Prof Dr Werner Wehry sadly passed away on 4 December 2016 aged 77. He was one of the founders of the European Meteorological Society signing the founding documents in Norrköping, Sweden in 1999. Werner Wehry was a strong supporter of cooperation amongst meteorological societies in Europe and also served as the second President of the Society during the years 2002 to 2005.
Werner Wehry can be named together with Rene Morin (France), Jon Wieringa (Netherlands) und Stan Cornford (UK) as father of EMS. He participated in an early meeting of a couple of European meteorological societies in September 1993, at which the idea of a European Meteorological Society as an organization was conceived. Following this initial spark, a core group consisting of René Morin, Jon Wieringa, Stan Cornford and Werner Wehry, joined by Hans Richner, Gerd Tetzlaff, Arne Spekat and Fritz Neuwirth, met during ECAM1997 in Lindau (Germany) and started to draft a constitution for the EMS. Two years later, during ECAM1999 in Norrköping, the constituting meeting of the EMS was held on 14 September 1999, the legal birthdate of EMS.
It was due to Werner Wehry’s initiative that the EMS Secretariat was hosted at the Freie Universität Berlin – where he had been a Professor of Meteorology – and that the EMS was registered as a charity in Germany.
Werner Wehry was a member of the EMS Council, representing the German Meteorological Society DMG, from 1999 to 2007. He was EMS Vice-President from 2002 to 2004 and in 2007 and the President from 2002 to 2005.
Werner Wehry was also instrumental in establishing the EMS Awards Programme, and chaired the Awards Committee until 2007. His last important initiative for the EMS was the proposal to establish an honours award for meteorology in Europe; this is now the EMS Silver Medal which has become a recognised award in the European community.
Fritz Neuwirth and Martina Junge.