Speakers

Edgar Westerhof: Key Note Speaker

edgar westerhofEdgar Westerhof is Arcadis’ National Director for Flood Risk and Resiliency for North America. Edgar is a water consultant with 18 years of experience in integrated urban water management. He has a deep understanding of urban and industrial flood proofing concepts, infrastructure planning and design, sustainable urban water management and waterfront development and international water management concepts. Edgar was leading the ARCADIS participation in the international HUD Rebuild by Design competition, including the winning BIG U – Waterfront Resiliency Plan of Manhattan. Edgar functions as the climate change adaptation specialist regarding integrated and multi-layered coastal waterfront and urban water management strategies. He bridges the understanding on water management between the Netherlands and the US and plays a key role in the identification and implementation of our local and international flood proofing expertise. As the Flood Risk & Resiliency Lead, Edgar is the Rockefeller Foundation 100RC participation lead for North America and involved in strategic initiatives regarding climate change adaptation and water resiliency concepts. Edgar has given master classes on resilience and climate adaptation at University of Pennsylvania, Yale University and Harvard and functions as press spokesperson on climate adaptation in the US and the Netherlands.

 

DAVID H. STEARRETT, CFM: Closing Luncheon Speaker

Director, Office of the Flood Insurance Advocate
Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration

David Stearrett serves as the Director of the Office of the Flood Insurance Advocate (OFIA). In his role as the Flood Insurance Advocate, he leads the OFIA in advocating for the fair treatment of policyholders and property owners by providing education and guidance on all aspects of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), identifying trends affecting the public, and making recommendations for program improvements to senior FEMA leadership. Under his leadership, the OFIA serves as a catalyst to bring the customer perspective to FIMA’s program conversations and support a broader customer-centric focus in FIMA.

He joined the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in 1999 as a Regional Liaison in the Floodplain Management Branch. He has also served as a Regional Liaison in the Risk Management Directorate (formerly Risk Analysis Division) in Flood Hazard Mapping. From 2006-2015, he was the Chief of the Floodplain Management Branch, which oversees NFIP floodplain management policy, community eligibility and enforcement, and the Community Rating System (CRS). David is one of the first 40 people to earn the title of Certified Floodplain Manager (CFM) through the Association of State Floodplain Managers certification test in 1999.

David holds a Master of Public Administration from Valdosta State University and a Bachelor of Science in Political Science from the University of Idaho. He is retired from the United States Marine Corps Reserve, having served 22 years. Prior to joining FEMA, Mr. Stearrett worked in the North Carolina NFIP State Coordinating Office as a coastal and riverine flood floodplain management specialist and he has served in several disaster field offices as both a state and Federal employee.