Get to Know Richard Serino on Team Rubicon’s Board of Advisors

Appointed by President Obama and confirmed by the Senate as FEMA's 8th Deputy Administrator, Richard Serino now serves as a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at Harvard University and sits on Team Rubicon's Board of Advisors.

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What compelled you to first join Team Rubicon?

The mission and the people, while serving as the Deputy Administrator of FEMA, I saw fist hand the work that TR did on the ground and the passion of the people who are part of TR. Also, although I am not a veteran my father served in WWII and was a former POW and and was injured and awarded a Purple Heart, so working with TR is a tribute to my father as well.

With decades of emergency management experience, what excites you about serving with a young disaster response organization?

I always tried to work with, for and hired people who have passion for what they do and TR has that passion. TR is also innovative and willing to try new technologies and find a better way to assist in the disaster space which will only enhance and help survivors int he community where they live. Giving help when they need it most. I also started FEMACorps during my time at FEMA 
FEMA Corps is another  way for young people to serve their country and TR also help fulfill that mission of another way too help people serve their community

What is one of the biggest challenges of keeping a community prepared for disaster?

One of the biggest challenges is that people say “It can’t happen to me. We must constantly reach out and educate people ahead of time and use disasters that occur as a reminder. We also have reach out to children and start raining and educating children to make them resiselnt and therefor parents resilient.

Name a person or event that’s had a significant impact on your life.

One of the most significant when I was 14 years old riding in a car with my uncle and watched a car flip over in front of us and 4 people were ejected and 3 were trapped under a car. They were all seriously injured and I felt helpless and never wanted to feel that way again. Shortly after that I signed uo for a basic first aid course an 3 years laterI took the first EMT course ever offered in Boston or New England, then joined I a volunteer ambulance Squad. The rest,as they say is History.

When’s the last time you used a chainsaw (if ever)?

About 3 weeks ago in my back yard after a storm came through to clean up the tress that fell.

Mr. Serino currently serves as a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at Harvard University, National Preparedness Leadership Initiative. He was appointed by President Obama and confirmed by the Senate as FEMA’s 8th Deputy Administrator (2009-2014). Mr. Serino also served as Chief of Boston EMS and Assistance Director of the Boston Public Health Commission. 

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