Special EMForum.org Webinar Program
February 29, 2012

Engaging the Whole Community
in Emergency Management

David J. Kaufman
Director, Office of Policy and Program Analysis, FEMA

Moderator: Amy Sebring, EMForum.org
Photo of David Kaufman

Live Meeting Recording
Audio Only MP3 Recording
Summary Transcript
Speaker Biography
Related Links


Over the past year, FEMA has engaged many of its partners, including tribal, state, territorial, local, and Federal representatives, the academic sector, the private sector, nonprofits, faith-based organizations, the disability community and the public in a national dialogue on a Whole Community approach to emergency management. The recently released document, A Whole Community Approach to Emergency Management: Principles, Themes, and Pathways for Action, synthesizes what FEMA heard through research, conferences, listening sessions, and direct feedback from its partners about how this approach is successfully working around the country.

Woven throughout the document and supported by several examples are three key Whole Community principles that emerged through the national dialogue:

  • understand and meet the actual needs of the whole community;
  • engage and empower all parts of the community to define their needs and provide ways to meet them; and
  • strengthen what already works well in communities on a daily basis to improve resiliency and emergency management outcomes.

Speaker Biography

David J. Kaufman was appointed Director of FEMA's Office of Policy and Program Analysis (OPPA) in September 2009. In this position he is responsible for providing leadership, analysis, coordination, and decision-making support to the FEMA Administrator on a wide range of Agency policies, plans, programs, and key initiatives.

Mr. Kaufman has extensive experience with homeland security and disaster preparedness issues. He has been a member of the faculty at the Naval Postgraduate School’s Center for Homeland Defense and Security, where he has taught in the Center’s graduate and executive level education programs, and has previously served in several senior positions in the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and in FEMA.

His previous service included establishing the Office of Preparedness Policy, Planning and Analysis in FEMA's National Preparedness Directorate, where as the Director he led policy and planning efforts for national preparedness; and Acting Director and Deputy Director of the Preparedness Programs Division in the Office for Domestic Preparedness, where he oversaw the day-to-day activities of DHS’ $3 billion portfolio of state, local, and infrastructure preparedness assistance programs.

In 2008, Mr. Kaufman left government service to become Safety and Security Director for CNA, a non-profit think-tank that provides analysis and solutions to challenging problems for all levels of government, where he worked on a range of homeland security issues including community engagement, risk management, and catastrophic planning, and supported the Quadrennial Homeland Security Review.

Mr. Kaufman holds a Master of Public Policy degree from the University of Michigan; a Bachelor of Arts degree in International Relations, Political Science, and History from the University of Wisconsin-Madison; and is a graduate of the Center for Homeland Defense and Security's Executive Leaders Program.

Related Links

FEMA Whole Community Initiative Website
A Whole Community Approach to Emergency Management: Principles, Themes, and Pathways for Action
FEMA IdeaScale Collaboration Community