Kelvin Droegemeier

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Kelvin Droegemeier
Kelvin Droegemeier.jpg
10th Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy
Assumed office
February 11, 2019
Preceded byJohn Holdren
Oklahoma Secretary of Science and Technology
In office
March 13, 2017 – January 2019
Preceded byStephen W. S. McKeever
Succeeded byKayse Shrum
Vice Chairman of National Science Board
In office
Personal details
Born (1958-09-23) September 23, 1958 (age 60)
Ellsworth, Kansas, U.S.
EducationUniversity of Oklahoma, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Scientific career
ThesisThe Numerical Simulation of Thunderstorm Outflow Dynamics (Gust Front, Kelvin-Helmholtz Instability, Wind Shear, Microbursts) (1985)
Doctoral advisorRobert B. Wilhelmson

Kelvin Kay Droegemeier (born September 23, 1958) is an American research meteorologist currently serving as the Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy. Droegemeier is known for his research in predicting the development of extreme weather events, and previously served as Oklahoma Secretary of Science and Technology and the Vice President for Research at the University of Oklahoma.

Academic career[edit]

Droegemeier was born on September 23, 1958 in Ellsworth, Kansas. He received a B.S. in meteorology from the University of Oklahoma in 1980. He then pursued graduate studies in atmospheric science at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign, earning an M.S. in 1982 and a Ph.D. in 1985.[1] In 1985 he joined the faculty of the University of Oklahoma.[2][3]

Droegermeier's academic research has focused on extreme weather events. In the 1990s, he became known for research on computer simulations of thunderstorm development, drawing on advancements in both radar and computer technology.[4][5]

He went on to co-found two centers of the National Science Foundation: the Center for Analysis and Prediction of Storms in 1989, and the Engineering Research Center for Collaborative Adaptive Sensing of the Atmosphere in 2003.[4][5] He also founded and directed the Sasaki Institute, a now-defunct[6] non-profit organization at the University of Oklahoma, and as of 2011 owned a private weather technology company.[5] Droegemeier became Vice President for Research at the University of Oklahoma in 2009,[7] and held this position until August 2018.[8]

Political appointments[edit]

Droegemeier served on the National Science Board for 12 years during the George W. Bush and Obama administrations[9] beginning in 2004,[5] including as Vice Chairman during 2012–2016.[7] He was appointed Oklahoma Secretary of Science and Technology in March 2017.[7][10]

In August 2018, Droegemeier was nominated to be the Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP). The position had been vacant since January 2017. He was noted for being a strong supporter of federally funded research.[7][11] Droegemeier would be the first OSTP Director who is not a physicist.[7] Reaction to the nomination from the scientific community was generally positive.[4][11] Previous OSTP Director John Holdren called the nomination "a solid choice",[7][11] and American Association for the Advancement of Science CEO and former Democratic Congressman Rush Holt expressed approval of the nomination.[9] On September 5, 2018, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation voted unanimously to approve Droegemeier's nomination.[12] Droegemeier was confirmed by the Senate on January 2, 2019, the final day of the 115th United States Congress.[10][13] He was sworn in by Vice President Mike Pence on February 11, 2019.[14]


  1. ^ Droegemeier, Kelvin Kay (1985). The Numerical Simulation of Thunderstorm Outflow Dynamics (Gust Front, Kelvin-Helmholtz Instability, Wind Shear, Microbursts) (Ph.D.). University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. OCLC 93235437 – via ProQuest. (Subscription required (help)). Cite uses deprecated parameter |subscription= (help)
  2. ^ "Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin appoints OU vice president to serve on cabinet". OU Daily. March 9, 2017. Retrieved August 9, 2018.
  3. ^ "Curriculum Vitae" (PDF). University of Oklahoma. June 16, 2018. Retrieved August 2, 2018.
  4. ^ a b c Zimmer, Carl (August 1, 2018). "Trump Finally Picks a Science Adviser. And Scientists? They Seem Relieved". The New York Times. Retrieved August 9, 2018.
  5. ^ a b c d "Kelvin K. Droegemeier: Biography". National Science Board. Retrieved August 9, 2018.
  6. ^ "History". University of Oklahoma School of Meteorology. Retrieved August 9, 2018.
  7. ^ a b c d e f Reardon, Sara; Witze, Alexandra (July 31, 2018). "The wait is over: Trump taps meteorologist as White House science adviser". Nature. 560 (7717): 150–151. Bibcode:2018Natur.560..150R. doi:10.1038/d41586-018-05862-y. PMID 30087470. Retrieved August 2, 2018.
  8. ^ K.S. McNutt (August 21, 2018). "Kelvin Droegemeier steps down as University of Oklahoma vp for research ahead of his U.S. Senate confirmation hearing". The Oklahoman.
  9. ^ a b "Trump appoints Oklahoma professor, meteorologist Kelvin Droegemeier to lead science policy office". CBS News. August 1, 2018. Retrieved August 2, 2018.
  10. ^ a b Wingerter, Justin (January 2, 2019). "OU meteorologist Kelvin Droegemeier approved to be Trump's science adviser". Retrieved January 3, 2019.
  11. ^ a b c Romm, Tony (August 1, 2018). "Trump intends to nominate extreme-weather expert for top White House science and tech role". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 2, 2018.
  12. ^ Reardon, Sara (September 5, 2018). "Trump science-adviser pick breezes through Senate committee vote". Nature. doi:10.1038/d41586-018-06196-5.
  13. ^ Morello, Lauren (January 3, 2019). "Donald Trump finally has a White House science adviser". Nature. doi:10.1038/d41586-019-00015-1. Retrieved January 3, 2019.
  14. ^ Smith, Marcia (February 11, 2019). "Droegemeier officially sworn in as OSTP director". Space Policy. Retrieved March 16, 2019.

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
John Holdren
Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy
2019 – present