Anniversary Celebration

The 50th anniversary celebration brought together many current and former NCAR, UCAR, and UCP staff. It also included family members of Walter Orr Roberts and I.M. Pei., two of the driving forces behind the Mesa Laboratory’s design and placement in Boulder.

The Mesa Laboratory was officially rededicated by Dr. Sarah Ruth of the National Science Foundation, who unveiled plans for a plaque honoring the anniversary. Other speakers from NCAR, UCAR, and the Colorado community shared memories of the Mesa Laboratory and highlighted the scientific achievements that have happened at NCAR over the last 50 years. The Boulder Philharmonic performed "Fanfare for NCAR" by Cecil Effinger which was composed in honor of the building's dedication.

Professor Stuart “Bill” Leslie presented a lecture on the history and design of the architectural icon called “A Different Kind of Beauty: I.M. Pei’s Modernist Masterpiece.”

Image Gallery

Anniversary photos by Carlye Calvin. Click an image to view at full size. 

Warren and Mary Washington and Dave and Gloria Williamson at the anniversary celebration. Vanda Grubišić, Mary Barth, Bette Otto-Bliesner, and Paty Romero Lankao at the re-dedication. Professor Stuart 'Bill' Leslie presents his talk, 'A Different Kind of Beauty: I.M. Pei’s Modernist Masterpiece,' featuring an archival photo of Walter Orr Roberts and I.M. Pei. Hanli Liu, Bill Kuo, Wen-Chau Lee. Jon Roberts and Sandi Pei, sons of Walter Orr Roberts and I.M. Pei. Members of the Boulder Philharmonic perform the Fanfare for NCAR, which was written by Cecil Effinger in honor of the Mesa Lab dedication in 1967 Attendees enjoy the Boulder Philharmonic’s performance of the Fanfare for NCAR Attendees mingle during the re-dedication reception Sarah Ruth and Jim Hurrell unveil the design for the plaque which will be displayed at the Mesa Lab in honor of the re-dedication NCAR Director Jim Hurrell served as the Master of Ceremonies for the celebration Scott McCarthy shared memories of visiting the Mesa Laboratory with his grandparents, Walt and Janet Roberts. Andrew Shoemaker, from the Boulder Mayor’s office, spoke about the relationship between the Mesa Laboratory and the City of Boulder. Representative Jared Polis shared a statement he entered into the Congressional Record in honor of the 50th anniversary of the Mesa Laboratory T.J. Mattimore of Vaisala, Inc Cliff Jacobs, former head of the NCAR/Facilities Section, Division of Atmospheric & Geospace Sciences, National Science Foundation, spoke of his work on behalf of the Mesa Lab Bob Serafin, former NCAR director UCAR President Antonio Busalacchi closed out the ceremony with remarks about the legacy of collaboration and cooperation at NCAR/UCAR Re-creation of an early Mesa Lab photo: Dave Williamson, Bette Otto-Bliesner, Akira Kasahara, Warren Washington, and Bob Chervin Dave Williamson, Bette Otto-Bliesner, Akira Kasahara, Warren Washington, and Bob Chervin at the Mesa Laboratory in the 1970s Sandi Pei stands in front of the photo of his father, Mesa Lab architect, I.M. Pei Daniel Marsh and Michael Thompson Walter Orr Roberts’ family pose together in the lobby of the Mesa Lab Valerie Sloan, Tim Barnes, Becca Hatheway, Sandi Pei, and Lucy Warner. Sandi Pei holds his copy of An Architectural Masterpiece which was updated and reprinted in honor of the anniversary. Bob Henson and Harriet Barker Betty Valent and Valerie Friesen


    The 50th Anniversary Celebration was made possible through the generous support of the following sponsors:       



Vaisala logo



Ball Aerospace logo




Elevations Credit Union logo



Western States Water Partners logo




TIAA logo