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.

    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.

    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.
    Development Projects Consultant; Former Chief of the Permit and Engineering Bureau, Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety (LADBS)(ret.)

    Dr. Kashefi has over 35 years of structural engineering experience and extensive managerial and leadership experience in the private and public sectors. She has excellent knowledge of building and zoning codes, and throughout her career she has overseen, advised and guided numerous development projects smoothly through the permitting process. Before retiring from the City, she served as the LADBS Permit and Engineering Bureau Chief (2008-2018). In her role, she directed the entire Bureau’s operations in 5 offices with over 350 employees. Her responsibilities included leading the Department-wide plan checking and permit issuance operations, managing LADBS Construction Service Centers, developing technical and operational enhancement programs, and enacting the Bureau’s administrative policies. Dr. Kashefi was also a key member on the Mayoral Seismic Safety Task Force for Los Angeles’ Resilience by Design report, which addressed the city’s greatest seismic vulnerabilities and provided recommendations to improve seismic preparedness.


    She is an active member of the Los Angeles Tall Buildings Structural Design Council and a past President (2013). Also, she served on the Structural Engineers Association of Southern California (SEAOSC) Board of Directors (2012-2014) and was an involved member and speaker in many of the SEAOSC’s events. She also serves on a variety of other professional organizations, such as the Buildings Subcommittee of the California Strong Motion Instrumentation Advisory Committee. She is a registered Structural Engineer (SE) and Civil Engineer (PE) in the state of California.


    • 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.