TALLAHASSEE, FL (October 21, 2011) –
Foremost experts in disaster safety and severe weather will share their latest insights and innovations at the 2011 Annual Meeting of the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes® (FLASH) to be held Oct. 26-28 at Disney’s Boardwalk Inn, Lake Buena Vista, FL.
With the theme, Disaster Safety: One Movement, Many Voices, this year’s event will convene more than 100 of the nation’s leading experts in disaster safety, property loss mitigation and weather outcomes.
In a variety of presentations, panel discussions and demonstrations, meeting attendees will hear and see the latest regarding disaster safety and mitigation and the impact natural and man made disasters have had on the U.S. economy and population at large. Prominent speakers will include academics, builders, educators, emergency managers, engineers, researchers and scientists.
“Bringing together the industry’s most influential and talented minds to share best practices is essential to making America and our world more disaster-resilient,” said Leslie Chapman-Henderson, President and CEO of FLASH.
Among the events on tap:
Thursday, Oct. 27
9–10 am: An up-to-date report on the economic, human and structural impact of natural disasters and severe weather over the past year presented by Craig W. Tillman, president of Weather Predict Consulting Inc.
10-11:15 am: A panel featuring a discussion of the latest and most effective resources available to educate families about disaster preparedness. Scheduled panelists include Mark Benthien, Earthquake Country Alliance (ShakeOut); Jim Cowen, Ogilvy Washington Emergency Risk Communications team (FEMA’s FloodSmart campaign); Claudette Fetterman, FEMA (National Earthquake Hazard Reduction Program); Trenise Lyons, FLASH (Great Hurricane Blowout preparedness campaign); and Monica Phillips, DOE’s Savannah River National Laboratory (wildfire risks).
11:30 am-12:15 pm: Keynote Address by Craig Fugate, Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
12:15-1:45 pm: A Innovations in Product Technologies Showcase featuring the latest in disaster mitigation and safety products for families and businesses, as well as a focused session on tornado safe rooms. Kevin and Sarabeth Harrison, who received international recognition when an AP photo depicted them emerging with their two children from their safe room amid total destruction after a direct hit on their Athen, GA home by a killer tornado last April.
1:45–3 pm: A panel of experts from a variety of industries will describe how they’re tapping the social media phenomenon to successfully communicate with their audiences. Scheduled panelists include Tom Ferries, Vice President of Integrated Solutions, USAA (cross enterprise member solutions; Kevin Smith, Director of Salvation Army’s emergency disaster services (social media); and MaryAnn Tierney, Regional Administrator of U.S. Department of Homeland Security FEMA’s Region III (social media implications and emergency management).
3:30–4:45 pm: A panel featuring a discussion of the latest academic research influencing structural design and mitigation practices. Expected participants include Jay Baker, PhD, Department of Geography, Florida State University (preparing for and responding to hurricane threats); Forrest Masters, PhD, Department of Civil and Coastal Engineering, University of Florida (effects of wind and wind-driven rain on homes); Tim Reinhold, PhD, Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (advances in residential and commercial structural design); and Paul Tertell, FEMA (tornado damage mitigation).
Friday, Oct. 28
9–9:30 am: Keynote speech by Elizabeth Hausler, founder of Build Change, an international non-profit social enterprise that designs earthquake-resistant houses in developing countries and trains builders, homeowners, engineers and government officials to build them.
9:30–10:45 am: This panel discussion will focus on the latest in mitigation policy, legislation and programs from all levels of government. Scheduled panelists include Steven Cooper, National Weather Service (Weather-Ready Nation initiative); Matt Fuchs, Department of Homeland Security (Resilient Star Initiative); and Mark Washko, BASF (legislation analysis).
11:15:11:45 am: Keynote speech by Bill Read of NOAA’s National Hurricane Center. Read will discuss the aftermath of Hurricane Irene, and plans to expand NHC forecasts from five to seven days and provide interactive storm surge risk maps to help people better understand their vulnerabilities during hurricane season
11:45–1:45 pm: Closing remarks by Dr. Rick Knabb, hurricane expert and tropical program manager for The Weather Channel.