Flood Risk Management Program


2012 USACE Flood Risk Mgmt & Silver Jackets Workshop Presentations

Monday, August 20th

8:00 AM - 6:00 PM Workshop Check-In
8:30 AM - 4:30 PM Optional Pre-Workshop Training
8:30 AM - 4:30 PM Certified Floodplain Manager Refresher Training

Speaker(s): Susan Wilson, CFM, Chief, Floodplain Management and Insurance Branch, Mitigation Division, FEMA Region IV; Jason Hunter, CFM, Sr. Natural Hazard Program Specialist, Floodplain Management and Insurance Branch, Mitigation Division, FEMA Region IV

The Association of State Floodplain Managers (ASFPM) CFM Exam will be given 6-9 pm, Thursday, 23 August. Participants must register in advance with ASFPM (www.floods.org) to take the exam.

9:30 AM - 2:30 PM Flood Risk Plan Formulation for Alternatives to Levees (Nonstructural Mitigation)

Speaker(s): Randall Behm, Joe Remondini, Keven Lovetro (USACE Nonstructural Committee)

This training will provide an overview of nonstructural techniques, illustrate the general data requirements for conducting plan formulation, and how to conduct an economic analysis to obtain a benefit-cost ratio. The workshop identifies the hydrologic and nonstructural plan formulation required to assist communities/states to, either individually or in conjunction with USACE, develop potentially feasible nonstructural flood risk reduction measures which could lead to implementation.

9:30 AM - 4:30 PM Risk Communication Training

Speaker(s): Ms. Stacy Langsdale, USACE Institute for Water Resources; Mr. Hal Cardwell, USACE Institute for Water Resources; Mr. Carey Johnson, Kentucky Division of Water; Ms. Torrie McAllister, USACE – South Pacific Division; Mr. Bruce Bender, FloodSMART

The purpose of this interactive workshop is to understand the criticality of communicating flood risk within a range of contexts and learn how to design and conduct appropriate and effective risk communication. Participants will work with actual case studies to apply an array of tools for discussing risk and interagency key messages for flood risk management. The instructor team will also cover public communication preferences, how to measure success, and strategies for interagency coordination on communication.


2:30 PM - 3:30 PM Flood Insurance for Flood Risk Managers

Speaker(s): Susan Wilson, CFM, Chief, Floodplain Management and Insurance Branch, Mitigation Division, FEMA Region IV

This workshop will provide an understanding of the basics of flood insurance coverage, rating, and the Mandatory Purchase of Flood Insurance Guidelines.


2:30 PM - 4:30 PM Hydrological Warning Systems Training

Speaker(s): Ben Pratt, National Hydrologic Warning Council

Community-based Hydrologic Warning Systems (CHWS) can provide a cost effective nonstructural flood risk reduction strategy when properly designed and implemented. Whether developing a project to address coastal concerns, dam safety, riverine flooding or a variety of other hydrologic hazards, understanding the technology available to capture and effectively communicate associated risk is critical to the success of the CHWS. This workshop will examine the necessary components of a CHWS, strategies for implementation of a CHWS, and potential benefits beyond saving lives and property. This workshop is presented by the National Hydrologic Warning Council (NHWC), whose membership includes flood-warning professionals, service providers, and vendors in the United States and abroad.

5:30 PM - 6:30 PM External Partner Orientation: "Corps-speak" Immersion Program

Speaker(s): Judy Soutiere, USACE–Sacramento District

This optional session will provide a general background on the USACE and the Flood Risk Management and Silver Jackets Programs. In additional, participants will gain a better understanding of the Corps' structure, organization, and terminology. Participants will receive an explanation of some of the key messages of the Flood Risk Management and Silver Jackets Programs, which will be discussed throughout the week.


7:00 PM - 8:30 PM Informal (No Host) Welcome Networking Session

Catch up with old friends and meet new ones before the official start of the 3rd annual Flood Risk Management and Silver Jackets Conference. To welcome you, the Café menu will offer special FRM-SJ drinks and appetizers while you network and test your flood risk management IQ – prizes will be awarded!

Tuesday, August 21st

7:30 AM - 8:30 AM Registration
7:30 AM - 11:30 AM Morning Plenary Sessions
8:30 AM - 8:45 AM Welcome & Opening Remarks

Speaker(s): Colonel Trey Jordan, Commander Baltimore District, USACE; Mr. Ray Alexander, Deputy Chief Office of Homeland Security, HQUSACE


8:45 AM - 9:30 AM Welcome: The 2011 Pennsylvania Floods Experience

Opening plenary will speak about the response and recovery efforts in Pennsylvania since the 2011 floods, including the importance of interagency efforts and lessons learned in the application of federal and state programs to mitigate flood risk and improve resiliency.


9:30 AM - 10:15 AM Views from Senior Leadership: Achieving Success Working Together

Speaker(s): Ms. Karen Durham-Aguilera, P.E., Director Contingency Operations and Homeland Security, HQUSACE; Dr. Sandra Knight, Deputy Assistant Administrator Mitigation Directorate, FEMA

These senior leaders will discuss the national context of flood risk management from their perspectives including the critical role it plays in reducing flood risk in the nation, including recent successes and challenges.


10:15 AM - 10:45 AM Break
10:45 AM - 11:30 AM The Benefits of Mitigation

Moderator: Doug Bellomo, Director, Risk Analysis Division, FEMA

This panel will share information regarding the benefits of mitigation in reducing flood risk, reducing future federal expenditures and improving community resiliency in the 2011 flood season and beyond. Discussion questions will focus on opportunities for additional mitigation activities and overcoming challenges to their implementation.


11:30 AM - 1:00 PM Awards Luncheon

Speaker(s): Major General Michael J. Walsh Deputy Commanding General, Civil and Emergency Operations, USACE

MG Walsh is invited to provide comments related to his vision of the USACE in managing the nation’s flood risk and present awards to the Silver Jackets Team of the Year, Silver Jackets Coordinator of the Year and Flood Risk Manager of the Year.

1:00 PM - 2:00 PM Concurrent Breakout Sessions

Breakout sessions will be organized along four tracks:

  • Communicating Risk & Taking Action
  • Efforts, Updates & Experiences with Mapping Tools
  • Mitigation & Mitigation Planning
  • Tools for Flood Risk Management

Workshop participants may focus on a single track or “mix and match” for a broader exposure to the breadth of flood risk management activities and tools.

Track #1 - Communicating Risk & Taking Action: FEMA’s Flood Risk Communication Building Blocks

Speaker(s): Mary Jo Vrem, FEMA, Risk Insurance Division; Vincent Brown, FEMA, Risk Analysis Division

Through new coastal initiatives, new levee analyses and watershed-based flood risk studies, a new understanding of the likelihood of local flooding is emerging. Federal and State agencies as well as local communities need a range of tools and strategies to help communicate those changing risks. And communicating that story is not up to FEMA alone. For example, FEMA, USACE, and seven other Federal agencies have joined forces to develop the strategy and tools necessary to launch a High Water Mark Initiative in communities. Presenters will share findings around communicating risk, engage participants in sharing their experience, while demonstrating new tools available to communities through FEMA’s National Marketing Campaign (FloodSmart) and its High Water Mark Initiative.

  • Building Local Flood Awareness and Action Using NFIP FloodSmart Tools (Vrem)
  • It HAS Happened Here: A Cross-Agency High Water Mark Initiative (Brown)


Track #2 - Efforts, Updates & Experiences with Mapping Tools: Integrated Water Research Science and Services (IWRSS) Consortium: A New Federal Collaboration

Speaker(s): Mary G. Mullusky, National Weather Service, NOAA; Marie C. Peppler, US Geological Survey

The Integrated Water Resources Science and Services (IWRSS) is an innovative partnership between NOAA, the U.S. Geological Survey, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, to meet the growing demand for enhanced water resources information. Collaborative IWRSS activities will provide emergency managers and the public with detailed maps that explicitly show forecasted locations and effects of flooding for faster and more effective evacuations. It will also support the development of new forecasts for water supply and availability, thereby helping communities become more resilient to floods.

  • Partnering to Address America's Water Resources Information Needs (Mullusky)
  • A Federal Partnership for Flood Inundation Mapping Services (Peppler)


Track #3 - Mitigation & Mitigation Planning: State-Led Mitigation Planning Activities

Speaker(s): Jason Smith, USACE–Rock Island District; Stu Townsley, USACE –South Pacific Division

Presenters from Iowa and California will share examples of state-led mitigation planning efforts. In California, the CA Department of Water Resources, working with the South Pacific Division of USACE, produced a statewide flood planning document. Presenters will discuss the benefits and challenges of multi-District participation in a state-led planning effort. In Iowa, a single floodplain management database is being used to communicate both qualitative and quantitative flood risk with the Iowa-Cedar Rivers basin, an 8 million acre mixed use basin, as an example.

  • • Iowa Silver Jacket Pilot: Floodplain Management and Risk Communications (Smith)
  • • California Statewide Flood Planning (Townsley)


Track #4 - Tools for Flood Risk Management: Ensuring A Robust Alternatives Analysis For Flood Mitigation Options

Moderator: Chad Berginnis, Association of State Floodplain Managers

This session will focus on conducting a robust alternatives analysis for mitigation options, whether at the community or state level. The session will take a more in-depth look at the following aspects of alternatives analysis: 1) valuing ecosystem services and functions, 2) climate change and adaptation, 3) long term O&M costs to the community and 4) legal issues related to flood mitigation and floodplain management.

2:15 PM - 3:15 PM Concurrent Breakout Sessions

Breakout sessions will be organized along four tracks:

  • Communicating Risk & Taking Action
  • Efforts, Updates & Experiences with Mapping Tools
  • Mitigation & Mitigation Planning
  • Tools for Flood Risk Management

Workshop participants may focus on a single track or “mix and match” for a broader exposure to the breadth of flood risk management activities and tools.

Track #1 - Communicating Risk & Taking Action: Building Community Networks

Moderator: Alessandra Jerolleman, Executive Director, Natural Hazard Mitigation Association

Speaker(s): Mr. Daya Dayananda, City of Pasadena, TX; Ms. Debbie Cahoon, CRS User Group Liaison, League City, TX; Mr. Bill Lesser, Federal Insurance & Mitigation Administration, FEMA

While considerable state and Federal effort is focused on supporting sound flood risk management, each community has the authority and responsibility to implement wise use of their floodplains. The Resilient Neighbors Network (RNN) will allow for communication among communities to support each other’s efforts in all hazard risk reduction. At this time, a small group of communities is piloting the RNN, focusing on designing the range of communication mechanisms. Several states have found that CRS User Groups have been an effective, growing and popular forum to clarify CRS elements and inspire CRS Class advancement by communities.


Track #2 - Efforts, Updates & Experiences with Mapping Tools: USGS Efforts

Speaker(s): Robert (Bob) A. Hainly, USGS; Shannon Williams, USGS–Tennessee Water Science Center

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is one of three federal partnering agencies under the Integrated Water Research Science and Services (IWRSS) consortium involved in moving the science of Flood Inundation Mapping (FIM) forward. Presenters will discuss Flood Inundation Mapping Program and provide an example of lessons learned in Tennessee.

  • An Overview of the USGS Flood Inundation Mapping Program: Current Activities and Future Directions (Hainly)
  • USGS Flood Warning, Monitoring & Mapping Activities in Nashville, Memphis and Chattanooga (Williams)


Track #3 - Mitigation & Mitigation Planning: Examples of Mitigation Activities after 2011 Flood Season

Speaker(s): Henry C. DeHaan III, USACE–Rock Island District; Michael Foley, FEMA Region 2; William McDonnell, NJ Office of Emergency Management

Presenters will highlight activities undertaken by state and federal partners after the 2011 floods to prepare for the 2012 flood season, with a focus on managing and mitigating risks resulting from the 2011 historic flood damages to the Mississippi River and Tributaries (MR&T) Project and other Mississippi River Flood Risk Reduction Projects and implementing an expedited FEMA Hazard Mitigation Grant Program in New Jersey to be able to truly support the recovery effort after Hurricane Irene.

  • Operation Watershed – Recovery 2012 Flood Preparedness Efforts, New FRM-SJ Innovations and Tools (DeHann)
  • The New Jersey Experience – Expedited Buyout Program for Hurricane Irene (Foley, McDonnell & Gallagher)


Track #4 - Tools for Flood Risk Management: Establishing and Running an Effective Silver Jackets Team

Moderator: Norb Schwartz, USACE Institute for Water Resources

Panelists will share their insights and experiences in initiating new state-led interagency flood risk management teams, integrating into existing teams, and maintaining vibrant teams. The audience will be encouraged to guide the discussion. Anticipated topics include how to: determine whether a new team is needed, develop initial team membership, expand team membership, keep momentum going, interact with individual communities, non-governmental organizations, and neighboring state teams. There will be a discussion on the usefulness of a resource guide or team handbook. Best practices will be presented that establish team credibility and encourage lasting productivity.


3:30 PM - 5:30 PM Afternoon Plenary Sessions
3:30 PM - 4:30 PM Updating USACE Policies to Support Flood Risk Management

Speaker(s): Jeff Jensen, Deputy Director, National Flood Risk Management Program; Sue Hughes, Deputy Director, USACE Planning and Policy; Tammy Conforti, HQUSACE Levee Safety Program Manager

Updates from USACE on Civil Works/Planning Transformation; the USACE Levee Safety Program, the System-Wide Improvement Framework (SWIF) policy and more.


4:30 PM - 5:30 PM Silver Jackets Team Networking Blitz

Each state team in attendance will provide a 1-2 minute update on a few select activities or initiatives. Participants are encouraged to engage in one-on-one discussions with speakers and team members, while flip charts will be available to capture follow-up opportunities.


Wednesday, August 22nd

7:30 AM - 8:00 AM Registration
7:30 AM - 10:15 AM Plenary Sessions
8:00 AM - 9:00 AM Celebrating Successes in Interagency Partnerships: Recent Activities of the Federal Interagency Floodplain Management Task Force

Speaker(s): Karen Durham-Aguilera, P.E., Director Contingency Operations and Homeland Security, HQUSACE; Dr. Sandra Knight, Deputy Assistant Administrator Mitigation Directorate, FEMA

This panel will provide update on recent FIFM-TF activities that have improved the ability of the Federal agencies to work in partnership with each other as well as with other stakeholders and partners in flood risk management. The FIFM-TF brings together representatives of many Federal agencies and aims to align Federal programs for flood risk management.


9:00 AM - 10:00 AM Raising the Level of Public Dialogue to Manage Flood Risk

Moderator: Doug Bellomo, Director, Risk Analysis Division, FEMA

Speaker(s): Mr. Jon Janowicz, FEMA Region III; Eric Halpin, Special Assistant for Dam and Levee Safety, HQUSACE; Mary G. Mullusky, National Weather Service, NOAA

This panel will discuss recent activities related to catalyzing and supporting meaningful community dialogue surrounding issues related to flood risk and discuss reactions to these efforts, lessons learned, successes in effecting risk reduction on the ground and persistent challenges.


10:00 AM - 10:15 AM Break
10:15 AM - 11:00 AM Regional Group Discussions
10:15 AM - 10:15 AM Regional Discussion


11:00 AM - 11:30 AM Lunch (on your own)
11:30 AM - 5:00 PM Field Trips
11:30 AM - 5:00 PM Field Trip #1 : Harrisburg Area Flood Risk Management Experiences and Highlights

Hosted by USACE Baltimore District and Pennsylvania Emeregency Management Agency (PEMA)

Planned stops include:

  • City Island, City of Harrisburg – Information on history of flooding in Harrisburg, response to 2011 event, lessons learned and transition to recovery.
  • Three Mile Island Nuclear Power Plant – Mitigation plan in planning, response, recovery.
  • Lower Swatara Township --2011 flooding response and recovery efforts including buy-outs and mitigation.
12:30 PM - 5:00 PM Field Trip #2: Tour of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Emergency Operations Center and Joint Field Office

Hosted by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania & Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA)

Overview of the state Emergency Operations Center (EOC) and how the JFO operated during and after the Irene and Lee floods. (Note: Tour may be altered if there is a declared emergency.)

Planned stops include:

  • Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Emergency Operations Center
  • State Disaster Recovery Center (former Joint Field Office)

Thursday, August 23rd

7:30 AM - 8:30 AM Registration
7:30 AM - 11:00 AM Morning Plenary Sessions
8:30 AM - 9:45 AM Silver Jackets Pilot Project Achievements and Interagency Perspectives on Evaluating Risk Reduction

Moderator: Jennifer Dunn, USACE Institute for Water Resources

Speaker(s): Lisa Bourget, USACE Institute for Water Resources; Carey Johnson, Kentucky Division of Water: Combining Public and Private Resources for Success: A Kentucky Silver Jackets Pilot Project Story; Brian Rast, USACE Kansas City District: Silver Jackets 2011 Pilot Project: Wildcat Creek; Juliette Hayes, FEMA Region IX

This panel will highlight the progress being achieved through partnerships and leveraging by two Silver Jackets pilot projects; describe transferable activities, actions and approaches; and discuss how the value of project achievements can be demonstrated and communicated, with particular focus on the goal of actions resulting in risk reduction. FEMA's experience in developing the Risk MAP Action Tracker and opportunities to integrate with this tool will also be discussed.


9:45 AM - 10:45 AM Developing Resiliency Along the Coasts

Moderator: Charley Chesnutt, USACE Institute for Water Resources

This diverse panel will discuss how Federal agencies and states are working to increase community resilience to flood risks along the coast. Innovative approaches to decrease the vulnerability of coastal communities and mitigate flood risks will be described. The effectiveness of collaboration across agencies and levels of government to promote resilience will be demonstrated through a case study.


10:45 AM - 11:00 AM Break
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM Concurrent Breakout Sessions

Breakout sessions will be organized along four tracks:

  • Communicating Risk & Taking Action
  • Efforts, Updates & Experiences with Mapping Tools
  • Mitigation & Mitigation Planning
  • Tools for Flood Risk Management

Workshop participants may focus on a single track or “mix and match” for a broader exposure to the breadth of flood risk management activities and tools.

Track #1 - Communicating Risk & Taking Action: Cooperative Approaches to Communicating Flood Risk

Speaker(s): Michelle Hamor, USACE–Norfolk District; Ellen Berggren, USACE –Walla Walla District

Representatives from Silver Jackets teams from Virginia and Idaho will share examples of the successful partnerships and initiatives developed through interagency cooperation to help protect lives and property. A partnership between Virginia and North Carolina will expand North Carolina's existing flood mapping website to allow Virginians to estimate flood damage and costs to properties from various storms on an individual and community-wide basis. In Idaho, the networking, coordination and cooperation achieved through Idaho Silver Jackets team has successfully leveraged the data and analyses of many agencies’ efforts in the Boise River watershed.

  • Virginia and North Carolina Shared Website (Hamor)
  • Boise River, Idaho – Many Agencies Working Towards One Version of the Truth (Berggren)


Track #2 - Efforts, Updates & Experiences with Mapping Tools: Hydrologic/Flood Forecasts and NWS River Forecast Centers

Speaker(s): Ernie Wells, NOAA National Weather Service; and Ted Rodgers and Cody Moser, NOAA/NWS/Middle Atlantic River Forecast Center

The National Weather Service is currently engaged in a 3 year project to develop and implement a new capability to produce operational hydrologic ensemble forecasts for lead times of a month out to one year that include uncertainty ranges at all time scales to be applied at all thirteen NWS River Forecast Centers (RFCs). We will discuss the project with a focus on new products and maximizing the utility of this information to flood risk managers with specific examples from the Middle Atlantic River Forecast Center.

  • Quantifying Uncertainty in Hydrologic/Flood Forecasts (Wells)
  • An Overview of Middle Atlantic River Forecast Center Daily Operations (Rodgers & Moser)


Track #3a - Mitigation & Mitigation Planning: Recent Events and Approaches to Flood Hazard Mitigation

Speaker(s): Shane Csiki, NH Geological Survey, NH Department of Environmental Services; and Chad Dulaney, USACE Little Rock District and Jaysson Funkhouser, USGS

These presentations will survey recent Silver Jacket team responses to significant flooding events in 2011. In New Hampshire, floods have contributed to the adoption and presently expanding Fluvial Erosion Hazard (FEH) program within the state's flood management and protection strategy. In Arkansas, the members of the Silver Jackets Program in Arkansas have conducted a hydrologic study of gaged streams in the Presidential Disaster Declaration area as well as select streams in northwest Arkansas. This effort had begun long before an official charter was signed between the agencies involved.

  • Fluvial Erosion Hazards in New Hampshire (Csiki)
  • Silver Jackets Efforts After the 2011 floods in Arkansas---Successes and Failures (Dulaney & Funkhouser)


Track #3b - Mitigation & Mitigation Planning: What's New in USACE Climate Change?

Speaker(s): Dr. Kate White, Dr. Jeff Arnold, Dr. Rolf Olsen, and Dr. Dave Raff, USACE Institute for Water Resources

This session presents an update of how the USACE is approaching climate change and extreme events in the context of flood risk management. We'll cover the basics of climate change and variability, including potential changes to the intensity and frequency of extreme events, and USACE progress toward understanding and responding to climate change. USACE District climate change adaptation pilot projects and information on new and ongoing guidance updates will be also be presented.

Track #4 - Tools for Flood Risk Management: Overview of USACE Flood & Coastal Systems Research and Development Program

Speaker(s): Bill Curtis & Cary Talbot, USACE Engineer Research & Development Center

The USACE Flood & Coastal Systems Program seeks to deliver efficient and effective capabilities to plan, design and improve water resources projects. A brief overview of the USACE R&D process, the current program and the expected products in this and coming years will be presented.


12:00 PM - 1:30 PM Lunch & Information Sessions - Emerging Tools

Lunch is on your own. Lunchtime Information Sessions will be held at 12:00 and 12:45 where you can learn about existing tools and those in development.

12:00 PM - 12:45 PM Lunch Information Sessions
12:00 PM - 12:45 PM Dam Sector Analysis Tool

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Infrastructure Protection, designated Dams Sector-Specific Agency, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Headquarters Office of Homeland Security, under the auspices of the Critical Infrastructure Protection and Resilience (CIPR) program, have actively collaborated in the development and implementation of the Dams Sector Analysis Tool (DSAT). DSAT serves as an effective web-based platform that consolidates analysis tools and data collection mechanisms supporting the screening, prioritization, and characterization of critical assets. In addition, it provides Dams Sector partners with secure access to a series of modules and applications covering a wide range of analytical capabilities. DSAT also incorporates a state-of-the art geospatial viewer that provides powerful query capabilities as well as access to real-time information (earthquakes, weather, etc.). This session will feature a demonstration of the capabilities within the DSAT web-based tool, and engage a technical discussion on how these could be used to potentially support emergency preparedness and planning efforts led by some of the Workshop participating organizations.

National Levee Database

The NLD is a living, dynamic information source that provides visualization and search capability for the first time on the location and condition of levee systems nationwide. The database includes attributes of levees and floodwalls relevant to flood fighting, design, construction, operation, maintenance, repair and inspection. Because the location and characteristics of levee systems can be viewed on a map with real-time data from other sources, such as stream gauges and weather radar, it is a useful tool for a variety of public agencies and individuals including flood plain managers, emergency management agencies, levee system sponsors and citizens who live or work behind a levee.


National Weather Service Flash Flood Services

Speaker(s): Mr. Seann Reed, NOAA National Weather Service Middle Atlantic River Forecast Center

Effective warning for flash flooding is extremely challenging given the localized nature and rapid onset of intense rainfall and the fast hydrologic response of small basins. All the steps in an effective warning process need to be completed in the least amount of time possible. With the opportunities presented by the Community Hydrologic Prediction System (CHPS), the resources of an Integrated Water Resources Science and Services (IWRSS) Program, and NOAA’s new National Water Center facility, flash flood services delivery will most likely evolve significantly in the next 5 to 10 years.



Speaker(s): Chad Markin, USACE Institute for Water Resources; Steve Diaz, USACE–Mobile District/Readiness Support Center (RSC); Brian Rast, USACE–Kansas City District and MRFTF; Randy Behm, USACE–Omaha District and MRFTF

Silver Jackets Pilot Project Experiences using SimSuite will be presented, followed by an overview of the SimSuite tool including real-world applicability to flood risk management and use by the Missouri River Flood Task Force (MRFTF).


12:45 PM - 1:30 PM Lunch Information Sessions
Floodplain Management Services Database Program

Speaker(s): Kurt Buchanan, USACE –Huntington District

This presentation will cover the authorities and guidance on the FPMS program and how it could be leveraged by Silver Jackets teams. Under the FPMS program, Corps districts can provide technical assistance and responses to individuals and commercial or public entities on a fee for service basis. This assistance can be anything from flood zone determinations, review of construction projects for floodplain impacts, base flood elevation determinations, or other information requests. Huntington District uses an Access-based geospatial database (FPMSdb) to record and track efforts under the FPMS program.


USACE Flood Risk Management Program and Silver Jackets Websites

Speaker(s): Lisa Bourget, USACE Institute for Water Resources

The Corps of Engineers is redesigning the National Flood Risk Management Program and Silver Jackets websites. Redesign is informed by feedback obtained from surveys and various listening sessions, including one held with state partners involved with Silver Jackets Teams. The redesign will update existing content, develop more extensive links to program partners, and improve functionality and navigability. This brown-bag session will summarize key feedback received and the resulting changes anticipated, with particular focus on the Silver Jackets website, and will invite participants to offer their further observations and suggestions for enhancement.


Water Infrastructure Systems Data Manager (WISDM)

Speaker(s): Mark Sudol, USACE Institute for Water Resources

WISDM (formerly known as the Watershed Investment Decision Tool) is an interactive mapping application designed to foster understanding of our current infrastructure investments and operating environment, and envision possible future states. A demonstration of the tool will be conducted and a discussion of the tool and its applications will occur.

1:30 PM - 2:30 PM Plenary: Integrating Whole Community Benefits into Flood Risk Management and Flood Damage Reduction

Moderator: Mr. Pete Rabbon, USACE Institute for Water Resources

Speaker(s): Jerry Skalak, USACE –Rock Island District; Randall Behm & Tony Krause, USACE; Mr. Steve Graham, San Antonio River Authority

This session will share experiences in developing and implementing multi-objective projects. The projects described will incorporate a variety of community objectives such as environmental protection, housing, recreation, and stormwater management while managing flood risk. Speakers will discuss the circumstances that led to consideration of multi-objective projects, the challenges that were overcome, and the benefits that have been observed.

1:30 PM - 2:30 PM Integrating Whole Community Benefits into Flood Risk Management and Flood Damage Reduction


2:30 PM - 3:15 PM Regional Group Discussions
3:30 PM - 5:00 PM Concurrent Breakout Sessions

Breakout sessions will be organized along four tracks:

  • Communicating Risk & Taking Action
  • Efforts, Updates & Experiences with Mapping Tools
  • Mitigation & Mitigation Planning
  • Tools for Flood Risk Management

Workshop participants may focus on a single track or “mix and match” for a broader exposure to the breadth of flood risk management activities and tools.

Track #1 - Communicating Risk & Taking Action: Innovation and Collaboration in Communicating Flood Risk

Speaker(s): Jason Miller, Theresa Fowler & Joseph Ruggeri, USACE; Patricia Wnek, NOAA National Weather Service; Rachel Hogan Carr, Nurture Nature Center

Multi-agency efforts are highlighted which are using innovative and engaging methods for communicating flood risk. Presenters will provide examples of the products, how they were developed, and how you can use them in your communities.

  • Delaware River Basin Comprehensive Study – Silver Jacket Approach to Public Outreach (Miller)
  • National Weather Service and The Nature Nurture Center (Wnek and Carr)


Track #2 - Efforts, Updates & Experiences with Mapping Tools: Experience from the Field

Speaker(s): Stacey Underwood, USACE –Baltimore District; Victor Hom, NOAA National Weather Service; Terry R. Zien, USACE St. Paul District, and Jennifer Nelson, Minnesota Homeland Security and Emergency Management

Members from Silver Jackets Teams from Idaho, Pennsylvania, and Minnesota will highlight experiences with developing inundation maps for enhancing flood risk communications, providing planning assistance for emergency response during flood events, and empowering decision makers with information for mitigating the flood impacts on the Boise River (ID), Susquehanna River (PA), and St. Paul River (MN).

  • Harrisburg Flood Inundation Mapping Pilot Project – Many Agencies Working Together (Underwood)
  • Flood Inundation Maps Linked to Real-time River Forecast and Observations (Hom)
  • Mississippi River at St. Paul Inundation Mapping and Flood Warning System Pilot Project (Zien & Nelson)


Track #4a - Tools for Flood Risk Management: Community Rating System

Speaker(s): Bill Lesser, Federal Insurance & Mitigation Administration, FEMA Washington DC; Tom Brett, Insurance Services Office, Pittsburgh, PA (invited); Mari Radford, FEMA Region III (invited)

This session will continue recent efforts to provide basic information about the CRS program to the flood risk management and Silver Jackets communities. This will include information about what the program is and how it works, how communities enter the program, and basic information about the activities. This session will also interactively discuss ways in which the CRS and Silver Jackets programs complement each other. This will likely involve small group discussion, and may focus on areas such as how to approach and work with communities, how Silver Jackets teams have already been involved with CRS communities, and which activities in the CRS Coordinator’s Manual best lend themselves to involvement from Silver Jackets teams. Representatives of FEMA Regional offices will be invited to discuss, from their perspective, what sort of involvement would be most helpful from USACE and Silver Jackets teams. This will move the group from just talking about coordination of the programs to developing ideas for how it could be done and showing what has been successful so far.


Track #4b - Tools for Flood Risk Management: Post-Disaster Toolkit

Moderator: Ed Thomas, Natural Hazard Mitigation Association

This session will encourage discussion about the products that should be included in a "Post-Disaster Toolkit". This "Post-Disaster Toolkit" would compile resources for state representatives to assist them in understanding what funding sources, technical assistance, or other tools are available to best seize the opportunity to carry out mitigation activities in the aftermath of a disaster. This will be a group discussion focusing on what material or information already exists that may not be widely known or understood, and what information state representatives need to understand after a disaster event. Notes from the discussion will be used to help develop further products for inclusion in the Toolkit.


6:00 PM - 9:00 PM Certified Floodplain Manager Test

Participants must register at least two weeks in advance with ASFPM to take the exam. Download an application package for the CFM Program at www.floods.org.

Friday, August 24th

8:00 AM - 9:00 AM Plenary: 2011 Flood Recovery - The Benefits of Collaboration

Moderator: Scott D. Whitney, USACE Mississippi Valley Division

Speaker(s): Bob Hainly, Office of Surface Water, U.S. Geological Survey & Mississippi River Recovery Task Force; Beth Freeman, FEMA Region VII Regional Administrator; Missouri River Recovery Task Force; Northeast Flood Recovery (invited)

8:00 AM - 11:30 AM 2011 Flood Recovery - The Benefits of Collaboration


9:15 AM - 10:15 AM Concurrent Breakout Sessions: 2011 Experiences and Lessons Learned from the Field

The Workshop’s Final breakout sessions will focus on the experiences and lessons learned from the field during the 2011 flood season.

2011 Missouri River Flooding: Preparation & Recovery

Speaker(s): Randall Behm & Colleen Horihan, USACE–Omaha District; Steve Bredthauer, USACE - Northwestern Division

  • 2011 Missouri River Flood and the Development of Miles of Inundation Maps as a Risk Reduction Tool (Behm & Horihan)
  • Value Engineering for Missouri River Emergency Levee Repairs (Bredthauer)


Irene and Lee, An Experience in the Northeast

Speaker(s): USGS New Jersey Water Science Center; William J. Marosi, NOAA National Weather Service, Middle Atlantic River Forecast Center

  • USGS New Jersey Water Science Center Preparation and Response to Irene and Lee (USGS New Jersey Water Science Center)
  • An Assessment of Forecast Challenges During the Floods of Irene and Lee (Marosi)


Responding to the 2011 Mississippi River Floods

Speaker(s): Scott D. Whitney, USACE–Mississippi Valley Division; Robert (Bob) A. Hainly, USGS

  • Operation Watershed – Recovery: Responding to the Historic Mississippi River Flood of 2011 (Whitney)
  • A Retrospective of the USGS Flood-Response Activities for the 2011 Mississippi River Basin Floods (Hainly)


10:30 AM - 11:30 AM How to Integrate Silver Jackets into the Joint Field Office and the Emergency Operations Center

Moderator: Mr. Mark Slauter, State of Virginia Department of Emergency Management

Speaker(s): Mr. John Forr, Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency; Ms. Kelli Higgins-Roche, New York Silver Jackets; Mr. Don Keldsen, Office of Federal Disaster Coordination, FEMA

Many States have an interagency group to address hazards, mitigation or recovery. While the group may be a Silver Jackets Team or a Hazard Mitigation Work Group, it is sometimes not closely connected with emergency management. At issue is how members of interagency teams can integrate into a state Emergency Operations Center (EOC) or the Joint Field Office (JFO). How do you engage the experts in your partnership? Part of the answer lies within understanding the purpose and structure of each. This session will briefly discuss the operational construct of an EOC and the recovery structure of a JFO, including how an EOC augments before a flood, responds during a flood, how the activities transition to the JFO for recovery, and how the JFO disbands. Areas of activity that may benefit from interagency team participation will be identified.

11:15 AM - 12:00 PM Wrap Up and Regional Group Future Initiatives

Speaker(s): Ray Alexander, Deputy Chief, Office of Homeland Security, USACE

11:30 AM - 12:30 PM Wrap - Up