Frank Marks

Frank Marks

Research Highlights

Research Interests

Analyzing meteorological remote sensing (e.g., microwave radar and radiometer) and numerical model data sets, particularly in tropical cyclones and mesoscale convective systems to understand the storm kinematic and precipitation structure.

Frank Marks, Sc.D.

Former Director in Staged Retirement, Hurricane Research Division


4301 Rickenbacker Causeway
Miami, Florida 33149

Dr. Frank Marks is a recognized expert in tropical cyclones and is the leader of the NOAA tropical cyclone research efforts as the research lead of NOAA’s Hurricane Forecast Improvement Project (HFIP) and the director of the Hurricane Research Division of NOAA’s Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorology Laboratory. Dr. Marks also serves as co-chair of the Interagency Council for Advancing Meteorological Services (ICAMS) Committee on Observational Systems (CObS) Working Group for Aerial Reconnaissance Equipment (WG/ARE).

Besides his role within NOAA Dr. Marks is also an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Meteorology and Physical Oceanography at the University of Miami, as well as a Fellow of the Cooperative Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Studies (CIMAS) at the University of Miami Rosenstiel School for Marine and Atmospheric Sciences. Dr. Marks received a B.S. in Meteorology from Belknap College (1973) and both an M.S. (1975) and Sc.D. (1981) in Meteorology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Dr. Marks is a member of the American Meteorological Society (AMS) and became a Fellow of the AMS in 2000. He served as a member of the AMS Committee on Radar Meteorology and of the AMS Council.

Current Work

Director, Hurricane Research Division

Download Full CV

1981, Sc.D. Meteorology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA

1975, M.S. Meteorology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA

1973, B.S. Meteorology, Belknap College, Center Harbor, NH

  1. Alaka, G.J. Jr., J.A. Sippel, Z. Zhang, H.-S Kim, F. Marks, V. Tallapragada, A. Mehra, X. Zhang, A. Poyer, and S.G. Gopalakrishnan. Lifetime performance of the operational Hurricane Weather Research and Forecasting model (HWRF) for North Atlantic tropical cyclones. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 105(6):E932-E961, 2024
    Ref. 4396
  2. Chen, X., and F.D. Marks. Parameterizations of boundary layer mass fluxes in high-wind conditions for tropical cyclone simulations. Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences, 81(1):77-91, 2024
    Ref. 4357
  3. Hazelton, A., X. Chen, G.J. Alaka Jr., G.R. Alvey III, S. Gopalakrishnan, and F.D. Marks. Sensitivity of HAFS-B tropical cyclone forecasts to planetary boundary layer and microphysics parameterizations. Weather and Forecasting, 39(4):655-678, 2024
    Ref. 4389

2022 National Tropical Weather Conference William Gray Award

For outstanding leadership and/or contributions to the field of tropical meteorology.

2022 U.S. Department of Commerce Bronze Medal

For the rapid development of an application allowing aircraft acquired dropsonde data to be processed and disseminated from the ground. 

2021 American Meteorological Society Joanne Simpson Tropical Meteorology Research Award

For outstanding contributions to the understanding and prediction of tropical cyclones through scholarship, field contributions, and community leadership. 

2018 NOAA/OAR Dr. Daniel L. Albritton Outstanding Science Communicator Award

For outstanding communication of NOAA research and its relevance to the American public. 

2014 U.S. Department of Commerce Gold Medal

For developing and implementing a high-resolution Hurricane Weather Research and Forecasting (HWRF) system model, a major advance in operational hurricane intensity prediction. 

2014 South Florida Federal Executive Board Federal Employee of the Year

For contributions toward the development of the advanced, high-resolution Hurricane Weather Research and Forecasting (HWRF) model used operationally to provide forecast guidance to the National Hurricane Center. 

2014 American Meteorological Society Banner I. Miller Award

For valuable insights into incorporating real-time airborne Doppler radar measurements via ensemble data assimilation, leading to improvements in forecasts of tropical cyclone track and intensity.

2012 NOAA Administrator’s Award

For outstanding management of the G-IV Tail Doppler Radar project, enhancing NOAA’s weather forecasting and research capability.

2012 NOAA/OAR Federal Employee of the Year

For innovative work on the NCEP/EMC hurricane forecast model, leading to greatly improved hurricane track and intensity forecasts. 

2011 NASA Group Achievement Award

For outstanding contributions to the Genesis and Rapid Intensification Processes (GRIP) field campaign as members of the GRIP Science Team during the 2010 Atlantic Hurricane season. 

2011 American Meteorological Society Verner E. Suomi Award

For creative use of airborne Doppler radar and other technologies that have advanced the understanding of the dynamics of tropical cyclones. 

2010 NOAA/OAR Outstanding Scientific Paper Award for Weather and Water

Marks, F.D., P.G. Black, M.T. Montgomery, and R.W. Burpee, 2008: Structure of the eye and eyewall of Hurricane Hugo (1989). Monthly Weather Review, 136(4):1237-1259.

2009 NOAA Distinguished Career Award

For pioneering achievements in airborne radar remote sensing of tropical cyclones and severe storms to improve the understanding of storm structure. 

2008 NOAA/OAR Research Employee of the Year

For exceptional leadership of NOAA’s new Hurricane Forecast Improvement Project, a long-term effort to accelerate improvements to hurricane intensity forecasting in the one- to five-day time range. 

2005 NOAA/NWS Richard H. Hagemeyer Award

For outstanding contributions to the nation’s Hurricane Warning Program. 

2005 NOAA Administrator’s Award

For establishing and administrating the Joint Hurricane Testbed, NOAA’s first U.S. Weather Research Program testbed, accelerating research into operations and greatly improving forecasts.  

2005 NOAA/USWRP Joint Hurricane Testbed Outstanding Contributor Award

For outstanding contributions to the Nation’s hurricane warning program as a member of the Joint Hurricane Testbed Steering Committee from 2002 – 2005. 

2002 NOAA Diversity Council Spectrum Achievement Award for Managers

For “living the vision” and for dedication to including students in hurricane reseearch, which has brought many benefits to AOML. 

2002 NOAA Office of High-Performance Computing and Communications Best Wireless Project Award

For presentation of the wireless-based WLAN technology onboard the NOAA WP-3D research aircraft.

1998 U.S. Department of Commerce Silver Medal

For performance as the Research Mission Manager for the NOAA High Altitude Jet procurement.

1989 Distinguished Authorship Award, NOAA/ERL

Marks, F.D., and R.A. Houze, 1987:  Inner core structure of Hurricane Alicia from airborne Doppler radar observations.  Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences, 44(9):1296-1317.