• I believe true leadership has nothing to do with position.

    A leader is anyone willing to step forward and help.

    Maybe you’re committed to creating change – but you aren’t sure how or where to begin. Start your journey here.
  • Home
  • disaster recovery

Archives of #disaster recovery

Louisiana On My Mind —

I am thinking of some of my most treasured relationships. People in Louisiana. Friends and family. Many Louisiana friends are “storm friends”. We came to know one another in the aftermath of Katrina. We’ve seen horrible stuff. We’ve hugged in a street surrounded by wreckage, when everything was gray dust covered, with the smell of […]

7 Stages of Disaster Recovery: How the Light Gets In

“There is a crack in everything. It’s how the light gets in.” -Leonard Cohen About twelve years ago I began collecting stories — stories that emerged from working with people who had survived disasters. There were so many lessons in these stories. After a time, I began to notice that the wisdom I heard and […]

FERAL HOGS: In Disasters

Anti-fragility We woke up today to a story about the people we elected using their knowledge of what was coming — a potential pandemic — to enrich themselves. In every disaster there is the “betrayal stage”. That’s the moment when the realization comes that some part of this suffering could have been avoided. And that […]

RED LINE

I’m more interested in armor than vulnerability. In war, we don’t expose our throat to the enemy. When we are being assaulted, our poetic professions of pain do not cause a perpetrator to pause in their cruelty. We continue to believe all the displays of outrage and empathy, calls to higher ground and virtue are […]

Born For Storms: Nine Lessons on Creating Welcome and the Journey to Recovery

One of the oldest stories in the world is the story of displacement. Upended lives. Mass migrations. Wholesale disruptions of community and belonging. When weather or war make our world uninhabitable, we will move to higher ground. We will seek a new life. I have witnessed this recovery journey as CEO of BakerRipley, the largest […]

Born for Storms: What Makes Long-Term Disaster Recovery Work? 2008

“No one can whistle a symphony. It takes a whole orchestra to play it.” — H.E. Luccock Long-term recovery begins after emergency services are depleted or no longer needed. After newly arrived residents are safe, (temporarily) sheltered, fed, and treated for emergency medical needs, the longer term response must kick in. The social, faith-based, and […]

MOTHER NATURE

On my mind – The thing about Mother Nature is that if you go to war with her, you lose. She has her rules. You live in her. She’s a “natural consequences” kind of disciplinarian. So she just lets the results of actions roll down. You can drum up all the heroics you want, sound […]

journal excerpt: community development

February 2012 I hold this deep faith and commitment to the promise of this country — this heartfelt hope that we never ever break the contract we have with the world — that if you come here and work hard it will pay off. If you use your gifts and your voice, you will belong. […]

The Power of I’m Sorry

An honest desire to help allows us to say “I’m sorry.” I am so sorry for your loss. For the devastation. For oppression. For your wounds that won’t heal and your hurt that has no remedy. If we are one with those we want to help, it becomes natural to express our sorrow for what […]