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Community Engagement in Research Conference: Advancing Communities’ Disaster Resilience


Clinical & Translation Science Institute of South East Wisconsin

Community Engagement in Research Conference: Advancing Communities’ Disaster Resilience

September 18, 2013 @ 8:00 am – 4:00 pm

Harley-Davidson Museum®
400 W. Canal Street
Wisconsin, USA

Conference Description

The Medical College of Wisconsin’s Community Engagement Key Function of the Clinical & Translational Science Institute of Southeast Wisconsin in collaboration with the Department of Emergency Medicine, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and the City of Milwaukee Department of Public Health are hosting a one-day conference to expand dialogue on advancing community resilience in preparation for possible future disasters which have been common in this region and state.

This conference is tailored for academic, clinical and community researchers interested in developing a local/regional/international pathway to whole community emergency preparedness. The success of the conference will also come from equal participation of a wide variety constituents, including government officials, public health professionals, community based organizations, small and large businesses, and volunteer groups. By attending the conference, participants will explore the following questions:

§  What are the community and academic perspectives about major local disasters and risks which can enhance a shared awareness and improve alignment across sectors for resilience during future disasters?

§  How can existing community-academic partnerships be leveraged to improve local, regional, and federal response in diverse communities when disasters strike?

§  How can business, government, and community-based organizations best interact to plan for and respond to crises?

§  Identification of existing community resilience strategies that can catalyze innovation toward FEMA’s goal of “Whole Community” disaster response

§  How can community preparedness for disasters improve overall community health?

Keynote Speakers

Steve Fronk was appointed by City of Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett in 2009 to serve as the Director of Emergency Management and Homeland Security for the City of Milwaukee and point of contact for the Milwaukee Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI. He was previously involved with the Milwaukee UASI in 2004-2005 while serving as an attorney with the Milwaukee Fire and Police Commission, and participated in the very first National Homeland Security Response Planning Group at the U.S. Naval Post-Graduate School in Monterrey, California during that time period. As Director of Emergency Management for the City of Milwaukee, Steve is responsible for direct oversight of all emergency management and homeland security issues involving the City. As UASI point of contact he has been involved in all Milwaukee area UASI projects, policies and funding and has served as a liaison between local state and federal emergency management agencies. He has been a guest lecturer for the Milwaukee Bar Association and Milwaukee Area Technical College and serves on executive boards for the Milwaukee Homicide Review Commission, Wisconsin Hospital Emergency Preparedness Program and National Homeland Security Coalition.

Richard C. Hunt, MD, FACEP serves as Senior Medical Advisor for the National Healthcare Preparedness Programs in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Prior to serving in his current position, Dr. Hunt was Distinguished Consultant and Director of the Division of Injury Response at the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control at CDC. While there, he led the development of preparedness and response initiatives for terrorist bombings including the guidance, In a Moment’s Notice: Surge Capacity for Terrorist Bombings, and the Tale of Our Cities conference series. He oversaw development of CDC’s National Guidelines for Field Triage of Injured Patients and the Acute Injury Care Research Agenda. Prior to his work at CDC, he served as Professor and Chair of the Department of Emergency Medicine at SUNY Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, NY. Dr. Hunt served as liaison from the American College of Emergency Physicians to the American College of Surgeons Committee on Trauma. He is a Past President of the National Association of EMS Physicians, and Founding President of Advocates for EMS.

Tracey O’Sullivan is an Associate Professor in the Interdisciplinary School of Health Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Ottawa. She obtained her masters degree from the University of Victoria and her PhD from Queen’s University. She worked as a Senior Research Associate at the University of Ottawa’s Institute of Population Health, prior to starting her faculty appointment in 2007. Tracey’s research program focuses on support mechanisms to promote health and resilience in conditions of high personal, occupational and community stress, with particular emphasis on building capacity for emergency management through community engagement, multi-disciplinary collaboration, and strengthening of critical social infrastructure. She is the lead investigator for The EnRiCH Project, which is a community-based participatory research project focused on enhancing resilience and preparedness among high risk populations, using a functional capabilities framework. In 2009, Tracey received the Faculty of Health Sciences Excellence in Education award, for recognition of excellence in teaching and research. In 2012 she received an Early Researcher Award from the Ontario Ministry of Economic Development and Innovation in recognition for her work on Salutogenic Indicators for Organizational Resilience.


Syed M. Ahmed, MD, MPH, DrPH, FAAFP
Senior Associate Dean for Community Engagement
Professor, Department of Family and Community Medicine
Professor, Institute for Health and Society
Director, Healthier Wisconsin Partnership Program
Director, CTSI Community Engagement Key Function


Zeno Franco, PhD
Assistant Professor, Dept. Family & Community Medicine, MCW
Member of the Board, International Association for Information Systems for Crisis Response and Management (ISCRAM)
Department of Homeland Security Fellow (fmr)
External Science Advisor, PsyCris Project on Disasters & Community (European Commission)


§  Mario (Ricardo) Colella, DO, MPH, Associate Professor, Emergency Medicine, MCW

§  Stephen Hargarten, MD, MPH, Associate Dean, Chairman, Director, Professor, Emergency Medicine, MCW

§  Kathryn A. Kuhn, VP Government and Community Relations, MCW

§  Michelle Smith-Beckley, Healthier Wisconsin Partnership Program (HWPP)

§  Jason M. Liu, MD, Emergency Medicine, MCW

§  Stan Stojkovic, PhD, MS, Dean, Professor of Criminal Justice, Helen Bader School of Social Welfare, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

§  Mia DeFino, MS, Community Engagement, MCW

Collaborating Organizations