Past Recipients

2013 Recipient

Dr. Cecilia Bitz

Cecilia Bitz

Dr. Bitz has more than 60 refereed papers to her credit. She contributed to the 3rd, 4th and 5th Assessments of the Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change and is a contributing author to the Snow, Water, Ice and Permafrost in the Arctic (SWIPA) 2011 report. On March 20, 2013 she provided a briefing for congress on Arctic sea ice loss.

Her research group recently published papers about Arctic sea ice predictability and reversibility, as well as the influence of ozone trends on Antarctic climate. She has also investigated global climate change from a geoengineering perspective and worked on understanding climate sensitivity. She traveled to the Greenland Sea with a class as an instructor to observe the record minimum in Arctic sea ice cover recently, as well.

Dr. Bitz currently chairs the advisory board of the NSF Office of Polar Programs and is an active member of the Community Earth System Model project. She served on the National Academy of Sciences Climate Research Committee. Dr. Bitz is currently co-leader of the World Climate Research Program Polar Climate Prediction Initiative and is a member of the American Geophysical Union. She received the Community Climate System Model Distinguished Achievement Award in 2002 in recognition of her contribution to developing the sea ice component of the model. She received her Ph.D. and M.S. from the University of Washington. Her undergraduate B.S. is from the Oregon State University.

"Professor Bitz has made significant contributions to our understanding of the role of polar regions to the climate system, specifically in making improvements to how the properties and behaviors of these critical regions are represented in numerical models," said Dr. Peter Minnett, professor and chairman of Meteorology and Physical Oceanography at UM's Rosenstiel School. "It has been known for over a century that the sea ice in the Arctic would be one of the first sentinels to indicate a climate changing in response to radiative forcing resulting from burning fossil fuels. Recent results from satellite remote sensing reveal the rapid reduction of summer-time Arctic sea ice and confirm the important role of high latitude interactions in the global climate."

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