In New Jersey, Collaboration is Key

A number of initiatives have contributed to the recent spate of activity that is enabling the Garden State’s cultural heritage and emergency management communities to move forward together on emergency preparedness. From the Regional Emergency Response Networks project in 2012 to the creation of the New Jersey Cultural Alliance for Response network in 2014, New Jersey has been moving full speed ahead!

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Webinar Series to Cover Mitigation, Continuity Planning, and Federal Disaster Recovery Assistance

Heritage Preservation is hosting a series of webinars this fall to raise awareness about important emergency management programs offered at the state and federal levels. Each 90-minute webinar will include time for attendees to confer with the presenters during a Q&A session.

Scott Baldwin, Mitigation Specialist, Colorado Office of Emergency Management, will be presenting on Mitigation and Mitigation Planning. Topics to be discussed include hazard identification, risk assessment, and how to obtain funding and communicate the necessity of cultural resource inclusion in state and local hazard mitigation plans. The webinar will take place on Thursday, November 13, 3:00 – 4:30 EST. Register for this webinar here.

Kiran Dhanji, Section Administrator, Preparedness, Texas Division of Emergency Management, will be presenting on Disaster and Continuity Planning and Preparedness. Topics to be discussed include the link between disaster response and continuity of operations plans, planning essential functions, and the planning process as a whole. The webinar will take place on Thursday, November 20, 3:00 – 4:30 EST. Register for this webinar here.

Mark Randle, Small Business Administration Public Information Officer, will be presenting on Federal Disaster Recovery Assistance from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) for Private, Nonprofit Organizations. Topics to be discussed include the SBA federal declaration process, types of loans available to organizations, eligibility, and the application and disbursement processes. The webinar will take place on Wednesday, December 3, 3:00 – 4:30 EST. Register for this webinar here.

Interested members of state cultural heritage emergency networks are welcome to register for the webinars. Our aim is to keep participation manageable to facilitate the discussion, so feel free to share registration details with colleagues at the state level, but please bear in mind that these webinars are aimed at providing information that’s most useful to network members, who will then be better equipped to help their constituents.

Thanks to the support and funding provided by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the webinars are presented free of charge. However, if you cannot attend, the webinars will be recorded and will be available as soon as possible at the State Heritage Emergency Partnership website, We encourage you to share the recordings as widely as possible.

If you have any questions, please contact Katelin Lee, Emergency Programs Assistant, 202-233-0835.

Pennsylvania Moves Forward

The Conservation Center for Art & Historic Artifacts (CCAHA), which was represented at the Philadelphia forum, has been awarded $189,000 by the Institute of Museum and Library Services to lead the Pennsylvania Cultural Resilience Network (PACRN), a two-year project to develop, coordinate, and consolidate statewide efforts to address disaster preparedness and response needs at museums and historic sites through new programs and resources. Components of the PACRN initiative include: emergency planning, response, and recovery training for museums and historic sites; the establishment of a trained response team to provide triage assistance when emergencies occur; expanded online emergency resources; and the development of an Annex concerning protocols at collecting institutions to be added to the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency’s statewide response and recovery plans. Click here for more information.

Another cool Pennsylvania initiative is Pennsylvania’s Top Ten Endangered Artifacts. This campaign highlights the cultural significance of our nation’s valuable and vulnerable heritage held in trust in Pennsylvania’s museums, libraries, archives, and historic sites. Check out the Top Ten here and vote for your favorite artifact (and even consider a financial contribution). Anyone can vote, whether or not you’re a Pennsylvanian.

More Support for Your State Partnership

Heritage Preservation has been awarded an off-cycle grant by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) to provide additional training and guidance to the 23 state heritage emergency partnerships that were launched at three forums this past spring. As part of the new grant, Heritage Preservation will host four two-hour webinars in 2014 on the following topics:

How an Emergency Operations Center (EOC) Operates
Continuity of Operations (COOP) Planning
Mitigation and the Mitigation Planning Process
Navigating Public Assistance Following a Disaster

We would love to draw from forum emergency managers to help us present these webinars; you are the experts, not us. If your area of expertise is in one of the above topics and you’re interested in sharing your knowledge, please let Lori Foley know. We’ll even pay you an honorarium.

And we’ll keep all of you posted as planning proceeds.

Welcome To Our New Site

We have a new name and a new site! Previously US Culture Network, we are now officially The Heritage Emergency Partnership. Below is a brief description of our project. To learn more, visit our About page.

Heritage Preservation Received IMLS Grant to Support the Development of Statewide Cultural Heritage Emergency Networks

Heritage Preservation received a Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program Grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) in August 2012. The IMLS grant supports the development of statewide cultural heritage emergency networks by strengthening the relationships among state libraries, state archives, state museum associations, state historic preservation agencies, and state and federal emergency management agencies to more effectively prepare for and respond to disasters.

The project began with an examination of the strengths and weaknesses of six existing statewide preparedness and response initiatives – the Alliance for Response, the Coordinated Statewide Emergency Preparedness (COSTEP) initiative, the Cultural Resources Emergency Support Team (CREST) project, the Delaware Disaster Assistance Team (DDAT), the Intergovernmental Preparedness for Essential Records (IPER) project, and the Regional Emergency Response Networks (RERN) program. The findings of this assessment will form the basis of three national forums attended by state delegates from each of the five communities of interest. The conclusions and recommendations that emerge from the forums will inform an action plan that will empower states, territories, and tribal nations to establish emergency networks.

The overall goal of this project embodies Heritage Preservation’s mission- to preserve and protect our nation’s cultural heritage for future generations through innovative leadership, education, and programs.