National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

About Our Office:

NOAA's National Weather Service office for central Illinois is located at the Logan County Airport in Lincoln. The office is home to the WSR-88D Doppler weather radar, and issues public and aviation forecasts, and severe weather warnings, for 35 counties in Central and Southeast Illinois. Click here for a map of neighboring offices' areas of responsibility.


Our Staff:

There currently are 23 people that work at our office:

  • Meteorologist-in-Charge (Ernest Goetsch):  
    The MIC oversees the operations of the Weather Forecast Office.  Besides administrative duties and personnel management, the MIC will fill forecast shifts as needed.
  • Warning Coordination Meteorologist (Chris Miller):  
    The WCM coordinates all warning functions within the office. This includes conducting spotter training, and working with local emergency managers and media personnel.  The WCM will fill forecast shifts as needed.
  • Science and Operations Officer (Llyle Barker):  
    The SOO is the office's principal and senior science advisor, and is in charge of all systems training for the employees.  The SOO makes sure that the staff is kept up to date on advances in meteorological forecasting and warning operations, and makes sure our products meet local, regional, and national NWS standards. The SOO will fill forecast shifts as needed.
  • Data Acquisition Program Manager (Billy Ousley):  
    The DAPM oversees data collection, quality control, and dissemination of observational data from the office. This includes the operations of the cooperative observer program, climate data, river observations, and upper-air observations.  The DAPM will fill in on data acquisition shifts as needed.
  • Service Hydrologist (Darrin Hansing):  
    The SH is in charge of the office's Hydrology Program. This involves river, flood, and water-supply forecasts, and necessary research.  The hydrologist is the primary contact with external agencies such as the U.S. Geological Survey and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The hydrologist also fills in on data acquisition shifts as needed.
  • Electronics Systems Analyist (Ed Martin):  
    The ESA is in charge of overseeing all equipment maintenance at the office. This includes the local computer network, the main AWIPS computer system for the office, heating and cooling systems, the Automated Surface Observation System at area airports, the Doppler radar, and upper-air observation equipment.
  • Information Technology Officer (Bryan Schuknecht):  
    The ITO provides applications and program support for the office. This includes installing, configuring, and maintaining local applications, as well as programs and scripts in both the Windows and Linux operating systems.
  • Administrative Support Assistant (Debbie Johnson):
    The ASA performs technical aspects of all administrative programs and activities for the office.  This includes items related to budget, funds control, purchasing, procurement, contract monitoring, property, personnel actions, time and attendance, etc. The ASA also operates as a liaison with NWS Central Region Headquarters, and works with the Administrative Support Center on adminstrative-type matters.
  • Senior Meteorologists (James Auten, Patrick Bak, Daryl Onton, Ed Shimon, Dan Smith)
    General Meteorologists (Matt Barnes, Chris Geelhart, Kirk Huettl, Heather Stanley):

    The meteorologists routinely work forecast operations. They are responsible for issuing public and aviation forecasts, severe weather warnings, river flood warnings, and work with external goverment partners to provide decision support services. The senior meteorologists serve as the shift supervisor as well. 
  • Hydrometeorological Technicians (Eric Laufenberg, John Parr)
    Meteorologist Interns (Scott Baker, Chuck Schaffer)

    The HMT and intern staff compose the office's data acquisition unit. They are primarily reponsible for quality control of surface and river observations, conducting twice-daily weather balloon launches, operations of the NOAA Weather Radio, disseminating climate observation tables, and obtaining and transmitting Local Storm Reports during adverse weather conditions. They also maintain the network of volunteer weather observers, installing necessary observation equipment and training new observers.
  • Electronics Technicians (Kyle Clark, Mark Stacey):  
    The electronics technicians are responsible for maintaining the equipment needed for forecast operations. This includes the Doppler radar, automated observing systems, upper-air equipment, office computers, and NOAA Weather Radio systems. These technicians often have to work outdoors in all kinds of weather.