August 2021

Thank you to the 18 teams and all our members who activated for Elsa. We are fortunate to be able to practice our activation procedures during damage assessment situations like Elsa.

From the top
In July, our members completed a successful activation and response to Hurricane Elsa. With heavy winds to our west and flooding to our east, we were lucky. This storm gave us an opportunity to practice our communication and collaboration. Let’s hope we don’t have to deal with anything more severe this season.
In July, we offered free CPR/AED/Heimlich Maneuver training for our members. We are not changing how we activate; we do not perform CPR while activating after a hurricane. This training was designed to give our members additional skills for individual emergency response.

Coronavirus cases are increasing in our area. Unfortunately, the August behind-the-scenes member tour of the Manatee County Emergency Operations Center (EOC) has been cancelled to help protect the health and safety of the EOC employees. We will continue to monitor Covid in our community and its impact on our remaining scheduled in-person events.
To our neighbors and members, please take all precautions and keep yourself and your family safe.

Jim Emanuelson
President, LWR CERT
RECAP: LWR CERT Activates for Elsa
On July 6, Hurricane Elsa passed near the Sarasota- Bradenton area. Forecasts indicated Elsa might bring 58-73 MPH winds and a storm surge greater than 3 feet in parts of our response area.

The LWR CERT Executive Committee decided to move to Readiness Condition 2 (ALERT) at 9 AM that day. This meant that a Readiness Condition 1 (ACTIVATE) was automatic after the storm passed.

LWR CERT successfully completed a Damage Assessment Activation despite this being only the second activation in our organization’s history. The LWR CERT Incident Commander received damage assessments from 18 active teams by 10:34 AM on July 7. More than 85 members activated. A damage assessment report was relayed to Manatee County via Manatee County ARES using Winlink.

Thank you to the LWR CERT members who activated for Elsa and those who responded to pre-storm messages to let us know you were out of town or otherwise unable to activate. We appreciate the efforts of our Team Captains, Group Leaders, Hubs and our Operations Manager, Dave Cashbaugh. Lakewood Ranch was fortunate to escape major damage from Elsa -- areas to our south and east endured major flooding from this storm.
Team 8 Elsa Activation
Members of Team 8 conducted a complete activation for Elsa. Led by Group Leader Mike Staley, Sam Mallis, Cynthia Olcott, Karen Lilly, Patt Staley, Paul Jackowski and Valerie Stafford-Mallis helped clear streets in Summerfield Woods.
Members who activate for a storm are automatically awarded Tier 2 Active Responder status. Share your team photos. Email them to
UPCOMING: LWR Hurricane Prep Event set for Aug. 21
After a successful social distanced Hurricane Prep event at LWR Town Hall last month, LWR CERT is once again offering residents an opportunity to learn how to keep their homes and families safe from our often unpredictable hurricanes.

The next Hurricane Prep event is set for
Saturday, August 21
9 - 10:30 AM
LWR Town Hall

This important hurricane preparedness information event is free and open to the public. Doors will open 30 minutes early for viewing of the Hurricane Prep supplies display.

Seating is limited. Click below for details and registration.
The Hurricane Prep session is a 2021 Active Responder Qualifying Event.
RECAP: July 22 LWR Hurricane Prep Event
More than 50 residents attended the July 22 Hurricane Prep event at LWR Town Hall where they socially-distanced while learning tips on how to keep their homes and families safe during hurricanes. Thank you to all who participated in this educational session.

Visit for details on future LWR public educational events.
Welcome to our newest managers
LWR CERT is pleased to announce three members have stepped up into new roles as managers within the organization.
Bruce Bedford
Membership Manager

Bruce joined LWR CERT in August 2019, He serves as Team Captain and Group Leader for Team 9 in Summerfield Glades. Bruce is responsible for keeping accurate records of all our members along with their most updated contact information. He'll use his IT background to analyze team and volunteer data. Bruce also tracks member activities, Active Responder credits, and Active Responder Tier 1 and Tier 2 awards.
Eddie Russell
Logistics Manager

Eddie graduated from Basic Training in June 2021. He is a member of Team 36 in Ashland in the Country Club. Eddie is responsible for managing the inventory of our supplies in our storage units, preparing backpacks for our new members, coordinating the annual Team Kit pick-ups and drop-offs, and tracking returned backpacks and radios from resigning members.
RECAP: July 10 Group Leader Workshop
To prepare for the current hurricane season, Group Leaders attended a workshop at Town Hall Saturday, July 10. They discussed the 2021 Activation process with Activation Manager Dave Cashbaugh, learned the importance of the new waiver form from President Jim Emanuelson, tested their IC radios with Frank Giannone (Hub 6), and practiced a new first aid skill, the Jaw Thrust Maneuver, with Pat Knowles and Brenda Nusbaum.
The GL Workshop was a 2021 Active Responder qualifying event.
Hands-only CPR/AED Personal Enrichment Training
The two (recently named) LWR CERT manikins, Homer and Jerome, played key roles at Town Hall last month, helping more than 20 members learn Hands-Only CPR. The 90-minute training was conducted by American Heart Association-certified CPR instructor and LWR CERT Team Captain Connie Farmer. Attendees also learned how to use an AED and how to save choking adults and children.

Thanks to Valerie Voutsas and Stephen Voutsas for sharing their photos of the event.

Hands-Only CPR-AED training was a 2021 Active Responder qualifying event.
Congratulations to our newest Active Responders
Tier 1
Mark Boutote
Paul Drzal
Anne Goyer
Andy Goyer
Bill Sgro
Jeff Williams
Wow! Look at all the new Active Responders this month! More than 75% of our members have achieved Tier 1 status, and 57% are Tier 2 Responders.

Congratulations and thank you for being so engaged! Active Responder awards have been provided to Team Captains for distribution to their qualifying team members.
Tier 2
Pablo Acevedo
Laura Adcock
Eileen Amesbury
Michael Baillie
Mary Balazic
Tricia Bauer
Tom Bishop
Stephen Bloom
Mark Boutote
Jerry Buhr
Marty Burton
Paul Catalano
Barb Clemons
Kay Culliton
Jim Curran
Mike Defferding
Sharon Defferding
Don Diven
Paul Drzal
David Forgash
Amy Franceschini
Frank Giannone
Anne Goyer
Andy Goyer
Polly Greene
Tier 2
Stephen Greene
Joan Grossel
Roger Grossel
Tony Gula
Barbara Hickey
Paul Jackowski
Irene Jimenez
Bill Leatham
Jack Mathews
Michael Miller
Mike Modisett
John Oakes
Cynthia Olcott
Julie Russell
Eddie Russell
Marty Saia
Mollie Saia
Stan Schuer
Bill Sgro
Art Taber
Robert Thompson
Valerie Voutsas
Douglas Webber
Jeff Williams
Lorraine Wright
LWR CERT needs you!
Looking for ways to get more involved with CERT? There are many opportunities for you to share your time and talents. Here are some of our current needs:

Radio Communications Committee: Our Hub Operators have held their positions for many years -- in some cases, more than a decade -- and they are looking for a few special members willing to learn how to serve as Hub Operators during times of activation. You supply the brain power, and LWR CERT supplies all the equipment. We will even provide resources for you to pass your FCC exam! Contact Interim Radio Communications Committee Manager Jim Emanuelson.
15th Anniversary Celebration: We're planning a community-wide celebration at Adventure Park on Jan. 22, 2022 and need more volunteers to ensure the event is a success. We'd love to hear your ideas for who to include in our lineup of partnering organizations, how we should get the community excited to attend, and which food trucks we should invite. We need planning help in the coming months as well as "boots on the ground" day-of event help, so let us know how and where you'd like to pitch in. Contact 15th Anniversary Celebration Coordinator Karen Emanuelson.
Member News and Things to Know

Happy August birthday to members Paul Drzal, Kathy Epstein-Leis, Frank Giannone, Jean Hritz, Gordon Kuhn, Jeffrey Mull, Don O'Leary, Bill Plerhoples, Richard Raymond, Teresa Reeck, Eddie Russell, and Lorraine Wright.

Test of LWR CERT Emergency Radio Communications Network - Group Leaders and Hubs will perform a quarterly test of the ERCN Saturday, Aug. 14 beginning at 9 AM. GLs and Hubs should watch their emails for registration information and details.

Thank you to Pat Knowles who, until recently, served as our Logistics Manager. You've probably seen Pat at a LWR CERT function (or two). In addition to his previous role as Manager of Logistics, Pat is also a board member, a member of our Executive Committee, our Treasurer, a key Basic Training First Aid instructor, AND our amazing public Hurricane Prep feature speaker. We thank him for his years (and hours of work) as Logistics Manager and for his continued contributions in so many other ways!

Thank you to Tom Hickey, who, until recently, served as our Membership Manager. Tom's data analysis skills were instrumental in helping the organization better understand where to focus recruiting efforts to build up teams in unrepresented neighborhoods. He also served as Team Captain Liaison. Tom remains an active member and Team Captain for Team 32.

Thank you to Jan Kuhn who has stepped up as our new Team Captain and Group Leader Liaison. Jan serves as Team Captain for Team 11 and is also Vice President and a member of the Executive Committee. TCs and GLs are encouraged to reach out to Jan.
Sarasota County Basic Training - Interested in joining CERT? Sarasota County Emergency Management is offering Basic Training at State College of Florida in Lakewood Ranch. This free course is offered through 6 sessions. Registration deadline is Aug. 13. Click here for details and registration.

Emergency Alert Test - FEMA will conduct a nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System and Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) on Wednesday, Aug. 11 beginning at 2:20 PM. For consumers who have opted in to receive WEA test messages, the message that appears on their phones will read: “THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed.”

Neighbor Outreach - Thank you to Matt Cangemi and Eileen O'Neil for their efforts to encourage their neighbors to learn more about LWR CERT. They wrote a great article for the July Weston neighborhood newsletter. Reach out to Matt and Eileen if you'd like a copy to use to promote LWR CERT to your neighbors.

Town Hall Mask Policy: Effective Thursday, July 29, all visitors and staff will be required to wear masks while inside LWR Town Hall regardless of their vaccination status. You may remove your mask when you are properly social distanced from others (at least 6 feet apart).
if you were in a crash or other emergency situation, couldn’t talk and your cell phone was locked, how would your family and friends be notified?

If you register your emergency contact information (ECI) into the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles system, law enforcement can contact your loved ones for you, and quickly, even across state lines.

Click the graphic for details and to register.
What's Inside A LWR CERT Backpack?
2 Mylar Emergency Blankets
In between the high visibility vest, green hard hat, 3 dust masks, flashlight and 3 light sticks, LWR CERT members also have 2 mylar emergency blankets in their backpacks.

The most basic use of an emergency blanket is as a blanket, helping to keep a survivor who may be in shock warm. Mylar blankets are waterproof and can also be used to keep a survivor dry.

Emergency blankets can be crafted into a makeshift splint to immobile a broken or sprained arm or leg. Use strips of the blanket to secure sticks or even a rigid magazine around the limb. You can also use a blanket as an improvised arm sling.

A mylar blanket can keep the contents of a backpack dry by placing everything in the blanket, then wrapping it prior to placing it in the pack. It can be a makeshift tablecloth or used to create a clean surface for a survivor to sit on.
Volunteer Opportunities
Part of the LWR CERT Mission Statement is to provide safety support for our community, so we are sharing individual volunteer opportunities our members may wish to consider.
Local Feeding Events - Feeding Tampa Bay
  • Manatee County Mega Pantry: Every Tuesday 3 - 6:30 PM (feed 900+ families) Location: Desoto Mall, Hungry Howie's side, 303 301 Blvd W, Bradenton 34205 

Have a volunteer opportunity you'd like to share in an upcoming newsletter? Email details and links to:
Upcoming LWR CERT Meetings and Training
Meetings take place at LWR Town Hall unless otherwise noted and are open to all members

Board Meeting - Monday, Aug. 9 - cancelled
Communications/15th Anniversary Planning Committee - Video Call - Tuesday, Aug. 10 at 4 PM
Operations Committee - Video Call - Thursday, Aug. 12 at 6 PM
Quarterly Test of LWR CERT Emergency Radio Communications Network - Saturday, Aug. 14 at 9 AM; conducted by all GLs and Hubs
Radio Communications Committee - Wednesday, Aug. 18 at 7 PM
Public Hurricane Prep - Saturday, Aug. 21 at 9 AM. Registration and info here.
Member Exclusive Event - Tour of Manatee County EOC - CANCELLED due to reinstated Covid restrictions
Basic Training - Sept. 14 - 25, Registration required. Learn more here.
SAVE THE DATE: Member Meeting - Tuesday, Sept. 28 at 7 PM
SAVE THE DATE: LWR CERT 15th Anniversary Community Celebration - Saturday, Jan. 22, 2022 at 11 AM at Adventure Park
LWR CERT Executive Committee

President - Jim Emanuelson
Vice President - Jan Kuhn
Treasurer - Pat Knowles
Liaison - Deb Diven

LWR CERT 941.404.8606
Newsletter Editor - Karen Emanuelson, Communications Manager

Newsletter Proofreader - Diane Anderson

Send comments, suggestions, and photos for future issues to