National Hurricane Center Chief Mayfield to Retire

August 27, 2006

Max Mayfield, long-time director of the National Hurricane Center in Miami, Fla., will retire at the end of the year after 34 years of federal service. Mayfield said he wishes to spend more time with his wife and family, which has been very limited during the last two record-setting hurricane seasons.

“I made this difficult decision knowing that the team here at the National Hurricane Center is the best there is,” said Mayfield. “They’re at the top of their game, and I’m confident whoever takes my place can count on the support of the most dedicated team in the hurricane forecasting business. The team’s performance during the last two years – certainly the busiest in my career – has been exemplary, and I am very proud of that… and them.”

“The entire nation will miss Max Mayfield’s extraordinary leadership, expertise and service when he takes his well-deserved retirement from the National Hurricane Center,” said Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez. “As a dedicated forecaster and a voice of calm during hurricane storm seasons, he helped save lives and property. We thank him and wish him well.”

Mayfield also said he’s given considerable notice to NOAA and National Weather Service leadership so they can begin the process of finding a successor and coordinate a seamless transition.

In 2007 NOAA, an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce, celebrates 200 years of science and service to the nation. Starting with the establishment of the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey by Thomas Jefferson in 1807, much of America’s scientific heritage is rooted in NOAA. The agency is dedicated to the prediction and research of weather- and climate-related events and information service delivery for transportation, and providing environmental stewardship of the nation’s coastal and marine resources. Through the emerging Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS), NOAA is working with its federal partners, more than 60 countries and the European Union to develop an integrated global monitoring network.

Source: NOAA

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