The Nebraska Silver Jackets Team was selected as the 2021 Silver Jackets Team of the Year by its peers. The Team received this recognition due to is its collaborative approach during 2019 Missouri River basin flooding, the largest federally declared disaster in the state’s history.
The Silver Jackets team assisted with response and recovery, engaging at the Joint Field Office and collecting highwater mark data. To collect data over a significant geographic area, the Team coordinated with local communities to enter data using an online portal, with the U.S. Geological Survey then surveying the data points. The Team successfully coordinated and transitioned into recovery, hosting three virtual post-flood workshops for communities about post-flood activities, grant opportunities, and agency resources to support recovery. Additionally, the Team collaborated to produce products to document the changed post-flood hydrologic and hydraulic environment, incorporating recent 2019 flood data to update numerous models and analyses. The team also participated on the Governor’s Task Force, evaluating local community applications for recovery funding, prioritizing projects, and also identifying other relevant funding sources, which maximized resources available to assist local communities.
The team’s successful accomplishments are attributed to active participation by many dedicated team members and agencies, demonstrating shared responsibility in action.