Office of Emergency Management

About Us

The Office of Emergency Management (OEM) engages the whole community in assessing needs and developing strategies to achieve stronger preparedness, prevention, response, and mitigation capabilities within the Santa Clara County Operational Area. 

    The OEM Grants Management Team invests more than $6 million in annual grant funds to help build resilience within the Santa Clara County Operational Area’s communities.

    Michelle Sandoval, Program Manager II – Grants and Administrative Services
    Karla Espartero Smith, Management Analyst
    Van Nguyen, Accountant II
    Ivan Williams, Senior Management Analyst

    The Multidisciplinary All Hazards Task Force works to prevent and reduce the risk of domestic terrorist events through special projects and training exercises.

    Douglas Young, Battalion Chief and All Hazards Coordinator​​​


    The OEM planning team is responsible for the Operational Area’s Emergency Operations Plan, an incident management protocol with supporting hazard and function-specific annexes.​

    Parastou Najaf, SR Emergency Planning Coordinator

    Marisol Torres, SR Emergency Planning Coordinator


    OEM builds community resilience by increasing awareness and emergency preparedness through public information and engagement activities, such as a website, social media, printed collateral, presentations, and events.  During an activation of the Emergency Operations Center, OEM establishes a Joint Information Center which disseminates emergency communications to those affected throughout the County.

    Kia Xiong, Communications Officer

    OEM offers a robust training program composed of emergency management courses, drills, functional and table top exercises for County staff and jurisdictions within the Santa Clara County Operational Area.​

    Louay Toma, Emergency Management Program Specialist II

    OEM is responsible for developing and implementing a comprehensive Disaster Preparedness Program for all County employees who are designated as Disaster Service Workers (DSW). Disaster Service Workers assist in protecting public health and safety and preserving lives and property during disasters and emergencies.


    The OEM Operations Section ensures the readiness of the County’s comprehensive emergency management program through the development, implementation, and maintenance of critical information sharing procedures, platforms, and equipment for use daily, as well as during activations of the Operational Area’s Emergency Operations Center.

    Sue Sherrin, Sr. Emergency Planning Coordinator

    Tammy Norem, Emergency Planning Coordinator

    Jeff Walker, Emergency Management Program Specialist II


    OEM maintains a 5,000 square foot EOC that serves as the hub for emergency management activities during disasters.

    During an activation, up to 150 personnel from the Operational Area serve in functional units: Management, Finance and Administration, Operations, Logistics, and Planning/Intelligence.

    The EOAC leads the Operational Area’s ongoing efforts to provide an effective, streamlined approach to disaster preparedness and planning. The EOAC has thirteen members, including seven elected officials from the County Board of Supervisors, Santa Clara Valley Water District and cities within the Operational Area, as well as six executives from public sector organizations​.​

    Supervisor Mike Wasserman
    Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors

    Councilmember Rob Rennie
    Los Gatos Town Council
    South County & West Valley Cities Representative
    Vice Chairperson

    Director Richard Santos
    Santa Clara Valley Water District

    Garry Herceg
    Deputy County Executive
    County Executive Designee

    Mayor Lisa Matichak
    Mountain View City Council
    North County Cities Representative

    Councilmember Debi Davis
    Santa Clara City Council
    Central County Cities Representative

    Councilmember Maya Esparza
    San Jose City Council Representative

    Councilmember Dev Davis
    San Jose City Council Representative

    Dr. Sara Cody
    County of Santa Clara Health Officer

    Jackie Lowther 
    County EMS Director

    Robert Menicocci
    Director, County
    Social Services Agency

    Christina Turner
    Morgan Hill City Manager
    City Manager’s Association Representative

    Chief Ruben Torres
    City of Santa Clara
    Fire Chief’s Association Representative

    Chief Max Bosel
    City of Mountain View
    Police Chief’s Association Representative

    Dale Austin Jenkins
    Interim Chief Operating Officer
    Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority

    Lisa Schoenthal
    Emergency Managers Association
    President and Representative​​​​​

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