Colonel (Retired) Pat Santos began his twenty-five year career in the Louisiana Army National Guard in June 1979, where he served in the Headquarters State Area Command (HQ STARC) while participating in the Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC) program at the University of New Orleans. In December 1981, Santos was commissioned a Distinguished Military Graduate. After attending his Officer Basic Course, he began his full-time military career as the training officer of the 773rd Maintenance Battalion.
In September 1984, Santos was transferred to the famed 1-141st Field Artillery Battalion and served in various command and staff positions until July 1994, when he returned to HQ STARC. There he served as the State Security Officer, where he developed the first State Partnership Programs with Uzbekistan and Belize. He also served as the State Readiness Officer and the State Operations and Training Officer. In August 1999, Santos was assigned as the State Plans, Operations and Military Support Officer (POMSO). As the POMSO, Santos and his staff developed and refined essential emergency plans and procedures while managing the military response and assistance efforts to numerous state emergencies and special events during this period until his retirement in 2003.
After working a year in the public sector, Colonel (R) Santos accepted an offer from the Adjutant General to return to the State Military Department as the Joint Director of Military Support (JDOMS) in October 2004. His experience played a key role in coordinating the unprecedented military support efforts during Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. In January 2006, he accepted a position at the Louisiana Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (LOHSEP) as the Chief of Homeland Security. July 2006, Santos was named Assistant Deputy Director of Emergency Management for the Governor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness, where he has primary oversight of all the State's emergency management functions.
Colonel (R) Santos is a graduate of the U.S. Army Combined Arms Staff School and the Command and General Staff College. In 1981 he earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration from the University of New Orleans and a Master's Degree in Organizational Management in 1997.
His awards and decorations include the Legion of Merit, the Army Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation and Achievement Medals, the Joint Service Achievement Medal and numerous State awards including the Louisiana War Cross and Louisiana Commendation and Emergency Service Medals. He currently resides in Prairieville, LA with his wife Gayle and their two sons, Sean and Stephen.
What difference has a decade made?
Due to severe flooding in Baton Rouge and the surrounding communities, the recording of “Black & The Blue,” which was to be the August episode of Louisiana Public Square, was cancelled. Instead we will be broadcasting an encore presentation of “Louisiana Post-Katrina: A Decade of Difference.” More information, including broadcast dates and times, is below.
“Louisiana Post-Katrina: A Decade of Difference”
Eleven years ago, Hurricane Katrina swept through Southeast Louisiana, triggering what would become the nation’s costliest disaster. Less than a month later, Hurricane Rita inundated Southwest Louisiana forever altering the landscape. The storms uprooted residents, while the rest of Louisiana and its neighboring states welcomed them with open arms.
What affect did the storms have on economic development along the I-10 corridor? Just over a decade later, how have public services changed? How prepared is Louisiana to handle hurricane evacuees? And how did the hurricanes change the demographics of the state?
This month Louisiana Public Square takes a look at where the state is now on an encore presentation of “Louisiana Post-Katrina: A Decade of Difference” airing Wednesday, August 17 at 7 p.m. and Sunday, August 21 at 11 a.m. on LPB HD.
The panelists are:
· Andy Kopplin, Office of New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu
· Paul Rainwater, Rainwater Consulting, LLC
· Stephanie Riegel, Greater Baton Rouge Business Report
· Nihal Shrinath, The Data Center
The program includes interviews with Jason El Koubi, One Acadiana; Chris Guilbeaux, Governor’s Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Preparedness (GOHSEP); Kathy Kliebert, Secretary of the Department of Health and Hospitals; Allison Plyer, Executive Director of the Data Center; John White, State Superintendent of Education; and Christopher Bohnstengel and “Byrdie” Lane, owners of Byrdie’s Gallery and Café in New Orleans.
LPB CEO, Beth Courtney, and Kim Hunter Reed,Ph.D., who served in the Blanco administration during Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, moderate the discussion.
“Louisiana Post-Katrina: A Decade of Difference” will also air in New Orleans, on WLAE. It can also be heard on public radio stations WRKF in Baton Rouge; Red River Radio in Shreveport and Monroe; and WWNO in New Orleans. Check their station websites for schedule.
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