Mike Chesney serves as the Deputy Regional Administrator for FEMA Region 5. In this position, his responsibilities include oversight for the operational aspects of preparedness, response, recovery and mitigation activities in support of the Region’s six Great Lakes states which include Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin, along with 34 federally recognized tribal nations.
Most recently, Mr. Chesney held the positions of Federal Preparedness Coordinator and Director of the National Preparedness Division for FEMA Region 5, coordinating a range of preparedness activities for the region. During the COVID-19 pandemic response, he served as the Regional Coordinating Officer for operations that managed medical resources to combat the virus and provided the oversight of six federally supported community vaccination centers.
Mr. Chesney previously served with FEMA Region 5 in a military capacity as the assigned Defense Coordinating Officer. In this role he successfully commanded the military recovery operation for the I-35 Minnesota bridge collapse in 2007. He completed 30 years of honorable military service in the United States Army with several years of executive-level management experience, achieving the rank of Colonel.
Other key assignments throughout Mr. Chesney’s military service include positions as a senior staff officer with Combined Forces Command Afghanistan, where he led the coalition in the development of programs that strengthened the role of the Afghan government in national security matters. He also served as a special assistant to the Chief of Staff of the Army, where he advanced the communication efforts regarding Army-wide transformation initiatives. Mr. Chesney has also served in unique strategic-level staff assignments at Joint Commands and Department of Defense level activities, supporting a wide range of contingency operations and national military policy development programs.
Mr. Chesney holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Northern Illinois University and a master’s degree in National Security Studies from the U.S. Army War College.