Michael Hayes is an applied climate scientist in the School of Natural Resources at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. His research and outreach efforts concentrate on drought risk management strategies, as well as assisting society to understand and prepare for climate variability and extremes. Hayes served as director of the National Drought Mitigation Center from 2007 to 2016. In that capacity, he studied drought monitoring, impact assessment and planning methodologies; and he assisted local, state, tribal, and federal officials with drought planning and mitigation. Hayes has conducted drought workshops and conferences around the world and is a widely published researcher.