Day-2 of the State of Ohio #Basic #PIO class #Summit

Day-2 of the State of Ohio Basic Public Information Officers’ Course here in Summit County. And yaaassss, #OnWednesdaysWeWearPink!

Started off the morning talking about interview skills and techniques that are readily used by both PIOs and Reporters/Photojournalists.

Reviewed all oncamera interviews from all the participants in our class.

We want to prepare our new PIOs with the best training so they are capable off hitting the ground running representing their agency positively in a crisis or emergency.

Steve brought in the Team from WKYC (NBC affiliate) Akron Office to be our panel discussion.

Lots of great points including what could make or break a PIO – esp for a close tight knit community like Akron and Summit County. Special thanks to Reporter Amani Abraham and Photojournalist Carl Bachtel on their insight to news media.

PC: Bosso

I was able to get my friend Cleveland Police PIO Sgt Jennifer Ciaccia to give a dual presentation with me on the 2016 Republican National Convention and other Cleveland activities.

As a team, Jen and I are solid, but we recognize that others are needed to establish the efforts of PIOing within their own communities – no matter pre-planned event or emergency.

And yes, we addressed how PIOs need to keep current on social media trends esp on national cool campaigns…like the mannequin challenge.

Again, special thanks to Jen on the support of today’s State of Ohio Basic PIO class.

PC: Bosso

PC: Bosso

Afternoon was dedicated to the PIO TTX. We setup two groups with all participants for the in class mock press conference and they did a solid job. Both groups worked together…

…and formulated talking points….

…organized and strategically thought out a press conferences agenda…

…prepped speakers…

And of course controlled the unruly fictitious media reps from OZRadio, WTF, and the YellowBrickRoadNews. FEMA Phil and USFA Tom would be so proud of us MPIOs to see us working the press conference part of the class.

Another great day for PIO training in the State of Ohio!


2018 Second Quarter #PIO Training at WOIO Channel 19 news #PresidentsDay

Leading off our 2018 2nd quarter Public Information Officer (PIO) Training at WOIO Channel 19/43 (CBS Affiliate).

I’m proud to have so many PIOs from across the State of Ohio and West Virginia discussing current issues and breaking news.

PC: Beth Zietlow-DeJesus

PC: Beth Zietlow-DeJesus

Collaboration and coordination were consistent themes we revisit all the time including Joint Information Center and Joint Information Systems (JIC/JIS). Current news stories like the FL shooting were hot button topics but we also discussed the Boston Bombing, FacebookLive killer, 2016 Republican National Convention, Chardon Shooting, Burke Lakefront plane crash, 3 girls missing for 10+ years, Imperial Ave murders, World Series, and NBA Championships.

PC: Beth Zietlow-DeJesus

PC: Beth Zietlow-DeJesus

But knowing that other PIOs are going through the same issues, we can commiserate and work toward a solution. Yes, of course we did the behind the scenes tours of the studio, desk assignment/reporter bullpen….

…anchor desks, and even popped into a planning meetings for the evening broadcast.

We had so many various disciplines represented.

PC: Beth Zietlow-DeJesus

PC: Beth Zietlow-DeJesus

Great to see all those hard working PIOs ensuring the safety for their communities on Presidents’ Day.

PC: Chris Tanaka

PC: Chris Tanaka

Special thanks to Anchor Chris Tanaka, Acting News Director Brian Sinclair, Mel Watson, Assignment Editor Shelly Steinmetz, and Reporter Jennifer Picciano. Trust me – it’s great to have media partners working with the NEOhio PIOs!

I’m @rusnivek, reporting live from 19 News desk…..


Only one relation #PIOProblems #chyron

Even if you give the TV news crews your title on camera for the chyron….they might get it wrong.

Apparently, my new title only allows me to only have ONE relation.

Well, at least they spelled my name right.



The FEMA #PIO on #PirateRadio! Is that real? #FBF

I was asked if Pirate Radio was real….yeppers!

Pirate Radio based in the Florida Keys-Key West has a strong voice that not only hits audiences throughout the keys, but also into southern Florida too. They stream their shows so that any Pirate can listen in…even when yer a landlubber!

I was a regularly contributor to their morning shows with daily Hurricane Irma disaster updates. We also brought other public safety agencies in with us to showcase the unified efforts of countless government agencies involved and how we are all working together in the response/recovery effort.

Additionally, I was invited to be a regular guest on their Friday morning show to talk about the DHS/FEMA response and recovery efforts for the Florida Keys. Not only talking about the Florida Keys, but also the millions of $$ in financial support approved for the State of Florida.

Remember, AM/FM radio stations are a critical source of information in a disaster. After a disaster, cell service might be down, sat tv might be out, and it is highly likely that your neighborhood may not have power. Post-disaster, plan on AM/FM radio being a solid source of information.

Many mahalos to both gracious Pirate Radio hosts – Jack and Kim!


Reviewing performance evaluations for Hurricane Irma’s response

Spending my Sunday reading through paperwork, demobilization emails, and my performance evaluations from Hurricane Irma’s disaster response.

“Mr. Sur is “a model for the agency.'” – FEMA Division Supervisor Mark Landry (Federal Coordinating Officer cadre).


Just glad to be a part of the FEMA disaster response to help my fellow Americans.


Demobilized from Hurricane Irma, now headed back out again

I just demobilized from Hurricane Irma. Total of 42 days.

One thought as I repack: I have never worked so hard and had to use ALL my learned PIO skills and tricks in just one disaster.

Few hours to make the turnaround in Cleveland.

Now headed to support another DHS mission with the US and Canada.

Evoking the famous quote from Ray Stantz: “Oh, I got to get some sleep, I’m dying.”


Moving another DRC in the Florida Keys

In efforts to best serve the communities that were hardest hit by Hurricane Irma, we (FEMA) moved the Marathon Disaster Recovery Center (DRC) to a new location

As you guessed it, this new DRC has much easier access to the highway.

6805 Overseas Highway in Marathon, Florida

Stop on by to update your records and/or check on your status for disaster assistance.

Reporting live from the new DRC location in Marathon…