FEMA Basic Academy graduation – first one in Illinois

The time has come to welcome all of our graduates of the FEMA Basic Academy here at DuPage County Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management!

“This is the first FEMA Basic Academy offered here in Illinois and we are proud to bring this Emergency Management foundation education here to DuPage County.” said Academy Instructor Kevin Sur. “The skills learned during this intensive course from November through March builds the framework for all Emergency Managers combining knowledge of all fundamental systems, concepts, and practices of leading actions for future leaders.”

The course started in November 2019 where participants were exposed to all mission areas including a myriad of case studies that highlighted the importance of collaboration and coordination in the response and recovery phase of any disaster or emergency.

In January 2020, participants took a deep dive into the science of disasters as well as planning to better help and understand the threats and dangers to each of their own communities.

To understand our hazards, we must understand legit science so that we can use the right resources to solve the problem.

The last week in March 2020, the class focused on the hot button topic of Homeland Security Exercise Evaluation Program and the Public Information and Warning course. Special thanks to new FEMA MEPP DuPage County OHSEM Sup Corey Mulryan for teaching with me on this one.

Participants debated the use of mass notification systems, social media in targeting specific audiences, and the value of the Public Information Officer (PIO) who’s role is so vital to the success of the agency.

Proud to be a part of the Instructional delivery team to get this first class here at DuPage County OHSEM.

Who’s who in the zoo? Well, we had participants from 6 different states, 3 different FEMA Regions with a diverse crowd from local, county, state, and Federal partners.

OUTSTANDING!!!!!

As we rolled into the graduation, I was able to make some opening remarks and thanking our most esteemed guests in the room.

Glad to hear from the new FEMA Region V Deputy Regional Administrator Kevin Sligh.

Deputy RA Sligh is a graduate of the program and is proud to see this foundational course being used as the marker of success for local Emergency Managers.

We also got a chance to hear from FEMA Region 5 Training & Exercise Manager Jessica Mitchell on the value of training. She is a proud resident of DuPage County.

And finally, to close things out, ladies and gents….put your hands together for Former IEMA Director and former Director of DuPage OHSEM….FEMA Region V Regional Administrator James Joseph!!!!

@rusnivek = #HypeMan

Great to hear his words of wisdom as his start here at DuPage and move on up has been solid.

Oh yeah…..social media. Yeah, I haven’t been posting a ton of stuff. Been concentrating on instruction and delivering the best class stuff.

Buttttttttttttttttttttttttt since I am one of the few FEMA Master PIOs, I figured it was only appropriate that I take a class selfie right?

#engagement #selfie

But seriously, I’m super proud of all the work that everyone contributed in class.

Lots of love for all of them.

More importantly, I know who I can count on during an activation/disaster.

Rusnivek’s 2020 Objective-1: Instructor certified FEMA Basic Academy – completed.

From the bottom of my heart, mahalos to my colleagues for the support throughout the academy.

Reporting live with a huge smile on my face…..

@rusnivek

Day 3 of ICS-300

Starting out Day-3 of the ICS-300 class on Aloha Friday.

You can see my Aloha shirt peeking out on this cold 34 degree day in Alabama.

Glad to share the work of what our public safety forces do prior to a disaster declaration. In fact, lots needs to get done before a Federal Declaration. We talk about how locals need to work seamlessly with state agencies.

Then we talk about the importance of how states work with our regional partners.

Tailoring the convo to our FEMA employees attending helps them understand the seriousness of our work as incidents get bigger and inevitably into a type-1 disaster.

Making sure you specifically address your audience is critical at being a good instructor.

Tho, I don’t know who is Kevin Kur. Dang it. 😆

So for those that believe ICS classes are boring, I would contend that you don’t have the right instructor(s). Case in point, who gets cheers and applause at the end of an ICS-300?

Yep. Hello, I’m @rusnivek.

And of course the R9 PIO said we had to do a class Usie so…..

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Say Happy Aloha Friday!!!!! PC: BRT

Reporting live from the Center for Domestic Preparedness….

@rusnivek

Final day teaching ICS-300 at FEMA Region V

Final Day of ICS-300 as we roll along with resource management, prioritization, demobilization….

….and of course the new recovery support functions. All aimed to help communities recover from any disaster.

We are all working hard to enhance the preparedness level of many of our critical staff – building a culture of preparedness.

Reporting in from FEMA Region V…

@rusnivek

Day-2 of FEMA ICS-300 here at FEMA Region V in Chicago

More fun as we continue through day-2 of ICS-300 at FEMA Region V.

Today’s convo will be dominated by the Planning P and how integral the cycle is to our operational rhythm in the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) or the Joint Field Office (JFO).

Also a great time to talk about resources and the need for more as we progress along in the disaster. As you know, ordering stuff (single point vs multi point) isn’t easy, accounting for the resource, tasking the resource, and justifying the resource is harder than it looks due to the restrictions that inbound resources have. As always, great discussion today from all participants!

Throwing the shaka cause I know tomorrow is AlohaFriday!

Reporting live from FEMA Region V!

@rusnivek

FEMA + Region V + ICS-300 = Meeee!

Good morning FEMA Region V!

Time to get my ICS-300 on because I am teaching ICS-300 with one of my Plans Section Chiefs Mark Ballard!

This one is an all Federal class here as we serve our DHS partners and various other organizations in learning about the Incident Command.

You know what day it is. On Wednesdays, we wear pink.

Reporting live from the FEMA RV RRCC…

@rusnivek

IPEM? Yep!

When I was deployed this summer with FEMA for the disaster response in Nebraska, I totally missed the State of Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) awarding me my official Illinois Professional Emergency Manager certification/designation.

Whohooooooooo – IPEM!

Special thanks to DHS/FEMA, the Illinois Emergency Management Agency, and the DuPage County Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management for their support in this process.

Reporting live from Illinois…

@MEPIrusnivek 😆

Today at 1017 #ShakeOut

Today is International ShakeOut day where at 10:17am (your time zone) we should all practice earthquake safety!

Soooooo, in case you need some ideas on what to do, here is my plan.

Seems like FEMA Region-8 approves!

Shout out to the FEMA Region-8 peeps who ran the Twitter #ShakeOutChat yesterday. Lots of great ideas on preparedness as well as what to do during an earthquake.

So no matter who or where you are…

Take a moment and assess your options BEFORE an earthquake strikes.

For more information on earthquake preparedness tips, check out Ready.Gov earthquake‘s page!

@rusnivek