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Lixion A. Avila (born November 25, 1950) is a weather forecaster with the National Hurricane Center (NHC).[1] He has been a senior tropical cyclone specialist since 1989 and has in 2018 the longest-tenured.[2] He is the only Cuban American specialist on the staff and is bilingual in English and Spanish.

Lixion Avila
Lixion Avila (meteorologist).png
Avila in 2017
Born25 November 1950 Edit this on Wikidata (age 68)
Cuba Edit this on Wikidata
Alma mater


Avila was born and raised in Cuba.[3]. He studied and received his Bachelor of Science degree in Meteorology from the University of Havana in 1973, then worked for Cuba's weather service for seven years.[3][4]

Avila was not able to study further in Cuba and with some help from his mother's family was able to emigrate to the United States[3][5] He was hired as a consultant for the National Hurricane Center in 1983, providing warning information in Spanish for the radio and television press.[4] He then obtained his MSc degree in 1987 at the University of Miami and became a forecaster at the NHC, graduating to hurricane specialist in 1989.[4] Continuing his studies further, he obtained a PhD in 1993.[4]

Since then, Dr. Avila represents often the National Hurricane Center at the World Meteorological Organization, especially for the coordination and training in the Caribbean and Central American region.[4]


Avila is a Fellow of the American Meteorological Society.[6] In 2000 Avila received a NOAA Administrator's Award.[7] In 2005, the National Weather Service bestowed him the Isaac M. Cline National Award for Outreach.[4]


Avila generally forecasts with a quirky personal touch. Similar to his NHC counterpart James Franklin, Avila occasionally expresses his opinion or sense of humor, often in the discussion areas of advisories. For instance during 2005's record-breaking Hurricane Epsilon, he expressed his frustration at the hurricane's refusal to weaken despite repeated predictions that it would do so: "There are no clear reasons...and I am not going to make one explain the recent strengthening of Epsilon and I am just describing the facts." He further signed off this discussion with "...Epsilon will likely become a remnant low. I heard that before about Epsilon... Haven't you?"[8]

While describing Hurricane Leslie, in 2018, he quipped, "It is difficult to add more to the discussion about a cyclone that has moved very little during the past few days and has not changed significantly in structure either."[9]


  1. ^ "Person Details for Lixion A Avila, "United States Public Records, 1970-2009"". Retrieved June 21, 2017.
  2. ^ Ken Kaye. "Bertha predicted to become a hurricane". South Florida Sun-Sentinel. Archived from the original on 2008-07-11.
  3. ^ a b c Hutt, Katherine; Cabbage, Michael (May 15, 1998). "Forecaster has clear skies on a return home to Cuba". Sun-Sentinel. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
  4. ^ a b c d e f "Lixion Avila, Ph.D., Senior Hurricane Specialist National Hurricane Center" (PDF). Staff profiler page. National Hurricane Center. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
  5. ^ "Cuban-born forecaster leaves emotion outside". NBC News. September 7, 2008. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
  6. ^ "List of Fellows". American Meteorological Society. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
  7. ^ NOAA Workforce Management Office. "2000 NOAA Administrator's Award". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
  8. ^ Avila, Lixion (2005-12-04). "Hurricane Epsilon Discussion 21". National Hurricane Center. Retrieved 2011-08-31.
  9. ^ "Hurricane LESLIE". Retrieved 2018-10-09.

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