2019 National Preparedness Symposium (Day-1)

Early morning start to this Tuesday waiting for clearance from tower.

But before you know it, we are off heading 150 to the 2019 National Preparedness Symposium!

Awwwww yeah, training & exercises and all the FEMA peeps in one place here at the Center for Domestic Preparedness in Alabama!

Started off with a talk from the National Integration Center on the new National Response Framework and Community Lifelines.

Chad walked us through soooooo many programs that Doc talked about previously. Glad to see his work has carried through to inspire a new generation of Emergency Managers.

Continued with spirited discussion from my friends at FEMA EMI on the ongoing efforts for the Emergency Management Professional Program.

Lots of recs on what to take and complete as they could (hint hint) require this for EMPG grant funding employees. Yes that’s right, they can mandate these courses to qualify for grant funds.

So yeah, I’d suggest you get on those courses right away.

Then we hopped deep into a FEMA Region 5 meeting w/ our partners from Ohio, Indiana, Minnesota, Michigan, Wisconsin, and of course Illinois. Overview of exercises “Basically, June is going to be insane.”

Grrrrreat.

Then, it happened. One of the Training & Exercise Managers called me out as “The Legend! We have a picture of you on our wall!”

Me: Blush

Joliet Fire Deputy Fire Chief gave us the biggest shoutout as they said to the entire region “Did you know DuPage trained all the Aurora Police PIOs? Their first day of the job was the day they had that shooting.”

Either way, it was good to report out for DuPage County OHSEM and their significant efforts in training for all provides from across Illinois.

And of course got a chance to see a few familiar faces in the crowd from Rhode Island, Vermont, Texas, California, Washington, Oregon, Nevada, Tennessee, New York, Kentucky, Louisiana, and of course Illinois.

Great to catch up to FEMA Region 8 James Taylor who served as my Disaster Recovery Center Manager during Hurricane Irma for the Florida Keys.

Glad to hear he is doing well.

Proud to see soooooooo many old disaster friends too.

Looking forward to hearing from Acting Administrator Pete Gaynor tomorrow morning as he will surely touch on our strategic mission objectives as well as building out a culture of preparedness.

Follow the hashtag used: #NPS19

Reporting live from the CDP….

@rusnivek

Forming the proverbial PIO Voltron for today’s FEMA JIC/JIS course

And now starting the FEMA JIC/JIS Course with our class here at the Defiance County EMA Emergency Operations Center.

And yes, if you’ve been in a JIC/JIS class w/ me before, you know I talk about Voltron. In the FEMA Basic PIO Course, we teach you to be an individual PIO and function with limited options…however, the JIC/JIS course allows you to join forces with other PIOs and work the magic despite being from different backgrounds and different factions for the emergency or disaster. That’s right-we can all get along in the JIC.

Starting out the day with a cold reality check on expectations and capabilities as we assess our options and ready our agencies for disasters. It would be a good idea to have a clear understanding of the situation and build from there.

Additionally, we bring our all-hazards partners into the fold. Here’s Sister Michael Marie talking about the complexities of what appears as a simple emergency that could quite result in bringing soooooooooooooooooooooo many partners to respond to this typical emergency.

Drawing too simple for you?

You need more description?

NO SOUP FOR YOU!

The whole point of the exercise is to get your mind thinking about various options as well as partners to call early as likely, they have a dog in the fight to help any affected community recover from any disaster.

Look, it’s more than Fire, Police, and EMS – it’s the #WholeCommunity to build a culture of preparedness.

Proud of every single one of these participants as everyone walked away with a new understanding and respect for the PIO. While some have been on TV before w/ a few interviews, all of them realize the dangers of an unprepared interviewee.

Looking forward to working with all of you on the next big one. And just think…in the midst of a disaster, you just might see these two smiling faces.

Now, go forth and use your new PIO powers for good!

@rusnivek

2019 May is cray!

Justin Timberlake better be busy too because this month because it’s about to get redic.

First week in May, our team was invited to teach ICS-300: Intermediate ICS to leadership staff at the Illinois Air National Guard.

Second week, will be the ICS-400 class and the solid bunch of social media classes (Basic Social Media, Social Media Engagement Strategies, Social Media Tools and Techniques).

Third week, we will be popping the FEMA G0290/0291 Basic PIO and JIC/JIS course with one of my favorite FEMA DSASers…Sister Michael!

Fourth week, I will be presenting at the 2019 National Preparedness Symposium at the Center for Domestic Preparedness in Alabama.

And the last week is the full set of FEMA Basic PIO and JIC/JIS Course at Aurora Police.

If you are calculating that out, that’s 128 hours of straight classroom time.

Fortunately, I enhanced the playlist this past weekend.

Headphones in, affirm the mission and objectives, head down…No time for rest.

@rusnivek

Day-1 of the FEMA G775 EOC Management & Operations Course at DuPage County OHSEM

Starting out the official FEMA G775 EOC Management and Operations course today.

And if you didn’t know what EOC was…..

And now you know.

In this class, we are fortunate to talk about our fine partners in public safety represented in 15 different ESFs. As an example, the biggest nerd….I mean guru on radios is everyone’s favorite Comms guy, ladies and gents, put your hands together for John Neeeeeeeeeeeebl!!!!!!

Happy to give the floor to him to share the efforts of the ITECS trailers and the COML function with everyone.

We also discussed a ton on positions and what is done to serve the EOC. We talked a bit on plans and how they drive the train along using the planning P as a guide to the formulation of the IAP.

Now, your EOC is waaaay more than just getting a few computers. 

Yikes. That’s right, you can’t have everything on computer, you need ACTUAL human beings running the show.

Not only a warm body, but also highly trained individual and pros that possess knowledge and experience to make critical decisions to support operations as well as support the ongoing operational periods. So basically we need peeps that know how to work a disaster.

So to help put things into perspective, we showcased our own EOC too.

 

Honestly, we hope that you know our EOC because if we spin up, we want you to know our setup so that we can all function well TOGETHER. Again, the EOC should be used as a coordination center for our all-hazards partners.

Solid first day as we talk about the benefits of the EOC. Glad to have so many partners here in class with us.

Reporting live from the DuPage County OHSEM FEMA EOC Ops class…

@rusnivek

 

FEMA EOC Management and Operations Course tomorrow

Teaching FEMA’s Emergency Operations Center Management & Operations course tomorrow.

Looking forward to sharing some EOC tips w/ Emergency Management pros from across the state of #Illinois.

@rusnivek

JIC/JIS Course here at DuPage County OHSEM

Outstanding day to start the FEMA G0291: JIC/JIS Course here at DuPage County OHSEM.

And a solid Miley way to start the day is a party in the USA!

Awwwwwww yeah.

As always, a fine safety brief from John on class including info on 24/7 PIO support from both of us.

With the upcoming exercises, we wanted to give the participants an opportunity to share their experiences as well as how much training has helped them increase their output and network with others.

In class activities concrete key points so that we can all function well with each other. In the end, we hope that nothing happens…but the reality is that it is only a matter of time before we have to work together.

Train like you fight right?

How is DuPage County OHSEM doing it? We are fostering a workspace for collaboration not only in this area, but statewide. Here’s an example.

As stated before, a rising tide raises all ships.

We will learn/train together and we will enjoy our successes together.

And when a crisis hits or a disaster just happens, it will no doubt be a challenging work environment. But thanks to training and exercises, we as PIOs will be able to function well together and shine.

Reminds me of a quote: “When it rains, we roar.” – PIO Ryan S.

Looking forward to seeing all of you at the next big one….in the JIC!

@rusnivek