Longtime hurricane specialist Dr. Mike Brennan began Monday his new role as director of the National Hurricane Center in Miami.
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration officials announced the appointment Monday.
Brennan, a North Carolina State University graduate, has been with the National Hurricane Center for most of his 15-year career with NOAA, serving the past year as the center’s acting deputy director.
Brennan is filling the position left vacant by previous director, Ken Graham, who became director of the National Weather Service in June 2022. Jamie Rhome served as acting director of the center since that time and will resume his duties as deputy director.
“I am honored and humbled to work with the talented staff at the National Hurricane Center at a time when we are making exciting advancements in hurricane forecasts and developing new decision support tools to improve community resilience to powerful hurricanes and tropical storms,” Brennan said in a statement. “Along with our colleagues across the National Weather Service and NOAA, we’re working to improve community safety through clear communication on the various hazards posed by these storms.”
Brennan began his career with the center in 2008 as a senior hurricane specialist, following a year as the science and operations officer for the Weather Prediction Center.
Brennan has been the branch chief of the hurricane specialist unit since 2018.
“The NHC director is one of the most visible and important jobs in the nation, and Mike possesses the right combination of experience, leadership and personal traits to prepare and guide us through major storms,” said Dr. Rick Spinrad, NOAA administrator, said in a statement. “Alongside our trusted and dedicated team at NHC, Mike will continue to leverage vital partnerships to provide the best forecasts and build resilience to the impacts of hurricanes in U.S. communities.”
He earned a bachelor’s in meteorology, and a master’s and doctorate in atmospheric science, all from North Carolina State University.
“I had the pleasure of working with Mike for four years at NHC, where I observed his steadfast dedication to the mission of saving lives and property,” Graham said. “Mike is an innovator who has built incredible relationships across the agency and with our emergency management and media partners, and I look forward to the great things ahead at NHC under his leadership.”
Graham extended his gratitude to Rhome “for his steady leadership as the acting NHC director through 14 named storms of the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season, including the newly retired hurricanes Ian and Fiona.”
Within the U.S. Department of Commerce, the National Hurricane Center is a division of NOAA and the National Weather Service’s National Centers for Environmental Prediction. The National Hurricane Center is co-located with the National Weather Service Miami-South Florida forecast office on the campus of Florida International University.