U.S. Drought Portal Enhancements Bring More Data and More Views into Drought Conditions from Local to National Scales

Riverside Team personnel supporting our Science and Data Stewardship (SDS) task order under NOAA NESDIS made key contributions in the recent significant upgrades to the U.S. Drought Portal (drought.gov) website. Rocky Bilotta and Lauren Cater, with SDS teammate iSciences, John Frimmel of Riverside, and Dustin Shackley with SDS teammate KBR streamlined the site to allow users to access more information than ever before. This includes the convenient ability to view information on a sector, county, or local basis. The work has been applauded by NCEI’s partners across NOAA and beyond, and is an important accomplishment for NCEI and NESDIS. This successful result is the culmination of a sustained public/private effort with contributions of NCEI’s Federal, contractor, and affiliate staff.

Riverside takes pride in the partnership and collaboration that led to the successful completion of this effort.

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Riverside Participates in NOAA Focus on AI

The American Meteorological Society recently released a collection of articles containing research on a variety of artificial intelligence topics from the 1st NOAA Workshop on Leveraging AI in the Exploitation of Satellite Earth Observations & Numerical Weather Prediction, which was held April 23–25, 2019 in College Park, Maryland. Two Riverside employees, Eric Maddy and Narges Shahroudi, contributed to the collection. The use of AI will improve the efficiency of environmental data processing and analysis, as well as identify innovative ways to use data to create new products and services. One example is improved hurricane forecast strength and intensity, which would result in a cost savings and help protect lives and property.

https://journals.ametsoc.org/collection/NOAA-1st-ai-workshop

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Riverside Recognizes Multiple NCEI SDS Team Members at NESDIS/NCEI 2020 Awards Ceremony!

Congratulations go to Devin Thomas, Nancy Casey, Bryan Iddings, and Scott Embler for the recognition they have received as a NESDIS Outstanding Information Technology and Engineering Employee(s) of the Year! Each were nominated for their work in designing the software system for quality control, developing an improved approach to standardizing soil moisture values, and establishing a new soil moisture dataset for the U.S. Climate Reference Network in alignment with requirements of the U.S. National Soil Moisture Network.

Devin Thomas, Nancy Casey, Bryan Iddings


Congratulations go to Nicol Newell-Bell, Paul Tisch, Russell Scarpino, and William Franklin for receiving an NCEI Collaboration Award on the NCEI-CO Stewardship Operations and Maintenance Project! This collaboration award is to recognize the joint ITSD-CCOG effort to address NCEI's CO stewardship operations and maintenance challenges. This group began an effort a year ago to address data archive and delivery issues with the NCEI-CO infrastructure, and since then they have made real and measurable improvements as evidenced by turning items in the NCEI Operations Report ‘green’. To achieve these results, NCEI staff worked collaboratively and strengthened the working relationship between ITSD and CCOG. Everyone exhibited a commitment to the NCEI mission and a OneNCEI approach that has resulted in success.

Nicol Newell-Bell, Russell Scarpino


Congratulations go to Rocky Bilotta, Scott Embler, Eric Freeman, Ethan Shepherd, Pete Jones, Bryant Korzeniewski, Georgi Kostov, Chunying Liu, Shelley McNeill, Xungang Yin, Michael Parker & Fengying Sun for receiving an NCEI Collaboration Award on the NCEI-NC Parallels Migration! NCEI has been running a significant portion of its IT server hosting platform on an old virtualization technology called Parallels Virtuozzo, commonly called “Parallels”. The platform stopped receiving security and maintenance upgrades from the provider several years ago, and NCEI adopted at the time a replacement platform called Ovirt. In an effort that has spanned the past four years, NCEI personnel from all divisions and centers have worked together towards the migration of the platform from Parallels to Ovirt.

This migration, performed while also maintaining the existing platform with minimal downtime to our user community, required the expertise, planning, teamwork, coordination, and efforts of many within NCEI. The collaborative approach taken by these individuals is noteworthy.

Top Row (L-R): Xungang Yin, Pete Jones, Ethan Shepherd, Eric Freeman, Rocky Bilotta

Bottom Row (L-R): Georgi Kostov, Bryan Korzeniewski, Michael Parker, Chunying Liu


Congratulations to Lois Ellingson for completing this year’s update to NOAA’s Research and Development Database (NRDD)! The NOAA Research and Development Database (NRDD) supports NOAA’s planning and progress tracking efforts and helps capture trends and evaluate the quality and performance of NOAA’s Research and Development activities. Deputy NOAA Administrator, Tim Gallaudet, highlighted the NRDD in NOAA’s annual report and in a dedicated video.

Lois Ellingson

Lois worked closely with the NCEI NRDD Federal Lead to ensure that data provided by NCEI POCs were accurate, complete, and logically consistent. She helped navigate a new NRDD interface for which bugs had to be identified and resolved. She liaised with the NRDD Administration Team to ensure everyone's NRDD account was set up correctly, proactively providing feedback to NRDD Administration in order to improve the NRDD experience in future data calls. Finally, she manually entered 56 projects into the NRDD containing hundreds of cells of data for each project, coordinating directly with three NCEI Division/Centers to get submitted projects approved.


Riverside to Participate in NOAA/Google Agreement to Exploit Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning for Environmental Prediction

Riverside Technology, inc. has been supporting the NOAA Center for Satellite Research and Applications (STAR) in the exploitation of emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) to improve both the quality and efficiency of numerical weather prediction. Recently, NOAA signed an agreement with Google to explore the benefits of AI/ML for enhancing the use of satellite and environmental data to enhance their mission of better protecting lives and property through more accurate and timely forecasts. Riverside employees at STAR have been selected to participate in this endeavor. “We are excited for this opportunity, “ said Riverside CEO Brian Ashe. “There is tremendous synergy with the work that we have been performing at STAR for the past several years.”

From Observations to Improved Forecast using AI (Image Credit: ECMWF)

From Observations to Improved Forecast using AI (Image Credit: ECMWF)

Research will initially focus on developing small-scale AI/ML systems that may evolve into full-scale prototypes that could ultimately migrate into forecast operations. If successful, these efforts have the potential to improve forecasts, reduce costs and enhance America’s contribution to the science of weather and climate prediction. “These goals are completely aligned with our corporate mission,” said Ashe.

For the last 30 years, Riverside Technology, inc. has provided innovative solutions that address the increasing demand for environmental decision support technologies in an ever-changing world. We improve lives and livelihoods by leveraging environmental intelligence to solve the world's most challenging water, land, weather and climate-related problems.

Research will initially focus on developing small-scale AI/ML systems that may evolve into full-scale prototypes that could ultimately migrate into forecast operations. If successful, these efforts have the potential to improve forecasts, reduce costs and enhance America’s contribution to the science of weather and climate prediction. “These goals are completely aligned with our corporate mission,” said Ashe.

For the last 30 years, Riverside Technology, inc. has provided innovative solutions that address the increasing demand for environmental decision support technologies in an ever-changing world. We improve lives and livelihoods by leveraging environmental intelligence to solve the world's most challenging water, land, weather and climate-related problems.

Riverside Awarded Two ProTech Satellite Task Order Contracts to support NOAA’s Center for Satellite Application and Research (STAR) Exploitation of Emerging Technologies

Riverside Technology, inc., a recognized industry leader in the design and implementation of integrated scientific and engineering solutions, has been awarded two ProTech Satellite Domain Task Order contacts to provide scientific and technical expertise to NOAA’s Center for Satellite Application and Research (STAR) for the exploitation of new and emerging technologies in space-based environmental observations. These two task orders, Research and Technology Maturation for the Exploitation of Emerging Technologies (RTMEE) and Transforming Satellite Data Assimilation using Artificial Intelligence Techniques (TSDA AIT), continue Riverside’s legacy of providing cutting edge scientific and technical support to STAR since 2007.

Block diagram of image-to-image framework to translate satellite HR IR images into MW images.

Block diagram of image-to-image framework to translate satellite HR IR images into MW images.

“We are honored to be able to continue and expand our long-standing relationship with STAR,” said Brian Ashe, Riverside President and CEO. “These awards are a testament to the dedication of our highly capable technical staff who have worked shoulder-to-shoulder with their STAR counterparts to infuse artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) techniques into exploiting new and advanced observing systems, improving the accuracy and computational efficiency of complex product algorithms, and fostering new intergovernmental, academic and private sector partnerships that ultimately improve both our understanding and predictive capability of environmental phenomena.”

The Riverside Team, which includes Atmospheric Environmental Research, Inc. (AER) and Carr Astronautics, is well-positioned to provide the full suite of required services on day one. Both RTMEE and TSDA AIT are connected to NOAA’s medium and long-term analyses and engineering trades for future satellite observing architectures as well as the impact of these decisions on both numerical modelling/prediction and the underlying computational infrastructure. “It’s a small but important aspect of the overall ecosystem,” said Ashe. “We hope to help STAR push beyond simply ‘emerging’ technologies and discover those that will be truly disruptive in terms of enhancing STAR’s contribution to the overall value stream. It is exciting to imagine where we can be in five years.”

Riverside Team Members Recognized at NCEI/NESDIS Annual Awards

On November 20, 2019, several members of the Riverside Team supporting the National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) Science and Data Stewardship (SDS) program were recognized for their outstanding contributions over the past year to the organization as a whole.

For exemplary support to the Mission Science Network (MSN) Phase 2 Project, Riverside employees Brian Newport, Robert Patten, and Michael Chapman were recognized. Additionally, they were recognized for their increasingly vital efforts and work towards the NCEI Cloud Adoption Preparation--a key component to the innovative project that will assist NCEI to become more efficient and sustainable moving forward.

For outstanding leadership and support to the MSN Integrated Product Team, Riverside Teammate GDIT employees Lenny Collazo, Tiffany Toft, and Andy Navard, along with Riverside employees John Voorhees and Ingrid Garcia-Solera, were recognized. This multi-contract and cooperative institute project has been a large on-going feat in both IT and project management efforts that has been riddled with impediments. The efforts and coordination of this team have been a key part of the continued success of this project, which will continue to migrate and centralize all data from NCEI MS to national headquarters at NCEI NC.

For commendable work supporting the 4th National Climate Assessment, an itative and comprehensive assessment of climatic changes and risks for the United States, Riverside Teammate GDIT employee Kate Johnson, along with Riverside employees Andrew Buddenberg, Kristy Thomas, and John Frimmel were recognized for their work. These efforts are not only to continue the support and gathering of important information, but the presentation and analyses of the data will continue to create discussions and raise awareness on the state of the climate in the nation.

Congratulations to all of the honorees, we appreciate all the hard work and innovation you have brought to this program and to NCEI as a whole!

Oceanic Fish Restoration Project Outreach Meetings with Pelagic Longline Fishermen

From July 24 - 26, 2019, the Oceanic Fish Restoration Project team held a series of meetings in Panama City, FL; Gretna, LA; and Pompano Beach, FL; with 2019 participants and pelagic longline vessel owners interested in participating in the 2020 season. Project team members from NOAA’s Restoration Center, Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Management Division, and Southeast Fisheries Science Center, as well as partners with the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, were all in attendance. 

Cody Rewis, Observer Coordinator with the NOAA Southeast Fisheries Science Center, presents alternative gear catch data to vessel owners and the project team at the Coastal Communities Consulting office in Gretna, Louisiana.

Cody Rewis, Observer Coordinator with the NOAA Southeast Fisheries Science Center, presents alternative gear catch data to vessel owners and the project team at the Coastal Communities Consulting office in Gretna, Louisiana.

During the meetings, the group recapped successes and discussed improvements for the 2020 project year. Possible changes to the project—including an option to renew the contract for participation every year, insurance requirements, and a modified bidding process—were discussed in detail. In addition, Cody Rewis from the Southeast Fisheries Science Center Miami Lab presented catch data gathered from observer reports. (Amy Piko)

Riverside Employees Support Sea Turtle Restoration

Riverside Technology, inc. employees Canh Nguyen, Jason Letort, Peter Nguyen, and Bryan Wescovich are part of the NOAA SEFSC Gear Monitoring Team (GMT) helping to reduce bycatch to aid in sea turtle population restoration after the Deep Water Horizon oil spill. Click on the link below to read more about it and to see a video of these extraordinary efforts.

https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/video/reducing-bycatch-helps-restore-sea-turtle-populations

Riverside Employee Jamie Clark Receives NOAA SEFSC 2019 Team Member of the Year Award

Jamie assists with tagging a leatherback sea turtle. This activity was ized by National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) Endangered Species Act permit 21233 issued to the Southeast Fisheries Science Center (SEFSC).

Jamie assists with tagging a leatherback sea turtle. This activity was ized by National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) Endangered Species Act permit 21233 issued to the Southeast Fisheries Science Center (SEFSC).

Jamie Clark has contributed to enhanced stewardship of NOAA Fisheries protected sea turtle populations and to the enhanced morale of the workforce at the NOAA Beaufort Laboratory. Despite being employed as a contractor for less than a year and having her schedule affected by both a major hurricane (Florence) and a prolonged partial government shutdown, Jamie's accomplishments are remarkably extensive. Jamie assisted with the deployment of 165 LED and 3 acoustic deterrents on pound nets during a 3 week period in October 2018 that involved almost daily switching out of deterrents, fishing pound nets, and working up incidentally captured sea turtles. Jamie also took on extra duties on her own initiative, to accommodate an injured co-worker, and single-handedly worked to salvage hundreds of sea turtle bone samples from a walk-in freezer that experienced catastrophic failure coincident with Hurricane Florence. It is difficult to describe the appalling conditions under which Jamie worked with respect to heat and decomposition state of affected samples, but despite the daunting nature of the task, she enthusiastically took on the challenge and cataloged, dissected, boiled, and cleaned >800 bones. In addition to this monumental effort she continued her regular laboratory work, involving histological processing of sea turtle bones for age and growth studies.

Jamie's contributions have been integral to research efforts focused on improving threatened and endangered sea turtle management and conservation. Data collected during bycatch deterrent research will enable use of pound nets with a reduction in incidental capture and potential injury of sea turtles, with implications for reducing bycatch in other types of fisheries as well. The bones Jamie salvaged following the freezer breakdown were representative of unique time series from locations spanning US Atlantic and Gulf coasts, making them irreplaceable for sea turtle age and growth studies that increase understanding of population dynamics, a fundamental requirement for effective management.

Jamie's unmatched enthusiasm and persistence in completing difficult tasks to meet agency goals make her an exceptional team member. She is very attentive to detail, asking perceptive questions to improve processes and approaches, and proactive in stepping in to help with whatever is needed to accomplish a given task, always with heartfelt interest and a smile.

Employee Spotlight: Jack McDermid

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Jack McDermid is the Riverside Program Manager for NCEI-CCOG at Stennis Space Center. Jack started out as a boat operator and field technician at the Gulf Coast Research Laboratory (now University of Southern Mississippi) in Ocean Springs MS, working on Corps of Engineers projects stabilizing spoil islands in the MS sound.  He joined the Naval Oceanographic Office in 1976 as a co-op student and became a certified U.S. Navy diver and biologist conducting ecological monitoring surveys of harbors, barrier reefs, shorelines and marshes near Navy installations. He also participated in oceanographic environmental surveys and search operations aboard Navy oceanographic survey vessels, mine sweepers and submarines.  Following his tenure at NAVOCEANO, Jack transferred to the Office of Naval Research as the Arctic Logistics and Instrumentation Program Manager where he planned and directed logistics support for the largest Arctic experiment in U.S. Naval history.  Jack retired from the Naval Research Laboratory where he was the head of the Naval Acoustics Tactical Applications Section developing ocean acoustic models for simulations, adaptive sampling and optimization systems.  Before ending up at Riverside and NCEI, he spent five years as an IT project manager with Computer Science Corporation supporting the Department of 比特币交易平台有哪些homeland Security.  Jack holds a double major undergraduate degree in biology and anthropology from the University of Southern Mississippi and a Master of Business Administration degree from William Carey University.  Jack is married, has two children, two dogs and a cat and lives in Pass Christian Mississippi.

1. What three traits describe you? Loyal, curious, ancient.

2. What are you most excited or passionate about in your career? Still being able to get up every morning

3. What’s the weirdest job you’ve ever had? I was a scrub-diver for an aquarium and part-time animated character actor for commercials for the company.

4. What would you do (for a career) if you weren’t doing this? Build wooden boats

5. Who lives in your house (people, pets, etc.)? My wife, two kids, two dogs and a cat.

6. Tell us something that might surprise us about you. I’m allergic to animal hair

7. If you could have a dinner party and invite any four people, dead or alive, who makes the guest list? My Mother, Father, Sister and Brother

8. What was your favorite subject in school and why? Science, I was too lazy to be any good at math

9. Which of your 5 senses is the strongest? How about weakest? Strongest is touch, I’m very tactile; weakest is smell – I can’t.

10. What kind of music do you listen to? Smooth Jazz if I have a choice, otherwise whatever is on the box.

11. You can only eat the same three foods for the rest of your life. What are they? Fried grouper, wild rice, pecan pie

12. If you could witness any historical event, what would you want to see? Woodstock NY; 1969, I must be the only person who missed it.

13. What trend would you like to see go away forever? Rap

14. If you could choose a superpower, what would it be? I’d be perfectly happy just to have my vision back to 20/20

15. Tell us about your most unique travel experience. I had to hitch a ride on an empty DC-4 cargo plane returning from Barter Island to Fairbanks Alaska. Going through the mountains the pilot thought it would be fun to chase a herd of caribou so he rolled the plane over for a better view and we flew upside down until the heard scattered. 

16. What’s your #1 item on your bucket list? Fly fishing on the Snake River Idaho.

17. What’s on or in your nightstand? Dust and Off-Grid magazines

18. What’s your biggest pet peeve? The cat claws-up the door casing in the garage at 04:30 every day

19. If you could be on any TV game show, what would it be and why? Jeopardy – I like trivia

20. Name a food item you wouldn’t touch with a 10-foot pole. Brussels sprouts

21. Tell us your favorite joke. No, no…

22. What movie could you watch over and over? Why? “The Rocketeer”, I like 1930s Hollywood

23. Tell me about your best friend. Dive buddy from college, piano keys for teeth he lights up a room, never met a stranger

24. Who’s the most famous person you’ve met? Mel Fisher, treasure hunter Key West FL “Today’s the Day!”

25. Who would play you in a movie about your life? What would be the title of that movie? Steve McQueen; “Blood, Sweat and Fears”

26. What’s an ability you wish you had? Concert 12 string Guitarist

27. Tell us about your best live performance experience. Jimmy Buffet; May 2 1982, Papeete Tahiti, a solo gig where only six of us in the venue spoke English

28. If you could choose one amenity to add to the workplace, what would it be? Locker room with showers so I could run at lunch.