News and Updates from OPCD


OPCD Executive Director, Tyrell Morris, is all smiles with his graduating class, 06 of the Certified Public Safety Executive Program, sponsored by APCO International. As the class President, Mr. Morris shows the group how to #SHOWUP! Congratulations and enjoy your graduation Thursday!

The City Of NOLA
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Today is #NationalPetFireSafety Day! Follow these tips to keep your little buddies safe!

Mayor LaToya Cantrell The City Of NOLA NOLA City Council New Orleans Fire Department
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3 days ago

Orleans Parish Communication District-OPCD

Timeline PhotosIf you experienced damage or flooding from #Barry or the flooding event on Wednesday, follow these tips for a more effective cleanup process.

Mayor LaToya Cantrell The City Of NOLA NOLA Ready NOLA City Council
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Thank you The City Of NOLA for helping us assist you!
Please continue to be cautious of flooding!

NOLA Ready Mayor LaToya Cantrell
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Our facilities team has been working around the clock to keep our “home” away from home cozy and clean throughout the duration of #Barry. Thank you for making sure we are comfortable while serving The City Of NOLA

Mayor LaToya Cantrell NOLA Ready
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4 days ago

Orleans Parish Communication District-OPCD

Mayor LaToya Cantrell and other The City Of NOLA leaders, inform the public to still be cautious of flash flooding as #Barry continues to head north. ... See MoreSee Less

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Although #Barry has moved along, The City Of NOLA is still under a flash flood watch until 7 p.m. Our diligent team is still here, happy and willing to assist you. #SHOWUP

NOLA Ready Mayor LaToya Cantrell
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4 days ago

Orleans Parish Communication District-OPCD

Timeline PhotosResidents of New Orleans who received damage to their home from the widespread flooding on Wednesday July 10th and need help with cleanup, please call the Crisis Cleanup Hotline at 1-844-965-1386 to register for assistance.
NOLA Ready Mayor LaToya Cantrell The City Of NOLA NOLA City Council
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MONDAY 8AM: Parking restrictions will be reinstated on neutral grounds and sidewalks tomorrow.

A flash flood watch remains in effect until 7pm Sunday night so remain vigilant.

Residents are reminded not to block intersections or streetcar tracks as @NewOrleansRTA resumes service today at 1pm. Stay @NOLAready
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AUGUST 2014 - New Orleans hosts APCO International Conference 2014

New Orleans was the host city for the 80th annual Association of Public Safety Communications Officials (APCO) International Conference. Five thousand 9-1-1 professionals from all over the world convened into the city from August 3-6, 2014. As usual, New Orleans served as the perfect backdrop for networking and presented a unique opportunity where public safety professionals intersected with the unique culture of New Orleans, America’s most interesting city. There was a block party at Mardi Gras World featuring the Grammy award winning Rebirth Brass Band. Keynote speakers included New Orleans football legend Archie Manning, true-life hero Captain Richard Phillips and TV celebrity chef Jeff Henderson. In addition OPCD Executive Director Stephen Gordon, NOEMS Deputy Director Barbara Ireland, NOFD Chief Maxine Vappie and NOPD Commander Captain Simon Hargrove presented a session entitled Going From Them To Us—Making Co-Location Work. Several local telecommunicators from throughout the state also volunteered at the conference. APCO offered attendees an opportunity to tour both the Chief Warren E. McDaniels Sr. 9-1-1 Center in New Orleans and the Jefferson Parish 9-1-1 Center in Gretna. Special thanks to Intrado and Motorola who sponsored all the APCO tours. In addition to the APCO tours, OPCD conducted tours of the McDaniels PSAP with attendees from Hawaii, Las Vegas, Virginia Beach, Israel, and Ascension Parish. New Orleans’ weather was fantastic which allowed APCO attendees to casually stroll from the Ernest Morial Convention Center to their hotels, the historic French Quarter as well as Canal Street with just experiencing light humidity.

During the APCO Conference the city of New Orleans and 9-1-1 operations had the opportunity to show the world that we are a phenomenal place to have a conference and that here in the Big Easy we make conference hosting and 9-1-1 operations look easy.

JULY 2014 - 9-1-1 Technology Improved with Solutions from Microsoft and Motorola

When a call comes in to 9-1-1, seconds count. The ability to provide an efficient, coordinated response and arm police officers and emergency personnel with critical information can help avert disaster and save lives. A technology solution from Microsoft and Motorola Solutions is drawing on the potential of the Internet of Things to vastly streamline the ways in which 9-1-1 dispatchers communicate with officers and first responders. The solution connects police, fire and medical services applications, a 9-1-1 call system, mobile terminals, tablets, and a data warehouse into one intelligent system.

DECEMBER 2012 - Press Release: Increase of 9-1-1 Fees, Release of Call Volume Statistics, Tour New 9-1-1 Center

OCTOBER 2012 The National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians & EMS World will Award the City of New Orleans EMS with Top Honors

The National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians has selected the City of New Orleans Emergency Medical Services (EMS) to receive the 2012 Dick Ferneau Paid EMS Service of the Year Award. This annual award is given to one EMS service that excels not only in outstanding patient care, but embraces the latest science in pre-hospital medicine, community education, and has unique capabilities such as a tactical medic division, swift water rescue, urban search & rescue medics, and bicycle medics. Read the Press Release

JANUARY 18, 2012 Next-Gen 9-1-1 Transition to VIPER.

On January 18, 2012 at 10:00 am, the 9-1-1 call takers from NOPD, NOFD and NOEMS moved to the new McDaniels 9-1-1 Center. When AT&T turned off the old circuits and redirected them to the McDaniels 9-1-1 Center, the call-takers started using OPCD’s Next-Gen 9-1-1 ready equipment, VIPER. OPCD and Intrado personnel dealt with minor issues that arose. Hats off to all agency staff and floor personnel who maintained their professionalism as the move took place. There were no calls lost during this migration.

OCTOBER 18, 2011 - Second Annual 9-1-1 Wellness Day

The back of the PSAP was transformed into a day spa as The Breath is Life Spa provided free chair and table massages to all 9-1-1 communication personnel on all shifts. Menhati Kherita of Breath is Life Spa was the massage therapist at the event. 

AUGUST 2011 - University of Tennessee's The Calm After the Storm - Developing Strength Out Of Weakness Conference

August 2011: Executive Director Stephen Gordon featured subject matter expert at the University of Tennessee’s The Calm After the Storm – Developing Strength Out Of Weakness Conference (Aug 20-23, 2011)

Additional featured speakers included:

  • Mark Grant , RPL ENP— Dyersburg 9-1-1 Communications Center
  • Louis Friedmann—TN Statewide Interoperability Coordinator
  • Mark Garland—KY Office of Emergency Management Region 1  Supervisor.

This event featured speakers who have developed strength through America ’s most trying times: Hurricane Katrina , the 2009 Ice Storms , the Gulf Oil Spill, and the 2010 Floods. Their insights helped agencies prepare for the next “Big One”.

JANUARY 2011 - OPCD Deputy Director Frith Malin and OPCD Systems Manager Karl Fasold receive NENA Emergency Number Professional (ENP) Certification

OPCD Deputy Director Frith Malin and  OPCD Systems Manager Karl Fasold have successfully received the NENA Emergency Number Professional (ENP) certification. The Emergency Number Professional (ENP) certification is a tool of a professional association to establish the benchmarks of performance that will signify a broad-based competence in the professional field. By successfully completing this certification program successful candidates:

  • Demonstrate a mastery of the comprehensive knowledge base required for emergency number program management.
  • Help to raise industry standards and increase the respect and prestige of those involved in 9-1-1.
  • Confirm commitment to the 9-1-1 profession by showing leadership  in public safety and staying aware of current issues and developments in the field.

March 2011 - The Warren E. McDaniels 9-1-1 Center Ribbon Cutting Ceremony & Open House

March 2010 - A Visit From Finnish Delegates

Finland Delegation Visit - 3/15/2010
Finland Delegation Visit – 3/15/2010
Finland Delegation Visit - 3/15/2010
Finland Delegation Visit – 3/15/2010

FEBRUARY 2010 - 9-1-1 Fares Best in Polls “You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression” -Steve Gordon

Screenshot 2016-03-30 20.09.21

Mile Markers on the Interstate System

The DOTD, in partnership with the RPC and the OPCD, are creating a system of “mile markers” at 2/10-mile intervals along the interstate highway system in Orleans and surrounding parishes. “These signs are large enough to be seen from a distance and are reflective for night visibility” says John Adams OPCD GIS Specialist who spearheaded the project.. Each sign displays the highway shield, direction and mile number plus fraction thereof. Often the problem facing citizens who get into trouble on the Interstate is that there are no visible addresses, cross streets, or nearby landmarks with which to determine their location in the event a 9-1-1 call is necessary. Once roadside installation of the signs is completed, and their locations incorporated into a 9-1-1 Computer Aided Dispatch system, these mile markers will assist in providing the exact location of a caller who passes the sign’s information to the complaint operator.

DECEMBER 2009 - OPCD Groundbreaking Ceremony

A ground breaking ceremony to celebrate the beginning of construction for the new Chief Warren E. McDaniels 9-1-1 Center will be held Tuesday December 8, 2009, 1:30pm at 118 City Park Avenue. Council members Arnie Fielkow, Jackie Clarkson and Shelley Midura, Police Supt. Warren Riley, Fire Supt. Charles Parent, EMS Director Dr. Jullette Saussy and Board Chairman Col. Terry Ebbert will speak as well as Betty McDaniels, wife of the late Chief Warren McDaniels. Attendance is by invitation only. View the press release

AUGUST 2009 - Captain Carl F. Saizan Jr. Promoted to Troop Commander of Troop B

capt saizan newCaptain Carl F. Saizan Jr. was promoted to Troop Commander of Troop B on August 31, 2009. His promotion to Captain of Troop B came after a twenty-five-year climb up the law enforcement ladder.

Saizan is originally from St. Bernard Parish and is a graduate of Chalmette High School class of 1983.   At the age of seventeen he enlisted in the United States Army Reserve where he served for four years before transferring to the United States Coast Guard Reserve, where he served for an additional eight years.

Saizan began his law enforcement career at the age of eighteen, serving as a correctional officer for the Orleans Parish Criminal Sheriff’s Office.  He went on to work as a deputy for the St. Bernard Parish Sheriff’s Department for five years, while attending college.

Saizan began his career with the Louisiana State Police as a State Trooper at Troop B in New Orleans, where, he patrolled the highways carrying out law enforcement duties. During his first year as a trooper, he was selected as a member of the State Police Special Weapons and Tactical Team (SWAT).  Soon after, he was certified as a firearms instructor, attended the Peace Officers Standards and Training / FBI Instructor Development course and served as an instructor for several state police academy classes. After being on the SWAT Team for ten years, Saizan was appointed as the Region 1 Platoon Leader, where he served an additional nine years.  During his nineteen years on SWAT he has participated in and supervised several high profile operations including bank hostage situations, police shootings, a serial murder search operation, as well as numerous high-risk warrant arrest operations.

In September of 1994, he was transferred to the Troop B Criminal Patrol Unit, where he spent the next four years patrolling the interstate highways looking for criminals, drug and money couriers, stolen vehicles and other criminal related activity.  During his time in Criminal Patrols, he was responsible for solving a custodial kidnapping case, and was one of two troopers responsible for the largest cash seizure in state police history, resulting in the seizure of over 1.2 million dollars on an Interstate 10 traffic stop.  In 1995 he received the prestigious “Trooper of the Year” award for his outstanding performance as a member of the Criminal Patrol Unit.

While working under Governor Foster’s administration, Saizan was responsible for re-implementing the State Police Motorcycle Patrol Operations.  He attended the Harley Davidson/Northwestern Motorcycle Instructor Program in Wisconsin, where he received his instructor certification.  He was tasked with building a statewide motorcycle patrol operation from the ground up for all nine Troops in Louisiana. In August of 1998 Saizan was promoted to the rank of sergeant at Troop B, where he served as a shift sergeant for one year before implementing and supervising a full time motorcycle patrol operation at Troop B. He served two years in that position before being promoted to the rank of Lieutenant in 2000.

In 2004, Saizan attended and graduated from the prestigious Federal Bureau of Investigations National Academy in Quantico, Virginia (Session 218th).

In 2005, immediately following Hurricane Katrina, Saizan supervised the night time uniform patrol operations throughout the Metropolitan New Orleans area.  Shortly thereafter, he assumed responsibility for the entire Katrina Task force Operation in New Orleans.  He was responsible for coordinating operations with several other state police agencies that came to the area to assist with relief efforts.  At its peak, Saizan was responsible for overseeing operations that encompassed 250 troopers, coordinating shift assignments and patrol areas, issuing equipment, and ensuring that personnel were continually informed of ever-changing operating procedures.

In May of 2007 Saizan was appointed Executive Officer of Troop B and was responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operations of the Troop B facility, communications, fleet, and evidence, as well as many other administrative duties. He worked as Executive Officer of Troop B until his recent promotion to Captain of Troop B.

As a member of The Louisiana State Troopers association, he was responsible for starting the Troop B Children’s Grant-A-Wish program in 1997.  This program grants wishes to terminally ill children using funds that are raised through affiliate sponsored road races, fishing rodeos and other fund raising efforts by The Troop B Associate Affiliate.  Saizan continues as an active member of the Association and has overseen the program for the last twelve years.

Saizan and his wife Stephanie (Chatelain) have been married for twenty-four years.  They reside in Mandeville where they are parishioners at Our Lady of the Lake Roman Catholic Church.  They have five children; Julia (17), Sophie (16), Bernadette (10), twins – Grant and Grace (8), and they are expecting their sixth child in May 2010.

SEPTEMBER 2008 - Appointment of Ms. Frith Malin as Deputy Director

The Board of Directors of OPCD is pleased to announce the appointment of Ms. Frith Malin as Deputy Director “I am excited and honored to be given the opportunity to work with a team of dedicated professionals at OPCD. E9-1-1 has been a bright spot in New Orleans’ recovery and rebuilding and I am honored to be able to work with the public safety agencies and employees in New Orleans.”

Ms. Malin is originally from New Orleans, was raised in Algiers, graduated from Ben Franklin Senior High School and the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts (NOCCA), and received her B.S. in Economics from UNO. Upon receiving her Masters in Economics from Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, she started her public service career working for Tennessee State Government. Ms. Malin brings with her a wealth of expertise, not just in E9-1-1, but in public and economic policy as well.  As a Senior Research Associate for the Tennessee Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations (TACIR), Ms. Malin researched and authored a report, The Funding and Creation of E9-1-1 Districts in Tennessee, which later received the Special Achievement Report from the Governmental Research Association.

In 1998, Ms. Malin drafted legislation creating a statewide E9-1-1 Board and implementing a statewide wireless E9-1-1 surcharge, and coordinated the passage of that bill. After receiving overwhelming bi-partisan support in both the House of Representatives and Senate of the Tennessee General Assembly Ms. Malin was appointed the first Executive Director of the Tennessee Emergency Communications Board. As State 9-1-1 Director, Ms. Malin implemented statewide wireless E9-1-1 Phase 1 service, and developed regulatory and program accountability standards. She was most recently the Enhanced 9-1-1 Manager for Snohomish County, Washington, a bedroom community north of Seattle, WA. As E9-1-1 Manager, Ms. Malin implemented wireless E9-1-1 Phase 2 and VoIP E9-1-1 service for the entire county. Ms. Malin also served as Chair of the Next Generation E9-1-1 subcommittee, which was responsible for developing a six-year implementation plan, including the build out of an IP network for the entire state. In addition, Ms. Malin implemented financial and program accountability standards, and was able to save the county over $1 million per year in cost savings for the E9-1-1 network.

SEPTEMBER 2008 - OPCD Appointment of Dr. Julius Levy to the Board of Commissioners

Dr. Julius Levy

September 2008 OPCD announced the appointment of Dr. Julius Levy to the Board of Commissioners. Dr. Levy practiced General Surgery in New Orleans and Metairie until his retirement in December, 1998.  He is a Diplomats of the American Board of Surgery and a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons.  He is a member of numerous medical and surgical societies and served as Chairman of the Surgical Section of the Southern Medical Association and Chairman of the Departments of Surgery at Touro Infirmary and Lakeside Hospital.  He served as Chairman of the Emergency Medical Services Committee of the Orleans Parish Medical Society, Chairman of the Health Advisory Committee of the City of New Orleans, and Command Physician for the National Disaster Medical System.

Dr. Levy is currently a Clinical Professor of Surgery and an Adjunct Professor of Structural and Cellular Biology at Tulane University where he continues his lifelong participation in the teaching of students and residents.  He is a past Chief of the Section of Pediatric Surgery at Tulane and a past-President of the Tulane Medical Alumni Association.  He is a member of the Medical School Admissions Committee and a member of the Administrative Board of the Medical Center of Louisiana at New Orleans (Charity Hospital).  His previous Tulane activities include membership on the Board of the Tulane Alumni Association and Class Agent Coordinator.

He recently received Alpha Omega Alpha’s Clinical Teacher of the Year Award and The Tulane Medical Alumni Association’s Distinguished Service Award. Dr. Levy has served as Chairman of the Physicians’ Division of United Way, President of the Louisiana Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, President of Woldenberg Village, President of the Jewish Federation of Greater New Orleans, Chairman of the Jewish Welfare Fund, and President of Temple Sinai.  He is a graduate of the New Orleans Police Academy and currently holds the rank of Captain in the Reserve Division of the New Orleans Police Department. Dr. Levy is the immediate past-Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Tulane University Health Sciences Center, a post that he held from 2003 through 2006.  He remains an active member of the Board.

JULY 2008 - Kathrine Cargo Appointed To Represent The Louisiana Chapter of NENA

Kathrine Cargo URISA President Elect URISA
Kathrine Cargo URISA President Elect URISA

Kathrine Cargo URISA President Elect URISA (Urban and Regional Information Systems Association)

Kathrine Cargo, GIS-P, ENP, the OPCD GIS/Mapping Coordinator, was recently appointed by the Governor’s Office to represent  the Louisiana Chapter of NENA (LANENA) on the Louisiana Geographic Information Systems Council (LGISC). LGISC was created by the state Legislature in 1995 to: “eliminate duplication of effort and unnecessary redundancy in data collections and systems and to provide for integration of geographically-related data bases to facilitate the policy and planning purposes of the state of Louisiana” (La R.S. 49:1051-1057; Acts 1995, No.922 amended by Act 772 of 2001 and Act 68 of 2005). The LGISC is made up of representatives of twenty-six state agencies and entities. Seventeen of the twenty-five agencies were appointed by legislation in 1995; seven additional entities, including LA NENA, were subsequently added to better serve all members of the Louisiana ospatial data community. The Council meets monthly and regularly recommends spatial data policy and provides a forum for coordination of spatial issues in state initiatives. With Ms. Cargo’s appointment, LA NENA expects to continue to have a voice in the development of data systems supporting NextGen 911 and a statewide broadband data emergency network.


July 21, 2008 (PARK RIDGE, IL) – URISA is pleased to announce the results of its 2008 Board of Directors Election. Kathrine Cargo, GISP (New Orleans Parish Communications District) will become President-Elect of the association and Clare Brown, GISP, Michael Lovett, GISP and Karen Stewart, GISP will begin their three-year terms as members of the Board of Directors, at the close of URISA’s 46th Annual Conference in New Orleans this October.
“URISA means professional growth, as I feel that my participation in conferences, committees and chapter functions better prepared me to recognize challenges as opportunities for improvement. URISA has been and continues to be a great source of inspiration to me in my work as a GIS/Mapping Coordinator, mainly due to the GIS educational offerings and the industry information that streams from the association on a regular basis,” said Cargo.
Three new directors were elected by the URISA membership to serve a three-year term on the URISA Board, also beginning in October.

The three new Board members are: • Clare Brown, GISP, Montgomery Watson Harza, New Orleans, Louisiana

  • Michael Lovett, GISP, CDM, Maitland, Florida
  • Karen Stewart, GISP, ESRI Canada, Vancouver, British Columbia Professional Experience • 2002-Present – GIS/Mapping Coordinator. Orleans Parish Communication District.
  • 1996-2002 – Principal City Planner. New Orleans City Planning Commission.
  • 1986-1996 – Project Manager. Vernon F. Meyer and Associates, Inc. (now 3001, Inc.). Education • MURP – Masters in Urban and Regional Planning, 1999
  • University of New Orleans College of Urban and Public Affairs. BA – Geography, 1986
  • University of New Orleans URISA Activities • 2007 Geospatial Integration with Public Safety Conference, Conference Chair
  • 2003-2006 URISA Board of Directors, Board Secretary
  • 2001 URISA Service Award
  • 2000 Chapter Relations Committee Chair,
  • 1992 – Present URISA Member
  • URISA Annual Conference Program Committee
  • Street Smart/GIPSC/URISA NENA Addressing Conference Committee
  • Nominations Committee
  • Awards Committee
  • Ongoing URISA workshop instructor
  • Ongoing URISA conference presenter Other Professional Activities & Memberships • Certified GIS Professional (GISP)
  • Louisiana Chapter of URISA, Past President, Officer, Charter member
  • National Emergency Number Association (NENA) webbot bot=”Include” U-Include=”navigationright.html” TAG=”BODY” startspan

JUNE 2008 Honors Receive at the Louisiana National Registered Emergency Medical Technicians (LANREMT) Conference

The City of New Orleans Emergency Medical Services (NOEMS) department proudly announces that two of its personnel received the state’s top honors at the annual Louisiana National Registered Emergency Medical Technicians (LANREMT) Conference this past weekend.

CONTACT: JEB S. TATE, BSN (504) 905-1396
LESLEY EUGENE (504) 416-7694 


NEW ORLEANS, LA (June 25, 2008) — The City of New Orleans Emergency Medical Services (NOEMS) department proudly announces that two of its personnel received the state’s top honors at the annual Louisiana National Registered Emergency Medical Technicians (LANREMT) Conference this past weekend.

Dr. Jullette Saussy
Dr. Jullette Saussy

Dr. Jullette Saussy, Director and Medical Director of the NOEMS received the state’s top honor as EMS Administrator of the Year. Sandra Dixon, a 23-year veteran of New Orleans EMS was also named the state EMT-Intermediate of the year. Members of LANREMT, emergency medical technicians and paramedics from across Louisiana and Mississippi attended the event that took place in Lafayette, Louisiana.

“We are extremely proud of our EMS department that continues to show its commitment to providing the fastest and most recognized response services to those in need,” said Mayor C. Ray Nagin.  “This administration has always prioritized safety and we are honored that two of our own have been recognized as the best of the best in emergency medical services.”

EMS personnel received the award on behalf of Dr. Saussy who is recovering from her final chemotherapy treatment. After multiple surgeries, radiation and chemotherapy,

Dr. Saussy has been diagnosed as cancer free.

“This award, while given to me personally, is a reflection of the pride, passion and dedication of the men and women of New Orleans EMS,” said Dr Jullette Saussy.  “They are what make this organization successful. They are what make it shine.  I am just blessed to be able to do what I love with the medics I love.”

Earlier this year, Dr. Saussy received top honors at the EMS State of the Sciences Conference, otherwise known as “A Gathering of Eagles.” She received the Michael Key Copmass Award, which is given to the Emergency Medical Services Medical Director who has demonstrated superior longstanding service, contributions and leadership in out-of-hospital emergency care.

Stephen J. Gordon, ENP Named Executive Director for the OPCD

Executive Director for the OPCD, Stephen J. Gordon, ENP
Executive Director for the OPCD, Stephen J. Gordon, ENP

The Executive Director for the OPCD is Stephen J. Gordon, ENP, who is retired from the NOPD as a Police Captain after 33 years.   His last assignment was the Commander of Police Communications.  He earned a Bachelors of Criminal Justice from Loyola University in 1979. read more

He is a member of NENA’s Institute Board managing the Emergency Number Professional national certification program.  He has been a keynote speaker at National and State conventions, including presentations in Canada and England , about the Hurricane Katrina experience.

Mr. Gordon is a recipient of the Charles Dunbar Louisiana Career Civil Service Award.  He is married, has four children and is a Boy Scout leader for the BSA Troop sponsored at his church.

Barbara Ireland named NOEMS Director of Communications

Barbara Ireland named NOEMS Director of Communications
Barbara Ireland named NOEMS Director of Communications

Barbara Ireland has been in EMS for 26 years, 23 of which as a paramedic, and has a BA in Psychology from the University of New Orleans . She has been employed with New Orleans EMS since 1984 and is now the NOEMS Director of Communications. In November of 2007, Barbara took the Emergency Medical Dispatcher (EMD) instructor course in Salt Lake city, Utah through the National Academy of Emergency Dispatchers (NA*ED). The Academy only takes 1 out of every 20 applicants for this certification course. With New Orleans EMS implementing the Priority Dispatch system and with Barbara as an instructor, we are working towards becoming an Accredited Center of Excellence.

JUNE 2007 NFPA World Safety Conference & Expo - Chairman Warren McDaniels Recalls Lessons Learned from Hurricane Katrina


NFPA Chairman Warren McDaniels
NFPA Chairman Warren McDaniels

A blog on the 2007 NFPA World Safety Conference & Exposition®.

Sunday, June 03, 2007
NFPA Chairman Warren McDaniels recalls lessons learned from Hurricane Katrina

NFPA Chairman Warren McDaniels, former fire chief for the city of New Orleans, officially opened the 111th annual meeting of NFPA in the grand ballroom of the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center.

Chief McDaniels was born and raised in New Orleans and joined the city’s fire department in 1969. He was the first African American in many of the department’s ranks including his appointment as superintendent in 1993. He retired in 2001.

In 2005, Chief McDaniels saw the city’s fire service and emergency response units through a very different lens, as Hurricane Katrina barreled through the Gulf region with intense fury.

“Rather than providing service I needed service,” he said. “Rather than responding to the needs of others, others responded to my needs and those of my family. Rather than helping evacuate others, I struggled with the decision of whether or not to leave my 911 Emergency Fiire Police EMS. In the course of my nearly 40 years with New Orleans Fire, there were many times I told people to leave, pack what you can and go without thinking twice about it. I now know it from the other side. It was an onerous decision. Evacuating is not simply picking up and getting out of town.”

Chief McDaniel’s decision was complicated by health issues. In recent years, he has lost both legs due to diabetes and hypertension. He and his wife eventually evacuated New Orleans, driving in their motor 911 Emergency Fiire Police EMS 100 miles north of the city.

“The evening we arrived, we looked at the TV coverage of the still-raging hurricane and knew everything we had was gone,” he said. “Two 911 Emergency Fiire Police EMSs, a lifetime of memories, photos dating back to the 1930s, awards…all of it washed away. Our history, like that of thousands of other Katrina victims, now exists only in our minds.”

Chief McDaniels said that events in recent history and his own personal story have painfully reminded the nation of the importance of preparing for disasters – both natural and man-made. He said NFPA’s role in ensuring businesses, governments, and individuals are ready should these events occur is paramount and growing.

NFPA 1600, Disaster Preparedness and Business Continuity Planning, has been officially designated as the emergency preparedness standard for the United States and is used in numerous other countries throughout the world,” he said. “Now in its fourth edition, it has been downloaded, at no cost, more than 120,000 times from NFPA’s Web site.”

In addition, the U.S Department of 911 Emergency Fiire Police EMSland Security (DHS) adopted eight NFPA standards for first responder personal protective equipment. Three of the eight documents were adopted for the first time by DHS and the remaining five were re-adoptions of the latest editions of standards currently being recognized by DHS.Read the full text of Chief McDaniel’s remarks.

Mike Hazell
Web Publisher

1 Comments: Jack Oliver said…I had the pleasure of working with Chief Warren McDaniels back in the late ’80s and early ’90s when I was with the Louisiana State Fire Marshal’s Office. Unfortunately, I lost touch with him after that and often wondered how he was doing. Your story about his speech at the NFPA Conference helped to answer many of those questions for me. I was sorry to hear about his health problems, but was glad to hear that he was still alive and well.

Chief McDaniels helped me to succeed with a project that I had been given and I will never forget that help.

Thank you for keeping me updated!

Jack Oliver
Life Safety Officer
Massachusetts General Hospital
Boston, MA

About the Conference
NFPA’s World Safety Conference & Exposition® (WSC&E), being held this year in Boston, is the biggest event for fire protection, security, and life safety professionals. Visit the conference Web site.NOTE: The views expressed in education sessions, section meetings, seminars, and other programs at this meeting do not necessarily represent the ideas or policies of NFPA or any of its constituent parts. NFPA technical policy is expressed in its adopted codes and standards.

MAY 2007 - 9-1-1 Goes to Baton Rouge

On May 22, 2007, the Orleans Parish Communication District along with other 9-1-1 Districts from throughout the State of Louisiana will converge on the State Capitol during this session of the Legislature. This event was created to improve legislators’ awareness of public safety issues that directly concern the funding and operations of 9-1-1. This event is sponsored by the Louisiana Chapter of the National Emergency Number Association (NENA).

Over 35 9-1-1 Directors, Coordinators, Board Members and Agency Personnel attended this State Legislative session: 

OPCD Participates in 9-1-1 Goes to Baton Rouge
OPCD Participates in 9-1-1 Goes to Baton Rouge
Ausettua AmorAmenkum of OPCD Ralph Ladnier, District Manager of East Baton Rouge Parish
Ausettua AmorAmenkum of OPCD Ralph Ladnier, District Manager of East Baton Rouge Parish
Red River Parish Comm. District Scotty Warren – 9-1-1 Administrator, Daniel Simpson 9-1-1 Coordinator
Red River Parish Comm. District Scotty Warren – 9-1-1 Administrator, Daniel Simpson 9-1-1 Coordinator
Ms. Schexnayder and Kory Latiolais, Director, St. Martin Sheriff Communications Marie Anderson, Director and Jeannie Bergeron, Asst. Director, St. Mary Parish
Ms. Schexnayder and Kory Latiolais, Director, St. Martin Sheriff Communications Marie Anderson, Director and Jeannie Bergeron, Asst. Director, St. Mary Parish
Kory Latiolais, Director, St. Martin Sheriff Communications, Sonya Wiley, Director, Rapides Parish Communication District Linda Lavergne, Katie Zeringue, Director Lafourche Parish 9-1-1
Kory Latiolais, Director, St. Martin Sheriff Communications, Sonya Wiley, Director, Rapides Parish Communication District Linda Lavergne, Katie Zeringue, Director Lafourche Parish 9-1-1
Rep. Karen St. Germaine with Greg Hood, Supervisor and Mark Boudreaux, Director of Terrebonne Parish Communication District
Rep. Karen St. Germaine with Greg Hood, Supervisor and Mark Boudreaux, Director of Terrebonne Parish Communication District
Rep. Henry “Tank” Powell with Dennis Darouse of Tangipahoa Communications District
Rep. Henry “Tank” Powell with Dennis Darouse of Tangipahoa Communications District

NOVEMBER 2006 - OPCD Director William Hawkins Retires