NORMAN — Elizabeth M. (Sohl) Quoetone was born Feb. 1, 1957, in Lawton, to Muriel and Gene Sohl. She died around sunrise Tuesday, March 18, 2014, at the age of 57.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Walter Quoetone; her brother-in-law, Matt P. Haag; and both her parents.
Liz graduated from Eisenhower High School in Lawton in 1975. She received her BS in meteorology from the University of Oklahoma in 1980. Liz also completed a five-year course of study in spiritual direction formation through the Benedictine Sisters at the Red Plains Monastery in Piedmont, nurturing her gift of guiding others on life’s journey. At the time of her death, she was pursuing a Master of Arts in pastoral ministry.
Liz grew up in southwest Oklahoma watching squall lines approach with her meteorologist brother from their home’s rooftop vantage point, too ignorant to worry about lightning back then. This early passion launched her professional career in the National Weather Service (NWS) in 1979. Her work included 10 years at the NWS forecast offices in Tulsa and in Oklahoma City/Norman, where she was involved in the groundbreaking test and evaluation of the NEXRAD weather radar.
In 1989, Liz became an NWS instructor as one of the six original members of what is now known as the Warning Decision Training Branch located in Norman. She had this position at WDTB at the time of her death. Her focus was on baseline WSR-88D radar training for NWS meteorologists, as well as advanced training encompassing the elements of the severe weather warning processes that included science, technology and human factors. While at the WDTB, Liz instructed more than 4,000 NWS forecasters, significantly improving NWS warning support to the public for more than three decades.
Liz introduced many human-factors training elements into the NWS weather warning process, including Situation Awareness Displays and Weather Training Simulators. The NWS now regards her techniques as best practices that are “mission-critical” to the NWS warning process.