Member Update- February 24


MEMBER UPDATE February 24, 2015

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Message from NHMA President Ed Thomas:

1) NIST Workshop

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) hosted the fourth in a series of workshops on Disaster Resilience of Communities on February 18-19, 2015 in San Diego, California.   Both Katie Skakel and Ed Thomas attended representing NHMA. Information about this NIST initiative is available at the following link:

This workshop provided an excellent opportunity for NHMA to stress the need for peer to peer education and networking along the lines of our Disaster Risk Reduction Ambassador & Resilient Neighbors Network programs. NIST is seeking to develop “a first generation framework that will provide a methodology for all communities to improve their resilience to hazard events, maintain their social fabric during and after disruptive events, and increase their economic prosperity.  The Framework is the first step in a long-term, stakeholder-driven process to provide communities with guidance to withstand and more rapidly recover from disruptive events.”

NIST believes that the framework is at about 75% completion and actively is seeking comments.

Volunteers to work with Katie and Ed on developing NHMA comments are most welcome!

NIST has posted an updated draft of the Disaster Resilience Framework for review. NIST indicates that the posted draft “benefits from comments received during previous workshops, public input from a diverse body of stakeholders, and the contributions of the NIST Disaster Resilience Fellows.”

2) HMDR Division approved by APA Board of Directors

On behalf of the Hazard Mitigation and Disaster Recovery Planning Interest Group’s executive committee, I am pleased to inform you that the Group’s petition to form an APA Division was approved by the APA Board on Saturday.  This action by the Board of Directors of the American Planning Association begins a series of steps to organize the new Division.

The creation of this group involved a tremendous amount of work by many folks especially NHMA Board Member Barry Hokanson. Congratulations to all involved!

We will look forward to an even closer working relationship with APA through this new Division of APA.

3.) NHMA is one of the sponsors of:

Western Places/Western Spaces: Building Fair & Resilient Communities
Denver, CO
March 11 – 13, 2015

The Rocky Mountain Land Use Institute’s 24th annual land use conference focuses on the innovative ways cities and towns across the West are building more resilient, equitable, and vital communities. Visit RMLUI online to learn more about the conference, download a program, and to register. Use promo code WEST to take $25 off your registration!

This conference has a special track on Resilience which NHMA helped develop. NHMA Board members including Molly Mowery, Darrin Punchard, and Ed Thomas are all speakers, as are several of our members.

Please consider attending.

4.) New Flood Risk Management Standard

Please SAVE THE DATE: Federal Flood Risk Management Standard Implementing Sessions, multiple dates and times.

This is an incredibly important opportunity to support efforts to support a higher federal standard of care for federal facilities and investments, which I fondly hope will lead to adoption of a higher standard of care by all professionals.

FEMA Listening Sessions on the Federal Flood Risk Management Standard Implementation. These sessions provide the opportunity to listen, ask questions, and provide feedback on how federal agencies implement the Standard.

Other Items of Interest…

Call for Applications – 2015 Mary Fran Myers Scholarship

The Mary Fran Myers Scholarship recognizes outstanding individuals who share Myers’ commitment to disaster research and practice and have the potential to make a lasting contribution to reducing disaster vulnerability.

At least one scholarship recipient each year will receive financial support allowing them to attend the Annual Natural Hazards Research and Applications Workshop. Scholarships can cover part or all of transportation, meals, and Workshop registration costs.

FEMA Insurance Reviews of Applicants Receiving Public Assistance Grant Funds for 2004 and 2005 Florida Hurricanes Were Not Adequate

New Office of the Inspector General report critiques allocation of public assistance grants for Florida hurricanes.

New research PhD studentships 2015

Kingston (London) is now offering 35 prestigious research studentships to students who wish to study for a full-time PhD beginning in 2015-16 (part-time studentships are not available). Funding is at Home/EU level for three years only.

Graduate Student Assistantship

The Department of Geography at the University of Kansas is recruiting a graduate student to work on disaster management starting in the fall of 2015. We offer a competitive salary with health benefits. If interested, please send inquiries to

FEMA Disaster Grant Obligations Process Webinars, multiple dates and times.

A series of ten (10) webinars have been scheduled to provide you with an overview of the system enhancement as well as training on how to use the new interface and draw down project funding.

Hazard and Disaster Mitigation Professional Development Series PART I webinar, February 26, 1:00-3:00PM CST

This webinar will feature a variety of professionals in the emergency preparedness and response community–enriching the educational scope of potential career options for its members.

Connectivity of Streams and Wetlands to Downstream Waters: A Review and Synthesis of the Scientific Evidence.

The purpose of this report is to summarize the current understanding about the connectivity and mechanisms by which streams and wetlands affect the physical, chemical, and biological integrity of downstream waters.

Articles & Editorials…

Argonne researchers to study Chicago emergency evacuation system

$2.9 million FTA grant will lead to better emergency transportation planning and response for cities in U.S

Storm ready: First new storm shelter at Tulsa Public Schools opens for library business

Public school builds storm shelter that doubles as a library

Note to our members:

With your member support and involvement, we look forward to continuing the promotion of natural hazard risk reduction and climate adaptation through a Whole Community approach. Please consider supporting this mission by maintaining your membership (which can be renewed here) or through a tax-deductible donation (which can be done here). If you prefer to donate via check, please download this form.

Note about website changes:

In an effort to better server our membership, some changes have been made to our website. Job post submissions can now be made online using the link at the top of the job post page. Also, NHMA’s work is made possible by the dedication of volunteers. Please visit our volunteer page and consider contributing your time to the cause of natural hazard risk reduction.

Please remember to send any mitigation related announcements, articles, and resources to for inclusion in our updates.