Nominees from AFI members Arilington County, VA and City of Tempe, AZ named finalists!
Here are the outstanding nominees from AFI members who are doing big things and showing themselves as the next “ones to watch” in public service:
HERricane Arlington - Executive Director Lauren R. Stienstra and Advisory Board, Department of Public Safety Communication and Emergency Management, Arlington County, Virginia
Empowering women in emergency response
If Stienstra and her team have anything to say about it, the future of emergency management is female. HERricane Arlington is a summer camp that gives high school-aged girls the knowledge, skills, and abilities to survive disasters—and a stepping stone to consider careers in emergency management. The program focuses on experiential, hands-on learning related to personal preparedness, natural hazards, and crisis communication. The summer camp provides exposure to the field and leadership training to ensure those who pursue it will be successful.
Tempe Grease Cooperative - Administrative Team, City of Tempe, Arizona
Green partnerships that grow businesses and save infrastructure
Getting rid of grease is a perennial headache for both local communities and restaurants in cities. It’s tough to police compliance, and sending it down drains can be damaging to the infrastructure of both buildings and city sewers. Enter the Tempe Grease Cooperative, which serves as a buying agent and provides compliance assurances to businesses. Started as a pilot project in 2014, today one-fifth of the city’s food service establishments, approximately 200 establishments, have voluntarily enrolled. Restaurants that sign up receive a discount on their utility bills due to the reduced risk to the sewer infrastructure, and it’s no loss to the city. The team estimates the city is receiving a savings of over $250,000 per year in treatment costs (over $1,000 per participating restaurant) as a result of more effective grease diversion. They also have the potential to generate renewable biogas from the grease. With over 600,000 gallons collected so far, that’s 4.8 million cubic feet of renewable biogas based on EPA estimates.