In the same week that Fort Bend County was recognized as StormReady by the National Weather Service, County Judge Robert Hebert hosted a Homeland Security Executive Education Seminar presented by the Center for Homeland Defense and Security.
Elected officials, hospital administrators, school administrators, business executives, emergency managers, health officials, and other Fort Bend County community leaders met to discuss issues of communication, continuity of operations, and public safety during emergency situations. The Executive Education Seminar was held at the Gus George Law Enforcement Academy in Richmond.
County Judge Robert Hebert said, “Fort Bend County is a diverse and thriving community; it is imperative that the leaders of our County come together to share ideas and discuss plans to determine the best way for the community to respond during an emergency. Response during Hurricane Rita and Hurricane Ike was excellent; but improvements in preparedness and collaboration can always be made.”
A primary focus of the discussion revolved around the actions that the key leaders would take during a pandemic influenza. Fort Bend County Director of Health and Human Services, Dr. Mary desVignes-Kendrick said, ““From a public health perspective, I think the discussions were very productive and will definitely improve our communication and our outcomes. This cooperation between the public and private sector is a clear example of what can occur when the two work hand-in-hand to achieve outstanding disaster preparedness”.
The Center for Homeland Defense and Security (CHDS) flew in several subject matter experts to help facilitate the discussion much in the same way they have done with communities across the country. The Department of Homeland Security, in coordination with CHDS, developed this Executive Education Program to assist state and local executive leadership to have an open and informed dialogue about homeland security, and to strengthen the capacity to respond to natural disasters and terrorism in a partnership with other localities, states, DHS, FBI and other federal agencies and the private sector.
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