As the new Deputy Weather Editor for the Washington Post, I wanted to take a moment and introduce myself to our readers here at the Capital Weather Gang.
So, hello! My name is Angela Fritz, and I am a diehard weather nerd.
As is the case with many meteorologists, my love for all things weather and science began at a young age, growing up in Cleveland, Ohio. My mother loves to tell the story that when I was just old enough to walk, I would be standing at our giant picture window during severe thunderstorms while the rest of the family were trying to decide if they should get into the basement. I question the validity of this claim but she swears up and down that it’s true. Proximity also forced me to become familiar with lake effect snow at a young age, and I thoroughly enjoy snow (gasp!) to this day.
Weather passion took me to Valparaiso University, where the professors would lead 10-day storm chases every summer. Safe storm chasing is an amazing, educational experience. There’s something about watching a “low-precip” supercell develop in the High Plains that you just can’t match. Storm chasing in addition to rigorous classroom coursework helped me confirm I had made the right choice when I decided to be a meteorologist!
As I graduated with my Bachelor of Science in meteorology, I was feeling the need to expand my atmospheric education. It was this desire that led me to the Georgia Institute of Technology, where I focused on tropical cyclones and climate change. My specific area of research revolved around tropical cyclone size, and how it’s an important variable to consider when you’re trying to figure out how “energetic” a hurricane season is. I also taught every semester on courses ranging from atmospheric thermodynamics to climate change solutions. Teaching helped develop my science communication skills, and fostered my desire to pursue weather and climate communication, in general.
Once I received my Master of Science in Earth and Atmospheric Science from Tech, I headed to CNN (to be fair, it was just down the street) to learn the media ropes as a weather producer. I learned there how much I love the thrill of breaking weather and news events, and honed my skills as the “resident newsroom scientist.” Deep water oil spills, earthquakes, space weather — all things that I didn’t anticipate adding to my arsenal of expertise, but needs be!
My next stop was Weather Underground in San Francisco, where I had the pleasure to work closely with Dr. Jeff Masters, who, if you haven’t read his blog, is an incredible science communicator. Over the course of three years, my role transitioned from blogger to software developer to product manager — but always meteorologist first and foremost. I am proud to have been with my WU friends through these past few years as the company has made giant strides, including a successful redesign in April.
Now here at the Capital Weather Gang I am looking forward to working with the Gang and learning the ins and outs of D.C. weather! I am also glad to be in an area that experiences more weather phenomena than San Francisco did — though I will miss the marine layer fog, which is surprisingly beautiful, as you can see in the video I’ve included below. I could wax poetic about the beauty of San Francisco fog all day, but local SF videographer Simon Christen proves a video is worth more than a thousand words!
I plan to be active on the blog comments so feel free to reach out to me there, or send me an email!