July 2012 brought about an extreme drought season for New Mexico farmers, resulting in a drought disaster area being declared for Dona Ana County by the New Mexico Department of Agriculture. Federal assistance for Dona Ana County farmers helped them deal with drought, high winds, and wildfires.
The 2012 drought certainly wasn’t the first extreme weather condition to hit this area of New Mexico, and it certainly won’t be the last, thereby highlighting the need to have a well-equipped and highly trained emergency management staff on hand to assist with mitigation, recovery and response efforts in the event of a natural or manmade disaster.
The Path to Employment
Individuals interested in attaining emergency management jobs in Dona Any County must first earn a bachelor’s degree in emergency management, public administration, public safety management, or a closely related field. They also must possess at least 3 years of experience working in emergency management.
Professional certification in emergency management is commonplace and is often required by employers seeking to hire emergency management professionals. Professional certification in emergency management can be obtained either through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) or the International Association of Emergency Managers (IAEM).
Emergency Management Specialists in Dona Ana County
The job of emergency management specialists in Dona Ana County involves coordinating all prevention, mitigation, response, and recovery efforts for all natural, technological, and human caused events. Typical job duties for this profession include:
- Maintaining a situational awareness for activities that may result in incidents that could hamper response efforts and plan implementation.
- Preparing emergency plans that comply with all local, state, and federal regulations
- Coordinating disaster response and crisis management activities
- Developing and maintaining relationships with all levels of government and nongovernmental organizations
- Developing instructional materials to the public
- Inventory and distribute emergency and disaster-related equipment
- Prepare for and participate in state and federal financial and performance audits.
Dona Ana County/City of Las Cruces All Hazard Emergency Operation Plan
The Dona Ana County/City of Las Cruces All Hazard Emergency Operation Plan (AHEOP) outlines potential manmade and natural disasters in Dona Ana County, which include:
- Dust Storms
- High Winds
- Terrorist Attack
The Dona Ana County/City of Las Cruces All Hazard Emergency Operation Plan (AHEOP) details the personnel and equipment that may be called upon to help facilitate the response to disasters and emergencies. This often includes:
- Providing for the integration of resources of county and city government for hazard mitigation and for the recovery operations following a disaster
- Defining the roles and responsibilities of local government, private entities, and other nongovernment agencies for the preparing for and conducting emergency operations before, during, and after a disaster
- Providing a basis for the preparation of emergency operating procedures and training by the county
- Detailing operating procedures through the Incident Command System
- Maintaining compliance with the National Response Framework and the National Incident Management System
The Office of Emergency Management includes an emergency management supervisor, an emergency management coordinator, an emergency management specialist, and emergency management secretary.