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Panelist Bio

Pat Santos
Assistant Deputy Director of Emergency Management Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness

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.

Current Topic

10/16 - Election 2016

What concerns are on citizens’ minds as they go to the polls this fall?

The presidential election may be getting all of the attention, but Louisiana residents will be making several important decisions at the ballot box in November. The U.S. Senate seat left up for grabs by retiring Sen. David Vitter has drawn a field of 24 candidates. Louisianians in the south- and northwest parts of the state will also be voting on congressmen. So, what national concerns are on citizens’ minds as they go to the polls this fall? What statewide issues should be on the mind of Louisiana’s next Congressional leaders? Louisiana Public Square looks for answers on “Election 2016” Wednesday, October 26 at 7p.m.

Our Panelists:

• Elizabeth Crisp / The Advocate
• Greg Hilburn / Gannett Newspapers
• Martin Johnson, Ph.D. / LSU Manship School of Mass Communication
• Albert Samuels, Ph.D. / Mandela School of Public Policy, Southern University

LPB CEO Beth Courtney and Patricia Smith, with the College of Government and Social Sciences at Southern University, moderate the discussion.

“Election 2016” 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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