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2019 Iowa Homeland Security Conference logo

2019 Iowa Homeland Security Conference

This year's Iowa Homeland Security Conference will be Oct. 30-Nov. 1, 2019 (Wed.-Fri.), at the FFA Enrichment Center on the Ankeny DMACC Campus. Click here to see a campus map.

 

Our conference is designed to incorporate speakers sharing the experiences and lessons learned from real world events along with a variety of other relevant topics. This year, as we developed our conference agenda, our goal was to incorporate topics related to Emergency Support Functions (ESFs) being updated by local emergency management coordinators in support of the state Planning, Training and Exercise Strategy (PTE Strategy). The focus for ESF updates this year include: ESF 1-Transportation; ESF 3-Public Works; ESF 7-Logistics and ESF 12-Energy.

 

Register to attend the 2019 Iowa HSEMD Conference here:

REGISTER


Click here to access the Credit Card Payment Form (PDF)
. You can save this document to your computer before printing and sending it (except in Google Chrome). PLEASE NOTE: new fax number is
515-323-4207.


Register to be a vendor here:

VENDORS

 

FFA Enrichment Building

 

Book your hotel: Click here for more information

 

The following hotels have a limited number of rooms set aside for conference attendees. The deadline to receive the identified hotel rate is October 4, 2019.

AmericInn logo


AmericInn
(Price TBD)

1610 SE Oralabor Road, Ankeny

Block name: Homeland Security Conference

To reserve: Call 515.964.2004

Comfort Inn logo


Comfort Inn
($89.99/night + tax)

2602 SE Creekview Drive, Ankeny

Block name: Homeland Security Conference

To reserve: Call 515.963.1100

Country Inn and Suites logo

Country Inn & Suites ($104/night + tax)

2510 SE Tones Drive, Ankeny

Block name: Homeland Security Conference

To reserve: Call 515.965.2646

 

Fairfield Inn and Suites logo

Fairfield Inn & Suites ($108/night + tax)

215 NE Delaware Avenue, Ankeny

Block name: Iowa Homeland Security Conference

To reserve: Call 515.965.8400

Hampton Inn and Suites logo

Hampton Inn & Suites ($97/night, state government rate + tax)

6210 SE Convenience Boulevard, Ankeny

Block name: Homeland Security Conference

To reserve: Call 515.261.4400 or Book Online

Holiday Inn Express logo

Holiday Inn Express & Suites ($108/night + tax)
2402 SE Tones Drive, Ankeny

Block name: Homeland Security Conference

To reserve: Call 515.965.2400

Homewood Suites Logo


Homewood Suites
($108/night + tax)
2455 SE Creekview Dr, Ankeny
Block name: Homeland Security Conference
To reserve: Call 515.963.0006

Quality Inn logo


Quality Inn & Suites
($65/night + tax)
201 SE Delaware Avenue, Ankeny

Block name: Homeland Security Conference

To reserve: Call 515.964.8202

Ramada logo

Ramada ($85/night + tax)

133 SE Delaware Avenue, Ankeny

Block name: Homeland Security Conference

To reserve: Call 515.964.1717

 

 

Agenda

This agenda is tentative and subject to change.

(Last edited: September 19, 2019)

Day 1 - Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2019

8:00 am-12:00 pm

Vendors Move In

 

Vendor Hall

8:00 am-12:00 pm

IEMA Business Meeting

 

Breakout Room

1:00-1:30 pm

Welcome from Governor Reynolds,
Opening Comments

 

Kim Reynolds, Joyce Flinn, & John Benson

1:30-2:30 pm

Surviving the Storm and Coming Back Vermeer Strong

 

Steve Flann, Liz Sporrer, Jeff Anderson

3:00-5:00 pm

Surviving the Route 91 Harvest Festival Shooting - Las Vegas Combined Communication Center

 

Joshua Fonseca, Anthony Bruno, & Melanie Straeter

5:00 pm

End of Day 1

 

Day 2 - Thursday, Oct. 31, 2019

8:00-9:15 am

Railroad Emergency Response and Hazardous Materials Awareness

 

Derek Lampkin

8:00-9:15 am

Lessons and Best Practices: 104 Day River Flood

 

Dave Donnovan, Nicole Gleason

8:00-9:15 am

Time to Exercise the Emergency Support Function

 

Steve O'Neil

8:00-9:15 am

The Logistics Involved in Safeguarding the Internationally Acclaimed Iowa State Fair

 

Doug Mollenhauer

9:45-11:00 am

Livestock Truck Rollovers: Preparing for the Safety Issue

 

Bonnie Castillo, Mike Telford

9:45-11:00 am

Public "Works"

 

Scott Mitchell

9:45-11:00 am

Logistics for Community Resources

 

Jeremy Sroka, Zac Ellison, & Brian Payne

9:45-11:00 am

State and Local Nuclear Power Plant Decommissioning

 

Stuart Jordan, Dean Curtland

11:15 am-1:15 pm

Lone Offender Terrorist Actors

Lunch Speaker

Molly Amman

1:30-2:45 pm

Passenger Train Emergency Response

 

Gary Miller

1:30-2:45 pm

Small Communities-Big Disasters: Navigating the Recovery Process

 

Tricia Sandahl, Michelle Sponheimer

1:30-2:45 pm

Community Preparedness for Foreign Animal Diseases

 

Andrew Hennenfent

1:30-2:45 pm

Public Safety Impacts: Coordinating Power & Comms

 

Rodney Cooper

3:15-4:30 pm

Doon, IA Train Derailment/Crude Oil Spill

 

Arden Kopischke

3:15-4:30 pm

Flooded in a Flash-A Disaster Decades in the Making

 

Jonathan Gano

3:15-4:30 pm

Using Technology to Your Advantage

 

AJ Seely

3:15-4:30 pm

Improving Iowa's Energy Resiliency

 

Shelly Peterson

4:30 pm

End of Day 2

 

Day 3 - Friday, Nov. 1, 2019

8:00-10:00 am

Anticipating the Unthinkable

 

Carly Posey

10:30 am-12:30 pm

Victim Assistance in Mass Casualty Events

 

Karen Gale

12:30 pm

End of Day 3

 

Back to top

 

Presenters

 

Each year, Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management strives to find knowledgeable speakers to provide conference attendees with interesting and relevant information from a variety of homeland security, emergency management, and response fields.

 

As in past years, this year's conference presenters come from all over Iowa and the United States.

 

2019 Iowa Homeland Security Conference Presenters

 

Molly Amman

Molly Amman

Supervisory Special Agent (SSA)
Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)

Supervisory Special Agent (SSA) Molly Amman manages two FBI offices in Iowa, the United States, with oversight over criminal and national security programs. Prior to this assignment, SSA Amman served in the FBI's Behavioral Analysis Unit from 2010 until 2018, focusing largely on threats of violence posed by individuals and groups, threats related to school and workplace attacks, protracted crisis operations, and stalking and communicated threats. SSA Amman served as the BAU's program manager for threat assessment from 2012 until transitioning to domestic terrorism matters.

 

SSA Amman has co-authored several publications including the 2017 monograph on targeted violence, Making Prevention a Reality: Identifying, Assessing and Managing the Threat of Targeted Violence. Prior to joining the BAU, SSA Amman was on faculty at the FBI Academy at Quantico, Virginia. SSA Amman has also been assigned to the Albuquerque, New Mexico, and the Counterterrorism divisions of the FBI, and has completed numerous overseas deployments. SSA Amman graduated from the University of Iowa with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History, followed by a Juris Doctorate from Drake University. After practicing law as a prosecutor, SSA Amman joined the FBI in 1998.

Jeff Anderson

Jeff Anderson

Marion County Emergency Management Coordinator

The Marion County Emergency Management Commission appointed Jeff Anderson to serve as the Emergency Management Director in May of 2008. In July of 2015, Anderson was also appointed as the 911 Coordinator by the Marion County 911 Service Board. He began his service in public safety in 1987 as a volunteer firefighter and has served in many capacities including Chief, Assistant Chief and Captain during his career.

 

While serving as the Director, he has overseen the response and recovery of incidents that have resulted in 6 Presidential Disaster Declarations. He has certified as an Iowa Certified Emergency Manager in 2011 and a Hazardous Materials Technician in 2014. Anderson is currently serving as the 1st Vice President of the Iowa Emergency Management Association.

 

Jeff and his wife Sara, have 4 children and enjoy golfing, fishing along with college football and professional baseball.

Anthony Bruno

Anthony Bruno

Communications Specialist
Las Vegas Combined Communication Center

Anthony Bruno is a Communications Specialist with 14 years of dispatching experience. He began his career in 2005 working for American Medical Response right out of high school.  He then became a law enforcement dispatcher with the City Marshals for 5 years before landing with Combined Communications in 2013. Anthony is a Certified Training Officer, a member of the CAD/Technical Committee, and a member of Las Vegas Fire and Rescue's Peer Support Team. He has also received several awards for service, including: LVFR Employee of the Month (2016), City of Las Vegas Employee of the Year (2017), and Meritorious Conduct Award (2018).

Bonnie Castillo

Bonnie Castillo

Manager
Iowa Dept of Transportation Traffic Management Center

Bonnie Castillo manages the Iowa Department of Transportation's Traffic Management Center. The Traffic Management Center (TMC) is responsible for monitoring and responding to all disruptions to the traveling public on the transportation system. The TMC works closely with internal DOT staff and external partners, and uses advanced technology to monitor and respond to these disruptions. Bonnie also has extensive experience in the Response and Recovery aspects of major disasters, and worked several flooding events, starting in 2007 until 2014.

Rodney Cooper

Rodney Cooper

Director
Federal Emergency Response, Sprint Corporation

Rodney has been with Sprint since 2001, where he began his communications career serving the Public Safety community across western Virginia. Rodney's experience in emergency response began April 16, 2007 where he led Sprint's Emergency Response Team's mission in support of local, state, and federal first response and law enforcement agencies responding to the Virginia Tech active shooter incident.

 

Today, Rodney is the east region Director for Sprint's Emergency Response Team where he serves as strategic planner, business development manager, primary liaison, and operational command across 32 States, District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, with national level responsibility for all Federal agencies. In his capacity, he focuses on the strategic development and deployment of Public Safety communications technologies such as satellite communications, deployable broadband systems, interoperability, and semi-autonomous aerial and ground based systems. When not working on corporate strategy, Rodney spends time in the field working behind the scenes with both government and commercial entities in the development of communications continuity plans and all-hazards emergency response frameworks.

 

Mr. Cooper also serves as liaison to Sprint's Enterprise Incident Management Team where he consults on the design and implementation of best practices, policies, and procedures necessary to enable continuity of Sprint's services and operations, community assistance, and rapid response capabilities. Rodney directs strategies that influence how Sprint supports the whole ecosystem of Disaster Planning, Mitigation, Response, and Recovery including Government Relations, Corporate Alliances, Cross-Sector Partnerships, and Non-Profit Relationships. Rodney is a strong advocate for public-private partnerships. He is a member of and continues to participate in advisory and chair positions including CUSEC, NISC, EIS Council, NY-NJ-CT-PA RCPT, NPSTC, various other state and federal level private sector integration efforts and continues to seek other opportunities to engage in areas of partnership with both government and industry sectors.

 

During his career at Sprint, Mr. Cooper has led Sprint’s ERT response in multiple planned and unplanned events such as Hurricanes Michael, Florence, Maria, Irma, & Sandy, Gatlinburg Tennessee Fires, and numerous tornado events. Rodney has also led Sprint's support role in other events including law-enforcement actions such as the Wythe/Pulaski County Manhunt, and a number of National Special Security events such as the Republican and Democratic National Conventions, 2013/2017 Presidential Inaugurations, and NATO Conference as well as a number of National Level and State Level Exercises such as Shaken Fury, NLE 2014, CUSEC Capstone New Madrid Exercise, and numerous Vigilant Guard and other exercises.

Dean Curtland

Dean Curtland

Site Director
Duane Arnold Energy Center

Dean Curtland is the Site Director of the Duane Arnold Energy Center. Mr. Curtland is responsible for the governance and oversight of all functions at the station. Prior to his most recent assignment, Mr. Curtland was the Vice President of Fleet Engineering for the NextEra Energy fleet in Juno Beach, Florida. Previous positions included Site Vice President at the Seabrook Station, General Manager, Fleet Engineering and a number of roles at the Duane Arnold Energy Center including Plant General Manager, Engineering Director, Training Director and Operations Director. He began his career at Duane Arnold as a shift technical advisor.

 

Curtland received a Bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering from Purdue University in 1983. He earned his NRC Senior Operator License at Duane Arnold in 1988, and in 1999 attended the Institute of Nuclear Power Operations' Senior Nuclear Plant Management Course.

Dave Donovan

Dave Donovan

Scott County Emergency Management Coordinator
Scott County Emergency Communication Center

Dave Donovan is the Director of Scott County Emergency Management Agency and the Scott Emergency Communication Center. Prior this position, Dave has also been the Emergency Management Coordinator and the Director of Facility and Support Services, during a 30 year career with Scott County in Iowa.

 

Dave graduated from Davenport West High School, Scott Community College (Computer Science) and Western Illinois University (Board of Trustees with Emphasis in Public Policy). In addition, he has earned a Graduate Certificate from Michigan State University in Facility Management and a Graduate Certificate in Public Management from Drake University.

 

Dave is married with two adult children, Ben, who is attending graduate school at Penn State University, and Alexandra who is a physician assistant in the Iowa City area. Dave and his wife, Mary, live in Le Claire. Dave and Mary enjoy traveling and playing golf.

Zachary Ellison

Zachary Ellison

Preparedness Bureau Chief
Iowa Homeland Security & Emergency Management

Zachary Ellison joined Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management in 2010, where he served as a Disaster Project Specialist within the Recovery Division. While working in the Recovery Division, he worked with both the Public Assistance and Hazard Mitigation grant programs. In June 2015 he was promoted to Strategic Planner within the Response Division. As the Strategic Planner, he was in charge of the State Strategy, the Threat and Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment Report (THIRA) as well as the Stakeholder Preparedness Review (SPR). Mr. Ellison has also served as an Operations Officer within the State Emergency Operations Center, as well as the 24/7 on-call Duty Officer.


In June 2019 he became the Preparedness Bureau Chief, overseeing many different preparedness activities the Department manages such as: Disaster Response Planning, Critical Infrastructure Planning, Radiological Emergency Preparedness Planning, Strategic Planning and Volunteer/Donations Management.


Mr. Ellison is a 2009 graduate of Iowa State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Community and Regional Planning.

Steve Flann

Steve G. Flann

Senior Director, Environmental, Health, Safety & Security Vermeer Corporation

Steve Flann is the Senior Director, Environmental, Health, Safety and Security for Vermeer Corporation. He is responsible for developing, managing and implementing the Vermeer Global EHS&S strategic plan.

 

Prior to joining Vermeer Corporation, Steve had 20+ years of EHS experience in the chemical, aerospace, appliance and defense industries. He is a retired officer with the US Army and has spent a significant amount of his career identifying and evaluating risk and implementing control measures for radioactive subassemblies of weapon systems in maintenance, repair and overhaul operations.

 

Steve holds a Master of Science in Industrial Technology emphasizing Occupational Safety from Iowa State University and is a Certified Safety Professional.

Las Vegas CCC Logo

Joshua Fonseca

Communications Specialist
Las Vegas Combined Communication Center

Joshua Fonseca is a Communications Specialist with 7 years of dispatching experience. He started his dispatch career in 2011 for the Torrance County Dispatch center in New Mexico where he dispatched for Police, Fire, and EMS. He was on the volunteer fire department and also trained as an EMT-B. He Graduated from the New Mexico State Law Enforcement Academy in 2012 and then returned to become a state certified law enforcement trainer a year later. Josh moved to Las Vegas in 2015 and was hired on with the CCC that year. Since working the October 1st shooting, he has made it his mission to share his experience so that others understand that we are all in this together.

Karen Gale

Karen P. Gale

Victim Specialist
Federal Bureau of Investigation

Karen entered on duty with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, September of 2005, in the Omaha Division, Des Moines Resident Agency.


Karen holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications from Pacific Lutheran University and a Master of Arts degree in Human Relations from the University of Oklahoma.


Karen's area of responsibility includes FBI Resident Agencies in Des Moines, Waterloo, Cedar Rapids and the Quad Cities in Iowa. She provides comprehensive victim services to identified victims of federal crimes, including, white collar crime, bank robbery, fraud, human trafficking, on-line sexual exploitation and crimes against children.


Karen provides training, statewide, on a variety of topics, to include On-line Sexual Exploitation, Human Trafficking and Internet Safety. Karen has provided training and informational presentations to thousands of individuals, schools, businesses and groups throughout Iowa.

 

Karen was a member of the FBI Victim Services Rapid Deployment Team (VS-RDT) from 2012-2018 and responded to mass casualty events, to include: Sandy Hook School; Inland Regional Center, San Bernardino, California; Pulse Nightclub, Florida and the First Baptist Church shootings in Sutherland Springs, Texas. Karen also works with the Iowa victims in the Las Vegas Harvest Festival shooting.


Before joining the FBI, Karen was part of the Army's Family Assistance Program and built the first Victim Advocacy Program, and served as Coordinator, for Fort Richardson Army Post, Alaska.


She has received the FBI Director's Award for "Distinguished Service for Assisting Victims of Crime" for both the Sandy Hook and San Bernardino mass casualty events and was awarded the 2018 Crime Victim Rights Week, Award of Excellence in Victim Services 2018, by the US Attorneys' Offices in Iowa.


Karen has over 20 years' experience in victim advocacy.

Jonathan Gano

Jonathan Gano

Director of Public Works
City of Des Moines

Jonathan Gano is the Director of Public Works for the City of Des Moines, a position he's held since early 2015. He is responsible for the city's wastewater utility, stormwater utility, flood control, street maintenance, snow removal, tree care, and residential trash and recycling.

 

Before arriving in Iowa, Gano served in a variety of roles in the Public Works Department of the City of Springfield in Missouri with service over a 10 year period that culminated as the Assistant Director, responsible for infrastructure maintenance and operations.

 

Prior to working in public works, Gano served as an engineer officer in the United States Army for eight years, where his duties took him to a variety of different states and countries. Gano holds a master of science degree in engineering management from the University of Missouri at Rolla and a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering from the United States Military Academy. He is a professional engineer registered in the state of Missouri since 2001.

Nicole Gleason

Nicole Gleason

Assistant City Administrator & Director of Public Works
City of Davenport

As the City of Davenport's Assistant City Administrator and Director of Public Works, Nicole Gleason manages the complex programs and services of public works' 15 divisions and over 350 employees, including the City's Flood Plan. Prior to her current position, Nicole held the position of Logistics Manager and Assistant Public Works Director for the City of Davenport from 2014-2016.

 

Before coming to the City, she held multiple positions in the supply management field at John Deere and DENSO Manufacturing.  Nicole holds an MBA from the University of Iowa and a degree in Supply Management from Western Michigan University.

 

Since joining the City, Nicole has used her leadership skills and background in operations and supply management to initiate operational changes focused on improving accountability, and overall efficiency of service delivery through data-supported analysis. The most critical change included launching a new public works asset management system.

Andrew Hennenfent

Dr. Andrew Hennenfent

Emergency Management Coordinator for Animal Health
Iowa Department of Land Stewardship (IDALS)

Dr. Hennenfent grew up on a crop and livestock farm in Warren County, IL and has had a lifelong interest in animal and community health. He most recently served as the State Public Health Veterinarian for the District of Columbia. In this role he was responsible for supervising zoonotic disease investigation and response. He had previously worked as a Veterinarian in Orland Hills, IL.


Dr. Hennenfent graduated from the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine and earned a Master of Public Health in Epidemiology and Biostatistics from the University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health.

Stuart Jordan

Stuart Jordan

Health Physicist, Bureau of Radiological Health
Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH)

Stuart Jordan is a health physicist for the Bureau of Radiological Health at the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH). He is responsible for licensing and inspection for radioactive materials and industrial x-ray machines in Iowa. He is also part of the IDPH response team for providing independent dose projections and technical advice during a radiological emergency in Iowa. Stuart earned his BS degree in radiation sciences from the University of Iowa.

Arden Kopishcke

Arden Kopischke

Lyon County Emergency Management Coordinator

Arden Kopischke has been involved in the emergency services for over 35 years as a volunteer firefighter and EMT with the Little Rock Fire Department and serving as Fire Chief for 12 of those years. In addition, he has been a fire instructor for the Fire Service Training Bureau and Northwest Community College for 18 years. In 2014, Arden began serving as full time Emergency Management Coordinator and 911 Director for Lyon County. He is also currently serving on the four county Fire Advisory Board and EMS Advisory Board.


Prior to his position as Lyon County EM, Arden was a building contractor for 32 years. He resides in Little Rock, Iowa and enjoys spending time with his wife of 39 years, three daughters, and four grandchildren.

Derek Lampkin

Derek Lampkin

Manager Hazardous Materials, Field Operations,
and Emergency Response
BNSF Railway

Derek Lampkin is a Hazardous Materials Field Manager for the BNSF Railway, based out of Kansas City, KS. Some of Derek's roles at the BNSF Railway include managing hazardous material incidents involving rail transportation, emergency responder training, community outreach, and various other emergency preparedness responsibilities. Throughout the years Derek has held positions as a private hazardous materials contractor, emergency responder, and Environmental, Health, and Safety Manager for various companies. Derek earned his bachelor’s degree in Safety Management and a minor in Fire Science from the University of Central Missouri.

Gary Miller

Gary Miller

Regional Emergency Manager
Amtrak

Gary Miller is an Amtrak Regional Emergency Manager. Mr. Miller is one of Amtrak's 7 Regional Emergency Managers. He is responsible for all aspects of Amtrak’s emergency response and preparedness for a 17 State Region to include Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Oklahoma, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota, Texas, Wisconsin and Wyoming. He has over 20 years in railroad operations with over 6 years in his current position; prior to coming to Amtrak. Mr. Miller had worked for Union Pacific Railroad as a Dispatcher and Manager.

 

Miller is also a retired Colonel of the US Army where he has over 32 years with experience as the State of Illinois’ Emergency Preparedness Liaison Officer for the Department of Defense and has experience in Military Support/Defense Support to Civil Authorities as a member of the Illinois National Guard and the Army Reserve.

Scott Mitchell

Scott Mitchell

Mayor
City of Hornick

Mr. Mitchell comes from a family of nine, born and raised on the family farm five miles east of Hornick. He graduated from Westwood School District in 1990 then started working odd jobs in packing houses, grain elevators, soybean plants and ethanol plants. He currently works for the Iowa Department of Transportation as a Senior Highway Technician in Sioux City.


Scott became a member of the Hornick City Council in January of 2010, then Mayor in 2015. On March 13, 2019 the City of Hornick was put to the test with major flooding. With the help of the city council, city clerk, water and sewer superintendent, fire department, the county and state agencies, and my family everything worked out for the best.

Doug Mollenhauer

Doug Mollenhauer

Director of Public Safety

Iowa State Fair

Doug is the Director of Public Safety for the Iowa State Fair. He oversees the newly formed Iowa State Fair Police Department along with Livestock Control, Grandstand Security, Fire/EMS, Gate Security, and the Transit Hub.

 

Doug has a BA degree in Criminal Justice Management through Simpson College, and has also graduated from Northwestern University Staff and Command School and Drake University Certified Public Managers School.

 

Previously, he retired from the Iowa State Patrol as an Area Commander in 2014 after a 32 year career. He served in several capacities such as the Tactical Unit Commander for all State Tactical Units in Iowa, Commander of the Governor's Executive Protection Unit, Director of Homeland Security, Bureau Chief of Planning and Training with the Department of Public Safety, as well as Assistant Camp Commander, Lead Drill Instructor, and Course Instructor at several of the DPS Academies.

 

Doug is also a former United States Marine Corps veteran, serving with 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment as an infantry squad leader deployed with the 6th Fleet during the Tehran, Iran Hostage Crisis and also served as a Presidential Guard at Camp David, Maryland during the Camp David Summit Peace Accords.

Steve O'Neil

Steve O'Neil

Cerro Gordo County Emergency Management Coordinator

My wife, Susan, and I have been married and living in Manly for 32 years. We have two children, Patrick, deceased, and Hannah, age 28. A few years ago I received my certificate in Theology and Congregational Leadership from Wartburg Seminary. I have served on our church and synod councils for many years. I also teach our adult classes and serve as a lay minister in our synod. I started my EMA career in 1995 in Worth County and have been serving Cerro Gordo County since 2001. My wife and I are avid bird watchers, and I enjoy collecting books on naval history and space exploration.

Brian Payne

Brian Payne

Deputy Director
Scott County Emergency Management Agency

As the Scott County Deputy Director of the Emergency Management Agency, Brian oversees and directs day to day operations and planning. Prior to this position he was the Supervisor of Ambulance Operations overseeing operations and leadership of 100+ employees covering 5 counties in 2 states. His duties also included planning and execution of expansion projects, disaster preparedness, and financial and contract management.

 

Additional projects include development of MABAS 39 EMS Task Force and integrating operational communications as "One Operation." His 16 years as an EMS professional include deployments for local and national disasters. Brian is an accredited Illinois Professional Emergency Manager (IPEM).

Shelly Peterson

Shelly Peterson

Energy Team Program Manager
Iowa Economic Development Authority

Shelly Peterson has worked with the State Energy Office, housed at the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA), since 2010. Her role includes management of energy efficiency, renewable energy and energy research projects funded by state and federal programs. She participates in inter-agency energy assurance, energy resiliency and energy code planning and implementation projects and acts as IEDA's technical lead on efforts to advance bioenergy and Combined Heat and Power. She also serves as contract manager for planning partners carrying out the $97M HUD award to the state of Iowa for The Iowa Watershed Approach for Urban and Rural Resilience - a resilience project designed to improve unmet needs from past disasters while addressing the vulnerabilities potentially impacted during future disasters. 

 

Shelly has a MS in Environmental Engineering from Cornell University (Ithaca, NY) and a BS in Civil Engineering from Iowa State University (Ames, IA).  

Carly Posey

Carly Posey

Mission Director
The "I Love U Guys" Foundation

Carly Posey is a national speaker and advocate for school safety. Two of her four children were inside Sandy Hook Elementary School when an armed man entered the building on December 14, 2012. The shooter made his way to her son's first grade classroom, killing his teacher and a classmate. When he stopped to re-load, her son escaped, running to a nearby fire station. Her daughter, who remained hidden inside an art room office, also survived, but the lessons learned were significant. Carly's other two children were at the intermediate school in Newtown where they were in lockdown the entire school day. The lack of preparedness within the community to respond and recover to such an incident left a lasting impression.


Today, as Mission Director for the "I Love U Guys" Foundation, Carly travels the country sharing her story to promote school safety and preparedness. Her experiences as a parent and a community member provide a compelling, often heartbreaking, case study for the need to prepare for the unthinkable. Carly has previously served as the Executive Director for the Safe2Tell Nonprofit and as Program Director for Anderson Software. She now lives in Colorado with her husband, Dave, and their four children.

Tricia Sandahl

Tricia Sandahl

Planning and Zoning Manager
City of Mason City

Tricia Sandahl is the Planning and Zoning Manager for the City Mason City, Iowa where she is the first point of contact for new development in the community and serves as the city's Flood Plain Administrator.

 

After historic flooding in 2008, Sandahl was responsible for managing the City's acquisition of 175 flood-prone properties acquired and demolished with FEMA Hazard Mitigation Grant Program funds, FEMA Public Assistances funds, and HUD Community Development Block Grant funds. She also coordinated the relocation of five buyout houses, including the historic Egloff House, as part of the historic mitigation treatments arising out of the buyout. 

 

Sandahl also provides technical support for the Planning and Zoning Commission, Zoning Board of Adjustment and Historic Preservation Commission. She serves on the Board of the North Iowa Farmers Market and is active the local foods movement in the region.  Sandahl holds a B.A. degree in Political Science from Iowa State University.

AJ Seely

AJ Seely

Dallas County Emergency Management Coordinator

AJ Seely currently serves as the Dallas County Emergency Management Coordinator. AJ began a career in public safety beginning as a firefighter/paramedic. AJ obtained his Associates Degree in Fire Science in 2014 and his Bachelor’s Degree in Public Administration, majoring in Emergency Management in 2017. His education and experience led him to serve as the Chickasaw County Emergency Management Coordinator from 2017 to 2018 where he was responsible for emergency management, 911 and a countywide EMS system.

 

AJ's significant accomplishments during his tenure in Chickasaw County included implementation of a countywide land mobile radio system, increasing responder retention and technologically transitioning emergency management and the countywide first responder service. Throughout AJ’s career, he has focused on process improvement and efficiency, many of which can be found with emerging technologies. In late 2018, AJ transitioned to his current role in Dallas County. AJ is a recent graduate of the FEMA Basic Academy.

Michelle Spohnheimer

Michelle Spohnheimer

Housing & Community Development Director
City of Marshalltown

Michelle Spohnheimer is the Housing & Community Development Director for the City of Marshalltown, and has served the City since February 2001. Michelle attended Iowa State University for Community and Regional Planning with an emphasis on Housing. She worked briefly with the City of Ames during college and shortly after before moving to Marshalltown. In Marshalltown she is responsible for administration of Planning & Zoning, Code Enforcement, Building Inspections, Rental Housing Inspections, Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program, HUD Lead Based Paint Hazard Reduction Grant and other various grant programs that are awarded to the City.

 

Since July 19, 2018 Michelle has been a key person involved in the FEMA Public Assistance Declaration administration. She has served on the Iowa NAHRO Board, the Region 6 Planning Commission Board and Region 6 Local Housing Trust Fund Board along with many other local committees over the years. She has secured more than $20 million in grant dollars for Marshalltown during her employment. On the side she is co-owner of Buzzed Bee Meadery with her husband Wayne which is located in rural Marshall County where they make Mead (honey-wine).

Liz Sporrer

Liz Sporrer

Corporate Communication Manager
Vermeer Corporation

Liz Sporrer leads the corporate communication team at Vermeer Corporation, a global industrial and agricultural equipment company making a real impact in a progressing world.

 

Liz received her B.A. in Communication and Fine Arts from Dordt College in Sioux Center, Iowa and her Master's in Business Administration from the University of Iowa. Prior to coming to Vermeer Corporation in 2012, Liz spent time in the healthcare and retail industries in various areas including graphic design, visual branding, Internet marketing and public relations. In her current role, Liz and her team are ultimately focused on the development of internal and external channels and content creation to help drive business initiatives and goals. Corporate brand and talent brand advocacy are driven through employee communications, media relations and executive visibility. Coming together, these key areas of influence help carry the culture and drive progress in a family-owned organization with a global reach.

 

In her free time, Liz enjoys traveling, cooking and spending time with friends and family.

Jeremy Sroka

Jeremy Sroka

Radiological Emergency Preparedness (REP)
Program Manager
Iowa Homeland Security & Emergency Management

Based in Johnston, IA, at the Iowa Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management Response Division, Jeremy Sroka is currently the state Radiological Emergency Preparedness (REP) Program Manager. Prior to becoming the REP Program Manager, he was the state Critical Infrastructure Protection Coordinator. Jeremy also worked for the Iowa National Guard in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Infrastructure Information Collection Division.

 

Sroka served in the Iowa National Guard and retired in 2015. Jeremy is a member of the State, Local, Tribal, and Territorial Government Coordinating Council and he serves on multiple national level critical infrastructure working groups. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Emergency and Disaster Management at Upper Iowa University.

Melanie Straeter

Melanie Straeter

Communications Specialist
Las Vegas Combined Communication Center

Melanie Straeter is a Communications Specialist with over 18 years of experience in emergency communications. After leaving the hotel industry 18 years ago, Melanie began her career in the public safety communications field, starting with the Metropolitan Police Department in Las Vegas. She worked for Metro Comm for 5.5 years as a Communications Specialist and trainer for the department. Melanie has also trained as an E-Tips first responder and is an EMD-Q. Melanie was not at work the night of October 1, 2017, because she was attending the Route 91 concert for her third year in a row. Her experience as an attendee and survivor of the worst mass shooting in US history has impacted her personal and work lives. Sharing her experience with others has helped her heal from this event.

Mike Telford

Mike Telford

Executive Director
Iowa Farm Animal Care

Mike Telford is Executive Director of Iowa Farm Animal Care. He's a graduate of Iowa State, former Farm Broadcaster at WHO, was Executive Director of Iowa Pork for 20 years, served as Director of External Affairs for the College of Agriculture at Iowa State, and is a private industry consultant for other National organizations. Iowafarmanimalcare.org


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If you have any questions, please contact Beth Lewis or Steve Warren at 515.725.3231 or HSEMDConf@iowa.gov.