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Disaster Heroes

Author: Sitch Radio

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'Disaster Heroes - the Podcast' is a bi-weekly podcast hosted by international crisis management consultant and author Suzanne Bernier, based on her critically-acclaimed book, 'Disaster Heroes'. During each episode, the host, a former journalist and news anchor will highlight and interview everyday people who have done or continue to do extraordinary things following disasters.

For every disaster reported in the media, there are thousands of inspiring and uplifting stories we don’t ever hear about. Disaster Heroes helps to bring some of these stories to you, not only to highlight some of these helpers and heroes from around the world but also to remind us all that 'there is a hero in each of us'.
10 Episodes
Attention all Emergency Managers - you don't want to miss this exclusive podcast chat with one of America's most respected thought leaders and innnovators in the field of disaster management:On this episode of Disaster Heroes, we talk to Jeff Schlegelmilch, Deputy Director of the National Center for Disaster Preparedness at Columbia University. Disaster Heroes is thrilled to be one of the first to chat with Jeff since the recent announcement of his new role of Director of NCDP effective July 1, 2020!Jeff's been the deputy director of NCDP since 2015, and has led projects focused on public health preparedness, integration of the private sector into disaster resilience, and is the principal investigator of the multi-award-winning Resilient Children/Resilient Communities Initiative. He previously worked as the manager for International and Non-Healthcare Sectors for the Yale New Haven Health System Center for Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Response, and was a public health preparedness planner and epidemiologist for the Boston Public Health Commission.Apart from being a true leader in the industry, he's also the author of the book 'Rethinking Readiness - A Brief Guide to Twenty-First Century Megadisasters'.Rethinking Readiness offers an expert introduction to human-made threats and vulnerabilities, with a focus on opportunities to re-imagine how we approach disaster preparedness. A must-read for any disaster/emergency/crisis management professional, Jeff identifies and explores the most critical threats facing the world today, detailing the dangers of pandemics, climate change, infrastructure collapse, cyberattacks, and nuclear conflict. LinksJeff SchlegelmilchFacebook – - - – – – –
On this first 'Coronavirus special edition' of Disaster Heroes entitled 'Behind the Masks - Voices from the Frontline', we have some very special guests we'll be hearing from throughout the episode, including some of the healthcare heroes risking their lives daily to help save ours. We'll also talk to Mark Howell of Brighton, Michigan, the Founder and Executive Director of Fund a Life. Already over 4,000 + members strong, Mark recently created the Facebook group 'Highlight our Heroes', where members recognize and celebrate our frontline heroes by posting stories, pictures, and efforts to inspire hope in our communities during the coronavirus pandemic.Be sure to tune into this very special *live* episode of Disaster Heroes to hear some of the 'voices behind the masks' and what they want to share with you!Mark HowellFacebook - - - - HeroesPodcast – – – –
On this episode, we talk to Gloria Gilbert Stoga, founder of 'Puppies Behind Bars' (PBB), a very unique and special program that trains prison inmates to raise service dogs for our wounded war veterans and first responder heroes, as well as explosive-detection canines for law enforcement. We also talk to Brian Andrews, an injured former first responder, as well as Heather O'Brien, a former inmate, who both credit PBB for helping them through their recovery and healing journey.Brian, along with his son Zach and wife Lambeth, have been driving around New York City a few times a week to thank healthcare and other essential workers for their heroic service. Brian's son Zach created signs from spare posterboard to hang out the car window. As they drive by, they blow the horn and scream, “THANK YOU” or something else that shows them appreciation for their heroic efforts.Listen in to hear Brian talk about how his family is spreading hope and happiness to our pandemic heroes! LinksGloria Gilbert StogaFacebook – - – – – –
On this episode, we talk to NYC-based marketing consultant, father and husband Brian Kaplan. Brian and his family have been driving down the semi-deserted streets of Manhattan to thank essential workers, volunteers, helpers & heroes for their dedicated service during the coronavirus pandemic lockdown. Brian, along with his son Zach and wife Lambeth, have been driving around New York City a few times a week to thank healthcare and other essential workers for their heroic service. Brian's son Zach created signs from spare posterboard to hang out the car window. As they drive by, they blow the horn and scream, “THANK YOU” or something else that shows them appreciation for their heroic efforts.Listen in to hear Brian talk about how his family is spreading hope and happiness to our pandemic heroes! LinksFacebook – – – – –
On this episode, we talk to Founder and 'Chief Wrangler' of the Field Innovation Team (FIT). Since 2010, this 'EM visionary' and her FIT team have been responding to disasters in new and innovative ways, working together with communities at the grassroots level to enhance neighborhood disaster resilience. Now a non-profit, FIT volunteers from across the globe deploy to disasters and work on disaster risk reduction and resiliency efforts.Their past work in disasters includes hurricane Sandy in 2012, the 2013 Moore, OK tornadoes, the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, Philippines typhoon Haiyan in 2013, and the 2014 mudslide in Oso, WA. The team continues to deploy into disasters working with communities across the globe. On this episode, Desi shares with us some examples of heroic emergency management and leadership demonstrated by a few communities she's had the opportunity to work with, both in Canada and the U.S.LinksTwitter – - – - – – – –
On this episode, we talk to Jeff Parness, Founder and Executive Director of the New York Says Thank You Foundation and its many wonderful offshoot projects, including Stars of HOPE USA. As many charitable organizations are often born of tragedy, as this one was, there is something unique about Jeff, his family, and the New York Says Thank You Foundation's story. Jeff talks to us today about his heroic journey over the past 15 + years, helping to provide hope and healing to disaster-stricken communities across America and the globe. LinksTwitter – - – - - jeff@newyorksaysthankyou.orgPodcast – – – –
On this episode, we talk to #SMEM (Social Media in Emergency Management) pioneer Rebecca Williams, who, along with her daughter Genevieve, provided a new model for the way we communicate after disasters.Moved to action by the deadly 2011 tornado in Joplin, MO, they were the first to use social media, particularly Facebook, to share disaster information and resources with the public in an organized, well-coordinated manner.LinksTwitter – – – – – –
On this episode, we talk to New Orleans native Ronnie Goldman, a very special hero who single-handedly helped rebuild the New York City Fire Department following the 9/11 terror attacks. Ronnie is also the inspiration behind the 2015 book, 'Disaster Heroes - Invisible Champions of Help, Hope and Healing'. Ronnie Goldman, a retired telephone engineer from New Orleans, started a fundraising campaign after seeing President George W. Bush address the nation standing atop one of the 35 fire trucks destroyed in the September 11, 2001 terror attacks. His original goal was to raise enough money to build and deliver a brand new fire truck to FDNY on behalf of the residents of Louisiana, to replace one of the many lost that tragic day.In the end, thanks to Ronnie's efforts, the people of Louisiana raised $1.2 million, which went to purchase several response vehicles for the New York City Fire Department, including the first delivery, a pumper truck named “The Spirit of Louisiana,” as well as two special duty vehicles, the Heart of Louisiana, also known as “Spirit 2,” and the “Soul of Louisiana, or “Spirit 3.” But the story doesn’t end there.In a heartwarming twist of fate, little did Ronnie know that The Spirit of Louisiana would return to the state of its inception to help respond and rebuild after Hurricane Katrina. A total of 343 New York City firefighters, the same number lost in 9/11, joined the Spirit in New Orleans to provide assistance after Katrina.Then, in 2012, the Spirit was recommissioned and dispatched back to New York to support recovery efforts after Hurricane Sandy, where it remained for several months before returning to Louisiana. The two cities, separated by 1200 miles, continue to enjoy a unique and lasting connection, all thanks to “everyday hero” Ronnie Goldman.LinksPodcast - - -
On this episode, we talk to 9-year-old Lucas Vetter, who started a fundraising campaign to help equip his local fire department with costly lifesaving CPR devices. Since he first started his effort, Lucas’ dream has grown, and he plans to raise enough money to buy 22 LUCAS devices - one for each fire truck in Livingston County.Links
On this first episode of Disaster Heroes - The Podcast, we speak with Chris Hopcraft, the founder of the World Trade Center Oak Project, who tells us about a very special 9/11 project he created to provide hope, healing, and to honor some of the many heroes lost in the September 11 World Trade Center terror attacks.LinksPodcast - - - - - admin@wtc-oaks.orgFacebook - -
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