Class comments – Yassssss!

In reviewing my comments from yesterday’s class, I am reminded how much our impact and influence we have as instructors.

This is the reason why we as instructors, educators, and leaders share our experiences.

Without a doubt, there are clear differences between people who read the slides vs instructors who are passionate about improving our field.

It is imperative that we continue to push the envelope as we train and exercise our nation’s public safety professionals. During an emergency or disaster, there is no second chance. The community’s safety is of the utmost importance.

Our dedication to our public safety constituents is neverending and we must strive to be ready for any situation.

This is what we train for…this is what we do.

@rusnivek

JIC/JIS Course at IFD HQ – Day-3!

Day-3 of the Joint Information Center/Joint Information System course here at the Indianapolis Fire Headquarters.

This place is super nice…

…and a bonus welcome by the Chief of the department – Fire Chief Malone!

Outstanding to see that kind of engagement of a large metro fire department stop by to say hi. And of course the IFD PIO BC Rita Reith working the PIO magic too!

Great discussion on when situations get worse…ie disaster declarations and how as situations start to grow, how we as a nation respond to help assist others.

You know we had lots of discussion on JIC/JIS operations and needs.

Also discussed how the executive policy room could affect actions of the field PIOs as well as the JIC – which stresses the need for solid, one voice communications from the Emergency Operations Center.

I know, I know, coordination again huh? But it’s the truth! If we don’t work together, we will likely fail our constituents. We must work together to support our ongoing efforts of safety with all our partners.

Great dialog on mutual aid partnerships. Regardless of the situation, we can all work closely with each other and share ideas.

Me? I am very proud of the work from everyone in the class this week.

Looking forward to working with all of you during the next big one.

Until then, go forth and tweet good stuff!

@rusnivek

Day-2 of the DHS/FEMA G0290 Basic PIO Course!

Day-2 of the DHS/FEMA G0290 Basic PIO Course!

We had time to discuss a myriad of topics including the importance of press releases.

While antiquated, there is some value. I think.

Lots of group work as we continue to move to support our agencies’ goals and mission.

As usual, we were fortunate to have excellent coordination with local and national media for this class.

Good Morning America Elyna Niles-Carnes (@encproducer)

WISHTV-8 Emily Kinzer (@EmilyKinzer8)

RTV6 Paris Lewbel (@PLewbel)

and Indiana State Police PIO Sgt John Perrine (@ISPIndianapolis).

So glad to have this candid media panel to discuss ongoing PIO operations with everyone.

Got a chance to facilitate this panel discussion as we had spirited discussion on “no comment”, realistic expectations, favoritism, “off the record” vs truth. Outstanding discussion from everyone from Ohio, Kentucky, Illinois, Florida, and of course Indiana.

And if you were wondering, no doubt, we did review all in-class interviews.

Solid discussion on tips/tricks to use during oncamera interviews as well as some great techniques to use during a crisis.

Looking forward to tomorrow – final day as we form Voltron and move into JIC/JIS!!

@rusnivek

Day-1 of the FEMA Basic PIO Course in Indianapolis

Day-1 of the FEMA Basic PIO course here in Indianapolis!

Glad to be teaching with FEMA Master PIO Erica Creech…

…and WTFD Capt Mike Pruitt…

…and oh a quick surprise….FEMA Master PIO Rita Reith!

That’s right, for those of you keeping score, this is the first time 3 FEMA Master PIOs have taught the Basic PIO Course. Whoop whooop!

Don’t worry, we did some on camera interviews as well as some fun dialog with out class that hail from Indiana and Kentucky!

We talked about press conferences and the importance and the need for onscene communications not only with the news media, but also the general public. Like the breaking news coming out of Mercy Hospital in Chicago.

Also sharing some stories of breaking news in Cleveland.

Great dynamic and solid discussion from everyone who attended today’s first day of FEMA Basic PIO!

@rusnivek

Tuesday at FEMA Region-5

Spending the day at FEMA Region-5 (Chicago).

If you were wondering, FEMA breaks the nation into 10 different regions.

Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois and Minnesota – the heart of Region-5 is Chicago! So basically I’ve been in Region-5 for several decades now – whoa!

Glad to see a few disaster faces I haven’t seen since Hurricane Irma. Hiya Katie!

Katie was part of our plans section in response to the direct hit Category 4 Hurricane Irma in Florida for Branch 5 Division A.

Happy Tuesday all!

@rusnivek

Day-2 of the 2018 DHS/FEMA Master PIO

Day-2 of the 2018 Master PIO program and today we talk a bit about leading the future of PIOs nationally. Starting the discussion is USFA Tom Olashanski.

Lots to discuss and help shape the pathway for External Affairs. Everyone here contributing to the body of knowledge and discussing the future.

It’s more than just tools, more than protocols, it’s about how we move the ESF15 portion along and guide others to a successful career to supplement our Incident Commander as well as our mission objectives.

Also had some heated debate on current topics including the EAS system for mass notification.

Definitely the State of Alaska playing a heavy weight on current topics.

On to the presentation part!

So many different things to talk about.

A dynamic group and solid discussion all day and all evening long.

A completely dedicated bunch of peeps for sure!

@rusnivek

Day-1 of the final week of 2018 DHS/FEMA Master PIO class

Day-1 of the 2018 DHS/FEMA Master PIO final week!

And yes, don’t have to look closely, I’m wearing a tie.

Stopping by is my good friend Interim Superintendent Steve Heidecker. Also sharing how proud he is of the staff at EMI and how they are augmenting the disaster response for Hurricane Florence.

Steve is an outstanding guy!

We most definitely had some solid PIO discussions at lunch…

And as you can imagine, with our class being from a bunch of states, we are all ready to enhance the PIO position in the Command and General Staff.

Yep, all smiles as we work through some complex problems for each of our respective jurisdictions.

Lots of great relationships as we plow through Monday of our Master PIO class.

More fun stuff this week!

@rusnivek