WASHINGTON -- FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell announced today the appointment of 16 new members and 3 returning members to the agency's National Advisory Council.
For the first time in the council’s history, a Tribal representative was appointed as council chair. Please join us in congratulating the new National Advisory Council chair, Mr. Jeff Hansen, Director of Community Safety for the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. Previously, Chair Hansen served as the vice chair of the council for four years, working alongside outgoing Chair W. Nim Kidd, Chief of the Texas Division of Emergency Management. FEMA appreciates Mr. Kidd’s many years of devoted service.
“The National Advisory Council brings together diverse voices and viewpoints to help us better identify and address the emergency management challenges facing FEMA and our nation,” said Administrator Deanne Criswell. “I am proud to share that, for the first time in its history, a Tribal Nation representative will serve as the chair of the council. Jeff Hansen, of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, dutifully served four years as vice chair of the council and I am confident he will continue to serve our nation well in this new role. Additionally, beginning in 2023, the size of the council will grow from 35 to 40 members, including positions designated on climate change. These new positions will allow FEMA to be better informed as we carry out our mission of helping people before, during and after disasters.”
The National Advisory Council advises the FEMA administrator on all aspects of emergency management, including preparedness, protection, response, recovery and mitigation for disasters and national emergencies. Council members represent a substantive cross-section of officials, emergency managers and emergency response providers from state, local, tribal and territorial governments, the private sector and nongovernmental organizations. Since its creation in 2006, the council has provided nearly 400 recommendations to FEMA on a variety of key emergency management topics.
Of the 19 members selected, 16 are new appointments. The following 19 members will begin their terms of appointment on December 1, 2022:
- Mr. Michael Antoine, Director of Public Safety & Emergency Preparedness at Louisiana State University, New Orleans.
- Ms. Brenda Bergeron, Deputy Commissioner of Connecticut’s Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection, Farmington, Connecticut.
- Mr. Chad Berginnis, Executive Director of the Association of State Floodplain Managers, Mount Horeb, Wisconsin.
- Mr. Michael Berkowitz, Founding Principal of Resilient Cities Catalyst, Brooklyn, New York.
- Mr. Christopher Blanco, Associate Director of the Budget Resources and Recovery Grants Management Division at the New York City Mayor’s Office of Management and Budget, Brooklyn, New York.
- Mr. Karl Fippinger, Vice President of the Fire and Disaster Mitigation, International Code Council, Manassas, Virginia.
- Mr. Patrick Hernandez, Director of the Office of Incident Command and Control and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, D.C.
- Ms. Lori Hodges, Director for the Office of Emergency Management, Larimer County, Colorado.
- Mr. Justin Kates, Director of Emergency Management & Communications Department, City of Somerville, Massachusetts.
- Dr. Misti Kill, Vice Provost of Academic Affairs for the College of Safety and Emergency Services at Columbia Southern University, Fargo, North Dakota.
- Mr. John King, Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner for the Georgia Office of Commissioner of Insurance and Fire Safety, Roswell, Georgia.
- Dr. Lorie Liebrock, Founding Director for the New Mexico Cybersecurity Center of Excellence, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology, Socorro, New Mexico.
- Mr. Gary Ludwig, Fire Chief for the Champaign Fire Department, Illinois.
- Mr. Andrew Phelps, State Director for the Office of Emergency Management at the Oregon Military Department, Lake Oswego, Oregon.
- Mr. James Redick, Director for Emergency Preparedness and Response, City of Norfolk, Virginia.
- Dr. Carol Salas Pagán, Director for the Puerto Rico University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities, and Coordinator of Developmental Disabilities at the University of Puerto Rico, San Juan, Puerto Rico.
- Ms. Carrie Speranza, Director of Emergency Management Solutions, Esri, Springfield, Virginia.
- Ms. Tafaimamao “Tafa” Tua-Tupuola, State Director for the American Samoa University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities at the American Samoa Community College, Pago Pago, American Samoa.
- Dr. Jiqiu Yuan, Executive Director for the Multi-Hazard Mitigation and Building Seismic Safety Council at the National Institute of Building Sciences, Potomac, Maryland.
On November 30, 2022, the following members will conclude their terms of appointment:
- Chief W. Nim Kidd, Chief, Texas Division of Emergency Management and Vice Chancellor, Texas A&M System, Austin, Texas.
- Ms. Donna Boston, Senior Manager, Business Resilience and Emergency Planning, Southern California Edison, Silverado, California.
- Mr. Paul Brennan, Director, Pre-Hospital EMS and Preparedness Coordinator, Lawrence General Hospital, Lawrence, Massachusetts.
- Mr. Charles Esteves, Administrator, Guam Office of Civil Defense, Agna Heights, Guam.
- Mr. John Grathwol, Deputy Director (Ret.), New York City Mayor’s Office of Management and Budget, New York.
- Ms. Nicolette Louissaint, Senior Vice President, Policy and Strategic Planning Healthcare Distribution Alliance, Arlington, Virginia.
- Mr. Jimmy Patronis, Chief Financial Officer, State of Florida, Tallahassee, Florida.
For additional information on the council, visit FEMA.gov.