Flood Risk Management Program


Bridging the Equity Gap: Flood Resilience for the Whole Community

What happens when environmental justice, social vulnerability, and flooding intersect? Who is affected differently and why? What barriers or external factors contribute to the vulnerability of certain groups? Most importantly, what actions can the flood risk management community take to advance equity and resilience for all?

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Flood Risk Management Program team and the San Francisco District bring you this webinar series featuring panelists who speak to the challenges facing frontline communities. Through the lively and interactive discussions, audiences will be empowered with meaningful actions and tools for building social equity and resilience across the nation.

The monthly webinars are recorded and available for viewing on this playlist. More information about each webinar and recording are available below:

 June 7, 2022 - Out of Harm’s Way Without Harm: Environmental & Climate Justice in Flood Buyouts and Relocation

As more frequent flooding disrupts low-lying communities, community members are faced with difficult decisions like whether to stay or go, and how to move. Relocating from flood prone areas has the potential to be an effective tool for households to move safely away from harm. However, relocation often comes with economic, social, and cultural costs. When not implemented with equity and inclusion in mind, buyouts and relocations could create or worsen environmental injustices. Join us for a rich discussion with expert panelists on the complex challenges, impacts, and benefits of using government buy outs and relocations to build flood resilience. Learn who lives in floodprone areas and who is targeted for buyouts. Consider how relocated households are doing today and what ‘success’ looks like. Discover how we as practitioners can approach relocation and resettlement more equitably. And, as always, leave the discussion inspired with tangible actions for change and a vision for environmental justice. 

  • Date: June 7, 2022
  • Speakers:
    • Dr. Alessandra Jerolleman
      • Assistant Professor, Emergency Management Department, Jacksonville State University
    • Dr. Carlos Martin
      • Director of Remodeling Futures Program, Joint Center for Housing Studies, Harvard University
    • Dr. Julie Maldonado
      • Associate Director, Livelihoods Knowledge Exchange Network (LiKEN)
    • Eric Tate
      • Associate Professor, Geographical and Sustainability Sciences, University of Iowa
    • Chris Narducci
      • Disaster Recovery and Resilience and Social Science Analyst, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
    • Brian Willsey
      • Hazard Mitigation Specialist, Grants Implementation Branch, Mitigation Directorate, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
  • Webinar:
 March 3, 2022 - When Communities Lead: Environmental Justice through Participatory Flood Risk Management

Environmental justice requires the ‘meaningful engagement’ of those affected by a project in the planning and decision-making process. Furthermore, best practices today point to ‘co-creation’ and ‘community-driven’ planning. Yet in practice, flood resilience and infrastructure planning are commonly conducted top-down and in ways that exclude those most affected which leads to inequitable project outcomes and reinforces a trust and power imbalance between communities and their governments.

In “When Communities Lead: Environmental Justice through Participatory Flood Risk Management”, the flood resilience practitioners will learn the importance of centering and resourcing economically-disadvantaged and historically marginalized communities in flood resilience work. Panelists will share myriad examples of how to increase the participation and voice of historically marginalized people and identities across the flood risk management lifecycle. They will demonstrate how community-driven infrastructure monitoring, risk assessment, and planning can contribute to more equitable and environmentally-just outcomes. As always, panelists will provide flood resilience practitioners actions to take now to create a more participatory flood risk management practice.

  • Date: March 3, 2022
  • Speakers:
    • Carlos Moran
      • Watershed Coordinator, Council for Watershed Health
    • Dr. Danielle Rivera
      • Assistant Professor of Landscape Architecture, College of Environmental Design, UC Berkeley
    • Dr. Marccus Hendricks
      • Assistant Professor of Urban Studies and Planning, Director of Stormwater Infrastructure and Justice Lab, University of Maryland
  • Webinar:
 February 9, 2022 - No Resilience Without Representation: A Discussion on Building a Diverse and Inclusive Flood Risk Management Workforce

What do workforce inclusion and representation have to do with flood resilience, equity, and environmental justice?  In, “No Resilience Without Representation –Building a diverse and inclusive flood risk management workforce,” participants learned why a diverse environmental, water resources, and military workforce is essential to delivering equitable outcomes and environmental justice. We heard about barriers to representation and what some organizations are doing to increase diversity of under-represented groups in the field. Panelists shared personal experience and provided tangible actions we can each take to build, leverage, and retain a flood resilience workforce who looks like the communities we serve and whose strength comes from the diversity of its lived experience.

  • Date: February 9, 2022
  • Speakers:
    • Dr. Nnenia Campbell
      • Deputy Director, Bill Anderson Fund
        Research Associate, Natural Hazards Center, University of Colorado Boulder
    • Ariana Rickard
      • Public Policy and Funding Program Manager, Sonoma Land Trust
    • Anna Muaswes
      • Equal Employment Manager, San Francisco District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
    • Larry Holman
      • Program Analyst from the Harassment Prevention Program, Office of Resolution Management, Diversity, and Inclusion (ORMDI), Veteran Affairs.
  • Webinar:
 November 4, 2021 - Disability Justice in Flood Risk Management

This disability-led webinar began with a screening of the “The Right to be Rescued” film, followed by a panel discussion on disability rights and inclusion. Flood risk managers learned how to strengthen preparation, response, and recovery by incorporating the lived experiences of people with disabilities into practice.  Panelists also discussed the cross-cutting nature of disability rights and forthcoming legislation essential to our collective well-being.

  • Date: November 4, 2021
  • Speakers:
    • Luis Vance Taylor
      • Chief, Office of Access and Functional Needs, California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services 
    • Shaylin Sluzalis & Germán Parodie
      • Co-Executive Directors, The Partnership for Inclusive Disaster Strategies
  • Webinar:
 October 12, 2021 - The Impact of Floods on Wealth Inequality in the United States

This interactive discussion explains how the Federal response to flooding and other disaster is increasing wealth inequality. This complex story combines historical housing policy with current day housing appraisals, economics, and federal disaster policy to reveal a major gap and opportunity for change. Participants will learn how to apply principles to their work.

  • Date: October 12, 2021
  • Speaker: 
    • Junia Howell, Ph.D.
      Urban Sociologist and Professor
      University of Illinois Chicago
  • Webinar:


 September 21, 2021 - Exercises in Risk Communication: Serving the Whole Community with a Focus on Socially Vulnerable Populations

Risk communication involving socially vulnerable populations is a two-way process that requires engaging and understanding the needs of the community. Learn how to enhance the effectiveness of risk messaging by creating genuine partnerships and tapping into local priorities and concerns. The webinar includes an overview of several resources that are available to assist with developing risk communication messaging with a focus on reaching socially vulnerable populations. Referenced risk communication resources are available online here.

  • Date: September 21, 2021
  • Speaker: 
    • Dr. Nnenia Campbell
      Deputy Director, Bill Anderson Fund
      Research Associate, Natural Hazards Center, University of Colorado Boulder
  • Webinar:


 August 4, 2021 - Environmental Justice, Equity, and Flood Risk Management

In this "Bridging the Equity Gap: Flood Resilience for the Whole Community" webinar series launch, panelists begin with the history of environmental justice at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

After describing the history of environmental justice at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, panelists and audience members explored the intersection of environmental justice with flooding and identified the conditions and factors that make people, institutions, and natural systems more vulnerable to flooding than others. Audiences heard the story of the award-winning Mutual Aid Response Network that demonstrated how an alternative and community-led approach to emergency response during the 2020 Hurricane-Pandemic season met the needs of the people effectively, efficiently, and compassionately.

  • Date: August 4, 2021
  • Speakers: 
    • Jerica Richardson, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Mobile District
    • Dámaris Villalobos-Galindo, Valley Water
    • Miriam Belblidia, Imagine Water Works
    • Klie Kliebert, Imagine Water Works
  • Webinar: