188 episodes

Disaster Zone is hosted by Eric Holdeman, an emergency manager with over 30 years of experience at the federal, state and local levels of government. Disaster Zone is a podcast that focuses on all facets of disasters; the before, during and after of events that are increasingly impacting communities around the world. Podcasts run between 35-45 minutes with a mix of guests covering a range of disasters and issues that flow from them.Sponsors of this podcast include:
Dynamis, a leading provider of information management software and security solutions. 
The Blue Cell, a by-design crisis and consequence management consulting firm.Bent Ear Solutions offers comprehensive capabilities and deep industry knowledge necessary to help you solve the most complex issues of your organization.T-Mobile for Government provides innovative connectivity solutions that help government better serve citizens by enabling agencies to work more intelligently, efficiently, and securely.Story topics and suggestions for people to interview are welcomed. You can contact the host via email.Podcast listeners might also be interested in the Disaster Zone Blog which is the number one blog on the topic of emergency management here in the United States.

Disaster Zone Eric Holdeman

    • News
    • 4.9 • 7 Ratings

Disaster Zone is hosted by Eric Holdeman, an emergency manager with over 30 years of experience at the federal, state and local levels of government. Disaster Zone is a podcast that focuses on all facets of disasters; the before, during and after of events that are increasingly impacting communities around the world. Podcasts run between 35-45 minutes with a mix of guests covering a range of disasters and issues that flow from them.Sponsors of this podcast include:
Dynamis, a leading provider of information management software and security solutions. 
The Blue Cell, a by-design crisis and consequence management consulting firm.Bent Ear Solutions offers comprehensive capabilities and deep industry knowledge necessary to help you solve the most complex issues of your organization.T-Mobile for Government provides innovative connectivity solutions that help government better serve citizens by enabling agencies to work more intelligently, efficiently, and securely.Story topics and suggestions for people to interview are welcomed. You can contact the host via email.Podcast listeners might also be interested in the Disaster Zone Blog which is the number one blog on the topic of emergency management here in the United States.

    How to Hire

    How to Hire

    In this podcast Pete Gaynor, the immediate past Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator and Acting Secretary of Homeland Security shares his experiences and ideas on how to hire staff at all levels. He put a special emphasis on hiring and was personally involved in the selection process for senior positions at FEMA.

    Today he continues to lead by hosting training sessions on “Leading During Crisis.” You can learn more about that at his website, www.femapete.com  There are both in-person and on-line options for attending.

    Before becoming FEMA Administrator, he held leadership positions in emergency management in the State of Rhode Island and was initially the Deputy FEMA Administrator.

    Prior to his experience as an emergency manager, Mr. Gaynor served for 26 years as an enlisted Marine and Infantry Officer in the United States Marine Corps. During his tenure in the Marines, he was assigned as the Executive Officer responsible for the security of Presidential Retreat, Camp David; assigned as the Head of Plans, Policy, & Operations at the Headquarters Marine Corps during the September 11, 2001 attacks; and deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom with the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force.

    This episode is sponsored by AshBritt, a national rapid-response emergency management and logistics company. Celebrating its 30th year, AshBritt has led response efforts following 60 federally declared disasters across 30 states and has conducted more than 400 missions, successfully serving over 600 clients. AshBritt is the trusted emergency management contractor for cities, counties, states and for federal agencies, including the Department of Defense where AshBritt holds a pre-position debris management contract which covers 25 U.S. states.  



    Eric Holdeman is a professional emergency manager who is passionate about providing information that can help families, businesses & governments become better prepared for disasters of all types. Hear first hand expert insights from Eric on his Podcast, Blog & EricHoldeman.com.

    • 55 min
    Forecasting the Weather as a Business

    Forecasting the Weather as a Business

    In this podcast we have a wide-ranging discussion about the importance of weather to business and government operations around the world. Getting actionable weather forecasts has never been more important. We learn how these forecasts can be both pinpoint and actionable by incorporating what is about to happen with your operational procedures to both protect people and property. 
    The podcast guest is Jonathan Porter, who is AccuWeather’s Senior Vice President, Weather Content and Forecast Operations and Chief Meteorologist. He is one of AccuWeather’s most accomplished subject matter experts. In this key leadership role, he blends his background in meteorology, weather news, and information technology to oversee AccuWeather’s team of over 100 highly experienced expert meteorologists, including some of the most gifted and talented weather forecasters assembled from around the world.

    Jon is also a broadcast meteorologist, routinely appearing on the AccuWeather Network as well as thousands of media interviews on major networks all around the world on a wide variety of weather and climate topics.

    Jon joined AccuWeather in 2004, after graduating from Pennsylvania State University with a degree in Meteorology and minor in Information Technology. He has held a series of demanding and progressively more responsible positions within the company.

    A Connecticut native, Jon has always been interested in weather and decided that he wanted to be a meteorologist in the fourth grade. Growing up, he was always fascinated with East Coast snowstorms.

    Jon is a Professional Member of the American Meteorological Society. He was appointed and served 7 years on the US government National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Environmental Information Services Working group, a federal advisory committee. Jon frequently delivers presentations at conferences and professional meetings – specifically focused on the exchange of weather data and warnings.

    This episode is sponsored by Bent Ear Solutions which offers comprehensive capabilities and deep industry knowledge necessary to help you solve the most complex issues of your organization. We advise public and private organizations on an all-inclusive approach to disaster preparedness that addresses governance, planning, operational procedures, technology implementation, training, and exercises in order to achieve a successful and sustainable program. 



    Eric Holdeman is a professional emergency manager who is passionate about providing information that can help families, businesses & governments become better prepared for disasters of all types. Hear first hand expert insights from Eric on his Podcast, Blog & EricHoldeman.com.

    • 51 min
    Communications Challenges in the 21st Century

    Communications Challenges in the 21st Century

    Take any emergency or disaster and you will find that communications is the key ingredient that needs to be present to have a successful outcome. Communications systems are changing rapidly to become lighter with more capabilities, including linking people and organizations with satellites. This is the topic for this podcast. Note, during the recording of this podcast we had our own “communications issues” that we had to work through by using a redundant communications system.

    Ivan Ruiz, the podcast guest is the Mission Operations Manager at Somewear Labs, a critical communications platform empowering the world’s most important organizations to communicate and coordinate during dynamic operations. Ivan works directly with Somewear Labs’ customers, from Special Operations Forces to first responders across the country.

    Prior to Somewear Labs, Ivan spent over 26 years as a Pararescueman in the United States Air Force, retiring at the highest enlisted rank, Chief Master Sergeant. Through his extraordinary heroism, valor, and bravery in combat, Ivan was awarded the Air Force Cross, the second highest military decoration, and three Bronze Stars with Valor. Ivan is a graduate of Grand Canyon University where he received his Bachelors of Science in Emergency Management. Ivan also received his Masters at Arkansas State University in Emergency Management and Disaster Preparedness.
    Merit is a first-of-its-kind, all-hazards, digital credentialing platform that equips emergency responders with innovative tools to securely manage their personnel on-site, no matter the situation. Merit's platform is relied on in mission-critical situations such as the Surfside building collapse and at secure Health and Human Service facilities and is trusted by a growing network of thousands of partners.
    Eric Holdeman is a professional emergency manager who is passionate about providing information that can help families, businesses & governments become better prepared for disasters of all types. Hear first hand expert insights from Eric on his Podcast, Blog & EricHoldeman.com.

    • 47 min
    International SOS

    International SOS

    It is not often that the host of the Disaster zone Podcast learns about an organization that has the depth and breadth of International SOS, and not had any background on the organization before this podcast recording. Based on the guest’s experience with the federal government in multiple high-level positions, you will find this podcast of great interest. 
    Josh Dozor is General Manager, Medical and Security Assistance Services servicing the Americas at International SOS where he is responsible for the oversight and delivery of assistance services. Josh oversees the integration and delivery of international operations, medical teams, security, and a global assistance network in the Philadelphia Assistance Center, one of 26 around the world. In this capacity, International SOS provides a variety of essential services for its clients around the global including medical advice and referrals, evacuations, repatriation, international travel, and domestic workforce resilience missions.
    Prior to joining International SOS, he spent 13 years with FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency), most recently serving as the Deputy Assistant Administrator for Response, where he led an organization responsible for coordinating the federal operational response to all threats and hazards to deliver capabilities needed to save and sustain lives, minimize suffering, and protect property in a timely and effective manner. 

    Prior to his service at FEMA, he served as the Director of Preparedness Policy for the White House Homeland Security Council. In this capacity, he developed and coordinated the administration’s policies and programs related to homeland security preparedness assistance, communications, planning, and doctrine.
    Josh began his government service with the Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Science and Technology within the House of Representatives Majority Committee on Homeland Security.  He holds a Juris Doctorate from the Widener University Law School, Wilmington, Del. and a Master’s Degree in Public Health and Homeland Security from the Pennsylvania State University.

    Dynamis, a leading provider of information management software and security solutions, is a sponsor of this podcast. 


    Eric Holdeman is a professional emergency manager who is passionate about providing information that can help families, businesses & governments become better prepared for disasters of all types. Hear first hand expert insights from Eric on his Podcast, Blog & EricHoldeman.com.

    • 42 min
    Forecasting the Weather in a Time of Climate Change

    Forecasting the Weather in a Time of Climate Change

    The National Weather Service (NWS) and their Forecast Offices around the nation are key partners for the broader emergency management community. Because of their role in natural disasters, that always have a weather-related connection, we need to have a close working relationship between the two professions. This podcast provides for a wide-ranging discussion of all things related to NWS and forecasting the weather. 
    The podcast guest is Tanja Fransen who has been with NOAA/ National Weather Service for almost 30 years, starting while a college student at the University of Northern Colorado. For the last 19 months she's been the Meteorologist-in-Charge (MIC) at the NWS Forecast Office in Portland, OR where she leads a team of up to 28 talented scientists and technicians who are striving to build a weather and climate ready nation.

    She served on the council for the American Meteorological Society (AMS) from 2017-2020, and was the 2021 AMS Annual Meeting co-chair, bringing in nearly 5000 attendees, and the first time ever as a virtual conference. She was recently elected as a "Fellow" of the AMS in 2024 for outstanding contributions to the field of meteorology. She currently chairs the Major Weather Impacts session at the annual meeting.

    This episode is sponsored by Bent Ear Solutions which offers comprehensive capabilities and deep industry knowledge necessary to help you solve the most complex issues of your organization. We advise public and private organizations on an all-inclusive approach to disaster preparedness that addresses governance, planning, operational procedures, technology implementation, training, and exercises in order to achieve a successful and sustainable program. 



    Eric Holdeman is a professional emergency manager who is passionate about providing information that can help families, businesses & governments become better prepared for disasters of all types. Hear first hand expert insights from Eric on his Podcast, Blog & EricHoldeman.com.

    • 55 min
    Excellence without Exhaustion

    Excellence without Exhaustion

    Do you ever feel like you don’t have the time or resources to accomplish everything that you are being asked to accomplish? If you are an emergency manager or working in another demanding profession, this is a very common feeling. We explore some personal solutions in this podcast. Meg Davis is a Certified Life and Health Coach with Windows Health Clinic based in Sonoma County, California, but has worked with clients around the world who specializes in helping driven, motivated high achieving professionals break down the barriers that are holding you hostage from achieving your highest potential. Before becoming a coach, Meg worked in several high-pressure industries including emergency air medical services and finance. As a coach, she helps her clients to establish a successful mindset, identify the goals in their lives that are most important to them, and develop a strategy that is tailored to their strengths and vision of success. You can learn more about her by visiting her website at: www.windowshealthclinic.com/coaching.
    She has a new program called Excellence without Exhaustion: Your solution for reaching your full potential in your life, career, productivity and success without exhausting yourself. This program is designed with driven, motivated high achievers in mind to help guide them to their full potential without all the pressure that super high standards, always taking on more work, never taking the time to celebrate their achievements, and all of the other expectations they feel are required for them to achieve the levels of success they know they're capable of.
    This episode is sponsored by AshBritt, a national rapid-response emergency management and logistics company. Celebrating its 30th year, AshBritt has led response efforts following 60 federally declared disasters across 30 states and has conducted more than 400 missions, successfully serving over 600 clients. AshBritt is the trusted emergency management contractor for cities, counties, states and for federal agencies, including the Department of Defense where AshBritt holds a pre-position debris management contract which covers 25 U.S. states.  


    Eric Holdeman is a professional emergency manager who is passionate about providing information that can help families, businesses & governments become better prepared for disasters of all types. Hear first hand expert insights from Eric on his Podcast, Blog & EricHoldeman.com.

    • 44 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
7 Ratings

7 Ratings

MCP6969 ,

Experience matters....

Eric ran King Counties department of emergency management.He is one of the most experienced EM managers in the country and I look forward to learning more from him during his podcasts.

Word EM up ,

Knowledgeable and engaging

I have followed Eric’s expertise in emergency management for years, great to see him bring his critical, direct, and humorous approach to such an important topic.

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