Awards & Accreditations
Certified Broadcast Meteorologist - American Meteorological Society
University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), Bachelor's of Science in Atmospheric, Oceanic, and Environmental Sciences with a minor in Environmental Systems and Society
Taban Sharifi grew up in Southern California between Los Angeles and San Diego. She is a Certified Broadcast Meteorologist (CBM) with the American Meteorological Society (AMS). She has a B.S. in Atmospheric, Oceanic, and Environmental Sciences with a minor in Environmental Systems and Society from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). Go Bruins! While in school, Taban was a meteorology intern with NBC LA. There she helped forecast daily weather for the greater Los Angeles region and created a playbook to deploy weather sensors for NBC owned-and-operated stations across the country. Her first on-air job took her to San Angelo, Texas, where she was a morning meteorologist and co-anchor. Working in West Texas gave her knowledge and experience covering severe storms. From there, she moved to Palm Springs, California. People think forecasting in California is sunshine all the time, but with temperatures in the 120’s, wildfires, damaging winds, floodings, and earthquakes, the forecasting kept her very busy! She also worked there as a general assignment reporter and told community stories. Taban is excited for the challenge and opportunity to forecast nationally with WeatherNation. She also looks forward to exploring all that Colorado has to offer!
Q&A with Taban Sharifi
What inspired you to become a meteorologist?
My inspiration to become a meteorologist was a little different than the stories I’ve heard. I didn’t know what my passion was for a long time. I just knew I wanted to be in the sciences working in an exciting environment. During my first year of college, I had a chemistry teacher who was also an atmospheric scientist. He incorporated interesting tidbits into lectures, and I found myself fascinated by the science behind the atmosphere. Simple concepts like understanding why the sky is blue (Rayleigh scattering) sparked my passion for the field. Combining my love for science, my obsession with rain over sunshine, and my enjoyment in storytelling, the idea of becoming a meteorologist in the news industry lit my fire. Here I am today, doing what I love everyday, helping keep people safe and informed, and teaching scientific topics to others!
What is your most memorable weather experience?
During the morning hours of May 18, 2019, at least six tornadoes were tracked through parts of West Central Texas. I drove to the station during the middle of the night. The streets were already flooded, the power at the station was out, and it was all hands on deck. The city of San Angelo, where we were, had not seen a tornado since the 1950’s. That morning we tracked what later became an EF-2 through the city. We also tracked two EF-3’s in our surrounding counties. Many homes became uninhabitable. Luckily, no lives were lost. Our station operated with two affiliates and both teams came together to forecast and track as one. The only tools we had were what we could use on our computer and cellphones, as the power remained out. It was the most memorable storm coverage experience, and I’m so proud of the teamwork we did to keep people safe.
Outside of weather, what are your hobbies and interests?
I truly enjoy being outdoors. As a Southern California girl, beaches are in my blood. I love snowboarding (though I’m no Shaun White), hiking, catching sunsets, practicing yoga, and exploring new places. I also love going out to find new places to eat, wine tasting, thrifting, and going to concerts. I am a big fan of traveling; I’m probably already planning my next trip or mini getaway to somewhere new! Indoors, I like watercolor painting and I’m a sucker for a good TV show to binge watch. Lastly, In-N-out… I love In-N-Out.
Besides your parents, who as influenced you the most in your life?
I think it’s hard to pinpoint one person in my life who has been an influence outside of my parents! I have a great family. My sister is much younger than me and she inspires me to be a better person so I can be a role model for her. Growing up, I got to spend a lot of time with my cousins, which are more like siblings. It’s a supportive crowd of people who maintain a positive mindset and that’s been the greatest influence. Each friendship I’ve had also taught me something new. I’m grateful for everyone who has influenced my life in every way. I wouldn’t be the person I am or where I am without the people I surround myself with.
What is a little known fact about you?
I’m bilingual, I can speak Farsi fluently! My name in Farsi actually means “shining” (such as the sun is shining). Fitting for a meteorologist, right?
What are your hopes and dreams for the profession of weather?
Like many meteorologists, I am hopeful and optimistic about the improvements in technology for forecasting in the future. On a personal level, I want to continue to use my voice to help educate people on scientific topics in weather and the environment while also working to keep them safe.