External Assessment Panel

Glenn Bell

Glenn Bell
Chief Executive Officer, Simpson Gumpertz & Heger

Glenn Bell is a Senior Principal and CEO of Simpson Gumpertz & Heger, where he has practiced for forty years. He is a registered Professional Engineer in seven states and the District of Columbia, a registered Structural Engineer in Illinois, and a Chartered Engineer in the UK. A consultant in design, investigation, and restoration projects, he has lectured and published extensively on technical, managerial, and professional practice in structural engineering. His structural design projects include the Baha'i Temple in Santiago, Chile; Simmons Hall at Massachusetts Institute of Technology; and Spaceship Earth, the geodesic sphere at Walt Disney World Epcot Center.


Mr. Bell was cofounder of the ASCE Technical Council on Forensic Engineering, which strives to improve professional practice by learning from failures. He was a member of the SGH team that prepared progressive collapse analyses of World Trade Center Towers 1 and 2 for NIST. Mr. Bell has been active in the earthquake engineering community. He helped to develop Procter and Gamble's Global Earthquake Risk Mitigation Program and has been active in earthquake standards and code development. Mr. Bell received the American Society of Civil Engineers 2014 Edmund Friedman Professional Recognition Award, the ASCE 2015 Forensic Engineering Award, and was a 2015 inductee into the University of California, Berkeley, Civil and Environmental Engineering Academy of Distinguished Alumni.

Jane Cage

Jane Cage
Principal for Insightfive22

Jane Cage provides practical and extensive recovery experience as an experienced community leader and entrepreneur. She currently serves as Principal for Insightfive22, a consulting firm focused on long-term community recovery and resilience. In that role, Cage has co-authored and instructed "The Resilient Community," a series of workshops to teach resilience practices to non-profit organizations that serve vulnerable populations, helping them prepare for and recover from natural disasters.


Before her role as a consultant, Cage served as Chairman of the Joplin Citizens Advisory Recovery Team, a citizen-led group of over 100 community leaders tasked with developing long-term recovery efforts for Joplin, Missouri, after the 2011 tornado disaster. Acting as a liaison between federal, state, and local government representatives, Cage and her team developed a post-disaster recovery vision that brought national recognition for her work. In 2016, Cage chaired the Joplin Disaster Recovery Summit, an event attended by over 300 people from 30 states. She has received numbers of honors and awards throughout her career, including:

  • 2012 Rick Rescorla National Award for Resilience (Department of Homeland Security)
  • 2013 Kevin Lavan National Leadership Award (National Weather Association)
  • 2013 Distinguished Alumna Award (Wake Forest University)
  • 2016 Harvard National Preparedness Leadership Initiative – Meta-Leader of the Year Award
  • 2012 Citizen of the Year (City of Joplin)
  • 2012 50 Missourians You Should Know (Ingram’s Magazine)
  • 2011 IT Hall of Fame Inductee (Computing Technology Industry Association [COMPTIA])
  • Cage received her B.A. in both Economics and Spanish from Wake Forest University. She attended the National Preparedness Leadership Initiative at Harvard University in 2014 and the FEMA Emergency Management Institute in 2016.

    Gary Chock

    Gary Chock, S.E., F.SEI, F.ASCE, D.CE
    President, Martin & Chock, Inc.

    Gary Chock has been engaged in structural engineering since 1980. He is President of Martin & Chock, Inc., and he has been responsible for many major private industry projects in Hawaii, as well as numerous projects for public agencies. Under his leadership, Martin & Chock has established multi-faceted expertise in the fields of structural engineering and blast analysis, engineering research and development, planning for natural, man-made, and technological hazards, structural performance and reliability analysis, risk analysis, as well as spatial analysis using Geographic Information Systems. In addition to the structural design of numerous buildings and infrastructure, his project portfolio also includes tsunami, earthquake, and hurricane hazard research, building risk assessments, hazard mitigation planning, coastal flooding hazard analysis, building code development, and emergency response planning.


    In 2010, he was awarded the ASCE Hawaii Chapter Outstanding Civil Engineering Achievement for Windspeed Mapping for the State of Hawaii Incorporating Topographic Effects. He developed uniform-risk wind speed GIS-based mapping products and topographic design provisions for adoption as County and State code amendments to the International Building Code. Gary Chock was selected by Engineering News Record as one of the 25 Top Newsmakers of 2012 for his work on developing a national standard for tsunami-resistant design and for leading the ASCE reconnaissance of the March 11, 2011 Tohoku Tsunami. His was the first group from the US to comprehensively survey the tsunami-damaged Tohoku coastline of Honshu, Japan. Mr. Chock is the national Chair of the ASCE 7 Tsunami Loads and Effects Subcommittee that in 2015 is completing the first national standard for tsunami-resistant design for the upcoming 2016 edition of the ASCE 7 Standard. As a result of this work, tsunami risk to coastal construction, particularly critical and essential facilities, will be comprehensively addressed in design. In 2014, he was bestowed the Western States Seismic Policy Council Lifetime Achievement Award, reflecting a multiple-decades long history of dedicated public service to the State of Hawaii in the areas of earthquake and tsunami mitigation. In 2015, Gary Chock was selected by the American Society of Civil Engineers Structural Engineering Institute to receive the Walter P. Moore Award for demonstrated technical expertise in and dedication to the development of structural codes and standards.

    William Coulbourne

    William L. Coulbourne, P.E.
    Structural Engineering Consultant

    Mr. Coulbourne has a BS in Civil Engineering from Virginia Tech and a Masters in Structural Engineering from the University of Virginia. He is a licensed Professional Engineer in three states. He is a national expert in wind and flood mitigation and has been involved in FEMA Mitigation Assessment Teams and natural hazard damage assessments for 20 years. He has been involved as an investigator or Project Manager with every major hurricane, tornado and flood since 1995, and was involved in a building collapse caused by terrorism and a tsunami in Japan. He has investigated failures and mitigation design techniques for thousands of buildings including residential structures, schools used as shelters, hospitals, and other critical facilities. He holds Certifications in Structural Engineering and Building Inspection Engineering.


    Mr. Coulbourne has written articles for journals and given presentations, seminars and webinars for homebuilders, engineers, architects, building officials and homeowners on high wind and flood design and coastal construction issues and has taught as an Adjunct Faculty member in the College of Engineering at the University of Delaware. He was the primary author and Project Manager for FEMA 55: Coastal Construction Manual. He has co-authored books and journal articles on high wind design issues and strategies including Guides to the Wind Load Provisions of ASCE 7-05 and ASCE 7-10, an ATC Design Guide on Basic Wind Engineering for Low-Rise Buildings and a book on Engineering Investigations of Hurricane Damage for ASCE. He is a Fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) and a Fellow in the Structural Engineering Institute of ASCE. He actively participates on the ASCE engineering standards committees for ASCE 7 Minimum Design Loads for Buildings and Other Structures, ASCE 24 Flood Resistant Design and Construction, and a new standards committee for improving tornado wind speeds using the EF Scale.

    Craig Davis

    Craig Davis
    Water System Resilience Program Manager, Los Angeles Department of Water and Power

    CRAIG A. DAVIS, Ph.D., PE, GE is the Water System Resilience Program Manager and the Seismic Manager for the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, Water System. Formerly he held the positions of Geotechnical Engineering and Trunk Line Design Manager and oversaw nearly a billion dollars in the dam and reservoir development, large diameter pipeline installations, and Water System seismic improvement programs. Dr. Davis is currently developing a comprehensive LA Water System seismic resilience and sustainability program.


    He is a California licensed Civil and Geotechnical Engineer and received a B.S. in Civil Engineering from the California Polytechnic State University in San Louis Obispo, CA, an M.S. in Civil Engineering with emphasis in structural earthquake engineering from the University of Southern California in 1991, and a Ph.D. in Civil Engineering with emphasis in geotechnical earthquake engineering from the University of Southern California in 2000. He has worked for the LADWP since 1987 where he has investigated and evaluated numerous dams, managed several multimillion dollar projects, and implemented unique and innovative designs. Dr. Davis is appointed to the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP) Advisory Committee on Earthquake Hazards Reduction (ACEHR). He is the founding Executive Committee chairperson for the ASCE Infrastructure Resilience Division. Dr. Davis participates in many other national and international professional committees involved in geotechnical engineering and lifeline system resilience and is the founding vice president of the International Society of Lifeline and Infrastructure Earthquake Engineering. He is involved in the utilization of seismic pipes and instigating development of a resilient pipe industry. He was honored with the ASCE 2016 Le Val Lund Award for Practicing Lifeline Risk Reduction. Dr. Davis has published over 100 technical papers and also organized and coordinated numerous international workshops and symposiums on geotechnical engineering and lifeline system resilience.

    Ann Margaret Esnard

    Ann-Margaret Esnard
    Professor, Georgia State University

    Ann-Margaret Esnard is a Professor in the Department of Public Management and Policy. She was hired in 2013 as part of the cluster on "Shaping the Future of Cities," during the third phase of the University's Second Century Initiative. In 2014, she was appointed as the Chair of GSU's Council for the Progress of Cities.

    Her expertise encompasses urban planning, disaster planning, vulnerability assessment, and GIS/spatial analysis. She has been involved in a number of research initiatives, including NSF funded projects on topics of population displacement from catastrophic disasters, and long-term recovery. She is the coauthor of the 2014 book Displaced by Disasters: Recovery and Resilience in a Globalizing World.


    Esnard has served on a number of state and national committees including the Disasters Roundtable of the National Academy of Sciences, and the National Research Council's committee on Private-Public Sector Collaboration to Enhance Community Disaster Resilience, and the State of Florida Post-Disaster Redevelopment Planning initiative.

    Esnard holds degrees in Agricultural Engineering (B.Sc., University of the West Indies-Trinidad), Agronomy and Soils (M.S., University of Puerto Rico-Mayaguez) and Regional Planning (Ph.D., UMASS-Amherst). She also completed a two year post-doc at UNC-Chapel Hill.

    Jane Gilbert

    Jane Gilbert
    Chief Resilience Officer, City of Miami

    Ms. Gilbert leads the resilience strategy development for City of Miami, and, in partnership with Miami-Dade County and City of Miami Beach, for Greater Miami and the Beaches. Additionally, as Director of the City's Office of Resilience and Sustainability, Ms. Gilbert is charged with leading the City's response to the impacts of climate change.


    Prior to joining the City, Ms. Gilbert managed The Miami Foundation's civic leadership agenda on sea level rise. Jane led Wells Fargo's philanthropy and community affairs in South Florida and was the Executive Director for 3 nonprofits, Dream in Green, Arts for Learning/Miami and ArtCenter/South Florida.

    Ms. Gilbert also served on the City of Miami's Sea Level Rise Advisory Committee, Beacon Council's One Community One Goal Steering Committee, Miami-Dade County Climate Change Advisory Task Force, and City of Miami NSP Task Force.

    Jim Harris

    Jim Harris
    J. R. Harris & Company


    • Ph.D.(1980), University of Illinois, 1980, Structures and Foundations
    • MSCE (1975), University of Illinois, 1975, Structures
    • BSCE (1968), University of Colorado, 1968, Structures

    Professional Employment:

    • 1984- J.R. Harris & Company, Principal, Denver
    • 1981-84 Structural Consultants, Inc., Principal, Denver
    • 1975-81 National Bureau of Standards, Research Structural Engineer, Gaithersburg, MD
    • 1973-75 University of Illinois, Graduate Research and Teaching Assistant
    • 1969-73 Zeiler and Gray, Engineer and Associate, Denver
    • 1968-69 Ken R. White Company, Engineer, Denver

    Selected Awards:

    • Distinguished Service Award, College of Engineering, University of Illinois, Urbana, 2010
    • Life Membership, Structural Engineers Association of Colorado, 2008
    • Distinguished Engineering Alumnus, University of Colorado, Boulder, 2007
    • National Academy of Engineering, elected 2005
    • Walter P. Moore, Jr., Award, Structural Eng'g Inst. of the Am. Soc. of Civil Engineers, 2002
    • BSSC Honor Award, Building Seismic Safety Council of the Nat'l Inst. of Bldg Sci, 1997
    • Outstanding Public Service Award, U. S. Federal Emergency Management Agency, 1986

    Selected Professional Committees and Activities

    • American Concrete Institute: Committee 318, Standard Building Code, 1989-present
    • American Institute of Steel Construction: Task Committee on Seismic Provisions 1999-present; former Chair, Committee for the Design for Blast Resistant Steel Buildings
    • American Society of Civil Engineers: Member 1979-present, and former Chair, Standards Committee for Minimum Design Loads for Buildings and Other Structures (ASCE 7); formerly Chairman, Task Committee on Earthquake Loads; Member 1988-2014 Standards Committee for Loads on Structures During Construction (ASCCE 37); Member, core team for the Pentagon to study building performance in the wake of the September 11, 2001, attacks
    • Applied Technology Council: President of Board of Directors 2008
    • Building Seismic Safety Council: Member, Provisions Update Committee, chair of committee for the 1985 edition of NEHRP Recommended Provisions (first edition) Mid-American Earthquake Engineering Research Center: former Member, Executive Advisory Board (Chair 2002-3)
    • Structural Engineering Institute of ASCE: President of Board of Governors 2008-2009
    • Structural Engineers Association of Colorado: President 1990; Snow Load Committee
    • The Masonry Society: Board of Directors 2004-2009

    Christopher P. Jones, P.E.

    Christopher Jones is a consultant specializing in coastal flood hazard analysis and coastal building codes. Mr. Jones uses his knowledge of construction and forensic studies to improve coastal hazard mapping and mitigation guidance, and his flood hazard mapping knowledge to inform post-storm damage investigations.

    He has been deployed after major hurricanes since 1995 as part of FEMA's Building Performance Assessment Teams and Mitigation Assessment Teams (Hurricane Opal 1995; Fran 1996; Ivan 2004; Katrina 2005; Ike 2008; Isaac 2012; Sandy 2012). He was a member of the ASCE team investigating 2009 tsunami damage on American Samoa.


    Mr. Jones serves as chair of the ASCE-24 (Flood Resistant Design and Construction) Standards Committee and the ASCE 7 Flood Loads Task Committee. He is a member of the ASCE Codes and Standards Activities Division Executive Committee. He is a member of the ICC-500 (Design and Construction of Storm Shelters) Standard Committee.

    Ifa Kashefi

    Ifa Kashefi, Ph.D., S.E.
    Assistant General Manager, Permit & Engineering Bureau Chief, Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety

    Dr. Kashefi has over 30 years of structural engineering experience, extensive managerial and leadership experience in the private and public sectors. As the Chief of the Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety (LADBS) Permit and Engineering Bureau, since 2008, she has directed the entire Bureau's operations and technical enhancement programs including development and implementations of the Bureau administrative policies and procedures. She is responsible for the following major Department-wide operations with over 260 employees (managers, engineers, office technicians, supervisors, and clerical support staff) and an annual budget of 43 million.


    Professional Affiliations include Los Angeles Tall Buildings Structural Design Council (Past President, 2013), Structural Engineers Association of Southern California (Board of Directors, 2012-2014), International Code Council (Los Angeles Basin Chapter).


    • Ph.D. - Civil/Earthquake Engineering, University of Southern California
    • M.S. - Civil Engineering, University of Southern California
    • B.S. - Structural Engineering, Aryamehr (Sharif) University of Technology, Iran
    Leon Kempner

    Leon Kempner
    Principal Structural Engineer, Transmission Engineering (TEL-TPP3), Bonneville Power Administration/USDOE

    Dr. Kempner has 41+ years of experience as a structural engineer for the Bonneville Power Administration, USDOE. Assignments have included structural engineering analysis, design, assessment, and research of transmission line facilities (transmission line towers, substation and microwave structures, and seismic upgrade high-voltage transmission line facilities). The last 20+ years Dr. Kempner has been performing seismic evaluation, research, qualifications, standards development, and mitigation design of the Bonneville Power Administration transmission line facilities.



    • University of Nebraska, Omaha, B.S.C.E., Civil (Structural) Engineering, With Distinction, 1972
    • Oregon State University, M.S., Civil (Structural) Engineering, 1974
    • Portland State University, Ph.D., System Science: Civil Engineering, 1997

    National Professional Awards:

    • American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), Technical Council on Lifeline Earthquake Engineering (TCLEE), Charles Martin Duke Lifeline Earthquake Engineering Award, 2009
    • ASCE, Committee on Electrical Transmission Structures, Gene Wilhoite Innovations in Transmission Line Engineering Award, 2001

    Member of the following technical committees:

    • ANSI/ASCE, Standard 48 - Design of Transmission Pole Structures,
    • ANSI/ASCE, Secretary, Standard 10 - Design of Latticed Steel Transmission Structures,
    • IEEE, Co-Vice Chair, Standard 693 - Seismic Design of Substation Structures,
    • National Electrical Safety Code Subcommittee 5, Overhead Lines (Strength and Loading),
    • National Electrical Safety Code, Executive Subcommittee,
    • CIGRE, US Representative and Convenor, WG24 "Static and Dynamic loads on Overhead Transmission Lines" of Study Committee B2 (Overhead Line),
    • ASCE M-74, Committee on Electrical Transmission Structure Loadings,
    • ASCE M-113, Committee on Substation Structure Design,
    • ASCE 7, Ice Subcommittee,
    • CEATI (Centre for Energy Advancement Though Technology Innovation) International, Overhead Transmission Line Design Working Group,
    • EPRI, Inter-Utility Seismic Design Group.

    Dr. Kempner has over fifty technical papers discussing structural engineering (analysis, design, and research) of transmission line facilities. He is a registered Professional Civil Engineer (P.E.) in the States of Washington and Oregon.

    Jamie Brown Kruse

    Jamie Brown Kruse
    HCAS Distinguished Professor of Economics
    Senior Scientist, Institute for Coastal Science and Policy
    Director, Center for Natural Hazards Research, East Carolina University

    Dr. Jamie Kruse is recognized for her research in economics and decision making under uncertainty especially as it relates to natural hazards. She completed her doctoral work at University of Arizona under dissertation advisor, Vernon Smith (2002 Nobel Laureate). Dr. Kruse has published over sixty refereed journal articles in addition to proceedings, abstracts and reports.


    Her work has appeared in Econometrica, RAND Journal of Economics, Southern Economic Journal, Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, Economic Inquiry, Natural Hazards Review, Journal of Wind Engineering and Industrial Aerodynamics, Environmetrics, Weather and Forecasting, Risk Analysis, Journal of Risk and Insurance, Journal of Insurance Issues and others. She has held faculty positions at the University of Colorado, Texas Tech University, East Carolina University and a visiting position at Eidgenossische Technische Hochschule (ETH) in Zurich, Switzerland.

    Her work has been supported by National Aeronautics and Space Administration, National Science Foundation, US Geological Survey, Department of Energy, National Institute of Standards and Technology, Federal Emergency Management Agency, Department of Homeland Security, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Niagara Mohawk, State of Texas and the State of North Carolina. In 2010 she held the position of Chief Economist at National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. At the interagency level, she served as a member of the Whitehouse Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) Subcommittee on Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences and OSTP Subcommittee on Ocean Science and Technology. At East Carolina University, Dr. Kruse was inducted to the 2011 Women of Distinction. Since then she has been recognized by East Carolina University with the 2012 Lifetime Achievement Award for Research and Creative Work and honored with the HCAS Distinguished Professorship.