News Release

Ray Schmitt Named 2012 American Geophysical Union Fellow



Media Relations Office

November 30, 2012

(508) 289-3340

WHOI Senior Scientist Raymond Schmitt has been elected a 2012 fellow of the American Geophysical Union (AGU).

Schmitt is among 61 new fellows who are being recognized by AGU for “exceptional scientific contributions and attained acknowledged eminence in the fields of Earth and space sciences.”

The AGU is a not-for-profit, professional, scientific organization with more than 60,000 members representing over 148 countries. Established in 1962, the AGU Fellows program helps identify experts who could advise, upon request, various government agencies and other organizations outside the Earth and space sciences. Fellows are nominated by their peers and chosen by a committee of existing fellows. It is a distinguished honor bestowed upon no more than 0.1 percent of the AGU membership annually.

"It is an exciting honor to be named an AGU Fellow. I have been a member for nearly 40 years and to receive such recognition from fellow scientists is gratifying affirmation of my work,” said Schmitt, a senior scientist in WHOI’s Physical Oceanography Department. “I am particularly grateful to the colleagues who supported my nomination.”

As a symbol of his accomplishment, Schmitt will receive an official certificate during the 2012 AGU Fall Meeting in San Francisco. The Honors Ceremony and Reception will be held at 7 p.m. on December 5 in Moscone North - Rooms 134-135.

Schmitt joined the WHOI staff in 1978 as a postdoctoral scholar and was promoted to senior scientist in 1994. His research focuses on the ocean's role in climate, small-scale mixing processes, double-diffusive convection, the global water cycle, and instrumentation for a global ocean observing system. Current projects include a collaborative study with NASA that will measure the ocean's saltiness from hundreds of miles above Earth using the Aquarius satellite.

Schmitt has served on a number of national and international committees concerned with climate, including the Atlantic Climate Change Program Science Working Group, the Ocean Observing System Development Panel, and the Climate Variability Science Steering Group. He was a contributing author to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Third Assessment Report and also contributed to “Advancing the Science of Climate Change,” issued in 2010 by the National Research Council's panel on America's Climate Choices.

Schmitt is a 2012 recipient of WHOI's Van Allen Clark Sr. Chair for Excellence in Oceanography. Other honors include a J.S. Guggenheim fellowship in 1997. He received his undergraduate degree in physics from Carnegie-Mellon University and his doctorate degree in physical oceanography from the University of Rhode Island. He has authored or co-authored over 80 publications.

The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution is a private, non-profit organization on Cape Cod, Mass., dedicated to marine research, engineering, and higher education. Established in 1930 on a recommendation from the National Academy of Sciences, its primary mission is to understand the ocean and its interaction with the Earth as a whole, and to communicate a basic understanding of the ocean's role in the changing global environment.