The University of Alabama has a new executive director for its Alabama Water Institute.
Matt Womble brings experience in weather and water-related data science to the position, the school said in a release. He most recently worked California-based Saildrone, which designs manufactures and operates wind and solar powered autonomous surface vehicles that provide cost-effective ocean data collection.
“I am honored to have the opportunity to join the dedicated team of professionals leading the Alabama Water Institute,” Womble said. “The combined academic and federal water research enterprise at The University of Alabama is second to none and is well on its way to becoming the premier hub for water-related research.
“I look forward to leveraging my previous experiences and relationships and engaging with UA faculty, students and AWI partners to design, lead and execute an enduring strategy that will enable continued success and growth for the Alabama Water Institute.”
The school’s Office of Research and Development praised the new hire.
“Matt is an outstanding professional and is a leader in the water industry. He has substantial experience at the highest levels of government and is in a strong position to direct the rapid growth trajectory of the Alabama Water Institute,” said ORED interim Executive Director Dr. Allen Parrish. “The University of Alabama is extremely fortunate to recruit Matt to lead the institute.”
This will be the second time Womble has worked in Tuscaloosa. In 2018, he was employed at the National Water Center.
Austen Shipley is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News.