating in more than 15 field programs. In association with her research, Ms. Richter-Menge has gained significant first-hand Arctic experience leading or participating in more than 15 field programs. From 1997-2006, Ms. Richter-Menge served as Chief of the Snow and Ice Branch. In this capacity she supervised a diverse research staff of over 20 people and oversaw the execution and development of a research program that, on an annual basis, was composed of over 80 projects and totals $5.5M.


Dr. John E. Walsh - (Co-Chair)
University of Alaska, Fairbanks

John Walsh is a President???s Professor of Global Climate Change at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks (UAF). He is also the Director of the NOAA/UAF Cooperative Institute for Alaska Research and of the Center for Global Change. His primary research interests are: Arctic climate change over the decade-to-century timescale; predictability of climate change in high latitudes, sea ice variations; and extreme weather events in the context of climate change. He was the lead author for the cryosphere chapter of the Arctic Climate Impact Assessment (2005) and a lead author for the Polar Regions chapter of the IPCC???s Fourth Assessment Report (2007). He is a Coordinating Lead Author for the 2013 National Assessment Report being produced by the U.S. Global Change Research Program.. Prior to his position at the University of Alaska, Walsh spent 30 years on the faculty of the University of Illinois at Urbana. He is the co-author of an undergraduate textbook on severe and hazardous weather. He earned his Ph.D. in meteorology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1974 and his B.A. from Dartmouth College in 1970.


Robert Raye
Shell Projects and Technology

Robert Raye is the Ice and Metocean Project Lead for Shell Projects and Technology in the U.S. Arctic. In this role, Mr. Raye is responsible for providing support to field activities and design engineering to ensure safe and efficient operations. He has a key role in delivery of Shell???s Arctic physical science program, which includes collection of field measurements, characterization and research studies, and collaborative programs with industry partners, academia, and governmental agencies. Mr. Raye has established a field observation program in Alaska that includes a network of instrumented buoys, coastal meteorological stations, and vessel-based observers that report near-real-time data used to validate models and forecasts. Recently, he has been instrumental in developing collaborative agreements with NOAA offices to share data and resources, with the goal of improving overall weather and ice forecasting in Alaska and improving hurricane intensity forecasting in the Gulf of Mexico. He serves on the Data Management and Communications Committee in the Gulf Coast Ocean Observing System, where he supports initiatives promoting data interoperability, metadata standards, and web services for data products and has applied these concepts in Shell internal data management and dissemination systems. Mr. Raye is Shell???s subject matter expert for oceanographic surveys and is skilled in environmental instrumentation, data analyses, and data management. Mr. Raye holds a Master???s of Science degree in Ocean Engineering from Florida Atlantic University.


Dr. Lawson Brigham
University of Alaska, Fairbanks

Lawson Brigham is Distinguished Professor of Geography & Arctic Policy at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, and a Senior Fellow at the Institute of the North in Anchorage. During 2005-2009 he was Chair of the Arctic Council???s Arctic Marine Shipping Assessment and Vice Chair of the Council???s working group on Protection of the Arctic Marine Environment. Dr. Brigham was a career U.S. Coast Guard officer serving from 1970-95 and retiring with the rank of Captain. He served at sea in command of four Coast Guard cutters including a patrol boat, Great Lakes icebreaker, offshore law enforcement cutter, and the polar icebreaker Polar Sea sailing in Alaskan, Arctic & Antarctic waters; he also served as Chief of Strategic Planning in Washington, DC. Dr. Brigham has been a Research Fellow at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, a faculty member of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy and the Naval Postgraduate School, and Deputy Director of the U.S. Arctic Research Commission. He is a graduate of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy (B.S.), a distinguished graduate of the U.S. Naval War College, and holds graduate degrees from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (M.S.) and the University of Cambridge (M.Phil. & Ph.D.). His research interests include: Arctic marine transportation, remote sensing of sea ice, Arctic climate change and polar marine policy.


Dr. Son V. Nghiem
Jet Propulsion Laboratory

Son V. Nghiem is the Science Applications Development Lead of the Radar Science and Engineering Section, and the Hydrology Discipline Program Manager of the Hydrology Office in the Earth Science and Technology Directorate at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory of the California Institute of Technology. His research encompasses active and passive remote sensing, advanced satellite radars and radiometers, electromagnetic scattering and emission, and earth sciences and applications. He has published 70 peer-reviewed articles and over 230 conference articles. He received the 1999 Lew Allen Award for Excellence in recognition of his pioneering research in the areas of polarimetric scatterometry for Earth science remote sensing and contributions to future advanced satellite instrument concepts; the 2006 NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal for developing scientific applications of scatterometry in land, ice, and snow processes; the 2008 NASA Exceptional Scientific Achievement Medal for his contributions to understanding the melt state of Greenland and Antarctica ice sheets, its significance in Earth science missions, and its implications in climate change; and the 2010 NASA Exceptional Technology Achievement Medal for his contributions in developing a new technology using NASA satellite scatterometer data to measure high-resolution global wind for off-shore wind energy development. His research results were reported worldwide by major news networks and many radio stations. Dr. Nghiem received his Ph.D. from MIT in 1991.


Dr. Rebecca Woodgate
University of Washington University of Washington

Rebecca Woodgate is a Principal Oceanographer and Associate Professor at the Applied Physics Laboratory and the School of Oceanography at the University of Washington. She is a Physical Oceanographer, specializing in polar research, with special focus on the circulation of the Arctic Ocean, interactions between sea-ice and the ocean, and the role of the polar oceans in climate. Her research concentrates on the collection and analysis of in-situ oceanographic data. She has worked for many years in the deployment and recovery of moored oceanographic instrumentation in ice-covered waters, and the analysis of both mooring and hydrographic data. She is involved in undergraduate teaching and graduate education. She has worked on British, German, Norwegian, and American research vessels and led expeditions to Bering Strait and the Arctic Ocean. Her first degree is in Physics from the University of Cambridge and her Ph.D. (University of Oxford) is in Data Assimilation in Ocean Models. Her postdoc work was done at the Alfred-Wegener Institute in Germany. Dr. Woodgate's research goal is to understand the physical processes in both Arctic and Antarctic regions, and to use her background to bridge the gap between theory, modeling, and real observations of the oceans.


Dr. Marika Holland
National Center for Atmospheric Research

Marika Holland is a an Ice Specialist in the Oceanography section of the Climate and Global Dynamics division at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR). She received her Ph.D. in 1997 from the Program in Atmosphere and Ocean Sciences at the University of Colorado in the area of sea ice modeling for climate applications. Her training continued with a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Victoria in British Columbia studying the influence of sea ice variability and change on the global ocean circulation and climate. In 1999, Dr. Holland moved to the NCAR in Boulder, Colorado, as a Postdoctoral Fellow and joined the scientific staff in 2000. Her research interests include polar climate variability and future change, including the role of ice-ocean-atmosphere interactions and feedbacks. She has extensive experience using coupled climate models to study these issues and has been active in the development of improved sea ice models for climate simulations. She is currently serving as Chief Scientist for the Community Earth System Modeling Project.


Dr. Jennifer A. Francis
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

Jennifer A. Francis is a Research Professor at the Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences and the Graduate Program in Atmospheric Sciences at Rutgers University. She studies the Arctic climate system, causes for rapid change, and linkages between the Arctic and the global climate system. Her work is funded primarily by the National Science Foundation. She has served on several national committees in the National Science Foundation, the American Meteorological Society, and the science steering committee for the Study of Arctic Environmental Change (SEARCH). Dr. Francis received her Ph.D. in Atmospheric Sciences from the University of Washington in 1994. Dr. Francis is currently a member of the Polar Research Board.