Wednesday, August 3, 2011

UASI Collaboration Update

Those of you that know me, probably know that I have been very involved in the Urban Areas Security Initiative (UASI) and the annual National UASI Conference since the inception of both programs. I blog today to note that, while I am no longer going to be involved with the UASI conference, I am going to keep working to support collaboration among UASIs as I have been doing for the last five years.


Why the Change?
As you may know, the UASI conference is now managed by a Board of Directors, elected from UASI Points of Contact and organized as a 501c6. This group is now the "National UASI Association" and has taken full responsibility for the conference.  Last year was a transition year and I helped plan the conference on behalf of San Francisco, the 2011 host. Going forward, the conference will be working to do the conference on their own.


Meanwhile, I plan to continue to support and facilitate collaboration and communication among UASIs as I have done for the last five years via the UrbanAreas.org web site and related mail lists. The UASI Association will  have a new web presence (TBD) and the 2012 Conference has already established its own web page at uasicolumbus2012.us.

Background
Since my involvement with the Miami UASI (starting in 2003), I have been immersed in the UASI program as both a UASI program manager (contractor) and as a networker (volunteer). I and my business (All Hands Consulting) have been involved in the UASI program for eight years now.  


In 2005, I was asked by Miami to help organize a UASI conference for the IAFC Metro Chiefs Section. That small conference lead to the first annual UASI Conference which Miami hosted in 2007.  The Miami conference was followed by two conferences in Charlotte, NC. With the great support of the Charlotte Fire Department (Jeff Dulin and Christina Parkins in particular) the conference grew from an attendance of 400 to over 1,100. Subsequent conferences in New Orleans and San Francisco continued the trend of growth in attendance with this year's conference drawing 1,800 attendees.  


We supported the National UASI Conference with web site development, creative media, administration and program support for the first five years of the conference (2007-2011). The 2009 Charlotte conference paid for web services thought June of this year; since that contract has now expired, the UASI Conference is moving to a new web address. This completes a transition from conferences supported by Charlotte and All Hands, to conferences managed by the National UASI Association Inc.


While we are no longer supporting the conference, we will continue to host the UrbanAreas.org web site as an information sharing portal for UASIs and other homeland security and emergency management program staff.

If you would like to stay up-to-date on UASI activities there are a number of information sharing tools at your disposal:





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