Bernice Ackerman was one of the most important woman meteorologist of the last half of the 20th Century. She started her career as a weather observer and flight briefer for the Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service (WAVES). After the war, she earned a B.S. in Meteorology at the University of Chicago with a minor in mathematics in 1948, and went to work for the U.S. Weather Bureau, taking part in the Thunderstorm Project (1948). She did research on extended-range forecasting and on tornadoes, and also worked as a hydrologist and river forecaster in Kansas City. She began work as a researcher in the Cloud Physics Laboratory, where she remained until 1968. She received her M.S. in Meteorology in 1955, and then a Ph.D. in 1965, spe-cializing in cloud physics, both from the University of Chicago. She was Assistant Pro-fessor of Meteorology at the University 1965-1967, and taught synoptic, physical, and boundary layer meteorology and cloud physics. She joined the faculty ofTexas A&M University as associate professor of Meteorology (1967-1970), and then became associate meteorologist in the Atmospheric Sciences Section of the Argonne National Laboratory (1970-1972). She worked at the Illinois State Water Survey (1972-1989) eventually attaining the rank of principal scientist. Her work involved weather modification, urban climate, radar meteorology, and insects. Among her other duties, she served on the AMS Council, the AMS Council Executive Committee, the AMS Committee on Atmospheric Measurements, the AMS Committee on Cloud Physics, and the AMS Committee on Weather Modification. She was Secretary of Section W of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, an AMS Fellow, an AAAS Fellow. She is remembered as a mentor to numerous graduate and undergraduate students and staff meteorologists. She died 5 July 1995.
Bernice Ackerman, 70, Pioneer in Meteorology: - July 8, 1995
Bernice Ackerman, 70, the retired head of the meteorology section at the University of Illinois and a pioneer in the field, died Wednesday in her Uptown home.
Miss Ackerman was an atmospheric research scientist for four decades and one of the first women to enter the profession. During her career, she wrote more than 70 professional papers.
She joined the University of Illinois in 1972 as a professional scientist in the atmospheric science section. Several years later, she became head of the meteorology section, a position she held until she retired in 1988.
Miss Ackerman was valedictorian of her Lake View High School graduating class. She joined the U.S. Naval Reserve (WAVES) in 1944. She served as an aerographer's mate in Washington, D.C., and Pensacola, Fla. Trained in meteorology, she furthered her education at the University of Chicago, where she received her bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees.
From 1948 to 1952, she worked for the U.S. Weather Bureau in Chicago; Washington, D.C., and Kansas City, Mo. She then joined the University of Chicago as a research meteorologist in its Chicago Cloud Physics Laboratory.
In 1965, she was appointed assistant professor in the Hyde Park school's physics department. She left two years later to become a member of the Texas A&M faculty and later served as an associate meteorologist at Argonne Laboratory.
Miss Ackerman was a fellow of the American Meteorological Society and American Association for the Advancement of Science.
She also volunteered her time to Recording for the Blind and the Lyric Opera.
A service will be held at 1 p.m. Monday at Weinstein Brothers Memorial Chapel, 111 Skokie Blvd., Wilmette. Burial will be in Waldheim Cemetery, 1800 S. Harlem, Forest Park.