When Brigantine native Nick Pittman, 31, was in third grade, he started doing the weather as part of the morning announcements and invited the chief meteorologist of NBC’s local affiliate to school. Pittman longed for a cool weatherman nickname.
Nor’easter Nick, replied the station’s meteorologist.
Pittman went on to become an on-air weather forecaster for NBC-40 when he was just 17 years old, and later the chief meteorologist of WJLP-TV. Today the president/CEO of Norcast Weather,“Nor’easter Nick” is thriving as an engaging and independent weather forecaster in South Jersey, specializing in hyperlocal weather specifically for local communities. He lives in Sewell.
Every weatherperson has a story about how they were infatuated with the weather from a young age.
I was raised by my grandmother. She was amazing, but it was just she and I in this big old house in Brigantine that would creak. When I would see a thunderstorm watch or tornado warning, I would hide under my bed. It was an actual phobia I had to overcome through learning about the weather.
I didn’t ask for fairy tales. I asked for books on meteorology. So there I was at eight or nine years old, teaching myself thermodynamics.
So now you have your own media company. Are you basically a cool indie rock/alternative weather forecaster?
When my grandmother was diagnosed with dementia, I had to grow up fast. I was hired to do the weather at TV 40 when I was 17, while working full-time as a manager at ShopRite. I had to turn down a full ride to Penn State to take care of her and pursue my degree online.
There was a point in 2019 where I could have either gone to another market to rebuild or turn my following of 50,000 people on Facebook into a career. I contacted local businesses and asked them about creating a hyperlocal weather service. Pretty much everyone said they would sponsor it … a lot of home-service providers, mom-and-pop operations.
I don’t do the weather-hype thing because I have a loyal following, and they’re going to come to me for the truth. My husband is in marketing and went to school for video production. He left his job last summer, and now we work together.
Why do weather forecasters seem to take so much heat?
When I was younger, I used to take every Facebook comment to heart. It would destroy me. I’d think, Do I suck? Am I bad at my job?
But I realized that, if someone’s biggest concern in life is criticizing the local weather guy, I want their life. They’re mad that their property wasn’t destroyed. I take solace in that, whatever the storm threat is, I did my job explaining what the potential outcome could be.
What aspect of New Jersey weather do you hate?
Probably the humidity. I’m a runner. I like to start my day with a two-mile jog. But I take a break from mid-June to early September because I don’t like that feeling of being suffocated. If it wasn’t for the humidity, from the standpoint of meteorology … and being a weather weenie … everything can happen here, from blizzards to hurricanes to tornadoes. We get it all.