“We’re so proud of Gary,” Boren said.
The OU meteorology school and the new National Weather Center located in the university’s Research Park are working together to do incredible things, Boren said. Partnerships around the globe are contributing to the science. Boren said a Japanese Company, Weather News, works with OU to gain technology to help the island nation deal with extreme weather such as sudden down drafts of wind that derail trains without warning.
OU also has the technology to help ships in Japan steer a course to avoid storms and to use less fuel.
After the 1999 Moore tornado, Boren met with President Bill Clinton when he came to Oklahoma to survey the damage. Clinton promised to help and he did, Boren said. Cal Hobson, who was in the state senate at the time, was also a big help.
“We put together several different sources of funding to get the weather center built,” Boren said.
He said Hobson found money in the leaky tank fund — a fund created by taxes on gasoline tanks that leak. Along with other funds, they cobbled together the money they needed.
“That was the beginning of our research campus,” Boren said.
England also spoke of the 1999 tornado that tore through Moore that May 3.
“We had 60 tornadoes that day in our viewing area,” he said.