Message from the President, Chandra Fox

Before I get to our update, I would like to take just a moment to say “Thank you!” to those of you who attended our 2021 Conference!  Overall evaluations have been good, with many expressing their appreciation for the conference simply being held.  The most highly rated session by far was Mr. Gordon Graham, and the Board is very happy that we were able to bring him up and he certainly didn’t disappoint.  If you have not had the opportunity to hear Mr. Graham speak in person, I would encourage you take advantage of his on-line materials.  We will have the presentations from our other speakers available soon; and I will send link(s) when they are ready to access.  Thank you again for attending.  We have already started work on preparations for 2022.

On to the update…….

  • I am very pleased to announce that Scott McDougall (Pacific County) has volunteered to step up as the Chair of our Legislative Committee!  A huge THANK YOU to Scott for taking this on!  Scott will be providing regular updates on legislative actions, as well as opportunities for members to engage.  One of Scott’s first priorities will be to offer training to WSEMA members on how to more effectively communicate with your electeds at both the local and the State levels.  More to come on that as Scott gets his feet under him.
  • Those of you who attended the General Membership Meeting at the conference (22-Sept) will remember the conversation regarding the Governor’s COVID AAR Task Force.  The Task Force will include 50+ members from the WA State Legislature, State Departments & agencies, local Health jurisdictions, healthcare, other associations and NGOs, Tribal Nations, and specific demographic groups.  Of these 50+ seats, two (2) are designated for Emergency Management – one for the Westside, and one for the Eastside.  The Governor’s Office is in the process of reviewing Task Force applications, and the first meeting is anticipated to be the first week in December.  It is my intention that, regardless of who the selected EM representatives are, WSEMA is committed to actively engaging in and supporting the State’s AAR process.  We want to ensure that even though we have only two seats, every EM will have an avenue to provide their perspective, experience, and input.  We will be heard.  Please let me know if you are interested in assisting with this effort.
  • Finally, for 2022, we will be instituting Quarterly General Membership meetings.  This is important not just for transparency, but for the health of the Association, to support engagement and communication.  The meetings will be March, June, September, and December.  For scheduling, I will do my best to avoid our already established State Committee meetings (E-911, EMC, etc.).  Please let me know if you have strong feelings about days or times to avoid or those that may work well.  i.e. Is afternoon better than morning?  Should we avoid Mondays or Fridays?  Please reply and share your thoughts.  I would like to get those on the calendar as soon as possible, before 2022 starts filling up.

That’s it for now!  As always, call or email with any questions or concerns; and please, send me your preferences for General Membership meeting dates/times.