Dr. Marshall Shepherd's research focuses primarily on hydrometeorological extremes, urban climate, and the intersections of atmospheric sciences with society. He uses remote sensing, weather-climate modeling, and risk-vulnerability approaches to address challenges such as urban flooding, energy-food-water nexus, weather-climate risk, and communication-warnings.
Dr. J. Marshall Shepherd is a leading international expert in weather and climate and is the Georgia Athletic Association Distinguished Professor of Geography and Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Georgia. Dr. Shepherd was the 2013 President of American Meteorological Society (AMS), the nation’s largest and oldest professional/science society in the atmospheric and related sciences. Dr. Shepherd serves as Director of the University of Georgia’s (UGA) Atmospheric Sciences Program and Full Professor in the Department of Geography where he was a previous Associate Department Head. Dr. Shepherd also holds a joint appointment in the College of Engineering and is the Associate Director for Climate and Outreach in its Institute for Resilient Infrastructure Systems (IRIS).
In 2022, he was selected as Southeastern Conference (SEC) Professor of the year. In 2021, Dr. Shepherd made history by becoming the first UGA faculty member to be elected to the National Academy of Science, National Academy of Engineering, and American Academy of Arts and Sciences in the same year. He is one of only a handful of scholars to hold membership in all three distinguished organizations. Dr. Shepherd is also the host of The Weather Channel’s Award-Winning Sunday talk show Weather Geeks, a pioneering Sunday talk podcast/show and a senior contributor to Forbes Magazine. Dr. Shepherd is the recipient of many awards including the 2020 Mani L. Bhaumik Award for Public Engagement with Science and the 2019 AGU Climate Communication Prize. Dr. Shepherd is the 2018 recipient of the prestigious AMS Helmut Landsberg Award for pioneering and significant work in urban climate and in 2017, he was honored with the AMS Brooks Award, a high honor within the field of meteorology. Ted Turner and his Captain Planet Foundation honored Dr. Shepherd in 2014 with its Protector of the Earth Award. Prior recipients include Erin Brockovich and former EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson. He is also the 2015 Recipient of the Association of American Geographers (AAG) Media Achievement award, the Florida State University Grads Made Good Award and the UGA Franklin College of Arts and Sciences Sandy Beaver Award for Excellence in Teaching. In 2015, Dr. Shepherd was invited to moderate the White House Champions for Change event. He is an alumni of the prestigious SEC Academic Leadership Fellows program. Prior to UGA, Dr. Shepherd spent 12 years as a Research Meteorologist at NASA-Goddard Space Flight Center and was Deputy Project Scientist for the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission, a multi-national space mission that launched in 2014. President Bush honored him on May 4th 2004 at the White House with the Presidential Early Career Award for pioneering scientific research in weather and climate science. Dr. Shepherd is a Fellow of the American Meteorological Society. Two national magazines, the AMS, and Florida State University have also recognized Dr. Shepherd for his significant contributions. Dr. Shepherd was the 2016 Spring Undergraduate Commencement speaker at his 3-time Alma Mater, Florida State University. He was also the 2017 Graduate Commencement speaker at the University of Georgia.
Dr. Shepherd is frequently sought as an expert on weather, climate, and remote sensing. He routinely appears on CBS Face The Nation, NOVA, The Today Show, CNN, Fox News, The Weather Channel and several others. His TedX Atlanta Talk on “Slaying Climate Zombies” is one of the most viewed climate lectures on YouTube. Dr. Shepherd is also frequently asked to advise key leaders at NASA, the White House, Congress, Department of Defense, and officials from foreign countries. In February 2013, Dr. Shepherd briefed the U.S. Senate on climate change and extreme weather. He has also written several editorials for CNN, Washington Post, Atlanta Journal Constitution, and numerous other outlets and has been featured in Time Magazine, Popular Mechanics, and NPR Science Friday.
Dr. Shepherd currently serves on the Board of Atmospheric Sciences and Climate of the National Academies and the Space Studies Board. He recently served on a committee examining research priorities for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). He has chaired the NASA Earth Sciences Advisory Committee and was a past member of its Earth Science Subcommittee of the NASA Advisory Council. He was a member of the Board of Trustees for the Nature Conservancy (Georgia Chapter), NOAA Science Advisory Board, Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed’s Hazard Preparedness Advisory Group United Nations World Meteorological Organization steering committee on aerosols and precipitation, 2007 Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) AR4 contributing author team, National Academies of Sciences (NAS) Panels on climate and national security, extreme weather attribution, and urban meteorology. Dr. Shepherd is a past editor for both the Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology and Geography Compass, respectively. He has been a significant founding partner in the Georgia Climate Project as well.
Dr. Shepherd received his B.S., M.S. and PhD in physical meteorology from Florida State University. He was the first African American to receive a PhD from the Florida State University Department of Meteorology, one of the nation’s oldest and respected. He is also the 2nd African American to preside over the American Meteorological Society. He is a member of the AMS, American Geophysical Union, Association of American Geographers (AAG), Sigma Xi Research Honorary, Chi Epsilon Pi Meteorology Honorary, and Omicron Delta Kappa National Honorary. He is also a member of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. and serves on various National Boards associated with his alma mater. Dr. Shepherd has authored or co-authored three books and is also the co-founder of the Alcova Elementary Weather Science Chat series that exposes K-5 students to world-class scientists. Dr. Shepherd is originally from Canton, Georgia.
- Ph.D., Florida State University Physical Meteorology
- Master of Science, Florida State University Physical Meteorology
- Bachelor of Science, Florida State University Physical Meteorology
07/01/2020-07/29/2021 U.S. Department of Army, Engineering With Nature ® Initiative (FP00021076) US Department of Army, W912HZ2020031, (UGA Budget, $ 2,500,000) 05/01/2020-04/30/2023 (1.0 month)
NASA, Towards Conceptualization and Predictability: A Multi-scalar Analysis of Urban-Influenced Hydrometeorological Processes. PI-Shepherd (UGA Budget, $1,564,139) 07/01/19-06/30/24 (TBD)
NOAA, Cooperative Institute for Satellite Earth System Studies (CISESS). UGA PI (UGA Budget, up to $1 million) 07/01/2018-6/30/21 (0.25 month)
NASA, The Impact of Soil and Surface Moisture on Tropical Cyclone Reintensification Over Land. PI. (UGA Budget, $316,516). 01/01/2021-06/30/2022 (.1 month)
Ray C. Anderson Foundation, Geospatial Tracking to Activate Drawdown Solutions in Georgia. Co-I. (Total Budget. $417,798) 12/15/2020-12/15/2021 (0.0 month)
Franklin College Office of Inclusion and Diversity, Hidden Figures in Atmospheric Sciences, Georgia. Co-I. (Total Budget. $2000) 01/01/2021-01/01/2022 (0.1 month)
UGA Office of Institutional Diversity, Assessment of Race and Heat Vulnerability in the Atlanta Metropolitan Area. PI. (UGA Budget, $9000) 12/15/2020-12/15/2021
UGA OVPR Interdisciplinary Seed Grant, Infectious Disease and Extreme Weather. Co-I (Amount: TBD)
Pending Grants 05/01/2020-4/30/2021 (0.1 month)
NSF, SRS RN: Sustainable and Equitable Urban Stream Corridors: Reimagining urban streams to provide social and ecological benefits to urban, suburban and rural communities.
Track 2 – Planning Grant Co-PI, Rhett Jackson, Brian Bledsoe, Emily Bell, Marshall Shepherd, and Seth Wenger (UGA Budget, $150,000) 01/0/2020-12/30/2025 (0.1 month)
NSF, ERC, Engineering Cities For Thermal Justice, Co-PI (lead at Georgia Tech), (UGA Budget, ~5 milllion)
2021 - Present, Member, National Academies, Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate (BASC), A leading advisory board for the nation and policymakers.
2017 – Present, Founding partner, Georgia Climate Project. In this role, we helped found and build the a consortium in the state of Georgia focused on climate science and solutions in a non-partisan, academic approach. Secured funding from the Ray C. Anderson Foundation, in two rounds, to build the network.
2018- 2021 University of Georgia Lead PI, Drawdown Georgia. In this role, I serve as the lead administrator for a large multi-institutional project funded by the Ray C. Anderson Foundation. The project is an ambitious effort to quantify carbon drawdown solutions for the state of Georgia. I lead the UGA research effort and serve on the broader project core team.
2021 -2021, Member, Taskforce on Weather Research Priorities for NOAA
2017-2018 Associate Department Head, Department of Geography, University of Georgia: In this role, I served as the deputy administrator in the Department and an ex-officio member of the departmental advisory committee. My responsibilities included scheduling departmental courses, managing faculty teaching schedules, strategic planning for external awards, and other tasks as designated by the Department Head.
2017- 2020 Chair, NASA Earth Science Advisory Committee: The NASA Earth Science Advisory Committee is one of the FACA mandated committees that advises the agency. I served as chairman of this committee and facilitated relevant activities in that role.
2016-2017 SEC Academic Leadership Fellow: I was selected as one of four faculty leaders at the University of Georgia to participate in the SEC’s Leadership Fellows program. This program selects potential Academic leaders and immerses them within 1-year leadership and higher administration program with peers at UGA and across the SEC schools.
Director, Atmospheric Sciences Program, University of Georgia (Current): In this role, I direct the AMS and Federally-credential atmospheric sciences program. The program addresses the needs of students interested in studying meteorology or climate science. Under my leadership, the University of Georgia became the 78th membership of the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR) and a member of the WSI National Lightning Network. From 2008-2015, our program faculty has attracted over $12 million dollars in extramural grants, contributed over 110 peer-reviewed journals, and provided key experts to the media and nation on weather and climate topics. For example, in February 2013, I briefed the U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works and in 2015 briefed members of the Congress and White House staff. My colleagues and I are also frequently sought for major media appearances or Opinion Editorials. Our program is also notably regarded on the UGA campus and is well supported by University Administrators, including President Jere Morehead. In 2015, we proposed a new Atmospheric Sciences major at the University of Georgia. The program was approved by the State Board of Regents in August 2016. I also secured the program’s first major donor and endowment. In 2016, we partnered with the Office of Preparedness to make UGA the first SEC member of the WeatherSTEM network.
President of the American Meteorological Society (2013): The American Meteorological Society is one of the leading professional societies in the world, dedicated to weather, climate, and related sciences. As President of the organization, I was elected by the nearly 14,000 members and preside over the AMS Executive Council and Executive Committee, which overseas the organization and its multi-million dollar budget and portfolio. I also provided vision and leadership on issues of the day facing the weather, climate, and related communities. AMS publishes several of the highest rated and cited journals in weather and climate fields and is seen as a key broker of information and leadership on weather/climate issues of the day. In this role, I also served as the U.S. representative to the International Federation of Meteorological Societies (IFMS). I also chaired the Executive Council and Executive Committee and led the annual performance review of the Executive Director.
International and National Advisory Roles: I have served as a member of the Nature Conservancy (Georgia) Board of Trustees, Board of Climate Central, Mothers and Others for Clean Air Partnership Council, NOAA Science Advisory Board, NOAA Climate Working Group, Department of Energy ARM Science Board, NSF Advisory Committee for Environmental Research and Education, NSF Committee of Visitors, Biocomplexity Program, Earth Science Subcommittee of the NASA Advisory Council, Mothers and Others for Clean Air Partnership Council, National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Director Search Committee, University Space Research Association (USRA) Earth Science Advisory Board, Department of Energy expert panel on Cool Roof Initiative and Climate Change, NASA/NOAA/Howard University Programmatic Advisory Committees and 2 National Academy of Science Studies (i. Implications of Climate Change on National Security and U.S. Naval Operations and ii. Urban Meteorology). I have also served on a World Meteorological Organization advisory committee related to aerosols, clouds, and precipitation and the external review committee for NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center and Hydrometeorological Prediction Center. I was also a contributing author to a chapter in the 2007 IPCC report (AR4). At the University level, I also served on the 2013 UGA Provost Search Committee, the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences Faculty Senate and the Center for Integrative Conservative Research (CICR) Executive Committee.
Host, Weather Channel WxGeeks (Current): Weather Geeks is a pioneering national Sunday talk show/Podcast by The Weather Channel. The show discusses contemporary weather and climate topics. The show has garnered strong critical reviews and an Award from the American Meteorological Society.
Ted Talks: I have delivered two TED X talks that together have nearly 2 million views. One was featured on the TED website.
Editorships: I have served as an editor for both the Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology (JAMC) and Geography Compass. I have also served as the Climatology Editor for the Wiley/Association of American Geographers (AAG) Encyclopedia of Geography and the Associate Editor for Weather at the IEEE-sponsored Earthzine.
Former Deputy Project Scientist, NASA Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) Mission: While at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, I served as the Deputy Project Scientist on a major NASA mission seeking to measure precipitation from space. GPM will improve weather, climate, and hydrological forecasting and is slated for a 2014 launch date. In this role, I was a part of the scientific leadership team that interfaced with the engineers, NASA Headquarters staff, and international partners. GPM is an approximately $1 billion dollar mission in aggregation.
RECOGNITION AND OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENTS
2021 National Academy of Sciences
2021 National Academy of Engineering
2021 American Academy of Arts and Sciences
2018 AMS Helmut E. Landsberg Award
2017 ESRI GIS Paper of the Year (shared award)
2017 AMS Charles Franklin Brooks Award
2016 Selected as SEC Academic Leadership Development Program Fellow
2016 Florida State University, Spring Undergraduate Commencement Speaker
2015 Florida State University, Graduate Made Good (Highest Alumni Honor)
2015 AAG Excellence In Media Award
2015 Franklin College of Arts and Sciences General Sandy Beaver Award for Excellence in Teaching
2015 American Meteorological Society-National Weather Association C.L. Chandler Award to WxGeeks Team (shared with Weather Channel colleagues) for outstanding contributions to the community
2014 Distinguished UGA Athletic Association Professor in the Social Sciences Departments
2014 Captain Planet Foundation Protector of the Earth Award
2013 UGA Athletic Association Professor in the Social Sciences Departments
2011 Franklin College of Arts and Sciences Excellence in Diversity Leadership Award
2011 Promoted to Full Professor at the University of Georgia
2011 Received the AMS Charles Anderson Award
2011 Outstanding Alumni Award, FSU Black Alumni Association
2010 Awarded tenure at the University of Georgia
2010 Nominated to attend 2010 UGA Teaching Academy Faculty Symposium
2009 Inducted as a Fellow of the American Meteorological Society**
2007 Contributing Author to Nobel Prize Winning IPCC AR4**
2005 Black Enterprise Magazine “Hot List”
2005 Network Journal Magazine “Forty under 40” recipient
2004 Recipient of Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE)**
2004 NASA.GSFC Group Award for Contributions to the JASON Project
2004 Special Act Award (NASA OES)
2003 Peer Award for Scientific Research
2002 Recipient of NASA New Investigator Program Award
2001 Laboratory for Atmospheres Outreach Award
2001 NASA/GSFC Group Achievement Award
2001 Special Act Award for superior performance of a special act (Horizon team)
2001 Special Act Award for superior performance of a special act (Outreach Initiatives)
NASA Performance. (FY03,FY00,FY98,FY97,FY96,FY95,FY94)
1999 1st African American to receive PhD in Meteorology from Florida State University**
1999 NASA/GSFC Special Act Award for superior performance
1999 NASA/GSFC Group Achievement Award-AGS Imager Team
1987-1993 American Meteorological Society (AMS)/TRW Industry Fellow
National Science Foundation (NSF) Fellow Competition (Honorable Mention)
Dolores Auzene Fellow (FSU).
Leslie N. Wilson Assistantship Recipient (FSU)
National Achievement Scholar
American Geological Institute Scholar
Chi Epsilon Pi Meteorology Honorary
Omicron Delta Kappa National Honorary
Who's Who Among College Students
Outstanding College Student of America
1990 National Collegiate Forecast Winner (Burlington, VT period).
1987 High School Valedictorian, Cherokee High School
Select out of 120+ publications (see CV for full publication list)
2021 Shepherd, J.M., A. Thomas, J. Santanello, J. Yoo, and P. Lawston, 2020: Warm corm structure maintenance over land: A case study analysis of Cyclone Kelvin. Environmental Research Communication. https://doi.org/10.1088/2515-7620/abf39a
2020 KC, Binita, M. Shepherd, A. King, and C.J. Gaither, 2020: Multi-hazard climate risk projections for the United States. Natural Hazards, https://doi.org/10.1007/s11069-020-04385-y.
2020 Shepherd, J.M., S.J. Burian, M. Jin, C. Liu, and B. Johnson, 2020: Two decades of urban hydroclimatological studies have yielded discovery and societal benefits. Satellite Precipitation Measurement Edited by V. Levizanni, C. Kidd, D. Kirschbaum, C. Kummerow, K. Kummerow, and J. Turk
2017 Andersen, T., and J.M. Shepherd, 2017: The Brown Ocean Effect: Re-intensification of Landfallling Tropical Cyclones. Hurricanes and Climate Change, In: Collins J., Walsh K. (eds) Hurricanes and Climate Change. Springer, Cham. 117-134. doi: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-47594-3_5
2016 National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2016. Attribution of Extreme Weather Events in the Context of Climate Change (includes J.M. Shepherd as an author). Washington, DC: National Academies Press. DOI: 10.17226/21852.
2016 Shepherd, J.M., S. Burian, C. Lui, and S. Bernardes, 2016: Satellite Precipitation Metrics To Study The Energy-Water-Food Nexus within the Backdrop of an Urbanized Globe. Earthzine, http://earthzine.org/2016/05/31/satellite-precipitation-metrics-to-study-the-energy-water-food-nexus-within-the-backdrop-of-an-urbanized-globe/
2016 Shepherd, J.M., and P. Knox, 2016: The Paris COP21 Climate Conference: What Does It Mean for the Southeast? Southeastern Geographer, https://muse.jhu.edu/article/622282.
2015 Shepherd, J.M., and B. KC, 2015: Climate Change and African Americans in the United States. Geography Compass, 9/11, 579-591,10.1111/gec3.12244. 2015
Debbage, N., and J.M. Shepherd, 2015: The urban heat island effect and city contiguity. Computers, Environment and Urban Systems. Volume 54, November 2015, 181–194.
2012 National Research Council Committee on Urban Meteorology, 2012: Urban Meteorology: Scoping the problem, Defining the Need (includes J.M. Shepherd as author). The National Academies Press, Washington, D.C. http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=13328.
2009 Seto, K., and J.M. Shepherd, 2009: Global urban land-use trends and climate impacts. Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, doi:10.1016/j.cosust.2009.07.012.
2007 Shepherd, J. M., A. Grundstein, and T. L. Mote, 2007: Quantifying the contribution of tropical cyclones to extreme rainfall along the coastal southeastern United States. Geophys. Res. Lett. 34, L23810, doi:10.1029/2007GL031694.
2005 Shepherd, J.M., 2005: A review of current investigations of urban-induced rainfall and recommendations for the future. Earth Interactions. Vol. 9. No. 12, 1–27.