Newswise — As we approach the eight-year anniversary of our nation’s worst terrorist attack, the question that most people have is: “How prepared are we today, at all levels of government, to respond to another terrorist attack or major emergency incident.” That is a question that is posed frequently to Dr. Robert S. Fleming, a professor of management at Rowan University and a recognized expert in emergency management and terrorism preparedness.
Fleming, an advocate of ensuring the “battle readiness” of local emergency responders who each and every day serve as our nation’s “domestic defenders,” says that “the importance of ensuring readiness of local first responders cannot be overemphasized in that they will be on the incident scene long before regional, state and federal resources arrive, and the strategic and operational decisions they make will significantly influence incident outcomes.”
Fleming has been actively engaged in assessing levels of preparedness and in assisting governmental entities and emergency responders in enhancing their “response readiness” for all types of emergency incidents, including terrorist attacks, since years before the tragic events of September 11, 2001. In addition to conducting research on terrorism preparedness and developing a model for assessing organizational vulnerability to acts of terrorism, Fleming served on the U.S. Department of Justice Stakeholders Group, which presented a comprehensive set of recommendations for addressing domestic terrorism to the Department of Justice and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
His extensive record of service at the local, county, regional, state and federal levels makes him uniquely qualified to comment on an array of timely issues. His professional responsibilities have included:
• Served as chairman of the National Fire Academy Board of Visitors, the federal advisory committee under the U. S. Department of Homeland Security that ensures that an appropriate curriculum is available for training the nation’s emergency responders. Additionally the Board of Visitors reviewed and recommended to the Secretary of Homeland Security the credentialing system that will be implemented for credentialing first responders for purposes of response to major incidents.
• Serving as chairman of the Pennsylvania Fire Service Certification Advisory Committee, which is responsible for providing advice and counsel as the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania develops and implements processes for training, certifying and credentialing first responders.
• Serving as chairman of the Chester County (Pa.) Local Emergency Planning Committee, which addresses issues of emergency preparedness within the County of Chester and coordinates with other counties within the region.
Fleming has worked with the media extensively since September 11, 2001 and is frequently interviewed by the print, radio and television media. He is available to discuss an array of timely issues including:
Preparedness Levelso Terrorism Preparedness Todayo Regional and National PreparednessVulnerability Assessmento Rethinking Vulnerability to Terrorismo Assessing Organizational Vulnerability to Acts of Terrorismo Assessing Community and Regional Vulnerability to Acts of TerrorismRole of “First Responders”o First Responders as Our Nation’s “Domestic Defenders”o Preparing First Responders: Post 9/11Preparation Strategieso Lessons Learned from 9/11o Regional Preparedness Strategieso National Preparedness Strategieso Establishment and Operation of the Department of Homeland Securityo Training of First Responders: Post 9/11o Emergency Preparedness Drills and Exerciseso Credentialing of First Responderso Changing Paradigms in Preparedness and Responseo Enhanced Preparedness through Governmental Cooperationo The National Incident Management System o The National Response Framework Impact of Terrorism on Businesso Changing Business Practices: Post 9/11