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Leiloni Stainsby

Leiloni Stainsby
Office of Response and Recovery

Assistant Administrator, Field Operations

Ms. Stainsby serves as the Assistant Administrator, Field Operations Directorate (FOD) in FEMA’s Office of Response and Recovery. FOD’s mission is to ready, deploy, and lead the incident workforce – one of the most important resources FEMA leverages to achieve its mission of helping people before, during, and after disasters. Ms. Stainsby oversees FOD readying the incident workforce by helping FEMA to develop a comprehensive readiness framework, building a trained and qualified workforce, and helping communities respond to and recovery from disasters. Ms. Stainsby leads FOD to deploy the incident workforce by developing, managing, and evolving the incident workforce management structures and leveraging data to ensure the right people are in the right place at the right time before, during, and after disasters. FOD also leads the incident workforce by enhancing and managing leadership in the field, teams, and emergency managers who are deployed to work alongside FEMA partners and help communities respond to and recover from disasters.

Prior to becoming the Assistant Administrator, Ms. Stainsby served as the Deputy Assistant Administrator, Field Operations Directorate. During this time, she was also responsible for the development and deployment of all Federal Coordinating Officers, Federal Disaster Recovery Coordinators, and FEMA’s Incident Management Assistance Teams. 

Ms. Stainsby previously served as the Division Director of the National Preparedness Assessment Division (NPAD) at FEMA. In that role, Ms. Stainsby oversaw implementation of FEMA Strategic Objective 1.4 — Better Learn from Past Disasters, Continuously Improve, and Innovate.  Ms. Stainsby served as the Acting NPAD Director since July 2018, leading the development of the 2017 Hurricane Season After-Action Report, the annual National Preparedness Report, and implementation of a new risk and capability assessment. She has a proven track record of working with stakeholders at all levels of government, the non-profit sector, international partners, and the private sector.   

Prior to joining executive service, Ms. Stainsby served as the Branch Chief for the Assessments and Analytics Branch of the NPAD. In that role, she was responsible for establishing assessment methodologies, streamlining data collection and analysis efforts, and supervising the development of policies, guidance, and grant metrics. Ms. Stainsby also served as the Program Manager for FEMA’s lessons learned and continuous improvement program, working to ensure that lessons learned from FEMA’s real-world incident activation and preparedness exercises are incorporated into plans, policies, and directives.

Before joining FEMA, Ms. Stainsby spent ten years in the private sector leading assessment and analytical efforts for government clients, supervising knowledge management programs, and managing information technology systems. Ms. Stainsby developed, managed, and led preparedness exercise and evaluation support, lessons learned and continuous improvement programs, and served as a program manager focusing on FEMA’s Catastrophic Planning efforts.  During her career, Ms. Stainsby has developed extensive management competencies, including people management, contract management, client management, financial management, and business process improvement. Ms. Stainsby began her professional career as a legislative assistant at Van Ness Feldman, a DC-based law firm, assisting in the development and implementation of policy and strategy initiatives for corporate and coalition clients.  

Ms. Stainsby holds a master’s degree from the London School of Economics, a bachelor’s degree from Millikin University, and a certificate from the American University Key Executive Leadership Program.