James Spann Chief Meteorologist for ABC 33/40 from Birmingham, Alabama
James has served as the Chief Meteorologist for ABC 33/40 for 22 years and can be seen weeknights at 4, 5, 6, and 10 o’clock. In all, James has been a television weather anchor for 40 years.
James has received the two highest awards in the nation for a broadcast meteorologist.
One is national “Broadcaster of the Year” by the National Weather Association, which he accepted in September 2012. According to the NWA, James was selected to receive the award “For his passionate dedication to serving the Central Alabama community with critical weather information for over thirty years, especially during the deadly April 27, 2011 tornado outbreak.”
James also was the winner of the AMS (American Meteorological Society) “Award for Broadcast Meteorology” in January 2013. The AMS stated he was the winner in part because of “his tireless efforts to advance the public’s awareness of and engagement in the science of meteorology, particularly severe weather forecasting and response”.
Question 1. What was your most memorable weather event?
Most memorable would be April 27, 2011. A total of 62 tornadoes in my state in one day, 252 dead.
Question 2. What is your favourite and least favourite type of weather?
Least favorite: heatwave/drought.
Favorite: snow/winter storms
Question 3. If you weren’t a meteorologist what would you most like to be?
If not a meteorologist, I would be a fourth-grade science teacher
Question 4. From a purely meteorological point of view, where would you most like to live?
There is no better place to live than Birmingham Alabama if you are weather weenie. You get it all. Tropical, winter storms, severe storms, tornadoes, floods, and of course, beautiful days. Greatest weather market in the world for diversity.
Question 5. Is there anything else you’d like to share?
I want to spend the rest of my career getting the weather enterprise on the same page with a simple, unified message during life-threatening weather. We are at a dangerous fork in the road, and we need to pull together now by putting aside territorial boundaries, pride, egos, and power.
I am hoping to start this process at the AMS broadcast conference this summer in Kansas City. I am a pretty boring person; I love hosting WeatherBrains every week, and this is my bio:
I really haven’t slept since 1973, but I still love coming to work every day.
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