TV Meteorologist

TV Meteorologist

Kevin Selle

Wichita Falls, TX

Male, 52

I've been a broadcast meteorologist on television since the early 1990's. Happy to answer any questions about the weather or local TV news. Yes, I often wear sneakers on set just out of view of the camera.

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Last Answer on December 13, 2018

Best Rated

do weathermen specialize by climate? like warm vs. cold climates? e.g. could a weatherman in hawaii take the same job in alaska without missing a beat?

Asked by CBass almost 6 years ago

Great question. One of my mentors told me, "You go to school for four years to learn meteorology, and then it takes two more to learn to forecast." So, time spent in a particular area gives you valuable experience in the local climatology. In your example, the weatherman in Hawaii, if he had had a good education, could certainly take a job in Alaska, but it would probably take a few seasons to get comfortable. Thanks!

What kind of career paths do TV meteorologists pursue other than doing the weather for a news station until they retire?

Asked by Tori almost 6 years ago

I know of a few who have started their own businesses, radar products or data services. Others have worked with the companies that provide graphics systems to television stations. There are more industries than you might think that hire meteorologists or meteorology consulting services. Power companies, trucking companies, aviation. Also weather research and teaching are options. Over the past few years more and more news anchors and reporters are leaving the business for public relations, media representatives and the like. Thanks, Tori!

When a major storm event is coming, do your TV producers encourage you to sensationalize it? Amp up the hype/severity/fear-factor, that sort of thing?

Asked by Moe-town almost 6 years ago

I haven't personally experienced that but I know of stations where the culture sort of suggests that type of behavior. One of the problems with that type of thing is once you raise the level just a bit there is often a "keeping up with the Joneses" type of competition that kicks in and it escalates over time. Often times reporters in the field will feel the need to raise the level of urgency to make live shots more interesting. Great question, it is a growing problem.

do you think it's unwise for weather reporters to report on location in the middle of hurricanes etc? seems so dangerous and not at all worth it...

Asked by becca j almost 6 years ago

Excellent question, Becca, there is actually some discussion about that now in the industry. Some have suggested that credentials such as Seals of Approval might be taken away for unsafe behavior. One problem is that no one wants to be the first to do "less" coverage or pull back. It might take someone getting hurt before some action is taken. It is a tough call. I guess my message to people in the industry, especially reporters as opposed to meteorologists, is to try and learn some basics about storm structure and safety so they can be as prepared as possible.

Do u have to stop yourself from talking weather in social situations b/c other ppl think it's small talk?

Asked by bomb'chelle almost 6 years ago

Never mind that...did you see what the Global Forecast System is doing over the plains at 384 hours!?! :) Usually what happens for me is once I get to the point in a conversation where I have to say, "Mostly cloudy tomorrow", or "Rain by mid-morning" people will giggle and say, "He sounds just like a TV Weatherman!" My favorite kind of interaction is when someone doesn't realize who they are talking with and makes some comment about the weather. Like in a elevator or the checkout line, they will say, "Boy, this is the worst hot spell in 100 years!" I usually play along and walk away wondering what they would think if they knew who they were talking with. :)

I am job shadowing a meteorologist and I was wondering if there are any questions that I should ask?

Asked by Jackie over 5 years ago

A lot of meteorologists have some story as to why they got into weather, often times some big event sparked their interest.  Many of us are technology geeks so you probably can't go wrong asking about computers and phones and such.  Good luck!

How much does the average TV weatherman make? And are you paid an annual salary, per episode, or some other kind of arrangement?

Asked by Ken almost 6 years ago

Hi, Ken. Big range of answers. At a base level salaries are reflective of the size of the city (we call them "markets"). A beginning TV meteorologist is likely to start by doing the weekend shift in a small market where they might also do some news reporting a couple days per week. Salary in this situation might be between $20,000 and $30,000. From there it does up well into six figures for many larger markets. Most are paid an annual salary.