The Illinois National Guard sandbags against flooding in Springfield, Ill., on June 26, 2019. (U.S. Air Force images taken by Tech Sgt. Robert R. Adams)

Share Your Expertise with HSToday Readers for National Preparedness Month

Dear HS Today readers,

As we head into September, National Preparedness Month, I would love to invite everyone to collaborate to share their ideas and experiences with preparedness. Preparedness is one of the four stages of the disaster management cycle. It is a wide-spanning topic with much to talk about. Getting prepared is something we can do on a personal level, a corporate level, and at the federal level as well. Preparedness measures make us better able to respond to disasters and security threats, ultimately leading to less loss of life, damage of property, impairments to the way businesses are run, and fewer detriments to society as a whole.

In the new landscape of emergency management, new threats spring up constantly, as well as new strategies of how to deal with those threats. These threats could include threats to life, infrastructure, facilities, or to online information and critical systems. As technologies develop, we adopt them and innovate our industry, but what are the threats associated with using those new tools, and how will we overcome them? In the month of September, we would love to feature reader-submitted articles and images that address preparedness. Articles may be opinion pieces that call attention to successes or failures of existing preparedness programs, or offer advice to edit or innovate current policy and plans. If you would prefer to be interviewed, please reach out to us, as we would be glad to make that happen.

Not only will we focus on innovation in the field of emergency preparedness, but we would also like to hear hometown stories of preparedness. Anyone of any demographic can take steps toward preparedness so we would be interested in hearing about employee training, in and out of school preparedness initiatives geared toward younger generations, and how your community is helping people be disaster-ready.

We should always be taking steps toward preparedness, so although at HSToday we are dedicating September to talking about this subject, it should always be in our minds. The publication is enriched by the experiences of people in our field. We thank you in advance, and look forward to hearing from you.

 

Richard Serino
HSToday Editorial Board
Distinguished Senior Fellow- Harvard NPLI
8th FEMA Deputy Administrator

The Honorable Richard Serino is currently a “Distinguished Visiting Fellow” at Harvard University, National Preparedness Leadership Initiative. Mr. Serino was appointed by President Obama and confirmed by the Senate as the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s 8th Deputy Administrator in October 2009 and served until 2014. Prior to his appointment as Deputy Administrator, he served as Chief of Boston EMS and Assistant Director of the Boston Public Health Commission. As Chief of Boston EMS, Mr. Serino served as Incident Commander for over 35 mass casualty incidents and for all of Boston’s major planned events. During his time at FEMA, he oversaw 60 disasters from flooding in the Midwest, tornado devastation in Missouri, tsunami destruction, and numerous hurricanes. Mr. Serino was on scene at the Boston Marathon bombings in 2013 as the highest-ranking official of DHS. Under Mr. Serino’s leadership, FEMA has started the following initiatives such as FEMA Corps, FEMA Stat, the FEMA Think Tank, a detailed budgetary process, and a Disaster Workforce and Workplace Transformation.

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