Sarah Kapnick has been recognized by American Geophysical Union (AGU) with the Cryosphere Early Career Award for 2015. As a Physical Research Scientist in the Climate Change, Variability, and Predictions Group at GFDL, Dr. Kapnick’s research focuses on the mechanisms controlling extreme storms and mountain snowpack. She uses data from both observations and models to shed light on how the climate system has varied in the past, and what we might expect in the future.
In a short period, Dr. Kapnick has made unique contributions to climate science by combining the use of very high-resolution models with observations, to provide critical new insights into the sensitivity of high-elevation cryospheric processes to climate variability and change. Her work examines snowpack changes in mountainous regions, and the underlying processes that drive the seasonal cycle of snowpack. Her ongoing research is expanding into the role of atmospheric rivers in hydro-climate variability and change, including their impact on western U.S. snowpack.
Dr. Kapnick’s contributions to the field extend beyond her outstanding scientific research. As a post-doctoral research fellow at GFDL, Dr. Kapnick was one of the founders of Princeton Women in Geosciences, a group dedicated to promoting and supporting women in geosciences. Recently, she served as an expert for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, on a panel investigating whether the wolverine should be listed as Threatened under the Endangered Species Act.
AGU established the Cryosphere Early Career Award in 2004, to be given annually to one honoree in recognition of significant early career contributions to cryospheric science and technology. The award will be announced in Eos and Sarah will be recognized at the AGU Fall Meeting.