Bob Ryan’s retirement: sunny days remain for legendary forecaster

(ABC7)
Bob Ryan (ABC7)

The Post’s media reporter Paul Farhi broke the news:

Weather forecaster Bob Ryan, a fixture on Washington TV for decades, said Wednesday that he intends to retire next month from WJLA (Channel 7).

A giant in the world of broadcast meteorology and local celebrity, Bob has exemplified class and professionalism in his 30-plus year television tenure in Washington.

With an advanced degree in meteorology, Bob has brought legitimate scientific chops to the television screen, not just a pretty face.

Bob remains the only broadcast meteorologist to serve as President of the American Meteorological Society and has also been selected to serve on expert panels of the National Academy of Sciences.

Bob’s weather reports have carried authority and credibility while conveying enthusiasm and his love for science.

A champion of effective communication, Bob has surveyed his viewers to come up with the clearest wording for his forecasts and is among the few broadcast meteorologists to experiment with probabilistic forecasts for snow amounts (“Bob’s Odds”).

Snow lovers know that when Bob gets excited about a snowstorm (“A Ryan Guarantee”), it’s the real deal, but that when he warns “do your homework”, a disappointment is inevitable.

A pioneer in digital meteorology, Bob developed WeatherNet4, a cutting edge interactive local weather website at his previous station WRC (NBC Washington) in the mid-1990s. Bob is now the chief architect behind WJLA’s weather website and mobile offerings – which are top notch.

Related: ABC7′s Bob Ryan to retire (from WJLA.com)

My first personal encounter with Bob was in the 6th grade when I sent him a letter asking about what colleges offered meteorology degree programs.  He replied and included a annual almanac (which I still have), which he signed “Sunny Days”.

I was fortunate enough to intern for Bob while a senior in high school, and he has served a wonderful mentor in my career.  I’m now lucky to consider him a friend and always look forward to our lunches together.

As for Bob’s next steps, he promises to remain a prominent voice in the weather community. Farhi’s article says:

Ryan said he plans to remain active, writing and blogging about the weather, possibly in conjunction with The Washington Post’s Capital Weather Gang. He may also appear on WJLA as a “fill-in” forecaster, but details have not been determined. He ruled out joining another local station.

Sounds like many more sunny days ahead for Bob, and no riding off into the sunset just yet…

Here are some reactions to news of Bob’s retirement from Twitter and Facebook…

 

 

 

 

Jason is currently the Washington Post’s weather editor. A native Washingtonian, Jason has been a weather enthusiast since age 10.
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Jason Samenow · May 8, 2013