Note from the SAFECOM Chair

Author: Chief Gerald Reardon, SAFECOM At-Large (Cambridge (MA) Fire Department)

Happy New Year! I hope everyone enjoyed the holiday season with their families and friends and are ready to hit the ground running for another productive year for SAFECOM.

2019 was a very busy year for us and came to a close with many accomplishments under our belt. Several products were published by the committees throughout the year, to include the creation of the Outreach and Engagement Tracker; Ten Keys to Improving Alerts, Warnings, & Notifications; Project 25 (P25) Inter-RF Subsystem Interface (ISSI) and Console Subsystem Interface (CSSI) Primer; Best Practices for P25 ISSI and CSSI Implementation: Volume I; Next Generation 911 (NG911) Maturity State Self-Assessment Tool; and a National Incident Management System (NIMS) Incident Command System (ICS) recommendation by the Communications Section Task Force, with public safety community letters of concurrence. Be on the lookout for the 2019 SAFECOM Annual Summary, which provides more information about SAFECOM’s impact, key products and activities conducted in 2019, summaries of the major in-person meetings, and a 2020 strategic outlook.

In September 2019, the Governance Committee, in conjunction with the former Executive Committee (EC), established the SAFECOM Executive Board. The new 11-member Board replaced the SAFECOM EC and consists of the SAFECOM Chair, First and Second Vice Chairs, each of the four (4) committee chairs, and four (4) additional Board Members. Thank you to the Governance Committee for their hard work and diligence in creating the new SAFECOM Executive Board.

Thank you to all those who presented and participated in the November 2019 SAFECOM meetings in Miami, Florida. Members were able to network and engage in many great sessions including First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet Authority), information technology, cybersecurity governance, 5G capabilities, and more. Most notably, SAFECOM members received an overview of the 2019 National Emergency Communications Plan (NECP) implementation plan and learned their role in the implementation process.

During the meetings, each of the committees devoted time to address their strategic priorities for the coming year. These priorities incorporate many of the activities addressed in the 2019 NECP and have been outlined in the 2020 SAFECOM Strategic Plan, which will also be released soon. The SAFECOM Executive Board also held its inaugural meeting and I am excited to work closely with the Board to help guide the strategic direction of SAFECOM in 2020. I look forward to the hard work of our committees, working groups, and task forces.

On behalf of the SAFECOM Senior Leadership—First Vice Chair, Chief Chris Lombard and Second Vice Chair, Michael Murphy—thank you all for your continued efforts that provide value to our public safety community!

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