The United States Senate confirmed on Thursday, March 6, 2014, that Kathryn D. Sullivan, Ph.D., will serve as the tenth administrator and under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
"I am pleased that Kathy Sullivan was confirmed," AccuWeather CEO Barry Myers said. "We have known one another for several years and I have the deepest respect for her. We exchanged notes already pledging to work together for the common good of the weather enterprise and the nation."
Sullivan is an accomplished oceanographer who has served many roles within NOAA.
She took on the role of acting NOAA administrator on Feb. 28, 2013. Prior to that, Sullivan was the assistant secretary of commerce for environmental observation and prediction and deputy administrator for NOAA. In 1993, Sullivan was appointed as NOAA's chief scientist.
"With her impressive background as a scientist and astronaut and her excellent record of building bridges between diverse environmental stakeholder communities and federal policymakers, Kathy brings a great blend of scientific rigor, team-building skills, and strategic sensibility to the important job of NOAA administrator," said John P. Holdren, assistant to the president and director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.
Joining the NASA astronaut corps in 1978, she was the first American woman to walk in space.
"NOAA provides the environmental intelligence that helps citizens, businesses, and governments make smart choices. Mission first, people always - this is my commitment to the American people and to the NOAA workforce," said Sullivan. "I'm incredibly proud of our people, and it's an honor to be at the helm."