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Who is Deanne Criswell?
Deanne Bennett Criswell is an American emergency management professional who has served as the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s administrator since April 2021. Criswell previously served as commissioner of the New York City Department of Emergency Management.
Criswell graduated from Manistee’s Catholic Central High School.
She then graduated from Colorado State University with a Bachelor of Science in technology education, a Master of Public Administration from the University of Colorado Denver, and a Master of Science in homeland security from the Naval Postgraduate School.
Criswell served with the 140th Wing of the Colorado Air National Guard and was deployed to Kuwait.
She also spent 21 years as a firefighter.
Criswell oversaw the city of Aurora, Colorado’s Office of Emergency Management.
She later worked for the Federal Emergency Management Agency during the Barack Obama administration before being appointed commissioner of the New York City Department of Emergency Management in 2019.
On February 22, 2021, her nomination to be the next FEMA administrator was submitted to the United States Senate. She was confirmed by voice vote on April 22, 2021, and sworn in on April 26, 2021, by Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.
Ms. Deanne Criswell was confirmed by the Senate as Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency on April 22, 2021. (FEMA).
Ms. Criswell served as Commissioner of the New York City Emergency Management Department from 2019 to 2021 prior to her appointment.
She was in charge of the City’s efforts to plan for and prepare for emergencies, educate the public about preparedness, coordinate emergency response and recovery efforts, and disseminate emergency information.
As Commissioner of NYC Emergency Management, Ms. Criswell oversaw the city’s response to emergencies such as extreme summer heat, large fires, and power outages, including blackouts on Manhattan’s west side and southern Brooklyn in July 2019.
She also oversaw the City’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, preventing the healthcare system from collapsing, ensuring that no New Yorker went hungry, establishing a first-of-its-kind non-congregate sheltering program, and assisting the country’s largest mass fatality program.
Additionally, she has coordinated the City’s readiness for upcoming events such as the 2019 Ticker Tape Parade honoring the United States Women’s National Soccer Team and the 2019 New York City Marathon, the world’s largest marathon.
She previously worked at FEMA as a Federal Coordinating Officer and as the leader of one of the Agency’s National Incident Management Assistance Teams (IMAT).
Ms. Criswell served as the agency’s primary Federal representative, overseeing the agency’s response to and recovery from emergencies and major disasters ranging from severe flooding in North Dakota to hurricanes in South Carolina to wildfires in Colorado.
She also served as the director of the city of Aurora’s Office of Emergency Management, where she oversaw strategic changes to the city’s emergency and disaster planning.
During her tenure there, Ms. Criswell oversaw transitional housing and family reunification efforts in response to Hurricane Katrina evacuees.
Ms. Criswell served as a principal for clients at the federal, state, and local levels, as well as the private sector, as an executive in the Cadmus Group LLC’s homeland security sector, providing exceptional technical expertise and experience to advise her clients on achieving their critical missions.
Ms. Criswell served 21 years as a firefighter and deputy fire chief in the Colorado Air National Guard.
She deployed to Kuwait in 2001 as a fire officer to assist with crash fire rescue operations, and to Qatar, Afghanistan, and Iraq in 2010 to advise senior leadership on fire protection requirements for new and existing military bases.
Ms. Criswell earned a Bachelor of Science degree in technology, education, and training from Colorado State University-Fort Collins. She also holds a Master of Public Administration from the University of Colorado – Denver and a Master of Arts in Security Studies from the Naval Postgraduate School, Center for Homeland Defense and Security.
New York City Emergency Management Department
Criswell is the first woman to head the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Criswell, who previously served as commissioner of the New York City Emergency Management Department, was confirmed as FEMA administrator by the Senate in April, making her the agency’s first female administrator.
Criswell assisted the city’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, large fires, excessive heat, and blackouts – as well as events such as the New York City Marathon – during her two years in New York, according to her biography on FEMA’s website.
According to The City newspaper in New York, a report recently released by City Comptroller Scott Stringer claimed the city’s response to the pandemic was out of date and lacked critical supplies such as N95 masks for health care workers.
Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York City defended the response, stating that there is “no way to fully understand a global pandemic until you are in it, and none of us anticipated anything like this anywhere.”
In February 2020, the city discovered that its stockpile of over 100,000 N95s had run out.
In response, Criswell stated in an email last year that “no city stockpiles contain non-expired N-95 surgical grade masks.”
However, according to the newspaper, the NYC Health + Hospitals’ pandemic preparedness manual from 2019 stated that a large stockpile of personal protective equipment should always be on hand.
Stringer’s report concluded that it was unclear precisely what role Criswell’s department played in responding to the pandemic, which claimed over 33,000 lives in New York.
De Blasio lauded Criswell following President Biden’s January nomination of her for the FEMA position.
According to the AM New York newspaper, de Blasio stated, “The American people deserve leaders like Deanne Criswell.”
“Deanne has been an unflinching, knowledgeable, and highly respected member of this administration.
I’m proud of everything she’s accomplished in New York City, and I’m excited to see what she’ll accomplish in her new position.”
Criswell previously worked for FEMA in a lower-level capacity during the Obama administration, including as the leader of a national incident management assistance team and as a federal coordinating officer, where she served as the primary federal representative for major disasters, according to FEMA’s website.
FEMA faced backlash in 2005, long before Criswell arrived, for its response to Hurricane Katrina, which made landfall on New Orleans 16 years ago Sunday.
Criswell may find herself in a position similar to that of former FEMA Director Michael Brown, who led the agency during Katrina’s aftermath.
Brown was forced to resign as a result of the federal response, which was widely criticized.
Katrina was blamed for 1,800 deaths and wreaked havoc on New Orleans, causing levee breaches and catastrophic flooding.
The city took years to recover.
Criswell was working in Colorado during the Katrina response as the head of the city of Aurora’s Office of Emergency Management, where she coordinated transitional housing and family reunification for Katrina evacuees being relocated to the area.
Criswell was also on the ground during the search and recovery operation following the condo collapse in Surfside, Florida, which killed 98 people.
“It’s difficult to express the devastation that this community is going through,” Criswell told Cox Media Group.
“FEMA has a presence on the ground.
We have a recovery center that is assisting families and loved ones who have been impacted by this tragic event.”
Net Worth, Salary
Works as an American emergency management professional who has served as the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s administrator since April 2021. Deanne Criswell has a net worth of $500,000. and has a salary of $243,171 according to public records.
Deanne Criswell had married and is currently single. her ex-husband is John Criswell employed at FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency). With that being said they’re divorced because Deanne betrayed with numerous affairs.
Climate Change: Crisis of our Generation
Deanne Criswell, the administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, declared Sunday that climate change is the “crisis of our generation” following the devastation caused by Hurricane Ida.
Criswell stated during an appearance on “Fox News Sunday” with Chris Wallace that the frequency and intensity of recent weather events indicate the “impacts of climate change” and that the federal government should begin investing in mitigating those impacts.
“This storm, in particular, intensified so quickly… in the Gulf that emergency managers and responders had an even shorter time to warn the public and assist them in getting out of harm’s way,” she explained.
“This storm, as well as several other recent weather events, are rapidly intensifying and dumping copious amounts of rain and tornadoes.”
“This is the crisis of our generation, these impacts of climate change, and we must act now to mitigate the future risks,” she continued.
“This, I believe, will become our new normal.
In 2017, we witnessed several severe weather events.
Last year set records for hurricanes and wildfires.
The United Nations had just released their climate report, in which they stated that we are currently in the midst of a climate crisis that is only going to get worse.”
Wallace pressed Criswell on how climate change can be blamed for all weather extremes, including record heat and cold, as well as drought and flooding, which appears to be “contradictory.”
“You know, I’m not sure how climate change specifically affects it,” Criswell responded.
“What I do know is that we are seeing an increase in the frequency and intensity of storms.”
Criswell lauded President Biden for authorizing $5 billion in “resilience funding” for states and local governments to boost preparedness in advance of natural disasters last month.
She also lauded the president’s bipartisan $1 trillion infrastructure plan, which she said would help rebuild infrastructure to withstand extreme weather conditions.
“From what I understand, portions of that plan will also contribute to and increase funding for mitigation efforts,” she said.
“However, another component of that plan is assisting in the general strengthening of our infrastructure.
We have an aging infrastructure in this country, and we need to work on rebuilding it, strengthening it so that it can withstand future threats.”
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