Elisa Raffa

“You’ll find a lot of New Yorkers there,” is the first thing I was told about Charlotte. And you know what…I already found some pretty awesome pizza! I am thrilled to be in the Queen City, and privileged to keep you weather-aware and science-savvy.

I’m a Cornell meteorologist holding the American Meteorological Society Certified Broadcast Meteorologist distinction, CBM #813. After 15 years of dreaming, 4+ years of studying, and countless weathercasts…that was the proudest moment of my career.

I earned that honor while hitting the airwaves at our sister-station, KOLR/ KRBK in Springfield, MO. There, I learned the horrors of waking up at 1:30 AM every…single…day, as the weekday morning meteorologist. Ok, it wasn’t that bad!

I have a passion for communicating climate change, one that earned me national and international recognition for using everything from beer, chocolate, snow shovels, and vultures to help viewers relate to the climate crisis.

When I wasn’t on-air, I was a STEM instructor at the Discovery Center Springfield. I stepped up to be a virtual science teacher as the museum pivoted to emergency childcare during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Those kids filled a place in my heart I didn’t know was empty. Also, science is SO COOL!

Before working in Missouri, I got my on-air start at our sister-station KCAU in Sioux City, IA, where I covered a blizzard alongside The Weather Channel’s Jim Cantore! I learned a lot from him in whiteout conditions, and from local farmers during planting and harvest seasons. Scientists of the soils, seeds, and weather, they taught this little New Yorker so much about agriculture.

I still keep in touch with the Cornell University professors that got me here. The moment I landed my first job in Iowa, I remember running down the hall to them in excitement. And after coming to Charlotte, I got another email from them saying, “I’m proud of you, kiddo.”

I was born and raised in New York City, my family still lives on Staten Island, or the “forgotten borough” of New York’s fabulous five. Raised in an Italian household with a Brooklyn edge, calzones, rice balls, and lasagna are some of my favorites when I head home. And while I’ll never quit having Pinstripe Pride for my Yankees, I’m excited to see what the Panthers can do on Sundays!

Latest from Elisa Raffa