Monday, August 9, 2010

Profiles-The Independent FEMA Stars! The Politicos!

I am not yet done with the profiles of the Directors of FEMA but believe that some fill in and context is necessary leading up to that post. So I have some favorites for the STARS that really helped FEMA along the way during its time as an Independent Executive Branch Agency from April 1, 1979 to March 1, 2003. Others of course would have different lists.

First some exclusions: The General Counsels and the Inspector Generals in general were not broad gauged people and did not contribute much to FEMA's effectiveness as an agency or even its survival. Some were civil servants and some were political appointees. And of course my test as always is not who survived the best bureacratically but who contributed most to FEMA's public or Congressional or Executive Branch interface. Some of these individuals are I assume almost unknown outside of former FEMA employees and also to the general public. Hey its my blog so my list can be personnel. And as always no one is perfect so some of these people had either personality defects or skill set deficiencies that would cause some to argue they should not have made the list.

These are not really in any given order and some may later get a fuller writeup.
1. Robert Goffus;
2. Ben Lewis;
3. Lee Thomas;
4. Grant Peterson;
5. Jeff Bragg;
6. Hal Duryee;
7. Lacey Suiter;
8. Fravel "Jim" Brown;
9. Kay Goss.
I will pull up my org charts from the previrtual world at some point and see if I can add to this list but likely to remain below a dozen. These people all helped FEMA to survive sometimes at great costs to their own careers or personnel life. So many thanks and hoping it has been a good life to you post FEMA. My bottom line of course is that there are no easy jobs at the political appointee level and contributions often cannot be weighed until long after departure from that particular appointment.

Many readers may have further suggestions for me and they are welcome to send to me off blog at