OCS was established in 1980 to provide climatological services to the people of Oklahoma, conduct research on the impacts of climate on human activities, and serve as a support facility for the State Climatologist. OCS is mandated to acquire, process, and disseminate climate and weather data and information for use by the state's citizens. OCS is the operational home of the Oklahoma Mesonet.
The Oklahoma Mesonet consists of 120 automated observing stations that continuously monitor numerous important weather and soil variables. It is administered jointly by the University of Oklahoma and Oklahoma State University, and operated by the Oklahoma Climatological Survey. Data collected are quality assured to provide high quality data for a variety of uses ranging from scientific research to decision making. Mesonet data is among the most critical datasets provided through OK-First.
The DPS helps OK-First meet its public safety mission by providing major funding support to the program. In addition, the DPS operates the Oklahoma Law Enforcement Telecommunications System, which provides the critical communications infrastructure for Oklahoma Mesonet data. Without these two crucial levels of support from DPS, Oklahoma’s public safety officials would be without OK-First.
The mission of the OEM is to minimize the effects of attack, technological and natural disasters upon Oklahomans by organizing community preparedness and hazard mitigation plans, and by coordinating emergency response and disaster recovery operations. OEM’s long-running relationship with OK-First has been key in the program’s evolution over time.
In addition to providing routine forecasts and outlooks, WFOs provide the public and public safety officials with critical information related to imminent or ongoing hazardous weather. WFO personnel from Norman and Tulsa also take a hands-on role in OK-First as guest instructors in OK-First Certification Classes.
Oklahoma's CareerTech system is dedicated to helping Oklahomans succeed in the workplace, in education and in life. It includes dozens of regional Technology Centers which graciously provide facilities and staff support for OK-First’s critical training mission.
The NWC is a unique confederation of federal, state, and University of Oklahoma organizations that work together to improve understanding of events occurring in the Earth's atmosphere. The NWC houses about 550 people including research scientists, operational meteorologists and climatologists, engineers, technicians, support staff, and graduate and undergraduate students. OK-First Certification and Assistant Certification courses are held at the NWC.