March 2018 comes marching right in!

March is…well marching in!

The first and second weeks will be dominated by serious meetings with government leadership, senior staff, and EM coordinators. And as usual we will likely have a few ad hoc meetings w/ DoD types and partner agencies.

Third week will be the FEMA basic academy in Columbus at the mothership (Ohio EMA). Shout out to Region-5!

Fourth week, for a hot minute, I’ll be presenting at the State of Georgia Conference on crisis communications and social media in emergencies. Region 4 baby!

Strategic month as we plan for upcoming events.


3 Regions in April including my favorite social media course

Spring has sprung and April is here!

First and second week will be packed with planning meetings for upcoming functional and full scale exercises as well as some follow up on upcoming Emergency Management / PIO classes and national conferences. Lots of work for classroom fun stuff. Additionally I’ll finally get a chance to sit down with some SES folks for strategic planning career development. 

Third week will be in Florida (Region-4) teaching my favorite #NDPTC advanced social media course – PER-344 Social Media Tools & Techniques. Whoop whoop!

The Fourth week will be a busy one as we finalize another social media course for FEMA certification at Sacramento County’s EOC in California (Region-9). Then double back to some of my favorite peeps from Georgia (Region-4) for more Emergency Management preparedness courses.

Region-5, Region-9, and Region-4 = Lots of great classes upcoming. 

You know me, I’m just glad to serve constituents who make a difference in their communities every single day.


Sharing your #Family #Emergency #Communications #Plan with First Responders #NatlPrep #PrepareAthon

Happy National Preparedness month! The focus during this second week is on preparing friends and family for different emergencies.


Showcasing the skills of local first responders are incredibly important to adults AND kids. And sharing important information (like a Family Emergency Communications Plan) with first responders is critical.

National Preparedness Month that promotes creating family emergency communications plans.

National Preparedness Month that promotes creating family emergency communications plans.

Often times, we overlook explaining what actually happens during an emergency.


So take the time to explain to your kids that during an emergency, ALL first responders are there to help. And of course, don’t forget to teach your children to dial 9-1-1.


Reminder: When teaching children to call 9-1-1, do not verbally say “Nine-Eleven” as there is not an eleven button on the phone.

Do it today!


“Don’t Wait. Communicate. Make Your Emergency Plan Today.”


August is a 9-5-6 squared kinda month

July was a success – phew! Now on to August.

First and second week, I’ll be in the left coast – Region-9 baby!

Third week will be in Columbus, Ohio (CBus!) for a few Emergency Management classes. A little love for the home state.

Fourth week I’ll head down to Oklahoma to teach with their state health department on some social media in Region-6 baby!

Fifth week, I’ll get a chance to present at the New Mexico Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Conference.


It’s a 9-5-6 squared kinda month.

Just trying to keep up with the pros…


December final classes and special detail for big CLE event

After a decent November, December looks to close out the year with a few classes and one big event planned.

In the first week, I’ll be doing a few local classes in Ohio so Region-5 baby!

Second week, I’ll be headed back to Kentucky for some Emergency Management training! Back in Region-4!

The first part of the third week, I have a few classes in Michigan (back in Region-5 baby!). Last half of the week, I’ve been assigned a special CPD detail for an extraordinary Make-A-Wish Foundation event. With so much bad news lately, I can’t wait for this huge event as it will be very special for all of NE Ohio.

And during the fourth and fifth week of December, I will likely head back to Illinois and HQ to close out class schedules and logistics for the year.


Peeking into 2016, I’m dreading January’s five different region schedule.




October has the big four: 3-9-5-NCAP #SURINDC

As National Preparedness Month closes, my October 2015 schedule is going to be very challenging. And as you know, I have to win. Here’s the plan:

First week: I’ll be in Carlisle, Pennsylvania presenting on Social Media in disasters. Pope out, Sur in! Glad to be back in Region-3.

Second week: I’ll be headed back to the Silicon Valley area presenting on social media specifically for large event planning and monitoring (because it’s all about the L right? Wait, it’s all about the 5-0 right?) I also hope to catch up to one of the VIPs at Intel. Since retiring from Emergency Management, his pro career intrigues me – so I believe some synergies could happen. Additionally, I get a chance to brainstorm with an extremely talented colleague from the NWS Sacramento office. I rant about “building relationships before an emergency” so I assure you that I am practicing what I preach. Love love LOVE me some Region-9!

Third week: I’ll be at Fairfield County (Ohio) Emergency Management Agency popping the G-290: Basic Public Information Officers Course and G-291: Joint Information Center / Joint Information System (JIC/JIS) courses. It will definitely be great to see my friend Director Kochis  and crews again – back in Region-5.

Fourth week: I’ll be presenting at FEMA HQ in Washington DC on social media. Yep, at the big house. OMG. This is a big presentation. Big. REALLY BIG. While at HQ, I am hoping to catch up with Lumpkins, Kamoie, FEMA’s Digital Engagement Team…and since we’re fresh off the heels of National Preparedness month grabbing a cup of coffee with my besties from ReadyGov and PrepareAthon. Love me some HQ preparedness action! Additionally, I am hoping to grab a few meetings with my friends at the Pentagon and NGA too. Special thanks to US Representative Fudge (OH-11) for some extra time with Congress and a stop at the White House. Yep. The White House. Again. #SURINDC NCAP region!


It’s going to be a challenge month all October long.

Get it.


Final FEMA review of the new social media courses #NDPTC

I popped back-to-back-to-back social media classes last week in Sacramento, California.


Participants from all over the west coast attended. Specifically for Thursday and Friday, FEMA reviewed our new curriculum courses. Yep, straight up evaluation. Not going to lie, I was pretty nervous.


Ongoing for course design, I will make a few more additions/changes before courses are sent to the National Training and Exercise Division (NTED) for certification. Hoping for final approval in November 2015. Hope to hear the magical words “Federally published” as my course is listed in the DHS / FEMA Training catalog. Whoa Nellie!


 For the classes? We had great interaction from all participants.


Solid discussions during the breakout sessions included professionals from all Emergency Support Functions (ESFs) as well as experts from the National Weather Service (NWS), Critical Infrastructure, and Volunteer Organizations Active in Disasters (VOADs), etc… Diverse groups make for the best discussions for sure!


As part of our continued efforts in Emergency Management, it is imperative that we address issues from the All-Hazards approach and incorporate the support of our stakeholders in solutions.


With heavy discussion, class participants had a great time engaging with others and using tools/techniques that are specific to the Preparedness, Response, Recovery, and Mitigation Directorates. Obviously, I showcased the importance of a good Public Information Officer (PIO) / Public Affairs Officer (PAO) and how their interaction in the Emergency Operation Center (EOC) or the Joint Information Center/System (JIC/JIS) is imperative to a successful emergency or disaster.

Also, starting to build an online learning library that can be easily accessed from anywhere using the #NDPTC is always good reference. Free. My favorite F-word.


Special mahalos to fellow Instructors Cheryl and MaryJo in the delivery of these courses.


Also the solid smiles from fellow #SMEM Jennifer and Scott was crucial support on this delivery.

Glad to be working with partners like the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), National Domestic Preparedness Consortium (NDPC), and the National Disaster Preparedness Training Center (NDPTC). Truly great to see everyone working collaboratively. Thanks to the Sacramento County Emergency Management for hosting these courses.

Looking forward to the next class at the International Association of Emergency Managers (IAEM) conference in Clark County, Nevada. See you there!