Meteorologist Chris Maiers's ride into weather was anything but ordinary. The Holy Cross, Iowa native started off as a youngster fascinated by the quick flashes of lightning during thunderstorms. "I think my Mom still has pictures of me planted against the window screen watching thunderstorms pass," Maiers said. He originally wanted to be a doctor, but then moved on to mechanical engineering. By the time Chris was in the latter stages of high school, it became obvious that he wanted study meteorology. "It just clicked," he said. "I knew it was what I wanted to do."
Chris graduated with distinction from Iowa State University with a bachelor of science degree in meteorology and a minor in journalism and mass communication in May of 2006. During his college years, he led several physics review sessions for meteorology majors, became academic chair for the student chapter of the American Meteorological Society, and was awarded the 2004 Student of the Year Award by the Order of Rose and Chessman.
Before coming to ABC5 in July of 2006, Maiers spent a lot of time interning. He started during the summer of 2004 at KCRG-TV9 in Cedar Rapids working with the staff he watched growing up in Eastern Iowa. "It was a thrill to work with Denny Frary and Joe Winters," he said. "I grew up watching them nearly every day, and I really learned a lot from them." Maiers had another stint there during the summer of 2005.
From there he interned at KCCI-TV in Des Moines during the 2004-2005 and 2005-2006 school years. He developed an interest in Doppler radar interpretation and has become skillful with radar data. He wrote a thesis that was heavily based on using Doppler radar for non-supercell tornado detection. He has also presented at the Severe Storms and Doppler Radar Conference in Des Moines on radar interpretation and was elected president of the Central Iowa National Weather Association in October of 2010.
Maiers has presented a continuation of his thesis, several Doppler radar workshops, and a look back at the June 29, 1998 derecho that caused over $100 million in damages at the Severe Storms and Doppler Radar Conference in Des Moines, IA where he also conducted a student-level radar workshop and an advanced one. His work with a bow echo that produced six tornadoes was also accepted for presentation at the Midwest Bow Echo Workshop in Louisville, KY.
Maiers has taken up teaching as well. He is now teaching an introductory meteorology class at Drake University.
Chris is an active member of the American Meteorological Society and National Weather Association at both the local and national level. He has earned the designation of Certified Broadcast Meteorologist (CBM) from the American Meteorological Society for his dedication to broadcast meteorology excellence and continuing education. He plans on seeking the National Weather Association's Seal of Approval very soon.
When he isn't living out his dream job and working on his research, Maiers enjoys spending time with his wife and son, being outdoors, listening to music, messing around with computers, and being a shade-tree mechanic.