As the United States—and the northeast in particular—struggles to deal with the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy, it will search for lessons learned and best practices from past disasters. Fortunately, some of that information is captured in the February 2008 article, "In for the Long Haul," which outlines relief efforts from Hurricane Katrina. As each disaster takes on its own personality, caution must be applied in searching for any formulaic response to such an event. In order to develop the best recovery strategy, a "toolbox approach" must be applied—specific methods and approaches that can be applied to already understood problems and issues. To name a few, I would draw on the Program Management Institute's standing guidance for help with large-scale management issues. The NDRF/RSF for specific disaster recovery concepts would also certainly apply (and will be followed by federal/state/local entities) to Sandy. Lastly, Sandy's early damage estimates are coming in large! We'll need leadership experience (Katrina or Fukushima) and a strong skill in improvisational problem solving.
Senior Vice President
Published in PM Network magazine, February 2008, by Sarah Fister Gale. This article focuses on post-disaster recovery efforts, including the massive and ongoing rebuilding of New Orleans and the Gulf Coast following Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005. Andrew Robinson, who spent six months as the program manager for the state of Louisiana’s The Road Home program, the largest recovery program ever undertaken in the United States, was interviewed extensively for the article. Douglas Beck, who oversees communications for the program, and David Fukutomi, who provides consulting services on response recovery and crisis communications for ICF were also interviewed.
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