Make Your Local EM Voice Heard
Effectively Engaging with Elected Representatives

Martha Braddock
Policy Advisor
International Association of Emergency Managers (IAEM)

Larry J. Gispert

Director, Hillsborough County
Tampa, Florida

January 27, 2009

Live Meeting Recording (WMV) This is a large file and requires Windows Media Player or Windows Media Components for QuickTime, or a similar product to view.
Transcript (HTML)
Transcript (MS Word)
Where To Get Information
IAEM Memo on FY 2010 EMPG Letter

Related Websites:
IAEM U.S. Government Affairs Committee

23 Ratings Submitted
2 (9%) Academia 3 (13%)
14 (61%) Business 4 (17%)
5 (21%) Government 9 (39%)
2 (9%) Volunteers 2 (9%)
0 (0%) Other 5 (22%)

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"Great session and useful information."

"Good show!"

"Great! We need more sessions like these. Very informative! "

"Good discussion of EMPG and more importantly working with elected officials and state associations."
Marty Shaub
Uni. of Utah/Utah Emerg Management Assoc.

"Good inforamtion and appropriate for this time."

"Thought this was an excellent session! Provided a lot of good information and motivation."
Ken Rudnicki
City of Fairfax OEM

"This is very basic information which I have heard amny times before, but the reinforcement is always good AND NEEDED based on the outcomes of the survey questions. In the words of Larry Gispert, let's 'Get 'Er Done!'"
Bob Goldhammer
Former IAEM Region VII President

"Great session, thanks to all."
Budd Johnson WB4J

"Thank you for the opportunity to hear from the EMs. Human nature being what it is, the usual sequence concerning allocation of resources toward disaster planning, training, & prevention is neglect, disaster, blame, frantic allocation, resolving back to neglect. 'If it ain't raining,I don't want to spend money on the roof' syndrome. I am proud of my 'hurricane state's' efforts to educate the public on preparing and taking care of themselves during & after hurricanes. I hope someone is making comprehensive notes on Haiti's process because The Big One will come to California someday, as we all know. I feel very lucky to live in a country that prepares and educates, (and lets me help occasionally)!"
J. R. Jones

"Thank you. I appreciate the great information that was provided." Melanie Lagarde
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

"Confirmation of what I already knew....thank you! IAEM is so valuable in sharing with us what the issues are that we need to contact our elected representative about.....Thank you!!!"

"This was great! I will go in and review the transcript, since I'm also working and missed out on some of the discussion. Thanks for putting this training out today."
Rebecca Smith
Jeffco Public Schools Emergency Planning

"Great Program. Very useful for the current economic challenges."
O. Mitchell Smeykal, FPEM, AEM
Okeechobee County Health Department

"This is a something that we all should realize we need to do, but most of us need to have it brought home for us. It takes suprisingly few to make a major difference. If we don't let our representatives know what we need, they will make it up as they go along."

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Martha is the Policy Advisor for the International Association of Emergency Managers. She develops and implements strategies for the Association to engage Congress, partner organizations, and Federal departments and agencies on key issues to local emergency managers. Her expertise includes developing key appropriations and authorization contacts so that IAEM's voice can be heard on crucial issues. In addition, Martha is a consultant to colleges and universities, associations, and corporations on a wide range of homeland security, emergency management, mitigation, and legislative matters.

Martha served fifteen years in senior management positions during three different Administrations at the Federal Emergency Management Agency headquarters in Washington, D. C., including Director of Congressional and Legislative Affairs and Director of Intergovernmental Affairs.

  • As Director of Congressional and Legislative Affairs she directed all aspects of the agency's relationships with the U.S. Congress including 12 authorization and two appropriations subcommittees and numerous oversight committees. In addition she directed all Congressional interactions related to Presidentially-declared disasters and emergencies, including the great Midwest floods, the Northridge earthquake, and the Oklahoma City terrorist bombing.

  • As Director of Intergovernmental Affairs, she was responsible for strengthening FEMA's ties with state and local partners, associations, the White House and other federal agencies. An important part of this effort was working with elected officials and their key staff to encourage high level support as well as serving as a problem solver on issues between officials and FEMA.

Ms. Braddock's Congressional experience includes serving on the staff of a senior Member of the House of Representatives, the staff of a Joint Congressional Committee, and as a Professional Staff Member of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs. She staffed the committee which held the hearings and wrote the bill which led to the formation of FEMA in 1979.

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Larry has been employed by Hillsborough County Florida Emergency Management since 1980 and has been the director in charge of the County's EM program since 1993. Hillsborough County is on the West Coast of Florida and has the City of Tampa as its county seat. The county's population is approximately 1.2 million. Larry is certified by the Florida Emergency Preparedness Association (FEPA) as a professional emergency manager. Larry has held the following offices:

  • Treasurer of FEPA (1998 - 1999)
  • President of FEPA (2000)
  • IAEM Region IV President (2004 - 2006)
  • First Vice President of IAEM (2007)
  • President of IAEM (2008)
  • IAEM Government Affairs Committee, Board Liaison (2009)

Larry has testified before the U.S. Congress numerous times with great success. Larry claims that the miles walked in the halls of Congress in Washington DC with Martha Braddock promoting the key issues for local emergency managers come close to the frequent flier miles he earned getting there. Larry is known by his peers as a "Lead, Follow or get out of the way" type guy but he tempers this intensity with a great since of humor and a willingness to help anyone anytime.

Larry's first love has always been radio communications. He is a licensed radio amateur for over 35 years, call sign KR4X. Larry has a Commercial Radio Telephone and a Radio Telegraph license issued by the F.C.C.