As an Assistant Manager to SkyGuard® Operations and a Lead Meteorologist, Raya Maday is heavily involved in how AccuWeather For Business verbally communicates the weather.
Raya helps coordinate shifts at our operations center in Wichita, Kansas, quality checks our products and warnings, and helps drive forecast decisions
Raya also trains each meteorologist on how to handle client phone calls
AccuWeather’s Raya Maday first saw severe weather when she was just eight years old. Living in Daytona Beach, Florida, during the record 2004 - 2005 hurricane season, her family hunkered down inside their boarded-up house as the storms rolled in. Once their house was in the eye of the storm, her dad drilled two holes into the plywood so that she could get a peek at the damage. That may have piqued her interest in meteorology, but it wasn’t until she was halfway through college and after taking MET 101 at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, FL,that she fell in love with the weather.
Today as an Assistant Manager to SkyGuard® Operations and a Lead Meteorologist, Raya is heavily involved in how AccuWeather For Business verbally communicates the weather. She also trains each meteorologist on how to handle client phone calls. She helps coordinate shifts at our operations center in Wichita, Kansas, quality checks our products and warnings, and helps drive forecast decisions.
Raya came to AccuWeather after attending the American Meteorological Society meeting in New Orleans in 2016. There she met AccuWeather’s hiring manager, and he sparked her interest in private-sector operational meteorology. The university Raya attended didn’t cover the world of operational meteorology in-depth, so Raya was eager to learn more. She took an internship at the Severe Weather Center, and soon she realized that was the arena she wanted to be in.
Raya points out that AccuWeather’s SmartWarn® is a patented technology that gives it an advantage over its competitors. SmartWarn® enables real-time pinpointed commercial weather forecasts, warnings, and alerts through its advanced proprietary technology, powering business-to-business services, including site-specific AccuWeather SkyGuard® Localized Severe Weather Warnings and AccuWeather Enterprise Solutions’ Business Portal. The team that built SmartWarn® was sent to a gaming school to aid in its development. AccuWeather's software to issue warnings is quick and can pull in all the weather information you can imagine, all while overlaying our clients on top to create site-specific warnings.
This patented and innovative technology was recently used in Houston to help AccuWeather For Business clients.AccuWeather Storm Warning Meteorologists issued an AccuWeather Alert for a tornado threat in the Houston area more than two hours before the government and all other sources issued their tornado watches. As one of the tornadoes developed, our Storm Warning Meteorologists issued a SkyGuard® Tornado warning with 15 minutes of lead time before the tornado reached Deer Park. AccuWeather was the only source to provide advance warning in the Deer Park area for our clients within the Houston Metropolitan area. Other sources provided very little to no lead time.
Raya enjoys forecasting all types of weather, from warm days to severe thunderstorms, flooding, and hurricanes. But there is one particular weather event that stands out more than most.
During a storm-chasing trip, Raya, her friends, and her boyfriend went chasing on an extremely marginal risk day and drove from Wichita to southeastern Colorado. She had never seen a tornado before and where hoping to this day. They came across one lone supercell in Raton Mesa and a wall cloud descending from the base. As the tornado touched down, so did her boyfriend Tom Bedard. He got down on one knee and proposed. It ended up being the only tornado in the entire U.S. that day, and to Raya, it was worth the chase.
The fact that every day is different is what Raya likes best about forecasting the weather at AccuWeather. One day she could be briefing Fortune 500 clients on a landfalling hurricane and, the following, issuing SkyGuardⓇ tornado warnings for our clients.
When Raya isn’t busy forecasting weather and helping AccuWeather For Business clients navigate through severe weather, she likes to practice and teach yoga, spend time outside riding her bike, and painting - you guessed it - the weather.