NOAA 2004-R239
Contact: Ron Trumbla

NOAA News Releases 2004
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Dr. J. David Lambert, co-director of the Applied Global Systems Laboratory, College of Computer Sciences and Engineering, University of North Florida, receives the Commerce Department’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Environmental Hero Award.

Held in conjunction with Earth Day celebrations, the award honors NOAA volunteers for their “tireless efforts to preserve and protect our nation's environment.” The award recognizes Lambert for his outstanding efforts in developing the Florida Road Weather Information System (RWIS).

Dr. Lambert is the primary individual responsible for the design, development and implementation of the RWIS. There are now 17 operational sites gathering meteorological data along 200 miles of North Florida Interstate Highways. Ten additional sites will be implemented in Central Florida this year as part of the Federal Highway Works Administration/Florida DOT project known as iFlorida*. Dr. Lambert managed the original project to develop the design and implementation in a joint Florida Department of Transportation/University of North Florida/Florida State University project to build the first segment of the system. As the project developed, he also worked closely with the NOAA National Weather Service Forecast Offices in Jacksonville and Tallahassee.

“NOAA and the nation are fortunate to have such dedicated people volunteer so much of their time,” said retired Navy Vice Adm. Conrad C. Lautenbacher, Ph.D., undersecretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA administrator. “They set a perfect example for others to follow in their communities, America needs more environmental heroes like them.”

Established in 1995 to commemorate the 25th anniversary of Earth Day, the NOAA Environmental Hero Award is presented to individuals and organizations that volunteer their time to help NOAA carry out its mission.

“On behalf of the 12,500 men and women working for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, I am pleased to present you with this 2003 Environmental Hero Award,” Lautenbacher wrote in a letter to the recipients. “Your dedicated efforts and outstanding accomplishments greatly benefit the environment and make our nation a better place for all Americans.”

NOAA’s National Weather Service is the primary source of weather data, forecasts and warnings for the United States and its territories. NWS operates the most advanced weather and flood warning and forecast system in the world, helping to protect lives and property and enhance the national economy.

NOAA is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and providing environmental stewardship of our nation’s coastal and marine resources.

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*EDITOR’S NOTE: iFlorida is the correct spelling.