Dr. James E. Hoke is currently the Director of the Hydrometeorological Prediction Center (HPC) of NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) in Camp Springs, Maryland. He has served in that capacity since the center was created in 1995.
From June 2007 to February 2008, Dr. Hoke served as the Acting Director of the NWS Office of Climate, Water, and Weather Services (OCWWS). In that position he led the NWS effort to sustain and enhance climate, water, and weather services, to establish NWS operational requirements, to evaluate customer satisfaction, and to train the workforce. In that position he led the NWS effort to sustain and enhance climate, water, and weather services, to establish NWS operational requirements, to evaluate customer satisfaction, and to train the workforce. OCWWS comprises a staff of nearly 200 federal employees, contractors, and associates in five geographic locations across the country.
Dr. Hoke also served as the first director of NCEP's Ocean Prediction Center(OPC) from 1995- 2006. The OPC provides atmospheric and oceanographic warning, forecast, and analysis products and services for the north Atlantic and north Pacific as part of the NOAA mission of protecting life and property and enhancing economic opportunity. The OPC strives to be the mariner's weather lifeline through exceptional products and customer service.
From July 1998 to January 1999 Dr. Hoke was the Acting Director of the National Centers for Environmental Prediction. An organization of over 400 people, NCEP delivers analyses, guidance, forecasts, and warnings for weather, ocean, climate, water, land surface, and space weather to the Nation and the world.
From 1989-1995, Dr. Hoke was the Chief of the Monitoring and Aviation Branch of NOAA's National Meteorological Center (now NCEP) in Camp Springs, Maryland. The 65-person branch continuously performed quality and quantity control of the observational database used in NMC's numerical weather prediction models, monitored the computer production system and initiated corrective actions when problems developed, and kept weather forecasters world-wide apprised of the status of the NMC operational analysis and forecast production system in real time. The branch also provided 24/7 weather support to NASA; to national air traffic management at the FAA's Air Traffic Control System Command Center; to the national and international marine community; and to national and international aviation interests.
From 1980-1989 Dr. Hoke was a primary team member working with Dr. Norman Phillips, Principal Scientist of the NWS, to develop, implement, maintain, and enhance the Nested Grid Model (NGM). This computer model of the atmosphere served as the primary regional-scale weather forecast model for the United States for a number of years following its implementation in 1985. Upon Dr. Phillips' retirement in 1988, Dr. Hoke became the director of the project.
Dr. Hoke began his career as a numerical weather prediction meteorologist on active duty with the U.S. Air Force from 1976-1980 at Offutt Air Force Base near Omaha, Nebraska. He was responsible for the day-to-day maintenance and improvements of the weather forecasts models of the Air Force Global Weather Central. Working after hours during this time he helped found the Atmospheric Sciences Program of Creighton University. Following his separation from active duty in 1980, he remained active in the Air Force Reserves. In his last assignments before retiring from the Reserves in 2002, he served as Individual Mobilization Augmentee to the Commander of the Air Weather Service and then to the Commander of the Air Force Weather Agency.
Dr. Hoke holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Physics from The Pennsylvania State University and Master’s and Ph.D. degrees in Meteorology from that same institution. He was designated a Centennial Fellow of the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences, PSU, in 1996, a Fellow of the American Meteorological Society in 1999, and received the Presidential Rank Award of Meritorious Executive in 2002. He has received the Department of Commerce Silver Medal and Bronze Medal. He has published a number of articles in referred journals and is a long-time member of the American Meteorological Society, National Weather Association, and Sigma Xi Scientific Research Society of North America.