John Ogren

John Ogren Image
Location of Interview
Collection Name

NOAA Heritage Oral History Project


NOAA Heritage Oral History Project aims to document the history and legacy of NOAA through compelling interviews with its leaders. These firsthand accounts provide an invaluable resource that preserves NOAA's significant contributions to environmental research and management, fostering a deeper understanding of NOAA's vital role in shaping our understanding of the Earth's oceans and atmosphere.

Date of Interview

Molly Graham


John Ogren was born in 1966 in Blue Island, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. He was fascinated by the weather from an early age. He grew up listening to his grandfather's stories about the deadly 1967 oak lawn tornado outbreak. In high school, John became really interested in earth science and was "hooked" after a six-week weather unit in science class. Mr. Ogren attended Western Illinois University, where he graduated in 1988 with a degree in geography and a minor in broadcasting and communications. John always knew he wanted to work for the National Weather Service and was offered his first position as a meteorologist intern for a Weather Service Office in Appalachia. In 1992, Ogren promoted to warning coordination meteorologist at the NWS office in Wichita, Kansas. After nearly ten years in Kansas, John moved to Washington, D.C., to serve as the national program manager for the warning coordination meteorologists, working closely with FEMA on disaster preparedness.  In 2002, John came to Indianapolis to work as meteorologist-in-charge for a weather office there, before becoming deputy regional director of the Weather Service Central Region. In 2010, John returned to Kansas to serve as the NWS training center director.  

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