Elizabeth Davis

Elizabeth Davis is an emergency management consultant specializing in fully inclusive planning, disaster human services and related issues through her firms EAD & Associates, LLC and the National Emergency Management Resource Center (NEMRC) both based in New York.  Both companies employ a holistic, client-focused approach to providing quality services and real-world solutions.  She is also a founding board member of the relaunched charitable organization Emergency Preparedness Initiative Global.

Ms. Davis received her JD from Boston University School of Law and her EdM from Boston University School of Education with a degree in the Socio-Bicultural Study of Deafness and American Sign Language.  She holds an undergraduate degree with a major in Sociology and a minor in Political Science from Barnard College at Columbia University. 

After many years as an advocate in the disability community, she began public service after law school with the NYC Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities as Assistant to Counsel and Senior Policy Advisor.  Due to her role as Incident Commander in the Deaf Mexican Nationals slave-ring case in Queens, she was transferred to the NYC Office of Emergency Management as Special Needs Advisor.  There she was responsible for ensuring that all elements of planning, response and recovery incorporated the unique needs of the disability community, senior population, and medically dependent persons.  She functioned in this capacity overseeing the Board of Education Y2K planning; planning for city-wide sheltering operations; coordinating transit strike/disruption responses; coordinating the public information lines during the West Nile virus outbreaks and she was a ground responder throughout the events of September 11th.

Ms. Davis now consults for public jurisdictions and agencies, private businesses, home based care agencies, residential health care organizations and others.  She retired as the first Director of the National Organization on Disability’s Emergency Preparedness Initiative (EPI) but remains an advisor to DHS and FEMA, sits on several national advisory boards, has been a court appointed subject matter expert, participates in many major conferences and web forums and has had materials published on the subject of special needs emergency preparedness and is a guest instructor to several emergency management graduate programs in addition to the recipient of several awards and commendations.

Realizing that building a community of purpose could drive serious cross-pollination between the worlds of emergency management, special needs advocacy organizations, and the private sector, Ms Davis founded and oversees the National Emergency Management Resource Center (NEMRC). NEMRC has as its centerpiece a subscription-based membership community serving government, non-profit and corporate organizations seeking to improve emergency preparedness and response with respect to the most vulnerable members of the population. NEMRC is also the home base for the intelSTREAMS program which provides near-real-time intelligent situational awareness layered with strategic oversight during regional crises and disasters.   

Ms. Davis is the co-chair of the National Hurricane Conference Health Care/Special Needs Committee; chair of the International Association of Emergency Managers (IAEM) Special Needs Committee; served a two-year term as appointed chair of the FCC’s CAC Homeland Security Committee; is an appointed member of the FEMA National Advisory Council’s Special Needs Subcommittee; and is the newly appointed chair of the FEMA Region II Regional Advisory Council’s Special Needs Subcommittee, to list a few active roles she maintains.  

As an accomplished public speaker with a reputation for creative solution development, Ms. Davis is considered one of the nation’s “go-to” sources when a convergence of emergency management and special needs issues is called for.  Her firm was responsible to get rapid assessment teams on the ground simultaneously in four Gulf States after Katrina and provide an immediate action report for the federal authorities regarding immediate health and special needs impacts.  This team model for communicating special needs information during a disaster is now being replicated across many federal agencies and was utilized in the 2008 hurricane session.  She and her team were brought in as subject experts on emergency planning elements for people with disabilities in the final development stages of the new New York Yankee Stadium.  Ms Davis herself has been called testify before Congress and was present in the Oval Office when then President Bush signed Executive Order 13347 and was later asked to brief the Obama Transition Team on the top issues of concern in her area of expertise.  

Ms. Davis operates both companies as boutique firms, with a mission and philosophy that supports an equal split annually of for-profit work coupled with pro-bono hours to demonstrate a real-world commitment as professionals to areas of core expertise.  As such, much of the work the firms are involved with has a national impact and depth while the exposure is not noted by revenue or accounting alone.  We remain true to this commitment and it has resulted in “informal” advising to most of the federal agencies, research efforts, and has even resulted in operational and logistics support in areas such as special needs sheltering, immediate demographic analysis and policy drafting during emergencies.

 Ms. Davis grew up in San Francisco but now resides in Brooklyn and Martha’s Vineyard with her husband and two young daughters where she remains active in her communities.

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