Sharon Schilling, Executive Director
Sharon is a proud representative of one of the first classes of women to graduate from the United States
Coast Guard Academy
in 1984. She went on to serve 22 years in the Coast Guard before retiring in 2006 as a Commander. In
addition she holds
an MBA in Business Administration, Management & Operations from George Mason University that she
utilized in carrying
on in a leadership role as a manager at Battelle Memorial Institute in Arlington, Virginia. At Battelle
she managed an
$8-10 million budget and as many as 80 employees located in various locations across the United States.
in 1929, is a $6.2 billion private non-profit applied science and technology development company
headquartered in Columbus,
Schilling and her husband Kirk (retired USCG Commander) plan to build a home in
Madison, N.H. where they had purchased
land after spending many summers with family on Duncan Lake in Ossipee.
Brian Fitzgerald, Director of Science & Education
Brian began his observatory career as a winter intern on the summit in early 2012 after attending the
University of New
Hampshire where he earned a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Conservation Studies. Following
as a Backcountry Hut Naturalist and Education Assistant for the Appalachian Mountain Club, Brian
returned to the Observatory
as a full-time Observer and Educational Specialist on the summit where he performed daily weather
observations and led
weather station tours, distance learning programs and media interviews.
After nearly three winters on the summit, Brian headed south to work as the Chief Weather Observer at
Blue Hill Observatory
and Science Center just south of Boston while going to graduate school at night. In early 2016 Brian
graduated from Boston
University with a Master’s of Education with a focus in Science Education, and moved back to the
Valley to serve as Mount Washington Observatory’s Director of Education. When Brian’s not
teaching educational programs and summit adventures, you can find him hiking, mountaineering, trail
running, skiing or
staring at the clouds. He currently resides in North Conway along with his partner, Stephanie, and their
Brenda Sullivan, Director of Finance & Administration
With an Animal Science degree from the University of Maine, Brenda started her career as a veterinary
and office manager on the East End of Long Island, NY. After going back to school and completing her
MBA, Brenda spent
a number of years in central Connecticut as Finance Manager for Protein Sciences Corporation, where
included the financial oversight of multi-million dollar government contracts and shareholder
relations. In 2017 Brenda,
her husband, two dogs and two cats moved to Madison, NH. After continuing to work for the same CT
based company for
over a year, she decided it was time to focus her attention on her new community by joining the team
at MWOBS. With
an MBA in Business and years of Finance experience, she now focuses on supporting The Observatory
Adam Gill, Weather Observer & Meteorologist
Growing up on the front range of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado Springs, CO. Adam's interest in the
weather began with
the dynamic weather experienced living in mountainous regions. From major snowstorms with 3 feet of
snow during the
winter with frequent hail storms with hail up to the size of baseballs during the summer,
fascination with weather grew.
Enjoying being outside as a kid, Adam joined the Boy Scouts and completed his Eagle Scout as well as
during the summer months. Hiking in the mountains has always been a fun weekend activity as well as
skiing once most
trails were snow covered.
Upon completion of high school, Adam attended the University of North Dakota and completed his B.S.
in Atmospheric Science
in May of 2015. Deciding to take a year off and gain some job experience, Adam would like to persue
a Masters or PhD
in Atmospheric Science focusing on winter weather and mountain meteorology in the coming years.
After watching weather documentaries as a kid and seeing what the conditions were like at the summit
of Mount Washington,
Adam's fascination with Mount Washington began. This fall, Adam was offered the opportunity to join
the team for the
fall season and learn about forecasting and the research that is conducted on the summit.
Ryan Knapp, Weather Observer & Meteorologist
Originally from the Lake Tahoe region of California, Ryan was born into the alpine lifestyle. He came
to the Observatory
as a winter intern in 2005, and started as a Weather Observer in 2006.
Ryan’s interest in weather started as a child, when he would watch the morning weather report
before going skiing.
In high school, he enjoyed giving weather reports to fellow students and ski clubbers, and decided
to pursue a career
in meteorology. He graduated from San Jose State University in 2004 with a B.S. in Meteorology, and
spent the first
three years of his career as a weather observer for San Jose International Airport.
Ryan came to Mount Washington for the unique weather, and to explore and study the worst weather in
the world. When he’s
not watching the weather, he enjoys backpacking, ski boarding, aggressive inline skating, traveling,
video games, and
Tom Padham, Weather Observer & Education Specialist
Tom started his Observatory career as a summer intern in 2011, and returned in 2013 to learn more
about this unique and
fascinating place. His internship provided real-world knowledge and experience to help him complete
his senior year
at Pennsylvania State University, where he graduated with a B.S. in Meteorology in 2012. Like many
discovered his passion for weather at an early age. Growing up in northwestern New Jersey, he was
fascinated by the
ever-changing weather—especially the extremes, like the blizzard of '96 and Hurricane Sandy.
An avid hiker, Tom is working to become a state high-pointer. He is thrilled to be returning to Mount
plans to make the most of the opportunity by expanding his knowledge of the weather and the
mountain, while sharing
that knowledge and passion with visitors.
Ian Bailey, Weather Observer & Meteorologist/Education Specialist
Originally from Cleveland, Ohio, Ian has been a passionate weather enthusiast from a young age. After
a large tree outside
his childhood home was struck by lightning, he became fascinated with extreme weather and has
strived to become a meteorologist
ever since. Intense blizzards, major floods, and even several tornadoes have been major severe
weather events for Ian
to learn from. Upon completion of high school, he set his sights on higher education in meteorology.
He finished his first Bachelors degree in 2012 in Atmospheric Science, and his second Bachelors
degree in 2016 in Journalism,
both from The Ohio State University. In between these degrees, Ian was brought on as a summer intern
for the Observatory
in 2015. He fell in love with the Mountain and the Observatory, and was fascinated each and every
day with the beautiful
and extreme weather that graces the Mountain’s summit. When he left the Mountain at the end of
the summer, he
swore that someday, he would return to his home-away-from home.
Back in Ohio, he accepted a Graduate School offer at Ohio University in 2016, and worked as the
Associate Director of Scalia
Laboratory for Atmospheric Analysis. After 2 years of running the weather laboratory and tower,
classes, and completing his graduate work, he received his Masters degree in Geography with an
Atmospheric Science focus
in 2018. Shortly after his graduation, he accepted the offer to rejoin the Mount Washington
Observatory team as a Weather
Observer and Education Specialist. And he is very excited to be back, working at the home of the
Weather; his brand new home.
Jay Broccolo, Weather Observer & Meteorologist
Jay was born
and raised in Westerly, Rhode Island. Having grown up along the southern coastline of RI gave Jay
the opportunity to experience all sorts of diverse and extreme weather from hurricanes to
Nor’easters. Jay’s enthusiasm for the outdoors and the natural world only increased
since childhood. His parents insisted that he spend as much time outdoors as possible. He joined the
Boy Scouts and spent a weekend every month, regardless of the weather, learning useful outdoor
skills, camping, and hiking all over New England. He became enamored with the White Mountains, but
specifically Mt. Washington, its geology, and unique extreme weather.
Following graduation of high school and obtaining his Eagle Scout, Jay attended the University of
Rhode Island. In the middle of his second year he took a semester off and lived in Boulder,
Colorado where he had the opportunity to experience mountain weather and hiking the Flatirons.
After returning home he continued and completed his B.S. degree in Geology and Geological
Oceanography at URI. While at URI he also attended a Geology Field Camp operated by University
at Buffalo, geologically mapping various regions Utah, Colorado and Wyoming.
With the completion of his Bachelors, Jay went on to work in the oilfield industries as a Mud
logger on drill-ships in the Gulf of Mexico. After a couple years of working offshore and not
feeling fulfilled with his career path, he interned at Mt. Rainier National Park where he was
charged with observing and recording the weather on the mountain while conducting various
research projects. Upon completion of the internship, Jay attended the University of Leeds in
Leeds, England and completed an MRes in Climate and Atmospheric Science where he focused on
factors that influence the development and intensification of extratropical cyclones over the
Northeast United States.
With his intrigue in extreme weather events and his love for Mt. Washington, Jay is more than
excited to be working here at the Mount Washington Observatory, home to the World’s
Worst Weather. In his off time, Jay enjoys the outdoors, board and video games, reading, and
learning to play the piano, just to name a few.
Anthony Grimes, Weather Observer
Born and raised in Milford, Massachusetts, AJ has been interested in extreme weather of all sorts since
childhood. From witnessing tornado outbreaks in Oklahoma to blizzard conditions in Colorado, he knew at
a young age that weather was going to fascinate and engage him toward a career in meteorology.
AJ finished his Bachelors degree in Environmental Studies at the University of Central Florida in 2012.
Upon completion he accepted a position at the Observatory as the summit museum attendant, working the
summer seasons from 2012-2017. In 2018, AJ received his Masters degree in Environmental Studies with a
focus in Atmospheric Science from the University of Massachusetts in Lowell. He is excited to return to
the summit and continue his journey with the Observatory as a Weather Observer.
In his off time, AJ is a drummer and stays busy playing for several bands and projects. He has a passion
for making desserts and is constantly looking for new and exciting recipes. He also enjoys snowboarding,
archery, discovering new music and spending time with his cats.
Marty, Observatory Mascot
Marty is Mount Washington’s only permanent resident, holding court as the most recent in a long
line of famous
Before coming to the Observatory, Marty lost his home to a fire and was taken in by the Animal Rescue
League of New Hampshire
North (formerly Conway Area Humane Society). In January of 2008, Marty won more than 8,000 votes in the
first ever Observatory
Mascot Primary and was donated to the Observatory by the Humane Society. He was quickly regarded as a
good fit for the
mountain because of his adventurous attitude and presumed Maine Coon Cat pedigree.
Marty enjoys romping around with the summit crew and exploring his massive home, the Mt. Washington State
Adams Visitor Center. Off the clock, he enjoys stalking the water cooler, chasing bouncy balls, napping
in odd positions,
and being brushed.
Keith Garrett, Information Systems Admin
Keith brings over 20 years of experience in IT hardware, software and business networks. He has
experience in working
with municipalities, non-profits and individuals.
Prior to his work with the Observatory Keith was the owner of Wolfeboro Computer Solutions in the
Wolfeboro and Lakes
Region area. His services spanned all aspects of IT including repair and maintenance of a wide range
Keith and his partner Michelle enjoy identifying local plants and lepidoptera, as well trudging
Krissy Fraser, Brand Manager
A Massachusetts native, Krissy started her career as a Communications Project Manager at Fidelity
Group. Eight years later, in 2006, she took a leap of faith and left the corporate world to relocate
to the Mount Washington
Krissy has enjoyed working for ski resorts in positions ranging from sales and marketing, to public
relations, and even
ski instruction. A graduate of the University of Rhode Island, Krissy brings a wealth of experience
and a well-rounded
approach to her role as Director of Marketing & Events.
Krissy lives in Jackson, N.H. with her partner Fred and his two boys Alex and Ethan where she
spends her free time
outdoors, skiing, biking, hiking, and gardening.
Eric Kelsey, Lead Research Scientist
Raised in picturesque New Hampshire, Eric has always loved observing the constantly changing weather.
As a young adult,
he took his passion for extreme weather to tornado alley, where he chased severe thunderstorms and
worked as a broadcast
forecaster while earning his degree in atmospheric science at the University of
Missouri—Columbia. After earning
his master's degree in atmospheric science at the University at Albany, Eric merged his interest in
stewardship and New England's unique climate by studying climate signals recorded in ice cores for
his PhD at the University
of New Hampshire.
Eric joined the Observatory staff in 2012 as a jointly-appointed Director of Research and Plymouth
State University Research
Assistant Professor in Atmospheric Science. He is excited to be working in the White Mountains, a
place he has skied,
hiked, bird watched, and camped his entire life.
Eric resides in Ashland, NH with his wife, Julie, and their daughters, Sophie, Madelyn and Tessa.
Rebecca Scholand, Summit Operations Manager
Rebecca, originally a native of Long Island NY started her career with the Mount Washington Observatory
in 2010 as a summer Intern. She quickly found a love and passion for the Observatory that drew her in
for a second winter internship. Still feeling the draw of the summit, she continued on as temporary
Outreach Coordinator, Museum Attendant, and Operations Assistant before a Weather Observer position
became available. During her time as a Weather Observer she also acted as the Education Specialist and
Shift Leader for her shift. In the spring of 2014 Rebecca left the Observatory in pursuit of expanding
her background. After several years away working in the Outdoor and Hospitality Service Industry Rebecca
has returned as the Summit Operations Manager. She is excited to be leading the summit staff and
continuing to support our mission
From a personal standpoint Rebecca enjoys calling the Mount Washington Valley home. An outdoor
enthusiast at heart, the area offers a plethora of activities while providing the perfect backdrop for
her small family.
Marty Basch, Windswept Editor
Marty joined the Observatory family with the fall 2007 edition of Windswept, Mount Washington
When not editing Windswept, Marty writes about the outdoors, travel, and sports. He has a weekly
syndicated outdoor adventure
column and his work appears in local, regional, and national publications. Marty has written a few books
and won several
writing awards including a prestigious Society of American Travel Writers Lowell Thomas Gold Award and
American Snowsports Journalists Association Harold Hirsch Awards. He has also worked in television and
An avid cyclist, Marty has ridden from Maine to Alaska, Canada to Mexico, and in Arctic Scandinavia. He
in the bike race up Mount Washington, stopped to eat lunch and didn't finish last. Marty also skis,
and paddles. Marty has climbed the White Mountain Four Thousand Footers and is the author of "50 Best
Hikes in New England"
Marty is a Boston University graduate and Explorers Club member. He lives on a Mount Washington Valley
dirt road with
his wife, Jan.
Samantha Brady, Retail Manager
Samantha, originally a native of Boston, MA started her career with the Mount Washington Observatory in
2012 on the summit
as retail museum attendant. After her first year being part of the summit staff decided she wanted to
move up here and
become a full time employee of the Observatory. She spent 4 years fulfilling the role as retail museum
both the Extreme Mount Washington Museum as well as the Weather Discovery Center. She currently has
taken on the role
as Retail Manager.
She is an avid hiker, skier, mountaineer, and outdoor enthusiast. When she’s not busy doing her own
she volunteers her time for the Androscoggin Valley Search and Rescue Team. She also had worked with
for a 5 month period. During that time she would give presentations at outdoor retailers trying to
educate and inspire
others to get outside more and what the proper equipment would be to do so. After visiting all of the
lower 48 states
on that trip, Mount Washington Valley is where she calls home.
Will Broussard, Outreach Coordinator
Will Broussard coordinates and leads programs on Mt.
Washington’s natural, cultural, and scientific history. He has an undergraduate
degree in biology from the University of Maine and a Master of Science degree
in environmental studies from Antioch University New England in Keene, NH.
Currently he sits on the board of Tin Mountain Conservation Center in Albany,
where he serves as Programs Chair. Originally from midcoast Maine, his
passions include hiking and bird watching.
Dr. Peter Crane, Curator
Peter oversees the Observatory's Gladys Brooks Memorial Library, which features books, maps, prints,
photos, and other
material relating to the Observatory, Mount Washington, and the White Mountains.
Peter has lived in the White Mountains for more than thirty years, and has worked for the U.S. Forest
Service and Appalachian
Mountain Club in resource management, public information, and educational roles. He began his
Observatory career in
1988 as a weather observer, museum manager, and Summit Shift Leader. After three years of summit duty,
he served for
several years as Director of Programs before transitioning to his current position.
Peter did his undergraduate work at Harvard College, and earned his doctoral degree in Folklore and
Folklife from the
University of Pennsylvania. An avid year-round hiker, he is also a volunteer trail maintainer for the
Club, a member of Androscoggin Valley Search and Rescue (AVSAR), and serves on the board of the New
Linda & Hank Dresch, Volunteer Coordinators
Linda is the daughter of Mount Washington Observatory co-founder Robert S. Monahan, and enjoys continuing
legacy as volunteer coordinator with her husband, Hank.
Married for more than 40 years, Linda and Hank have one daughter and two very active grandsons. During
U.S. Coast Guard career they lived in several locations including Alaska and England. Linda’s
diverse career has
spanned positions with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in Alaska, and the Editorial Staff of the Wall
Linda and Hank both also had "retirement jobs" in Portland, Maine, where they continue to volunteer at
They have been very active volunteers wherever they have lived.
Linda and Hank now reside in Jackson, New Hampshire, where they keep very busy with year-round activities
in the great
Pete Gagne, Hardware Systems Specialist
Pete started his career as a microwave radio equipment technician for the Air National Guard, traveling
the world to
install and repair equipment. With a degree in Industrial Technology from the University of Southern
Maine, he worked
as a consultant in the optical disk field and then as a field engineer for Netflix before joining the
Pete and his partner, Kathy, are avid hikers and winter sports enthusiasts. The Maine natives moved to
Jackson, New Hampshire
in 2009 to be closer to their favorite outdoor playground, and one year later Peter completed his goal
of hiking all
48 four thousand footers.
Pete describes his role at the Observatory, which offers an ever-changing mix of field and office work,
as "a dream come
Larry Martin, Museum Attendant
A native of Wisconsin, Larry graduated from the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire with a Bachelor of
After graduation Larry started a career in the computer software industry. Mainframe computer software
became his specialty
beginning in Eagan, MN then working in various locations throughout the country(as well as Japan). His
was Boston and after 17 years working as a contractor at the Mass DOR, Larry and his wife, Donna
designed and built
a house in Glen, NH. Larry has always had an interest in science and the outdoors. He is a skier,
bicyclist, hiker and
paddler. After moving to Glen, Larry became a weather enthusiast.
Steven Whitaker, Facilities Manager
Starting at a young age Steven has always been captivated with mechanical components and their
workings from rebuilding motors to heavy equipment repairs. You will find him up for the challenge
with a unique ability of troubleshooting just about anything that is broken. He is a graduate
of both Diesel Technical Institute and Johnson & Wales University.
He relocated to the White Mountains area 25 years ago from Providence, RI with growing up on the
northerly beaches of Rhode Island. Having also lived in Japan, Florida, Maui and California he now calls
New Hampshire home.
Soon after moving to the Mount Washington Valley he built his Glen log home that he
resides in today. When he’s not tackling home or mechanical projects, Steven enjoys snowboarding
and both summer and winter hiking. He has a love of the mountains and you will find him outdoors most of
the time enjoying the area. The opportunity to work for Mount Washington Observatory and getting to
revisit one of “the most interesting weather experiences ever”.
Stephanie Turnbull Fitzgerald, Membership & Database Coordinator
Stephanie has been on a steady move north since receiving her Masters in Library and Information
Science from Pratt Institute
in Brooklyn, NY. Originally from Massachusetts, she headed back to Boston after school to work for
Arnold Arboretum and the State Library of Massachusetts. After a few years, she knew she was done
with city life and
when the opportunity arrived to move to the Mount Washington Valley, she took it.
While Stephanie started working at the Observatory in the Summer of 2016 as a
contract worker, it only took a few months
before she was hooked and joined the valley staff full time. Between her background in organizing
and curating information
and her experience in various customer service roles, Membership and Database Coordinator seemed
like a perfect fit.
She currently resides in North Conway along with her husband, Brian, and their retired sled dog,
Mary Anne Sledzinski, Finance/Administrative Assistant
Mary Anne grew up in the Great North Woods of northern New Hampshire and has made her home in the
Mount Washington Valley
since 1988 where she lives with her husband John and a rescue dog named Shadow.
She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Management and has a passion for problem solving and
She frequently volunteers for local nonprofits and serves as Secretary for the Board of Directors of
Mary Anne is excited to be the Finance/Admin Assistant and Summit Volunteer Coordinator for the
Observatory and enjoys
assisting her coworkers and volunteers by providing support to accomplish the mission and goals of
this historic and
important scientific research institution. In her free time, Mary Anne enjoys cooking, spending time
with friends and
family, and taking in the scenic beauty of the mountains. “Be kind, stay positive and do good
Ben Charles, Summit Intern
Ben Charles was born and raised in Sparta, New Jersey. Ben first became interested in the weather when
experiencing severe thunderstorms and Nor-Easter’s in New Jersey.
Ben is a recent graduate from the State University of New York at Oswego where he studied Meteorology.
After spending four years on the shores of Lake Ontario and experiencing lake effect snowstorms, Ben's
passion for Meteorology grew.
In 2018, he had the incredible opportunity to travel to Tornado Alley as a storm chaser which ignited
him to study and observe extreme weather conditions.
When Ben isn’t watching the weather, he enjoys hiking, skiing, fishing, hunting, and mountain
Laura Kee, Summit Intern
Laura graduated this past May from Cornell University, where she majored in Atmospheric Science and minored in Climate Change. Her interest in meteorology stems from growing up in the Boston area where she was able to experience many types of weather ranging from hurricanes to blizzards and everything in between. Her passion for meteorology, oceanography, and agriculture have blended overtime as a result of the courses she has taken, including one that allowed her to attend the UN Climate Change Conference COP 24 in Poland last December. Going forward, she is eager to do what she can to protect our planet and its fragile environment as she continues to build her career.
She is thrilled to be able to return to the Mount Washington Valley and experience the wild weather on the summit. As someone who grew up learning how to ski in the North Conway area, she often found herself gazing out at the top of Mount Washington, imagining what sort of crazy weather the summit was receiving. She is really looking forward to learning about the operations of the Observatory while getting to experience life at the ‘Home of the World’s Worst Weather’.