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Media Contact: Maddy Elledge
(706) 379-5319, [email protected]

Leading International Expert in Weather and Climate Dr. J. Marshall Shepard to Deliver Young Harris College’s Shaw Lecture

YOUNG HARRIS, Ga. – Young Harris College is proud to welcome Dr. J. Marshall Shepard as this year’s speaker for the annual Shaw Lecture to be held on Wednesday, April 5, at 7 p.m. in the Wilson Lecture Hall of Goolsby Center on the YHC campus. The lecture is free and open to the public.

Frequently sought as an expert on weather, climate and remote sensing, Dr. Shepherd serves as the director of the University of Georgia’s Atmospheric Sciences Program and a professor and associate head of the Department of Geography. He is the Georgia Athletic Association Distinguished Professor of Geography and Atmospheric Sciences, and hosts The Weather Channel’s Sunday talk show “Weather Geeks.”

Dr. Shepherd’s science lecture entitled, “Zombies, Sports, and Cola: Implications for Communicating Weather and Climate,” will explore some of the biggest misconceptions about communicating weather and climate change in a way that is accessible to all audiences.

A routine guest on CBS Face the Nation, NOVA, The Today Show, CNN, Fox News and The Weather Channel, Dr. Shepherd is frequently asked to advise key leaders at NASA, the White House, Congress, Department of Defense and officials from foreign countries. He has written several editorials for CNN, Washington Post, Atlanta Journal Constitution, and is a contributing author to Ebony Magazine and Forbes Magazine Online. He is also the co-author of the children’s book “Dr. Fred’s Weather Watch.”

Dr. Shepherd is the recipient of the Protector of the Earth Award (2014), Presidential Early Career Award (2014), Florida State University’s Grad Made Good, Association of American Geographers Media Achievement Award (2015), and the UGA Franklin College of Arts and Sciences Sandy Beaver Award for Excellence in Teaching. In 2015, Dr. Shepherd was invited to moderate the White House Champions for Change event.

Originally from Canton, Ga., Dr. Shepherd received his B.S., M.S. and Ph.D. in physical meteorology from Florida State University. Dr. Shepherd currently serves on the Board of Trustees for the Nature Conservancy, Earth Science Subcommittee of the NASA Advisory Council and the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Visiting Committee.

The Shaw Lecture Series was established by YHC alumna and faculty member Martha Luelle Shaw, ’29, in 1977.  

To learn more about Dr. Shepard, visit

For more information on the event, contact Assistant Professor of English and Director of Rehtorica and the Writing Center Dr. Jared Champion at (706) 379-5323 or [email protected].

About Young Harris College
Young Harris College is a private, baccalaureate degree-granting college located in the beautiful mountains of North Georgia. Founded in 1886 and historically affiliated with The United Methodist Church, Young Harris College educates, inspires and empowers students through the highest quality liberal arts education. The College currently has more than 1,100 students across five divisions—Education, Fine Arts, Humanities, Mathematics and Science, and Social and Behavioral Sciences. The historic campus in Young Harris, Ga., has completed major campus improvements to accommodate the College’s growth. Recent LEED-certified campus improvements include the 121,000-square-foot Rollins Campus Center, new residence facilities, and a 57,000-square-foot recreation and fitness center. The College is an active member of NCAA Division II and remains a fierce competitor in the prestigious Peach Belt Conference. YHC is among fewer than 300 colleges and universities nationwide named to the 2016-2017 list of Colleges of Distinction and is listed as a “Best National Liberal Arts College” by U.S. News & World Report. For more information, visit