Peter Rekers

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Peter Rekers 2With over 30 years emergency experience, Peter Rekers is professionally recognized as being one of the most veteran and polished crisis management specialists in Australia. His experience encompasses developing crisis management communications systems and risk management systems for private and public sectors, to operational experience in war zones as a senior communications officer, to being a Spokesperson for various agencies and Governments, to coordinating the communication strategy for Tropical Cyclones for the Queensland Government.

Peter has served in senior management roles at Brisbane City Council, State and Federal Departments and is the founding CEO of the non-profit Emergency Media and Public Affairs (EMPA) group. EMPA delivers conferences in New Zealand and Australia, channeling profits into research. It also exists to lead and support the evolution of effective communication and community engagement before, during and after emergencies, by providing a network for all interested in emergency communications. EMPA strives to bring together like-minded people progressing the art of emergency public communications through these annual Conferences and advocates for international standardization of policies and approaches that impact communication in disasters to save lives.

Peter also served as a Lieutenant Commander in the Australian Navy and completed two operational postings in 2003 to Iraq as a Public Affairs Officer. In HMAS Kanimbla, Peter was deployed during the Iraq invasion, which earned the Meritorious Unit Citation for the Ship’s actions. His role was to advise the Australian Navy Task Group Commander on all media and Public Affairs issues and lead a small public affairs team. Later in 2003, Peter deployed to Baghdad to run the Coalition Press Information Center, coordinating all media relations, conferences and services for the Coalition in Iraq. This included media management during the 2003 UN Headquarters bombing and liaising with up to 450 in-country media personnel. Peter’s time in the Navy was also spent as a Naval Police Officer where he led the Naval Investigations Security Intelligence Cell, headed the Naval Investigation Service and other security and policing roles. His training included focus with the Australian Federal Police in Investigations and Bomb Search.

Peter helps organizations become Crisis Ready through planning, training, simulations and live support. Examples from around the world range from the Asian Community Mental Health Leadership Forum in Singapore, to the World Conference on Disaster Management in Toronto, to the FEMA External Affairs Conference in Washington, D.C., and the National Emergency, Crisis and Disaster Authority Conference in Abu Dhabi.

Peter looks forward to joining us in the Pacific Northwest and sharing best practices between us each.

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