Ray Russell's AsheWeather.Com
RaysWeather.Com continues to grow. We are an "information age"
company using the web to broadcast the message but also as a tool for
producing the message. RaysWeather.Com (what we call RWC) has evolved
from "Ray's hobby in Beautiful Downtown Rutherwood" in 1999 to the most
widely read media outlet in NW NC reaching 150,000 to 200,000 people per
month and covering the weather from NC/VA line to Asheville and Wolf
Laurel. We will continue to grow geographically as well--Burnsville has
just been added; Waynesville, you're next. The heart of the growth is
good data, "local flavor", and THE most reliable forecast.
We recently added our 6th forecaster to the best forecast team ever assembled for this region. It's time for us to introduce "the crew"...
Dr. Ray Russell is a Computer Science professor at Appalachian State University. His PhD is in Computer Science from Georgia Tech (1989); weather has been a long-time passion. He started posting a "snow forecast" on the university website back in the mid 1990's; this evolved into RaysWeather.Com in 2000. Ray lives in Boone and has taught at Appalachian State since 1991.
Eric Anderson (RWC's Chief Meteorologist) received his degree in meteorology from the University of North Carolina at Asheville, and is a 15-year veteran of NOAA with experience in forecasting, observation and analysis. A native of western North Carolina, Eric's former tenure in the National Weather Service gave him the opportunity to forecast for areas of the Mid-Atlantic region. His professional interests include upslope flow snow events in the southern Appalachians, as well as cold air damming in the Carolinas.
Alan Simons, born in Fayetteville NC, has a Bachelor of Science in meteorology and almost 20 years of professional experience that includes forecasting for newspapers, websites, radio, aviation, and the military. He first became interested in weather in North Carolina, and RWC takes him back home after a variety of duty stations, from New York to Hawaii. Alan's been with the RWC team since 2003.
Tim Kirby joined Ray's Weather Center in October 2004 and lives in his hometown of Fries, VA (pronounced Freeze). The folks from this small Grayson County town say "it's freeze in winter and fries in summer". He has a Bachelor of Science degree in Meteorology from NC State University. While at NC State, he was president of the NCSU Student Chapter of the American Meteorological Society. Before joining RWC, Tim worked for the National Weather Service for ten years in Raleigh, Chattanooga and Morristown, Tennessee. Tim has always loved the challenge of forecasting and owes his dedication to a childhood fascination of snow (no school!).
"Big Harold" has Bachelor of Science degrees from both App State (Broadcast Communications) and UNC-Asheville (Atmospheric Sciences). He has 30 years experience tracking and forecasting NC weather including 15 years experience for media outlets.
Jeff Cox, a native of Asheville, is the latest addition to the RWC team. He earned a Bachelor of Sciences in Atmospheric Sciences from UNC-Asheville. At UNC-A, he was the lead forecaster for the school's Weather Forecast Line, campus Radio Station, "The Blue Echo" and the campus newspaper, "The Blue Banner." Jeff has experience as a meteorologist in both television and radio. He spent over 2 years in Macon, GA, as the chief meteorologist at WGXA FOX-24. He also has experience as a radio broadcast meteorologist for The Weather Channel in Atlanta, Georgia.
So now you know who's behind the forecast. It's not magic--just lots of hard work by many people. In addition to meteorology, keeping RWC going requires office mangement, programming, computer system's administration, ad sales, and graphic design. We'll introduce you to the rest of the team soon.