Angeline Pendergrass recognized with Outstanding Early Career Award

Angeline Pendergrass, assistant professor in the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, is the recipient of a 2022 Outstanding Early Career Award presented by the American Meteorological Society (AMS) Scientific and Technological Activities Commission (STAC).

The award recognizes Pendergrass’ fundamental contributions to understanding the dynamics of extreme precipitation and its response to greenhouse gas forcing, the radiative forcing caused by greenhouse gases that humans emit.

Pendergrass’ area of study is Earth's hydrologic cycle. Her research focuses on extreme precipitation and its response to climate variability and change. “I try and work from an understanding of the whole distribution of precipitation in terms of intensity, space and time,” Pendergrass explained, “and how that interacts with atmospheric circulation and the flow of energy through the whole climate system.”

The Outstanding Early Career Award award comes from a particular working group at AMS, the Committee on Climate Variability and Climate Change. “It means a lot to me to be recognized by this group,” Pendergrass said, “because it’s made up of people whose work is quite close to mine, so it’s quite an honor.”

Pendergrass said she felt indebted to many mentors, supporters and peers who have supported her work. “I am lucky to have collected so many great people along my journey, particularly Brian Soden, who set me on this path in the first place; Dennis Hartmann, who helped me pick it back up after some detours; Jerry Meehl, who hired me to keep working on it and then opened many doors for me; and Reto Knutti, who was an inspiring role model for framing important problems in climate science including this work.”

Above all, Pendergrass recognized her husband and colleague, Cornell EAS assistant professor Flavio Lehner, for continued support and inspiration.

The AMS STAC Outstanding Early Career Award is given each year to an individual within 10 years of having earned their highest degree who has made significant contributions to the discipline and is on a path to becoming a science leader in the community. 

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