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Vincent Davis

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New Book Bares Lack of Disaster Preparedness in Poor Communities

Seven years after Hurricane Katrina, a new book written by a former FEMA and Red Cross staffer offers some revealing insights into the lack of disaster preparedness in underserved communities. Lost and Turned Out-A Guide to Preparing Underserved Communities for Disasters, discusses the fallacy of current readiness steps to protect poor, disadvantaged populations in a major catastrophe. The book offers solutions for improving underserved participation in the disaster preparedness process.

Chicago, IL, September 23, 2012 --( Lost and Turned Out, by Vincent B. Davis offers a true to life perspective about the state of disaster preparedness among the poor, elderly, people with functional needs, limited English speaking populations and others. The author, a former FEMA External Affairs officer and Red Cross Preparedness manager, relates personal experiences that reveal a stark contrast to what we saw and heard during Hurricane Katrina. Mr. Davis places much of the blame for the failed response to Katrina on the ineptitude of state and local government officials, and dissects the real role FEMA and the media played in the disaster. Further, the author provides a historical perspective about the reasons the underserved are not prepared, and takes the African-American community to task for not engaging in the disaster process. Lost and Turned Out breaks down the U.S. disaster system in layman’s terms, and debunks many of the misconceptions about how disaster relief is administered and who suffers most when the system fails.

Mr. Davis has experience in 11 Presidential disasters, and authored major preparedness reports and plans for the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning Go to 2040 Project, and the FEMA Regional Catastrophic Planning Program. In his new book released September 18th, he cites unpreparedness, lack of knowledge about the disaster system, and dependence on government as the biggest risks to surviving disasters for the underserved today. The book, targeting government response agencies, public health providers, disaster relief organizations, faith leaders and families, shows how these risks can be avoided, and how the underserved can be taught to survive disasters despite the external influences beyond their control. The book was released by Create Space and is available through Amazon and in bookstores.

Davis says he wrote the book in an effort to change the dialogue regarding preparedness among underserved communities and help them make realistic choices to take charge of their own destiny during disasters. He provides examples of proven, cost-effective programs to achieve preparedness in schools, the workplace, and at home. Individuals, rich or poor, can benefit from Davis’ insights because of his frank, honest assessment and broad understanding of the issues surrounding disaster response and relief. Lost and Turned Out is part memoir, and part expose, tackling socially taboo subjects of race, class and culture. A self-help book from a “real” person who has walked in the shoes of the underserved, the book is devoid of pretense or hidden agendas often found in so-called social analysis studies of the post-Katrina debacle. While other books may be more technically rigorous, this self-published work is both interesting and thought provoking.

One Illinois county emergency management director commented, "This book is an awesome summary of the disaster relief system. No unnecessary fluff and written in plain language. It can even be made in to a stand-alone brochure to raise awareness about the whole process. I like it!"

A book signing and launch ceremony is being planned for early October. The book is available in bookstores, online on Amazon, or see the web site for more information under the book title by Vincent Davis.

For more information about Lost and Turned Out a Guide to Preparing Underserved Communities for Disasters, please contact Eraina Ferguson at 857-540-2778, or email

About Author
A native of Maywood IL, Vince Davis began his emergency management career with the Illinois National Guard, where he retired with honors after a 23-year career in Public Affairs and Community Relations. From 2002-2005, he served in the Office of the Regional Administrator at FEMA Region V, supervising regional and national Community Relations teams during Presidential declared disasters.

In 2004, Mr. Davis led community relations teams in Florida and Alabama, in response to Hurricanes Charlie, Frances, Ivan and Jeanne. That year, he was also part of a task force at FEMA headquarters, coordinating deployment and training for Citizen Corps volunteers assigned to the Gulf region.

After leaving FEMA, Mr. Davis served as National Director of Operations for the Save-A-Life Foundation, managing first aid and CPR training programs for K-12 school children. In 2007, he was appointed Manager of Regional Preparedness for the American Red Cross of Greater Chicago, where he established initiatives designed to strengthen the chapter's preparedness capabilities. While at the Red Cross, Mr. Davis researched and developed a ground-breaking Regional Emergency Preparedness Report for the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) Go To 2040 Project. In 2011, he led design and delivery of FEMA's Regional Catastrophic Incident Coordination Plan, which included catastrophic disaster plans for 16 counties in Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin.

Regarded as a subject-matter-expert in preparedness planning, Mr. Davis holds numerous certifications in emergency management, planning, training, exercises, and operations. He currently works in the Emergency Preparedness and Response section at Walgreens Co., where he is responsible for managing emergency programs for the company’s stores and facilities nationwide.

Contact Information:
Vincent B. Davis
10331 Bond St.
Contact Information
Vincent Davis
Publicist - Eraina Ferguson at 857-540-2778

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