Interim Nebraska State Climatologist Named


   The University of Nebraska-Lincoln is conducting a national search for a new state climatologist to replace Martha Durr, who resigned in November.

     Durr, who’d served nearly 8 years, indicated she’d become a victim of burnout – saying she “didn’t have anything left to give” to the job

     UNL climate scientist and research assistant professor Deborah Bathke is the interim state climatologist and will head the State Climate Oce until a full-time replacement is found. 

     Bathke, a native of Ponca, is a former assistant New Mexico state climatologist with extensive experience in drought management. 

      Larkin Powell, director of UNL’s School of Natural Resources, says Bathke is “uniquely positioned” for the interim role because “she is known nationally for her work in climate science and has the ability to translate complex data for the public.”

     Bathke says she looks forward to her new position and hopes to combine her expertise with her “Nebraska roots” to help Nebraskans better understand and prepare for climate risks and the severe weather they’re expected to bring.,

     One her first tasks in leading the State Climate Office in updating a state climate change assessment last done in 2014. The Legislature allocated $150,000 last year for the project, which is to be completed next year.