Major P. May, Regional Administrator, FEMA Region IV Biography
Major Phillip (Phil) May is administrator of Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Region IV. He coordinates preparedness, response, recovery, and mitigation activities in Region IV's eight states – Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee. May also manages the transition recovery offices throughout the region.
May served as Region IV Administrator for 13 years from1981-1994. With more than 21 years at FEMA, May left to pursue opportunities working with U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions of Alabama, and the Alabama Emergency Management Agency. May returned for his second tour as Region IV Administrator in October 2006 to lead the restructuring of the New FEMA.
During his tenure with FEMA, May has shown his outstanding leadership abilities through his coordination of FEMA preparation and response to some of the nation’s worst disasters, including Hurricane Hugo in 1989 and Andrew in 1992. His work during the recovery from Hurricane Andrew earned May both the Distinguished Meritorious Service Award and the Distinguished Civil Service Medal. Honors for his tireless efforts in the wake of Andrew and other disasters did not end there. The Department of Health and Human Services presented May with its first National Disaster Medical Services Award in 1994.
As testament to his leadership abilities, the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security has designated May as the Regional Team Lead (RTL) for H1N1 Pandemic Influenza Response. In this role, he is charged with ensuring a prompt federal response, state and regional coordination, and implementation of national planning.
May is a native of Alabama and attended the University of Montevallo. He received his commission as an officer in the U.S. Air Force in 1971 and served as a member of the Alabama National Guard from 1971 to 1983.