Photo by Josh Lukman
Hometown: Ocala, Florida
Current Residence: Starkville, MS / Summerfield, FL
Current Occupation: Graduate Student in Meteorology, Mississippi State University; Graduate Assistant, Department of Communication, Mississippi State University
I became fascinated with meteorology when I was nine years old. It bugged me that it kept raining in the hot, Florida summer afternoons and I wanted to know why it occurred so frequently. I watched the weather on TV and craved knowledge so I could understand why. Before I knew it, I was hooked. Since then, I have been self-taught and lectured to regarding this "blanket" that covers our planet. I've kept myself busy in the field by participating in Skywarn storm spotting using amateur radio and other means of communication, forecasting for the weather section in the Independent Florida Alligator, forecasting on my weather blog, and worked on a Climatology and Meteorology Certificate at the University of Florida. I am also a student member of the American Meteorological Society, was a student member of the UF club, and now the president of the East Mississippi Chapter of the National Weather Association and the AMS.
At a young age, I also became interested in the world of journalism and communications. It started with my high school newspaper as a writer as well as taking a class in television production. I would eventually evolve from writing in high school to writing and photojournalism in community college at their newspaper, The Patriot Press. When I attended the University of Florida, I found my niche in photography and multimedia. I was a photographer at the Alligator and was a photo/multimedia editor for two semesters (non-consecutive). I had the opportunity to do a photo internship at The Gainesville Sun for a semester and worked at the UF Levin College of law as a photographer for over a year. Since 2010, I have been doing more extreme weather video and still photography. I have had footage recently featured on the National Geographic Channel.
I have graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Geography from UF with a Certificate in Climatology and Meteorology in May 2010. I am now a graduate student in meteorology at Mississippi State University and a graduate assistant for the Introduction to Television Production labs for the Department of Communication. I plan on doing my thesis in the area of tornadogesis from landfalling tropical cyclones. My primary focus in photography and videography is severe weather, but I still shoot in other areas. I have also co-created a blog and social media entity that focuses on Florida Weather: Florida Weather Update.
Besides weather and photography, I have an interest in political science, history, technology and science, amateur ("ham") radio and communications, and technology.