National Hurricane Center director to mark Camille anniversary

Bill Read, the director of the National Hurricane Center and a former on-board meteorologist for the Navy’s Hurricane Hunters, will speak about the impact of Hurricane Camille and advances in hurricane forecasting when he addresses a luncheon on Aug. 17 to commemorate the 40th anniversary of Camille striking Biloxi and the Gulf Coast.

The red beans-and-rice luncheon will be from noon to 1 p.m. at the Biloxi Community Center on Howard Avenue. Doors open at 11:30 a.m. Advance ticket, at $5 each, go on sale Monday at all Biloxi branches of The Peoples Bank.

Beau Rivage Resort & Casino will sponsor the event, meaning all proceeds from the admission fee will be used by the Episcopal Church of the Redeemer for landscaping in the area near the Camille memorial.

Read began his National Weather Service career in 1977 with the service’s test and evaluation division in Sterling, Va. He developed his forecasting skills in Fort Worth and San Antonio, Texas, and served as severe thunderstorm and flash flood program leader at the National Weather Service headquarters in Silver Spring, Md.

In 1992, Read was appointed to direct the Houston/Galveston weather forecast office of NOAA’s National Weather Service, and led it through the challenges of the National Weather Service modernization and restructuring program in the mid-1990s.

He was named director of the National Weather Service’s Tropical Prediction Center, which includes the Miami-headquarters National Hurricane Center and two other divisions, in January 2008. He had served as the center’s acting deputy director since August 2007.

Before joining the National Weather Service, Read served in the U.S. Navy, where his duties included an assignment as an on-board meteorologist with the Hurricane Hunters.

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