Each year, Homeland Security Today honors shining stars in the community who are making their own unique, invaluable contributions to advance the mission of keeping America safer from myriad threats. Their strong commitment to mission touches every part of their work, from day-to-day operations to special projects and work in the community. This year, with the unprecedented coronavirus pandemic affecting every facet of homeland security, HSToday is interviewing these individuals for a Profiles in Excellence series: to highlight the stories and successes from our winners.
A winner of the 2020 Mission Award, Bridget Pelaez currently serves as the Assistant Director of Emergency Management at Florida International University and is the Deputy Commander for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services National Disaster Medical Systems Trauma Critical Care Team. She has developed a robust Stop The Bleed Program and has trained more than 10,000 faculty and staff for Stop the Bleed alongside FIU Police. She has devoted her life to improving healthcare preparedness and response in South Florida.
In this interview, Pelaez sits down with HSToday to discuss the ways she has helped her team at FIU navigate through the pandemic. She highlights the critical need of using your resources and being resilient during disasters; while also emphasizing the importance of diversity and inclusion to foster a tight-knit community. Pelaez notes how she uses her background and work as a clinician to bring creativity and grit to advance disaster response.
Watch the full interview below & stay tuned as we continue to highlight our 2020 Award Winners: