Richard Berler

Chief Meteorologist
Richard Berler

I had an interest in meteorology and weather at an early age. In 1962, at age 8, I ordered the climatological data for 600 worldwide locations from the United States Weather Bureau for 5 cents. At about the same time, I discovered the daily weathermap in the New York Times, isobars and all!

Growing up in Westport, Connecticut, 100F heat was something that brought images of exotic tropical locations such as India, the Middle East, northern Africa, and the U.S. desert southwest. My mom took me to the nearby Weather Bureau at age 10. Looking through an array of climatological data in one of their back rooms, I discovered that Laredo had reached 100F on February 28, 1940. February!

My goal, from that day on was to walk the streets of Laredo at high noon. My first experience in doing just that was in August 1977 while on a 2 week vacation from my position at KDAL TV in Duluth, Minnesota. I got an Ameripass ticket good for two weeks of travel on the Greyhound, and got to El Centro, California, went across and got on a Transportes de Norte bus, and went through Mazatlan, Guadalajara, Mexico City (went to Servicio Meteorologico and picked up a book with the climatological data for ~800 locations), Monterrey, and on to Nuevo Laredo, and arrived in Laredo by walking across the bridge! It was 103F that day!

I finally had the chance to obtain my position at KGNS on Valentine's Day in 1980.

The National Weather Service (NWS) and what would become National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) placed their instrumentation in my care on June 10, 1985. Since then, I have recorded 6 February days that have reached 100F or higher due to the arrival of Mexican Plateau Air at the surface! 2011 featured 122 days that reached 100F or higher.

In May of 2005, I became the 18th broadcast meteorologist in the nation to earn the American Meteorological Society (AMS) Certified Broadcast Meteorologist (CBM) designation.

The NWS/NCEI awarded me the John Campanius Holm Award in 2010, and the Jefferson Award in 2021 for the observational work that I have done (only 5 Jefferson Awards can be conveyed per year in the field of ~12,000 observers nationwide).

In addition to visiting schools and civic organizations, my position has afforded me the opportunity to present at AMS conferences each year since 2003. It is a privilege and a treat to have my position at KGNS, and to share my interest and forecasting with our community.

I am married to Carol G. Berler (1991)! Carol has been a Realtor since 1993.