About ICF

Lisa Flax

Senior Manager Disaster Recovery, Disaster Management
Lisa is a disaster recovery and disaster management expert with 25 years of experience helping communities prepare for and recover from natural and human-induced disasters.

Lisa served in program management roles for more than 40 major presidentially declared disasters. She assisted local and state governments, private non-profits, public transportation providers, and electric utilities plan for and recover from disasters across the U.S. She managed the state’s implementation of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Public Assistance Program in Florida, Georgia, New York, Mississippi, and North Carolina.

Lisa authored and co-authored disaster preparedness, response, recovery, hazard mitigation, and post-disaster redevelopment plans for over 400 jurisdictions at the city, county, regional, and state levels. She supported FEMA Regions I, V, VII, and X, as a Local Mitigation Strategy reviewer for FEMA Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000 compliance, conducting pre- and post-disaster analyses. She managed many multi-hazards geographic information systems (GIS)-based risk and vulnerability assessments to evaluate hazard reduction and resiliency initiatives. Lisa prepared Continuity of Operations Plans (COOPs), and Emergency Operations Center plans and operational guides. She also managed a project to assess hazard mitigation integration between emergency management, hazard mitigation, and disaster recovery plans and local comprehensive land use plans for 36 Florida counties. Lisa developed, delivered, and evaluated Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP) exercises and conducted reviews of COOPs for HSEEP compliance.

Following Hurricane Katrina, Lisa co-authored a hurricane protection and coastal restoration report for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers New Orleans District, and the “New Orleans Post-Hurricane Katrina Population Study” for the City of New Orleans.

Lisa provided expertise for the 2009 Florida (FL) Post Disaster Redevelopment Plan (PDRP) pilot project initiative. She served as the project manager for two plans and authored the “Nassau County PDRP.” She prepared case studies with best practices and served as a peer reviewer for the FL PDRP Guidebook. She prepared a multi-hazard GIS-based risk and vulnerability assessment methodology for the FL PDRP Guidebook website. Best practices learned during this grassroots pilot project initiative were considered during the development of the FEMA’s National Disaster Recovery Framework.

Lisa worked in New York (NY) following Superstorm Sandy, serving on the program management team that provided oversight and quality assurance for $729 million in FEMA Public Assistance 428 Program funding for the Long Island Power Authority Public Service Enterprise Group Electrical Utilities Hazard Mitigation Program. She also co-authored the “Gerritsen Beach and Sheepshead Bay NY Rising Community Reconstruction Plan” for the NYS Department of State.

While working on a contract with the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration Coastal Services Center, Lisa collaborated with the Organization of American States to plan and facilitate Vulnerability Assessment Techniques (VAT) Workshops II and III, involving academicians and practitioners from the U.S., Central America, South America, and the Caribbean. She managed the development of the Vulnerability Assessment Techniques and Applications website, which housed assessments developed by VAT workshop participants. She co-developed and co-delivered a workshop about how emergency managers and coastal zone managers could use funding sources and hazard mitigation projects to synergistically reduce hazards vulnerability within the natural and built environments.

"Accumulating best practices from collaborating with communities to develop pragmatic disaster planning and recovery solutions, provides a wealth of knowledge and experience to help other communities."
Areas of expertise
  • Community Vulnerability Assessment Tool Methodology, Natural Hazards Review Volume 3, Number 4, American Society of Civil Engineers, 2002.
  • FEMA Hazard Mitigation Integration Guide, FEMA Region III, 2014.
  • Confronting Catastrophe: A GIS Handbook, RW Greene, ESRI, 2002.