Shad Ahmed, Director
Shad Ahmed, MS, CEM, has an extensive background in diverse emergency management leadership roles within local, state, higher education, public health, and public safety agencies across New England. He serves as a subject matter expert for and has coordinated many projects in emergency management for organizations at the local, state, and national levels. He contributes to advancing the profession through publishing articles and presenting on emerging best practices in the field. He is an instructor in topics ranging from the Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP) to Incident Command System (ICS) to Continuity of Operations (COOP), having taught for nonprofit, academic, local, state, and federal organizations across the country. He holds a master's degree with a concentration in critical infrastructure protection and was recently appointed to the International Association of Emergency Managers' Certified Emergency Manager (CEM) Commission where he is responsible for reviewing credentials of professionals who are certifying or recertifying as a CEM. He is also a FEMA Master Exercise Practitioner, FEMA Master Continuity Practitioner, ASFPM Certified Floodplain Manager, is a graduate of the FEMA National Emergency Management Advanced Academy, and holds many other credentials and instructor certifications.
Prior to Portland, he served as an emergency manager with municipal, regional, higher education, and state agencies in Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island. He also served as director of a university-based research institute with work focused on connecting research to practical applications for public safety disciplines and training for senior officials. Director Ahmed's background includes experience intersecting related disciplines of law enforcement, emergency medical services, fire, fire marshals, environmental health, emergency communications, occupational safety, and risk management.
Angela Carkner, Regional Disaster Preparedness Organization (RDPO) Coordinator II
Angela joined the PBEM team in November 2017. In September 2022, she joined the Regional Disaster Preparedness Organization (RDPO) team as a Coordinator II supporting the RDPO planning portfolio. Previously at PBEM, she administered the City and County’s public alerting program and software, helped ensure Portland Emergency Coordination Center (ECC) readiness, supported City emergency training and exercise, and was a PBEM Duty Officer.
Prior to joining PBEM, Angela worked as a project and emergency manager at Multnomah County Drainage District for four and half years, focusing on flooding and levee systems. Angela is a third-generation Portlander and studied Planning, Public Policy, and Management at the University of Oregon.
Carol Chang, Regional Disaster Preparedness Organization (RDPO) Senior Planning Coordinator
Carol joined the Regional Disaster Preparedness Organization (RDPO) in June 2021 as a regional emergency preparedness coordinator. The role supports three regional subcommittees: training and exercise, resource management, and mitigation and recovery. Carol previously worked for New York City Emergency Management, and is experienced in large-scale emergency response operations and logistics.
Brandon Chapman, Operations Coordinator
Brandon comes with more than decade of experience in emergency management in both the public and private sector. Prior to PBEM, he worked for the City of Dallas, overseeing the Regional Catastrophic Preparedness Program, worked for the nation's largest utility provider in all hazards awareness, the City/County of San Francisco, for emergency planning, and the world's largest shipping line. Brandon holds a B.S. in Business Administration from the California Maritime Academy, CSU. He was a professional soccer referee for six seasons and continues to referee at the top college levels. In his free time he enjoys skiing, camping, hiking, and hanging out with his three orange cats.
Beth Crane, Regional Disaster Preparedness Organization (RDPO)
Beth joined PBEM in August 2018 as the Grant Coordinator for the RDPO. She is responsible for coordinating grant development and administration for the RDPO, ensuring a smooth experience for partners and awardees. Beth is currently serving as the RDPO's Interim Director.
Previously, she worked as the Operations Manager for the Oregon Health Security, Preparedness and Response Program at the Oregon Health Authority. She has expertise in emergency management, federal grant management, public budgeting, and contracts. She has worked extensively in the areas of social determinants of health and equity and inclusion. She graduated from Portland State University and has a Bachelor’s in Community Health Education and an Executive Masters of Public Administration.
Jaymee Cuti, Public Information Officer
Jaymee Cuti joined the Portland bureaus of Emergency Management and Emergency Communications in March 2023.
A FEMA-certified public information officer with a decade of experience in communications for the City of Portland, Jaymee previously served as Public Information Officer for the Portland Water Bureau (2014-2023) and Portland Housing Bureau (2012-2014).
She led and supported communications for regional emergencies, including an all-city boil water event, the Eagle Creek Fire, the COVID-19 pandemic, a shooting at Umpqua Community College, and Oregon's total solar eclipse response. Jaymee has experience in print and radio journalism.
Jaymee has a bachelor's degree in communications and art history from the University of California at Santa Barbara.
Glenn C. Devitt, Neighborhood Emergency Team (NET) Program and Information Specialist
As a member of the Community Resilience Team, Glenn is privileged to serve the volunteers of the NET and BEECN programs, and other preparedness efforts throughout Portland. Glenn chairs the regional UASI Citizen Corps Working Group and is a board member of the National CERT Association (NCA). His experience includes leadership of Sunnyside and Buckman NETs, civil rights and civil liberties advocacy, nonprofit governance, design of intercontinental computer networks, and 22 years as the owner of a website and app development firm. In his spare time he likes to get dirt under his nails in his garden, hike among very large trees, and play bocce.
Dan Douthit, Public Information Officer (Community Safety Division)
Dan is a member of the Portland Community Safety Division's communications team. He provides back up public information support to PBEM and the Portland Bureau of Emergency Communications (BOEC).
Dan started working at PBEM in 2008, first as a program specialist focused on regional coordination, and then as public information officer in 2013. He also previously served as a staff member in Portland Mayor Tom Potter’s office. Dan started working for BOEC in 2018 and the Community Safety Division in 2023. He holds an M.A. in Political Science and B.A. in Political Science and Canadian-American Studies from Western Washington University in Bellingham, WA.
Mark Ferdig, Regional Disaster Preparedness Organization (RDPO) Managing Director
Mark Ferdig has more than 27 years of domestic and international non-profit experience. He has a breadth of experience supporting households and communities to be more prepared and resilient in the face of chronic and acute crises; and also supporting communities and households to recover post-crisis in a way empowers and prepares for future crises.
He has a strong collaborative executive leadership background with extensive history managing strategic change and solving complex problems. He has thrived living and working in multicultural contexts around the world and has led initiatives that fosters more diverse and inclusive work environments.
He previously spent 22 years in the international relief and development sector, primarily with Mercy Corps.
He earned a Master of Environmental Studies degree from Evergreen State College and a BS in ecology and environmental management from South Dakota State University, with supplemental coursework in field ecology at the University of Montana Flathead Lake Biological Station. Mark is a certified PRINCE2® Registered Practitioner and a PMD Pro Project Management Professional.
Laura Hall, Regional Disaster Preparedness Organization (RDPO) Communications Coordinator
Laura joined the RDPO in 2017 and provides coordination of regional disaster communications. She is the Chair of the RDPO Disaster Messaging Work Group and co-coordinated the Regional Joint Information System during COVID-19 response. She is a Team Leader for the Arbor Lodge/Kenton Neighborhood Emergency Team and Co-Chair of Parents4Preparedness. She teaches disaster preparedness classes at venues throughout Portland and is a contract writer for the Oregon Seismic Safety Policy Advisory Commission.
Prior to joining the RDPO she worked in program coordination/management for Portland Community College and Portland State University. She holds a B.A. in Sociology and an M.A. in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages.
Regina Ingabire, Community Resilience Outreach Manager
Regina Ingabire joined PBEM in January 2018 to lead public engagement initiatives focusing on disaster risk awareness, community resilience, and household preparedness in historically underserved communities.
Before joining PBEM, Regina worked with Oregon Public Health Institute as Community Engagement and Equity Manager, where she managed projects addressing social determinants of health, mainly to increase health access services to low income communities in East Portland. She also worked with the Clinton Health Access Initiative in Rwanda coordinating public health projects. She obtained a master's degree from Brandeis University in Sustainable International Development and Bachelor of Arts in Accounting from National University of Rwanda.
Ernest "Ernie" Jones, Volunteer Program Development
Ernest Jones joined PBEM in October 2015 to work with the BEECN and NET programs and conduct outreach. He previously served 22 years as a reservist at the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in community relations and disaster survivor assistance on approximately 55 federally declared disasters, including Super Storm Sandy, Hurricane Katrina, and the World Trade Center in 2001.
Since 2005, Ernest has represented the U.S. as an election monitor for the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. He was a Rotary Foundation Graduate Scholar at Victoria University in Wellington, New Zealand, and holds a B.A. from The Evergreen State College and M.S.W. from the University of Washington.
Patrick Kramer, Procurement Analyst
Patrick joined PBEM in January 2022 as the Procurement Analyst for the Regional Disaster Preparedness Organization (RDPO). Patrick has worked for the City of Portland for almost 22 years, mostly at the Portland Bureau of Transportation. He has served in many roles, including as a Parking Enforcement Officer, Regulatory Program Specialist, and Towing Coordinator.
Summar Money, Regional Disaster Preparedness Organization (RDPO) Staff Assistant
Summar joined the Regional Disaster Preparedness Organization (RDPO) in 2022. She has extensive experience with all administrative tasks, including scheduling and correspondence. Summar has supported many committees in her roles as an office manager and recruiting assistant.
In addition to her duties as the program assistant, Summar is also active in many organizations in her community. She enjoys camping, hiking and paddle boarding with her husband and two boys..
Rachit Nerwal, Business Continuity Planner
Rachit joined PBEM in November 2018 as the bureau's Business Continuity Planner. He is a project manager with experience working in humanitarian relief and response, disaster risk reduction planning, and community needs assessment.
Rachit holds a master’s degree in Disaster Management from Tata Institute of Social Sciences, India. Previously, he worked on inclusive risk reduction planning and long-term recovery for hazards like floods, drought, landslides, and earthquakes in India and Nepal. Before starting to work in human development sector, Rachit worked as a software tester for an IT firm.
Lisa Oreskovich, Executive Assistant
Lisa joined the PBEM team February of 2023 as the Executive Assistant. She supports the Director as well as provides administrative assistance to the rest of the Bureau. Prior to joining PBEM, she worked for nine years at the City of Oregon City, first in Public Works and then as the Executive Assistant to the City Manager and Risk Administrator. She holds a B.A. and studied Criminal Justice at Portland State University as well as earning a Project Management Certification.
Outside of work, she is an avid reader and enjoys spending time with her husband, three children, and three dogs.
Jonna Papaefthimiou, Chief Resilience Officer
Jonna is Portland's Chief Resilience Officer. She coordinates hazard mitigation and business continuity planning for the City as an enterprise and leads a community resilience team, which includes direct community outreach, a Coalition of Organizations Active in Disaster, and volunteer programs for the Neighborhood Emergency Team (NET) and Basic Earthquake Emergency Communication Nodes (BEECN) program. The City’s resilience work advances the bureau’s vision of a resilient Portland, seeks to balance public infrastructure improvements with investments in community well-being, and is centered in service to the communities most impacted by disasters.
Jonna has been with PBEM since 2013. She previously worked as a community organizer, land-use planner, and political policy advisor. She holds a BS in Urban Studies and a Master in City Planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Jeff Perkins, Operations Analyst
Jeff joined PBEM in 2022 as an Operations Analyst. Prior to joining the bureau, he worked as a 911 call taker/dispatcher for the Florence Police Department and a dispatch supervisor for the Junction City Police Department. Jeff was born and raised in Portland and attended Roosevelt High School (Go Riders!). He graduated from Everest University with an Associate Degree in Homeland Security in 2013 and currently attends Arizona State University Online where he is studying for his bachelor's degree in emergency management. He served six years as a combat engineer in the Oregon Army National Guard and is currently in the Army Reserve. He volunteers with the Washington County Amateur Radio Emergency Service, is the Chair of the Technology Committee for the Oregon Emergency Management Association, and coaches youth baseball and basketball. Jeff describes himself as a family man that always finds himself busy trying to keep up with his kids.
Mike Phillips, Disaster Response Planner
Mike joined PBEM in February 2017 as the bureau’s Procurement manager. In December 2019, he became the bureau’s Disaster Response Planner, where he is responsible for leading collaborative planning processes and developing and documenting emergency response plans for the City.
Prior to joining PBEM, Mike was a Contracting officer for the Department of Human & Health services and served as an Intelligence Officer in the U.S. Army. Mike currently holds a BA in German Studies and an MA in Administration of Justice and Security.
Toni Slightam, Regional Disaster Preparedness Organization (RDPO) Grant Coordinator
Toni joined PBEM in April 2022 as the RDPO Grant Coordinator. Toni’s educational background is in Public Administration, but she has a myriad of experience in all sectors—public, private, and non-profit. She’s worked for the Oregon Health Authority, a strategic communications consulting firm, the US Department of State, an international adoption non-profit, a petroleum distribution wholesaler, taught English in Korea, and most recently, she worked as an independent management consultant for state and local governments in the Pacific NW while living in Japan. Toni has a BA in History from Oregon State University, a Project Management Certificate from Willamette University, and a Masters in Public Administration from Portland State University.
Jenna Stathopoulos, Community Outreach Associate
Jenna joined PBEM as the Community Outreach Associate to support Portlanders in their preparedness
journey. She holds a BA in Urban and Public Affairs with a focus in Civic Leadership from Portland State University. She had the invaluable experience of acting as the General Manager for the PSU Food Pantry, where she worked collaboratively across departments to create the Produce-to-Pantry Program, an on-campus food source for food-insecure students from seeds selected and bred for resilience against climate changes. Previously, she has worked in community engagement with local non-profits focused on equitable futures and as an event planner for large-scale sustainability conferences. Recognizing the power of convening and creating innovative solutions from assets existing within community, she holds that at the center of her work.
Tigger Subotnick, Operations Coordinator
Prior to joining PBEM, Tig worked for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) helping cities, counties, and agencies in Oregon with federal disaster aid. Tig is a 5th generation Portlander (Go Demos!), and a volunteer with the Multnomah County Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES). He has expertise in emergency management, FEMA's public assistance program, operations and logistics. Tig also has experience in radio broadcasting, film production, and risk management. He has a B.S. in Homeland Security and Emergency Management from Concordia University – Portland, and a M.S. in Homeland Security and Emergency Management with a concentration in Community Resilience from Arizona State University. He also is a Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriter and an Associate in Risk Management. You will often see Tig riding his bright red Vespa, cheering on the Portland Pickles, or camping in the great Pacific Northwest.
Kate Szrom, Coordinator, Community Organizations Active in Disaster (COAD)
Kate (she/her) joined PBEM in 2021 to coordinate the Community Organizations Active in Disaster (COAD) group. Her work supports community based organizations like nonprofits, faith organizations, and neighborhood groups in their critical work as trusted community leaders before, during, and after emergencies like severe weather, wildfires, and earthquakes.
Kate has a Master’s degree from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications and has previously worked in visual journalism and non-profit communications. She is working toward a graduate certificate in emergency management.
Jeremy Van Keuren, Community Resilience Manager
Jeremy manages the bureau’s volunteer programs and is a duty officer. He has worked for the City of Portland since 2003. He has been a policy manager in Portland City Hall (advising two mayors and one commissioner), worked in finance, housing, and economic development. Jeremy has graduated from Portland State University with a Bachelor’s in Anthropology and an Executive Masters of Public Administration.
Georgia West, Finance Analyst
Georgia first joined PBEM in January 2021 as the RDPO procurement analyst. As PBEM’s finance analyst, she provides financial management support working collaboratively with staff and partnering bureaus to perform core accounting duties, like monitoring fiscal activities and providing internal controls over budgets and grants.
Georgia has been working for the City of Portland since 2016 at the Portland Parks & Recreation bureau and at the Office of Community & Civic Life. She holds a Ph.D. in Ecology and worked for many years in native forests in the Brazilian Amazon.
Amanda Westervelt, Operations Specialist
Amanda (she/her) joined PBEM in 2021. Among other things, she serves as a duty officer, supports the ECC during emergency activations, supports training and exercise, and helps coordinate Neighborhood Emergency Team (NET) deployments. Before shifting to the Operations team, she worked for two years for PBEM’s Community Resilience Team, where she coordinated advanced training and managed deployments for the NET program.
Prior to joining PBEM, Amanda worked as a lead production chemist in California, a managing attorney in North Carolina, a Girl Scout leader and leader mentor, and Richmond NET Team Lead. She is a proud mother of two, and has a Bachelor’s in Biology from Cornell University and a Juris Doctor from Wake Forest University.
Morgan West, Operations Coordinator
Morgan joined PBEM in 2023. He currently serves as an Army National Guard flight paramedic, and previously worked as a Portland firefighter, a Secret Service agent, and a U.S. Coast Guardsman. He is a graduate of the University of Washington.
Katy Wolf, Operations Manager
Katy Wolf joined PBEM in 2016. Katy manages the Operations team and is responsible for recruiting and training Emergency Coordination Center (ECC) responders and for developing, conducting, and evaluating exercises designed to test and enhance the City’s capabilities. She serves as the ECC Manager during emergency activations and serves as a duty officer. Katy also started the Boise/Eliot/Humboldt Neighborhood Emergency Team (NET). Before PBEM, Katy worked in energy efficiency program management and business development for six years, and in urban planning and design for two years. Katy holds a B.A. in English from the University of Oregon.