Q4-2023 Newsletter

December Extreme Weather and Floods

A winter storm struck a large part of the state on December 17 leading to an activation of the State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC). Many communities experienced a combination of snowmelt and heavy rainfall resulting in rivers across the state rising above flood stage over the course of several days. The storm also brought strong winds that led to scattered power outages.

5 people stand near a collapsed section of roadway, in a wooded area. A metal device lies over the broken section of road, beyond which is a work truck and a car.
Above: HSEM employees and officials from the town of Jackson look at a damaged road. Right: Dena Norman takes a photo of damage in Lyndeborough.

On December 21 and December 22, nine teams made up of HSEM employees visited towns to start initial damage assessments. On December 21, our agency requested to conduct joint preliminary damage assessments with FEMA.

SEOC Activations

During this quarter, the State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) activated three times.

On November 17, the SEOC activated at Enhanced Monitoring after a shooting at New Hampshire Hospital. Staff from HSEM supported efforts by State Police, the Department of Health and Human Services and other agencies at the site of the shooting. That support included holding press conferences to update the media and coordinating the delivery of meals for people placed in lockdown on the State’s Pleasant Street campus.

On December 11, the SEOC activated at Enhanced Monitoring for about an hour to offer any support to communities affected by an overnight storm that brought snow to Northern New Hampshire and rain to Southern New Hampshire. The storm impacts were determined to be minimal.

On December 18, the SEOC activated at Enhanced Monitoring at 8 a.m. and then moved to a Partial activation around 11 a.m. to support communities affected by rain, flooding and power outages. Several communities requested assistance for items such as cots and signs. In addition, staff in the SEOC coordinated assistance from the National Guard and a Swift Water rescue team for the town of Conway when several residents became trapped in their homes by flood waters. The SEOC returned to Steady State on Wednesday morning.

Various numbers of people sitting at and surrounding computer monitors. The state flag is near the top of the frame, and a us flag marks the right side of the photo.
December 18 flood event.
On a large screen, a live map of the Northeast, and a blurry word document. Beneath them are people sitting at computers.
Emily Fernald makes calls to EMDs for recovery updates after the floods.

DOS Milestones

Congratulations to our amazing team members for celebrating some milestones! We had employees reach their 10, 20 and 25 year marks with the New Hampshire Department of Safety this year. Richard Cloutier celebrated 10 years, Kelly Brudniak celebrated 25 years and Paul Hatch celebrated 20 years. Keep up the great work!

Robert B., Richard, and Robert C. stand in front of the NH state seal and a US flag. Richard holds up a congratulatory letter.
Robert B., Kelly, and Megan stand in front of the NH state seal and a US flag. Kelly holds up a congratulatory letter.

Seabrook Station Exercise Cycle

The REP Exercise cycle is rolling right along!

Controller training was conducted on October 3 and 4, followed by the first Combined Functional Exercise (CFE1) on October 18. Upcoming is the second Combined Functional Exercise (CFE2) on February 7, 2024, with the full Graded Exercise scheduled for April 3, 2024.

NH Homeland Security and Emergency Management along with our federal, state, and local partners in the Emergency Planning Zone (EPZ) took part in the first Combined Functional Exercise for this exercise cycle (Plume Exercise) for Seabrook Station.  Coordinated by HSEM staff, this exercise includes 17 New Hampshire communities, multiple state agencies and the State of Massachusetts.  This exercise is an opportunity to ensure that there is good communication between partners, and is one of the largest Combined Federal Exercises in the country.  

Ingestion Exposure Pathway (IEP) Tabletop Exercise

On December 5, 2023  New Hampshire HSEM conducted an Ingestion Exposure Pathway (IEP) Tabletop Exercise (TTX) to fulfill a Radiological Emergency Preparedness (REP) Program biennial requirement.  The TTX was attended by 16 personnel representing New Hampshire HSEM, DHHS, NH State Police, DAMF, DES, and Fish and Game. Four personnel from the State of Maine participated remotely, representing the Maine Emergency Management Agency. The exercise focused on the State’s  Intermediate Phase Response with a heavy focus on the impact of a radiological emergency on agricultural products. Within the two-hour scope of the exercise, agency representatives were tasked with identifying agency priorities, capability shortcomings, and recommending state priorities for a given operation period (24 hours). The scenario began post release, on Day 2, of a Simulated Emergency at Seabrook Station Nuclear Power Plant. This exercise is part of the REP Section’s preparations for the upcoming 2028 Ingestion Pathway exercise.

Colby Sawyer College-Active Threat Tabletop Exercise

Colby-Sawyer College worked in conjunction with New London Police, Fire, and the New London Hospital on a tabletop exercise regarding their efforts in very early stages of recovery after an active threat occurred on campus. This tabletop exercise not only tested response, but also walked through communications and recovery to ensure key stakeholders were prepared for an emergency on campus and that they could implement their plan. That included how each group would coordinate with one another in a time of crisis, how they would handle media inquiries, and initiate early discussions on reunification. Forty-nine participants were involved in the exercise and helped make it a success!

We are currently working on their After-Action Report to give them an improvement plan based on their conversation and suggestions and document lessons learned so all the stakeholders can be ready to serve the community in their time of need if that time comes.

A woman stands next to a podium in front of an an enormous projector screen. To the right, stretching across the horizon of the photo, is a long, thin table full of people.
Preparing for a breakout discussion.
A Yellow, black and red binder design with arrows and white text reading "Emergency Management PLAN". A smaller arrow underneath reads "Colby-sawyer college". Everything is in all-caps, with "plan" in bold.
The college’s emergency management plan.

Career Fairs

HSEM employees from the Business & Finance Section and the Community Outreach Office (COO) teamed up to attend several job fairs this quarter. Connections were made with students from all majors to discuss internship and employment opportunities.

The University of New Hampshire (UNH) held its Fall Career & Internship Fair on September 26. HSEM team members were delighted to visit with two of our past interns, Sam and Maddie. On October 9, HSEM employees greeted students at Massachusetts Maritime Academy’s Fall 2023 Career Fair. Former intern Nate Lemire provided a tour of his beautiful campus. Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) held its Internship and Career Fair on October 11 and fall intern Matthew Giambartolomei, who attends SNHU, joined the table to greet students and talk about his internship, and Colby-Sawyer College had a Career Expo on November 8. There we met several students who were motivated, smart and looking for work!  These outreach events are excellent opportunities for students to discover and learn about HSEM’s positions and internship offerings.

If you or someone you know is interested in a career with our division, our job postings can be found on the state’s employment portal.

If you or someone you know is interested in an internship with our agency, applications are available on the HSEM Resource Center.

Hannah behind a table with a tablecloth and many items on top of it. To either side of the table is a large poster saying "Join the Team, make a difference"  and a spin-the-wheel on a stand. This is set up in an enormous gymnasium with red and blue seats.
HSEM Hiring Manager Hannah Ireland sets up the table at UNH.


The COO office was delighted to host several interns this fall. Garon Woods, Matt Giambartolomei, and Nikolas Thompson helped immensely with organization and set up of many of the events that HSEM took part in this quarter. They made sure that each person that received a Ready bag at one of our events got exactly what they needed.

All three participated in trainings and exercises, school security assessments and events that featured our mascot Ready the Prepared Puppy.

Nikolas is working on an Applied Meteorology Graduate degree at Plymouth State University. Garon is majoring in Homeland Security, with a dual major in World Languages (with a focus in Arabic), at UNH. Matt is working on a Justice Studies degree at Southern New Hampshire University.

Nick and Matt listening to an older gentleman in a library
Nikolas and Matt listen attentively during the Mascoma Valley tabletop exercise.
Ready and Garon walk through a parking lot with decorated cars and people in costumes
Garon supervises Ready’s trick-or-treating adventure.

L0105 Public Information Basics Class

Professionals in the field of emergency response participated this past October for a three-day training session on Public Information Basics when operating in the emergency management environment. These lessons and related activities as provided in the FEMA Emergency Management Institute L-0105 class furnish PIO’s with the tools necessary to establish protocols for getting messaging and other emergency information out to response partners, as well as the public, as efficiently and productively as possible to save lives and property when an event occurs. Instructors Vanessa Palange, Paul Raymond, and Patrick Cavanaugh from New Hampshire joined Maine’s Amy Carole as co-instructors to lead the group through the curriculum’s many sections and break-out activities as they learned how to better organize the PIO emergency management function as events occur and are unfolding. This course is fundamental to success as an integral partner in the emergency response environment. The class was not without a bit of fun as well. During the final day of training, in the middle of the morning, the Great NorthEast ShakeOut Drill took place and all our PIO Basics’ students found themselves under tables and otherwise protecting themselves to practice staying safe in the event of an earthquake (see photos accompanying this section). Very timely indeed!

A classroom full of people. Some have computers out, some have notebooks, but all have their eyes on the instructor, who stands next to a whiteboard and two screens with Power point slides on them.
All eyes on instructor Amy Carole.
Several people duck under desks, in a diagonal across the photo.
Students drop and cover during a drill.

Operation Santa Claus

Through the generosity and support of community businesses and HSEM team members, we raised $1,617 from raffle ticket sales and $802 from our dessert auction. We were able to give a happier holiday to 18 local children this year. Thank you for your continued support of this worthwhile endeavor!

The NH HSEM Fun Committee elves extend their gratitude to everyone who supported and donated to this year’s Operation Santa Claus efforts: Azotea Electric, Capitol Center for the Arts, Chunky’s Cinema Pub, The Common Man, Concord Auto Spa, Boston Red Sox, Constantly Pizza, Copper Door, Ice Castles, JAFRA, New England Patriots, NH Motor Speedway, Red River Theatre, Tropical Smoothie, Joe Darrah Enterprises, Geno’s Chowder and Sandwich Shop, NH Lottery, Project Inspire 603, Smokeshow Barbecue, Tucker’s Restaurant, White Mountain CrossFit, Loudon Country Club, Concord Chorale, Flannel Tavern, Ichiban, NH State Parks, Reed’s North and all the HSEM team members who put together gift baskets!

In a selfie done by Matt, multiple people pose in front of two large cars stuffed bags (which are in turn stuffed with gifts). The sun shines on a snow-free parking lot.
Two cars stuffed full of gifts for kids!

Ready the Prepared Puppy

On October 26 and 27, Ready the Prepared Puppy joined in on Department of Corrections (DOC) Halloween celebrations in Berlin and Concord! DOC employees and their children gleefully bounded among decorated cars, as crickets’ chirps filled the warm Autumn air. Kids and adults alike were charmed by Ready, especially for those who were dressed as dogs.

Interns Nick and Garon stand side by side, arms crossed, over a table of candy and emergency goodies
Interns Nikolas and Garon staff the webbed-up trunk and table loaded with goodies!
Ready the mascot stands surprised, 6 feet away from a very young girl in a defensive stance. She is glaring determined-ly at the mascot. Various DOC and trick or trreaters ar ein the backgground, parking lot with a glimpse of trees behind.
Ready challenged to a staring contest by a brave Dalmatian in Berlin.
ready crouches to pet 3 small dogs that are crowding him. The Are you ready banner and trick-or-treat table is behind ready. behind the table is Abby Z, in a red costume.
Ready found a few new friends in Concord.

Candy, emergency cards, activity books, and flashlights were all eagerly swept into waiting treat bags. From the picturesque peaks of Berlin to the brick and concrete of Concord, Ready and his handlers helped kids of all ages know what to do and have what they need to stay safe!

On November 17 Ready the Prepared surprised the students at Loudon Elementary School to help make the rounds with the snack cart.

On December 5 Ready visited Canterbury Elementary School.

If you would like Ready to visit your school or event, email your request to hsempio@dos.nh.gov.

Ready, Gail, and Matt all have their heads turned to the right of the image. The foreground of the image is children seated on a gym floor
Listening to Questions at Canterbury
Two kids stand at a cart full of snacks, with hands going out of the bottom frame holding stickers. To the right, a teacher stands. Behind the kids, Ready watches as the kids choose what they'd like from the cart. They stand in a colorful school hallway, with a glimpse of a classroom behind them.
So many Treats to choose from at Loudon Elementary

Upcoming Trainings

This year brought a passing of the torch to new State Training Officer Greg Gabrielli at Homeland Security and Emergency Management- if you have any questions about training, feel free to contact him at gregory.p.gabrielli@dos.nh.gov.

Q4 concluded with a total of 36 classes administered with 759 students in attendance. That brings the grand total of training opportunities to over one hundred with 2,323 students attending for 2023. This would not have been possible without a collaborative effort from all members of the HSEM team. Gabrielli would like to personally thank each one of the instructors and students that played a role in a productive and successful year. We look forward to continuing this tradition of excellence into next year and beyond. Check out the available training opportunities below and start achieving your 2024 training goals today!

MGT-905 Advanced ICS-400 Command and General Staff Complex Incidents

Concord, NH Fire Academy

January 16-17, 2024, 0800-1700

Prerequisite: IS-100.b, IS-200.b, ICS-300, IS-700.a, and IS-800.b must be completed prior to registration


ICS 400 is intended for an audience of experienced responders and other senior emergency management personnel who may perform in a management capacity for major or complex incidents (Type 1 or Type 2 incidents). Large and complex incidents that require the application of area command do not happen often. Although this is an advanced ICS course, it is not intended to develop mastery of area command. The purpose of this course is to expose students to the concepts of utilizing area command in major and complex incidents.

Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Hybrid Training

Hybrid- Online portion must be completed by Jan 27

This training is a hybrid opportunity- students can take the interactive lecture portion on-line. After completing the online course, students will receive a certificate. A copy of the certificate will be sent to the Souhegan Training Officer. Students who send the Certificate to the Training Officer will be registered for the CERT Hands on Skill practice and exercise day which will be held on Jan 27 (Certificates must be sent by this date). Completing the hands-on skill day will complete the CERT Basic requirements for students to become members of Souhegan CERT or other community CERT organizations. Our goal is to promote CERT as an introduction to young participants to potential emergency response careers and to better prepare our NH communities. We plan to complete training for 30 new CERT graduates.

To register, and get your link to great training, email: CertReadyNH@gmail.com

L0105 Public Information Basics

Concord NH

February 27-29, 2024, 0800-1700

FULL Waitlist only Contact Gregory.P.Gabrielli@DOS.NH.GOV

Prerequisite: IS-29 Public Information Officer Awareness. This three-day class will equip the participants with the skills needed to be full or part-time PIOs, including oral and written communications; understanding and working with the media; and basic tools and techniques to perform effectively as a PIO, both in the proactive/ advocacy times and crisis/ emergency response. This is the replacement for the old G290 and G291.

AWR-331 Winter Weather Hazards: Science and Preparedness

Concord, NH Fire Academy

February 20, 2024, 0800-1700


Join us for our Winter Weather Hazards: Science and Preparedness course and increase your understanding of the latest in winter weather science, forecasting, warning, and best practices in preparedness. Enhance your ability to identify and describe the hazards associated with winter weather and to better prepare for and mitigate the impacts of snow, sleet, freezing rain, and dangerously low temperatures.

MGT-324 Campus Emergencies, Prevention, Response, and Recovery

Keene State College

March 19-20, 2024, 0800-1700

https://train.ncbrt.lsu.edu/Student/Register?ClassID=30885 ACCESS CODE NCBRT324

This course provides participants with an understanding of and ability to navigate through the difficult aspects of dealing with campus emergencies involving natural or manufactured events, including acts of violence. The course consists of small, problem-based, integrated group activities that require a coordinated, integrated approach to solve. Through tabletop scenarios, course participants will observe a developing incident and respond in a manner consistent with currently established campus and jurisdictional emergency operations procedures. Full list of training opportunities can be found here: https://prd.blogs.nh.gov/dos/hsem/?page_id=1055

L0105 Public Information Basics

Milford NH

May 7-9, 2024, 0800-1700


Prerequisite: IS-29 Public Information Officer Awareness. This three-day class will equip the participants with the skills needed to be full or part-time PIOs, including oral and written communications; understanding and working with the media; and basic tools and techniques to perform effectively as a PIO, both in the proactive/ advocacy times and crisis/ emergency response. This is the replacement for the old G290 and G291.

MGT-347 Incident Command System (ICS) Forms Review, MGT-904 Intermediate ICS for Expanding Incidents (ICS 300)

Concord NH

May 14-16, 2024, 0800-1700

Must register for both Prerequisite: IS-100.b, IS-200.b, IS-700.a, and IS-800.b must be completed prior to registration.

Building on the prerequisite ICS 100 and ICS 200 courses, this ICS 300 course focuses on the Incident Command System (ICS) for supervisors in expanding incidents. ICS 300 outlines how the NIMS Command and Coordination component supports the management of expanding incidents as well as describes the incident management processes as prescribed by ICS. This course has a threaded activity that will give students the opportunity to practice implementing the incident management process and creating an Incident Action Plan (IAP) for a simulated expanding incident.

MGT-905 Advanced ICS-400 Command and General Staff-Complex Incidents

Concord NH

July 30-31, 2024, 0800-1700

Prerequisite: IS-100.b, IS-200.b, ICS-300, IS-700.a, and IS-800.b must be completed prior to registration ICS 400 is intended for an audience of experienced responders and other senior emergency management personnel who may perform in a management capacity for major or complex incidents (Type 1 or Type 2 incidents). Large and complex incidents that require the application of area command do not happen often.

Although this is an advanced ICS course, it is not intended to develop mastery of area command. The purpose of this course is to expose students to the concepts of utilizing area command in major and complex incidents.

L-0388 Advanced Public Information Officer

Concord Area

September 23-27, 2024, 0800-1700


Prerequisites: IS-29.a, IS-42, IS-100.b, IS-200.b; IS-201(Waived if current ICS-300 completed), IS-247.a: or IS-251; IS-700.a; IS-800.b and E/L0105 – Public Information Basics

This five-day course training curriculum includes courses delivered at the awareness, basic, intermediate, advanced, and master levels. The awareness, basic and intermediate level courses were developed by EMI and teach basic skills and techniques for use during small, localized, single-agency responses; preparedness campaigns; and escalating localized responses. The advanced level course teaches participants additional skills for use during escalating incidents, including strategic communications and incident action planning as it relates to Joint Information Center (JIC) operations.

Nationwide Suspicious Activity Reporting (SAR) Initiative (NSI) Fundamentals

Virtual Available 24/7/365 https://www.dhs.gov/form/nsi/nter

This one-hour Suspicious Activity Reporting (SAR) Fundamentals training course provides an interactive overview of the Nationwide SAR Initiative (NSI). It provides users an understanding of the evaluation process used to determine whether identified behavior adheres to the Information Sharing Environment Functional Standard criteria, in accordance with privacy, civil rights, and civil liberties protections. This training is available to federal, state, local, tribal, territorial, and private sector homeland security partners.

Health Sector Emergency Preparedness

Virtual https://cdp.dhs.gov/training/course/AWR-336-W

This course content is to provide training and resources to emergency management officials, healthcare coalitions, healthcare providers and suppliers. The course focuses on the general overview of emergency planning and preparedness; development of policies and procedures; creation of communication plans and training and exercises for healthcare entities.