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Speaker Series - October 2019 - Geospatial Technology Use at the Texas State Emergency Operations Center Part II

  • Tuesday, October 22, 2019
  • 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
  • Webinar (See Below)


Registration is closed

Geospatial Technology Use at the Texas State Emergency Operations Center

Presentation Outline: 

This presentation is targeted to local government GIS professionals that may support damage assessments after a major disaster.  The presentation will provide an overview of the preliminary damage assessment (PDA) process, the recent release of the FEMA ArcGIS Survey123 templates and how to obtain and deploy the app.  The presentation will next cover how the State of Texas utilizes the data for its online dashboards and best practices for local governments to successfully coordinate use of the app during joint federal, state & local PDAs

After each major disaster a damage assessment is conducted to assess the magnitude of the event’s impact to individuals, businesses and public infrastructure and to determine whether the disaster may qualify for a Federal Major Disaster Declaration (under the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act). The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has well defined standard operating procedures for assessing damages and the information required to evaluate requests for a major federal disaster declaration.

FEMA recently released ArcGIS Survey123 templates for conducting preliminary damage assessments for use by state, local and tribal governments. These templates provide a standard GIS tool for accurately capturing the information that FEMA requires for evaluating requests for a major disaster declaration.  Last year the State of Texas utilized the FEMA Survey123 templates for the first time during recovery operations for the June 2018 Severe Weather Event in the Lower Rio Grande Valley.  Since then, FEMA, the state and local Texas jurisdictions have successfully deployed the FEMA Survey123 templates for several more incidents, including the largest to date for Tropical Storm Imelda, which occurred in southeast Texas this past September.

About the Speakers:

Michael Ouimet (pronounced We’ Met) is Unit Chief for Operations Technology for the Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM) Technology Services Section in Austin, Texas.  Michael manages HQ operations technology for TDEM, including GIS technology and crisis information management systems.  Michael has extensive experience and professional interest in the application and use of GIS technology for emergency management operations.
Prior to joining TDEM, Michael served as Texas State GIS Coordinator at the Department of Information Resources. He also previously worked for FEMA as a Geospatial Program Analyst in Washington, D.C. and in another position worked as a GIS consultant in support of the Department of Homeland Security and the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency.  Michael has a Master of Science degree in Community & Regional Planning from the University of Texas at Austin and a Bachelor of Science Degree from Northern Michigan University in Geography & Urban Planning, and is a Certified GIS Professional (GISP).   

Marla Wise is a Grant Coordinator for the Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM) Recovery Operations and Quality Assurance team. In this role, she actively reviews grants in TDEM’s grant management system to verify compliance with state and federal requirements. When an event occurs and Recovery Operations is activated, she tracks and monitors jurisdictional disaster declarations, damage summaries, and requests for damage assessment, and handles scheduling for Preliminary Damage Assessments in affected counties. 
Prior to working at TDEM, Marla worked as a high school librarian, a technical writer, and a web programmer. She has a Masters of Information Science from the University of Texas at Austin and a Bachelor’s degree from Rice University.  

Chris Kundrock is an Emergency Management Specialist with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Recovery Directorate, in Washington, DC. In this role, Chris oversees the Preliminary Damage Assessment program, including the Preliminary Damage Assessment Tool and its’ development. 
Prior to joining FEMA, Chris served as an Emergency Management Specialist for the District of Columbia Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency (DC HSEMA) where he was a member of the 24/7/365 Regional Watch and Warning Center for the National Capital Region. Previous to Chris’s entrance into emergency management, he was a Paramedic and Field Supervisor for the Emergency Medical Services Authority in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Chris has a Master of Arts degree in Emergency and Disaster Management from the American Public University and a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in Criminology. 

Melissa Jurrens is a Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Developer for the Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM) Operations Technology Unit in Austin, Texas.   Melissa is responsible for coordinating the development of custom mobile, desktop, and web-based GIS solutions for all divisions of TDEM: Response, Recovery, Planning, and Mitigation. Melissa began her Emergency Management career at TDEM in August of 2017, just weeks before Hurricane Harvey impacted the Texas coastline.
Before beginning at TDEM, Melissa worked as a Green Building Assistant with Parsons Engineering and as a Comprehensive Planning Intern at the City of Austin. Melissa has completed her graduate course work for a Masters of Applied Geography in GIS at Texas State University in San Marcos, TX, where she also received her Bachelor of Science in Geography with a focus in Urban Planning and Resource Management.

To Join:

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 US: +1 408 638 0968 or +1 646 876 9923 

 or +1 669 900 6833

Webinar ID: 938 623 296

International numbers available:

Participants can connect to the audio conference by calling in via phone, or by using online audio with a headset. Please be sure to change your screen name when you log in so that we can be sure to send you your PDH certificate.

In order to receive a PDH certificate each participant must register for the event. Certificates will not be issued to those who have not.

Presentation Slide Deck:

Presentation Video:

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