LOS ANGELES – Team Rubicon, a veteran-based global disaster response organization, announced today that Jeffrey Byard, formerly of Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), will join the organization in a key leadership role as Vice President of Government Relations and Emergency Management beginning Feb. 18.
At FEMA, Byard was Associate Administrator for the Office of Response and Recovery (ORR) and was the top executive charged with the nation’s disaster response, recovery, logistics and field operations. During this time he oversaw national-level operations in the 2017 and 2018 hurricane seasons, the largest and most complex hurricane response and recovery efforts in US history. Prior to FEMA, Byard served in several capacities with the Alabama Emergency Management Agency, working his way up to Executive Operations Officer. In all he brings 18 years experience in emergency management, and is also a veteran of the US Marine Corps, in which he served for four years.
“Jeff is regarded as one of the country’s best emergency managers, and he will help elevate Team Rubicon’s service delivery to support local communities and emergency managers throughout the country,” said David Burke, Vice President of Programs and Field Operations for Team Rubicon. “As we continue to grow, Jeff’s background and experience will ensure that Team Rubicon effectively employs its volunteer base and enhances our impact for communities in disaster response, emergency management and humanitarian assistance.”
In his new role, Byard will be charged with growing and formalizing Team Rubicon’s interactions with local, state, territorial and tribal governments, as well as industry partners and associations. He will also be tasked with improving communication, coordination and clarity among local emergency managers to help Team Rubicon determine how it can best serve each community and how it can continue to grow and provide needed support.
“It’s human nature to want to help a community after disaster strikes, and it’s a veteran’s instinct to feel ready and able to help, especially in challenging environments and fast-changing situations. Team Rubicon recognized this early on, and built an organization that’s uniquely effective in its disaster and humanitarian missions, while also changing the conversation around veterans reintegrating into civilian life,” said Jeffrey Byard. “I’m eager to help Team Rubicon continue to grow its relationships and partnerships with the ultimate goal of maximizing the organization’s impact for disaster survivors.”
Among Byard’s first objectives in his new role will be connecting Team Rubicon’s current capabilities and services to the emergency management community in ways that maximize their impact for communities.
Team Rubicon began with a team of eight veterans who responded to a devastating earthquake in Haiti a decade ago and has since grown to over 100,000 volunteers, consisting mostly of veterans who provide disaster aid in some of the world’s most difficult places. From 2010 through year-end 2019, Team Rubicon launched 412 relief efforts in all 50 U.S. states and 23 countries. Its teams responded to hurricanes including Harvey, Florence, Michael and Dorian, as well as many post-fire efforts in California. It rebuilt 121 homes with a new program started in 2018 and created about $34 million in savings for disaster-affected communities.
About Team Rubicon
Team Rubicon is a nonprofit organization that serves communities by mobilizing veterans to continue their service, leveraging their skills and experiences to help people prepare, respond, and recover from disasters and humanitarian crises. Programs and services are made possible by the support of individual donors, corporate partners, and the dedication of volunteers across the country. To support Team Rubicon’s mission, visit http://www.teamrubiconusa.org.