Rebecca Hansen works nationwide with clients including governments, non-profits and private entities. Her professional emphasis is the integration of special needs and human services issues into emergency management standards, planning and practices. In her field she has developed and conducted several training sessions for public health and emergency management professionals. During the response and recovery phases of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in Louisiana Ms. Hansen worked as a subject matter expert on one of four Rapid Assessment Teams deployed by a national disability organization. She presently serves on a select special needs advisory group to The Road Home, Louisiana’s housing recovery program. Ms. Hansen was recently selected as an instructor with the CUNY Graduate Center, a partner with NYC OEM, to carry out coastal storm training to NYC employees to prepare them for leadership roles in evacuation centers and hurricane shelters.
From 2000-2003 Ms. Hansen served as the Assistant Director of Government Relations for the Greater New York American Red Cross (ARC) and as their primary disaster planner and liaison to the New York City Office of Emergency Management. In that role, directly working with NYC OEM, she helped lead the initial and long-term human services response to the World Trade Center terrorist attack including assisting with sheltering, food provision, service coordination, outreach, and other aspects of the complex response system. She collaborated with government and non-profit organizations in disaster preparedness and planning activities to address critical human needs issues. At ARC Ms. Hansen managed and trained a team of 20 volunteers to respond to the ARC, OEM, NYPD, or other Emergency Operations Centers activated within the ARC jurisdiction prior to, during, or after disasters. In addition she initiated activities to increase membership, develop infrastructure, and increase response capability of member organizations, as vice chair for the New York City Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (NYC VOAD).
Prior to the American Red Cross Ms. Hansen worked for the New York City Office of Emergency Management for three years. Her responsibilities included assisting with the development of the NYC Sheltering plan; coordination of human services activities during activation of New York City’s Emergency Operations Center; development and facilitation of interagency workshops, classes, table-top and full-scale exercises to test existing disaster plans, agency roles and resource allocation and management (topics included human services disaster response, Y2K planning and response, the Coastal Storm Plan, and the Emergency Operations Center information management tool); management of the NYC Emergency Hotline; planning activities relating to the NYC Water Disruption Plan, the NYC Heat Plan and the NYC Coastal Storm Plan; and, serving as the lead emergency manager for Y2K contingency planning with the Department of Environmental Protection, the Department of Information Telecommunication and Technology and the Administration for Children’s Services.
Ms. Hansen received a Bachelors of English from the University at Albany and earned a Masters degree in Social Work from the Hunter College School of Social Work. She is affiliated with the International Association of Emergency Managers (IAEM) and the National Association of Social Workers (NASW).