Silver Jackets: Many Partners, One team


Many Partners, One Team


For More Information Contact

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Kansas City DistrictEmail, 816-389-3337.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Tulsa District, 918-669-7330.​


AUG 30-31, 2023 Kansas Association of Floodplain Managers
SEP 5, 2023 Kansas Hazard Mitigation Team

Photo of Brian Rast, Ken Wade, and Julie MacLachlan who exhibited at the Kansas Silver Jackets work and Corps programs at the Kansas Association of Floodplain Managers annual conference August 31st and September 1st in Lawrence, KS.

Brian Rast, Ken Wade, and Julie MacLachlan (see photo) exhibited about the Kansas Silver Jackets work and Corps programs at the Kansas Association of Floodplain Managers annual conference August 31st and September 1st in Lawrence, KS. The floodplain managers that attended learned many new things on a range of topics. Tara Lanzrath, KDA DWR, Kansas Hazard Mitigation Team chair, presented on the status of flood mitigation work in Kansas, including new mapping projects and several flood buyout locations. Other presentations addressed topics like Exploring the Benefits and Multi-Program Uses of Graduate Flood Hazard and Risk Data and Decoding Climate Resilience were available. The team members held informal discussions on disadvantaged communities, timely flood map updates, and how to prepare communities for mitigation grants through current USACE and FEMA programs. The exhibit booth offered a chance to explain findings of the recently completed Kansas Healthy Watersheds project, to explain three current flood forecast inundation mapping projects, and to collect input for the Priority Repetitive Loss Areas project. All of these are FPMS Interagency Nonstructural projects funded this year, luckily, because of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. (Photo by Brian Rast)

Kansas Hazard Mitigation Team

The Kansas Hazard Mitigation Team (KHMT), under the joint leadership of the Kansas Department of Agriculture - Division of Water Resources and the Kansas Division of Emergency Management, is the longstanding entity managing state hazard mitigation and functions as the state Silver Jackets team. 

The KHMT Charter identifies the following purpose: To assess hazard mitigation needs, develop and implement statewide hazard mitigation policies, promote coordination of mitigation programs at all levels of government, and pursue alternate mitigation funding strategies.

The Silver Jackets efforts will support flood mitigation actions and the goals in the state hazard mitigation plan: 

  • Minimize the vulnerability of the people, property, environment, and economy of Kansas and its communities to the impacts of natural and manmade hazards
  • Build the mitigation capabilities of local governments throughout Kansas in establishing and implementing effective mitigation plans, policies, and programs
  • Promote a state policy framework for effective hazard mitigation programming in the state
  • Improve education and training in hazard mitigation and related programs for government officials, businesses, and the public.

Team Activities

Flood Forecast Inudation Mapping with NWS and USGS

The Kansas team is completing three community's inundation maps, in Ottawa, Salina, and Humboldt in late 2023. These will be hosted by NWS on the National Water Prediction Service website. The website replaces the Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service. Links to current community sites are listed below in a previous Team Activity.

Soils Versus Structures

The main project for 2023 for the Kansas Silver Jackets work involves looking at watersheds differently. This new project provides a cost effective analysis that compares land use practices for soil health management systems (NRCS) with small dams, specifically the costs associated with each. The project may help to guide the plans used by watershed districts in the future.

Nonstructural Workshop

On July 20, 2022, Brian Rast, Lead Silver Jackets Coordinator for Kansas, and Eric Lynn, Flood Risk Manager in Kansas City District, held a training session in cooperation with the KDA Division of Water Resources in Garnett, KS. Several community floodplain managers learned about nonstructural measures, including how to analyze and evaluate residential homes with various flood mitigation approaches. Attendees received training credits for maintaining their Certified Floodplain Manager certifications.

Mitigation Objects of Interest

The second action in the state’s all-hazard strategy (2018 Kansas Hazard Mitigation Plan) is about repetitive losses due to flooding. Priority Repetitive Loss Areas are a shared concern of USACE and FEMA, and the areas are a subject in FEMA NFIP Community Rating System, Activity 503 and 512. This interagency nonstructural project reflects on how repetitive loss properties inform and improve flood mitigation efforts. The project also considers the areas and where disadvantaged communities are. Two of the areas can get a benefit-cost analysis, which could be used to support a FEMA mitigation grant.

Kansas Healthy Watersheds

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment collaborated on their first project with the Kansas Silver Jackets team. The project evaluated the benefit of watershed-wide land use incentives that support the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service soil health management systems. These are practices like no-tillage farming, cover crops, perennial plants, and mob grazing. The result is a healthier soil that is like a sponge for absorbing rainfall. This flyer helps in understanding. The team used a hydrologic model and showed how well the flood flows can be reduced in the technical report. The effort also looks at Atlas-14 rainfall factors that can raise awareness of flood risks and how to adapt for climate change. The Kansas team will begin another project in this field of watershed planning in October 2022. The Buzz Newsletter Cover - September 2022For more information, you can visit the Kansas Department of Health and Environment’s Kansas Wraps website. The August national Silver Jackets webinar featured three presenters representing the project and will be available here.

Risk Outreach & Communication in Kansas (ROCK)

  • One of the interagency team projects, called the Risk Outreach & Communication in KS (ROCK) project, has implemented several forms of communication between 2020-2022. Most of these were signs. In addition, the team developed a script and a video that raises the awareness of communities and individuals for becoming more resilient by diversifying their set of flood risk management measures. Click the image below to go to the YouTube video.

Thumbnail of Partnering for Flood Resilience video from the Kansas Silver Jackets Team

  • The team developed four signs for levee sponsors and leveed communities to choose from in communicating the benefits of their levee and how to sustain it. The Topeka, KS levee sponsor received four signs on March 7, 2022, the first day of Flood Safety Awareness Week (see photo below).

Four signs used for ROCK project regarding levees.

  • Flood awareness achieved through signs and other tools are part of the new ROCK project. USACE Kanas City District has teamed up with KDA Division of Water Resources and NOAA National Weather Service and produced Turn Around Don't Drown signs (supporting NOAA NWS program). Learn more about dangerous low water crossings on roads and steps to take to be safe here.

Flood Safety Awareness Week

The Kansas Hazard Mitigation Team actively supports the Kansas Flood Safety Awareness Week, typically the second week of March each year prior to flood season. Along with Governor Laura Kelly’s annual proclamation, the partnering agencies increase awareness with signs, updated and improved flood maps, and even warning tools, like the flood forecast inundation maps.

Image of Governor Laura Kelly's flood proclamation (2022)

Kansas Flood Forecast Inundation Maps (FFIM)

Revised flood forecast inundation maps (FFIM) for the Missouri River downstream from west Kansas City to Leavenworth, KS combine the National Weather Service’s  forecast stages with levee heights. The inundation mapping combines inundation map books with forecasting and flood warning, and are offered as a way besides flood insurance rate maps to convey flood risk areas. The Kansas Hazard Mitigation Team requested the assistance of federal Silver Jackets  partners to develop FFIM for several communities in Kansas.

Kansas and Missouri Teams Receive Innovation Connection Award

Photo of Innovation Connection TrophyThe Federal Executive Board in Kansas City recognized the Silver Jackets projects that provide multiple flood forecast inundation maps with a trophy on August 8, 2017. The recognition was made on account of the innovative partnering combining the technical services of the NWS, USACE, and USGS with the state hazard mitigation teams.  

Third Place Innovation Connection Trophy Awarded to Kansas & Missouri Silver Jackets Teams:

On August 21, 2012, peer state hazard mitigation programs selected the KHMT as the 2011 State Silver Jackets Team of the Year.


Kansas Silver Jackets logo

Participating Agencies



  • Kansas Adjutant General's Department
  • Kansas Biological Survey
  • Kansas Corporation Commission
  • Kansas Department of Administration
  • Kansas Department of Aging
  • Kansas Department of Agriculture
  • Kansas Department of Commerce and Housing
  • Kansas Department of Education
  • Kansas Department of Health and Environment
  • Kansas Department of Human Resources
  • Kansas Department of Transportation
  • Kansas Forest Service
  • Kansas Geological Survey
  • Kansas Highway Patrol
  • Kansas Historical Society
  • Kansas Insurance Department
  • Kansas Legislative Research Department
  • Kansas State Fire Marshal's Office
  • Kansas Water Office (Current Vice-Chair)
  • Kansas Wildlife and Parks


U.S. Army Corps of Engineers supports state-led Silver Jackets Teams through its Flood Risk Management Program.