Valbona Kunkel


NOAA Atmospheric Scientist R2O Coordinator

Dr. Kunkel is a contractor working with the WPO Director and Program Managers to help coordinate, monitor, promote, and evaluate research-to-operations transition activities across all WPO’s programs. Prior to WPO, Dr. Kunkel supported the transition of the models from a research system to a fully operational system operated by the National Weather Service National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP). 

Dr. Kunkel has previously conducted Space Weather research at the Naval Research Laboratory in collaboration with the Paul Sabatier University and Institut de Recherche en Astrophysique et Planétologie (IRAP) in Toulouse, France. She started her research on the dynamics of magnetic flux ropes in the solar corona, which has evolved into current efforts to understand the physics of coronal mass ejections (CMEs). Dr. Kunkel is adjunct faculty at Millersville University and teaches Heliophysics and Space Weather as those classes are offered.