National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

Dr. Michael R. Farrar is the new director of the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP). NCEP delivers national and global weather, water, climate and space weather guidance, forecasts, warnings and analyses to help save lives and protect property. As director, Farrar oversees the planning, science and technology, and operational responsibilities related to NCEP’s nine national centers, which include the National Hurricane Center and Storm Prediction Center.

“Mike’s experience across the weather enterprise as the Chief Scientist of the U.S. Air Force weather squadron, the 2021 President-elect of the American Meteorological Society, and former NOAA Environmental Modeling Center (EMC) Director, position him to lead the critical NCEP mission into the future,” said John Murphy, Chief Operating Officer, NWS.

In his previous role, Mike served as the Chief Scientist for weather operations for the U.S. Air Force (USAF) where he was primary science advisor to the USAF Director of Weather and coordinated science and technology activities related to weather operations. In 2017–18 he was the senior vice president and chief operating officer of the University Corporation of Atmospheric Research (UCAR). Before his time with UCAR, he was the director of EMC and the director of the NWS Meteorological Development Laboratory (MDL). He also served as the acting deputy director of the NOAA Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research (OAR).

Prior to his work with NOAA, Mike was vice president of strategic and business development for Science and Technology Corporation (STC). He began his career as a uniformed USAF meteorologist where he served for 24 years in several leadership positions in forecast operations, scientific development, program management, training, budgeting, planning/policy, and collaboration with U.S. and international partners.

Mike holds a B.S. in physics from Purdue University, a B.S. in meteorology from The Pennsylvania State University, an M.A. in national resource strategy from the Eisenhower School of the National Defense University, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in meteorology from Florida State University.

Mike is a native of Nashville, Tennessee, where his mother and siblings still reside. He and his wife Barbara, a manager with the International Trade Administration within the Department of Commerce, live in Fairfax County, Virginia and together have two adult sons and two teenage daughters.

NCEP is located at the NOAA Center for Weather and Climate Prediction in College Park, Maryland. The world-class facility is home to 825 meteorologists, scientists, data managers and other NOAA employees from NCEP, NOAA’s National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service, and NOAA’s Air Resources Laboratory. Scientists at this NOAA center collaborate closely with University of Maryland faculty and students.