Meeting information

You can find information about the NOAA Education Council including meeting information, Council member contacts, and the Terms of Reference here.

Lt. Col. Keith Gibson interacts with students from Gilchrist Elementary School during the Tallahassee Hurricane Awareness Tour May 22, 2014, at the Tallahassee Regional Airport, Fla. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's national hurricane center and the 403rd Wing's 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron's tour is designed to help save lives and decrease property damage by promoting hurricane preparedness and awareness among local populations along the Gulf of Mexico. Gibson is the director of operations for the 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron.
Lt. Col. Keith Gibson interacts with students from Gilchrist Elementary School during the Tallahassee Hurricane Awareness Tour. (403rd Public Affairs)

Meeting information

The Education Council meets on the third Wednesday of the month from 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. Eastern Time. Council members can access the agenda and meeting materials for past and upcoming meetings on our shared Google folderoffsite link.

Presenting to the Council

The Education Council includes members from across NOAA, so it can be a great forum to share your projects and activities, get feedback, explore new opportunities, and make connections across the NOAA education community.

For example, NOAA educators and external grantees have presented on education tools they wanted the NOAA Education community to broadly share, use, and provide feedback. Presenters have also discussed new partnership opportunities that could be strengthened with wider NOAA participation. In addition, the Council Chair often has opportunities to share major NOAA education accomplishments with NOAA leadership, the Administration, Congress, and other leaders. If you’ve reached a major milestone or have outcome data that pertain to any of the goals of the NOAA Education Strategic Plan, we’d like to hear about them so we can spread the word as opportunity arises.

If you are interested in presenting to the Council, please reach out to any member of the Council or the Executive Secretary with your presentation idea, including how you'd like the Council to engage and how it relates to our strategic plan. Please be aware that time on the agenda can become full months in advance. Presentations to the Council are typically 15 minutes long with an additional 15 minutes reserved for discussion and questions.

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Council member contacts


Voting members

Council Seat Primary Alternate

Office of Education (OEd) - Chair/Vice Chair

Louisa Koch

Christos Michalopoulos

National Environmental Satellite Data and Information Service - At Large

Nina Jackson

Dan Pisut

National Marine Fisheries Service - At Large

Kate Naughten

Lisa Hiruki-Raring

NOAA - Teacher at Sea

Jennifer Hammond


NOAA - Bay Watershed Education and Training

Jim Foley

Bronwen Rice

National Ocean Service (NOS) - At Large

Peg Steffen

Bruce Moravchik

NOS - Office for Coastal Management

Atziri Ibanez

Nancy Cofer-Shabica

NOS - Coral Reef Conservation



NOS - Office of National Marine Sanctuaries

Tracy Hajduk

Seaberry Nachbar

National Weather Service (NWS) - At Large

Ron Gird

Mary Fairbanks

NWS - Warning Coordination Meteorologists

Faith Borden

Kerry Jones

Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research (OAR) - At Large

Rochelle Plutchak

Eric Hackathorn

OAR - Climate Program Office

Frank Niepold


OAR - Ocean Exploration and Research

Paula Keener

Susan Haynes

OAR - National Sea Grant College Program

Jon Lilley

Lisa Lawrence

OEd - Higher Ed/ Hollings Scholarship

Marlene Kaplan

Kristen Jabanoski

OEd - K-12 & Informal Ed

Christos Michalopoulos

Sarah Schoedinger

Advising members

Council Seat Primary Alternate

NOAA Budget

Joni Lombardi

Christopher Botnick

NOAA Library

Deirdre Clarkin

Mary Lou Cumberpatch

Office of Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs

Frances Bothfeld


NOAA Chief Administrative Office

Michelle Moore


OEd - Executive Secretary

Marissa Jones (acting)

Maggie Allen

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Terms of Reference

Updated August 2011



The Education Council is the primary forum for discussing ideas and proposals for NOAA's education activities and priorities. The Education Council is the coordination mechanism in NOAA responsible for facilitating integrated planning, budgeting, execution, and evaluation to advance the environmental literacy and workforce diversity components of NOAA’s Next Generation Strategic Plan Engagement Enterprise Objective: "An engaged and educated public with an improved capacity to make scientifically informed environmental decisions." This includes the development of any relevant documentation and reporting in support of these activities. In conjunction with NOAA's Office of Education, the Council develops and monitors the implementation of the strategic plan and makes recommendations to NOAA management on all aspects of NOAA's educational activities.


Council members represent NOAA's line offices and staff offices, including special representation for offices whose education activities are specifically authorized by statute.

  • Chair: Director of Education
  • Vice Chair: Deputy Director, Office of Education
  • Executive Secretariat: Office of Education

Principal members include:

  • Director, Educational Partnership Program with Minority-Serving Institutions, Office of Education
  • National Education Coordinator, Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, National Ocean Service
  • Education Program Director, National Sea Grant Program, NOAA Research
  • National Education Coordinator, National Estuarine Research Reserve System, National Ocean Service
  • National Education Coordinator, Ocean Exploration Program, NOAA Research
  • National Education Coordinator, Coral Reef Conservation Program, NOAA
  • Climate Education Coordinator, Climate Communications and Education Program, NOAA Research
  • Director, Teacher at Sea Program, National Marine Fisheries Service
  • Regional Program Manager, Bay Watershed Education and Training Program, NOAA
  • Regional Education Coordinator, Coastal Services Center, National Ocean Service
  • NOAA Research (At Large)
  • National Ocean Service (At Large)
  • National Marine Fisheries Service (At Large)
  • National Weather Service (At Large)
  • NOAA Satellites & Information (At Large)

Advisors include:

  • NOAA Central Library
  • Office of Program Planning & Integration
  • Office of Legislative Affairs
  • Office of Communications and External Affairs
  • NOAA Budget Office

New membership criteria

New voting Council members must:

  • Represent sustained, significant education programs
  • Demonstrate a high level of education capacity (with steady, documented history and/or budget continuity)
  • Bring a capability that benefits the Education Council and broader NOAA community
  • Have support from appropriate NOAA leadership
  • Spend a significant portion of time dedicated to education
  • Represent programs that support the NOAA Education Strategic Plan
  • Agree to implement the NOAA Education Monitoring and Evaluation System

Roles and responsibilities

NOAA's Office of Education serves as the Executive Secretariat for the NOAA Education Council by scheduling meetings, developing agendas based on input from Council members, and keeping records of proceedings. The Council meets monthly, or as needed. The Council may authorize the formation of task-specific working groups.

Council Members contribute to the development of recommendations through discussion at meetings, review of materials, and participation in working groups.

Decision making process

Decisions will be accomplished by voting. Each council member can vote in favor, against or request additional discussion. The Chair will strive for consensus on every issue. The Chair maintains 51% of the vote, therefore the final decision is made by the Chair when consensus is not achieved.

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