Having spent 10 years now working with the emergency management community I can tell you that there just aren’t any finer a group of folks. I love working amongst them – I consider it an honor and privilege.
I just finished teaching a FEMA leadership course today at the Emergency Management Institute in Emmitsburg, Maryland and it reminded me (as these courses often do) that the kinship between emergency management folk is powerful. I believe the kinship is so powerful because those in emergency management understand the commitment and passion that is required to do the job well, and they also realize that it can be at times maddening. Too often emergency managers don’t get enough support, resources, or freedom to do the work they need to get done; as such, they can often end up frustrated. Yet even though they get frustrated they keep moving forward and doing the things that are necessary to keep their communities safe. They do it because they believe in the value of their efforts and they know that even if no one else “gets it” their emergency management colleagues do. I surmise that is the genesis of the kinship.
The mascot for the class that just ended is a little pig (there is a story behind that but it is the secret of the cohort and I am not at liberty to share). You can see him in this handful of class photos with members of the cohort and instructor cadre posted below. It was a fun group and I will hope to see them all both individually and collectively again before too long. Until then, I wish them well.