May 11, 2016


Risky business:  Earthquake Preparedness in the Pacific Northwest

During the summer of 2015 an article title "the Really Big One" appeared in The New Yorker magazine and created quite a buzz around Seattle.  The article highlighted the potential for a 9.0 magnitude earthquake along the Cascadia subduction zone that could affect much of the west coast.  It left many wondering what it meant for them.  this session will provide an overview of our areas' earthquake risks, examining how an earthquake early warning system could benefit the region and showcase the ways in which government agencies,, non-profits and neighborhoods are preparing for "the Really Big One".

The Program will feature three speakers.

Barb Graff

Ms. Graff is the Director of the Seattle Office of Emergency Management and is responsible for the team that manages the all-hazard community-wide emergency management program for the City of Seattle.  Since 2005, the Seattle Emergency Management Operations Center has coordinated a city-wide response to 13 major exercises and 27 incidents, six of which resulted in a Presidential Declaration.  Prior to 2005,Ms. Graff served in a similar capacity for the City of Bellevue for 21 years.  Under her leadership, Bellevue's emergency management program served as the pilot for the national Emergency Management Program Review Committee and  the Emergency Management Accreditation Commission.

John Vidale

John, affiliated with the College of the Environment at the University of Washington, is the Washington State Seismologist. as a seismologist, he studies earthquakes, volcanoes, and ways to mitigate the hazards associated with them.  He works primarily in the Cascadia Subduction Zone.  He is the Director of the Pacific Northwest Seismic Network, and is working to develop

 an earthquake early warning system for the state.  in recognition of his work, he was elected a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union, and also  received that organization's

James B. Macelwane Medal, and in 2011 was named Outstanding Researcher in the College of the environment, U of W.

Matt Auflick

Matt is the Public Education and Outreach Coordinator for the City of Seattle Office of Emergence Management.  In this role he is responsible for managing efforts to encourage preparedness across all sectors of the city, including individual residents and multitudes of neighborhoods, businesses, and community organizations.  Previously, Matt was a Project Manager for Peace Winds America, overseeing the U.S.-Vietnam Disaster Preparedness Initiative.  He has also held several positions with the Western PA Region of the American Red Cross in the areas of disaster preparedness