Our Staff and Associates
It takes a team to make any project a success. Our consulting team is made up of independent professionals who are dedicated to the field of emergency management. Each team member brings many years of expertise in the field as well as a belief in the positive and essential nature of emergency management. We focus our efforts on quality services and customized solutions.
Jamie Caplan is the principal of Jamie Caplan Consulting and has over twenty years of emergency management experience in all phases of emergency management. Her expertise is in mitigation planning, public outreach and HAZUS.
Ms. Caplan has managed multiple large-scale emergency management projects including three versions of the Territory of American Samoa Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan.
Ms. Caplan was a part of the NY Rising and Reconstruction Program that won “Best Involvement of Vulnerable Populations” Rising to the Top award for their stakeholder involvement and community outreach. Ms. Caplan orchestrated a large-scale outreach effort for South Central Connecticut Multi-Jurisdiction Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan. The needs of both shoreline communities and small rural communities were met.
Ms. Caplan has facilitated the outreach and program management for multiple conferences, including five Annual Hazus User Group Conferences for FEMA Headquarters, as well as multiple breakout groups and public workshops for mitigation, response and recovery planning projects.
Quite simply, facilitating public outreach and collaboration of multiple stakeholder groups is Ms. Caplan’s expertise. Clients include local governments, state governments, U.S. Territories, the Federal Emergency Management Agency and multiple Tribal Governments.
Mr. Buika, M.S. Geology, University of Southern California, is a professional earth scientist, and a California Registered Geophysicist. Jim has been a disaster management specialist for the past 28 years, affiliated with the Pacific Disaster Center, Hawaii, 2002-2006 and with Federal Emergency Management Agency, Region IX, San Francisco, 1988-2002. At the Pacific Disaster Center, Jim managed the PDC’s Disaster Risk Management Program for Asian Megacities in partnership with the Earthquakes and Megacities Initiative, on two sustained Disaster Risk Management Master Plan projects for Metro Manila, Philippines and Kathmandu, Nepal, 2005 - 2006. Mr. Buika has been the Principal Investigator and Project Manager on projects to develop the American Samoa Risk and Vulnerability Assessment and Natural Hazards Mitigation Plan, 2003 and the Multi-hazard Urban Risk Assessment Project for Marikina City, Manila, Philippines, 2004.
Prior to PDC, Mr. Buika served for 13 years with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Region IX, San Francisco, as FEMA’s Regional Earthquake Specialist. Mr. Buika also led the FEMA Region IX efforts to initially implement the national risk assessment software application program known as HAZUS. Mr. Buika has managed Federal disaster mitigation teams for typhoons, hurricanes, floods, earthquakes and freezes within California, American Samoa and the Federated States of Micronesia. His special interest is to apply new technologies to enhance emergency managers’ decision-making capabilities.
Caroline Cunningham is a certified professional planner and floodplain manager with expertise in hazard mitigation planning and risk assessment, including Hazus-MH. She has contributed to plans at the local, regional, state, U.S. Territory, tribal, and university levels, including eight regional plans. In addition, she has worked with all levels of plan development including project management, action development, meeting facilitation, public outreach, risk assessment, and plan writing. She has taught the hazard mitigation planning regulations on behalf of FEMA.
Ms. Cunningham has completed risk assessments for hazard mitigation plans, preparedness exercises and pre-disaster catastrophic planning efforts. She utilizes Hazus-MH, ArcGIS, and other available tools to complete assessments and aid in the determination of potential dollar loss, structure damage, resource provision needs, and areas of concern. She also has conducted Hazus-MH Level 2, site-specific analysis for universities and communities. Lastly, Ms. Cunningham is a FEMA-authorized Hazus-MH trainer.
Pieter de Jong
Based out of Mendon, Massachusetts, Mr. de Jong has over 20 years’ experience in the field of comprehensive disaster management (CDM) and conducted a wide range of regional planning studies. He has worked across the entire spectrum of CDM including preparedness, response, recovery, and long-term reconstruction, and most extensively in the area of hazard mitigation. His experience includes Federal CDM policy development, in addition to leading project teams on local and regional disaster risk reduction projects in both pre- and post-disaster situations.
He began his professional career as a coastal zone planner for a rural county on the Eastern Shore of Maryland (Kent County), and then worked for the planning department in the rapidly urbanizing Harford County, also located on the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland. Those early experiences related to EPA’s Chesapeake Bay Program and implementing MD’s Chesapeake Bay Critical Areas program, firmly set the foundation for a professional career that has emphasized resiliency and sustainability planning here in the United States and internationally.
His consulting career has addressed coastal vulnerabilities, resiliency planning, and climate change adaptation (CCA) for both public and private sector clients. He was the national champion for the US FEMA program to promote sustainable development for high-risk and disaster affected communities. Mr. de Jong’s project management experience includes a range of vulnerability assessments addressing sea level rise (SLR), storm surge, hurricane, coastal and inland flooding, drought, landslide, tsunami, and earthquake hazards. He has led a number of long-term disaster recovery planning projects for municipalities throughout the United States. One specialty consulting area that Mr. de Jong has excelled at the local and regional levels is using an integrated development planning approach to incorporate risk reduction in regulatory, development review, comprehensive planning, and in capital improvement programming functions in order to address hazard mitigation across all the key sectors of importance to communities.
His international experience includes environmental and social impact assessment, disaster risk reduction, program evaluation, and conducting legislative reviews and institutional capability assessments related to CDM. He provided risk assessment and environmental planning input to a multi-disciplinary team developing a regional land use plan for the three Thailand provinces that were most affected by the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami. Supported Grenada and donor community in their declared mission to incorporate sustainable development and hazard risk reduction in their recovery and reconstruction program. Planning Team Lead for disaster risk reduction plans for a number of small island nations in the Caribbean that used the integrated development planning approach described above. He addressed SLR and CCA issues, as the co-author of UNEP publication, "Disaster Risk Management for Coastal Tourism Destinations Responding to Climate Change: A Practical Guide for Decision Makers”.
Yosef Yip is an urban planner and designer by training. He holds strong technical and communicative capabilities that contribute to the efficiency of his work. His public and private sector experience with City of Toronto, City of New York, HOK Planning Group, and IBI Group compliments his graduate and undergraduate studies to achieve a well-rounded approach to planning and design. He has generated master plans and project proposals for new cities, regeneration plans, and resort plans in the Middle East, China, and North America.