There’s not a person in Joplin that would have believed that our community would be in the spot we are today – recovering from a tornado that destroyed a significant portion of our town and took the lives of 161 of our friends, family and neighbors. It’s been a long five years. We’ve celebrated some incredible successes, and have had our share of struggles at the same time. If it weren’t for the incredible number of volunteers that have helped us, we could never have come this far.
We have learned a lot about what long-term recovery means and are continuing to learn every day. As a way to mark the fifth anniversary of the most significant event to affect our community we began to look for a way to “pay it forward”. We decided that the best way was to share what we, and other communities impacted by disasters, have learned through a disaster recovery summit to be held in Joplin on May 19th and 20th.
Our tagline is “Real People, Real Lessons, Real Experience”. Our conference participants include community leaders from
- Greensburg, Kansas – 2007 Tornado that destroyed 95% of their town
- Tuscaloosa, Alabama – 2011 Tornado that killed 44 people
- Cedar Rapids, Iowa – 2008 Flooding with 10 square miles of flooding including 5,900 homes
- Minot, North Dakota – 2011 Mouse River Flood with over 11,000 individuals displaced
- Moore, Oklahoma – 2013, 2010, 2003 Tornados including an EF5 killing 24 people
- Vilonia, Arkansas – 2014 Tornado with 16 fatalities
- Pilger, Nebraska – 2014 Tornado destroying over 50% of the village
The conference begins Thursday afternoon with “The Road to Resilience” when leaders of impacted cities will discuss the successes and struggles in long-term recovery. Friday has two highlights – a keynote address from Dr. Leonard Marcus from Harvard University on Crisis Leadership and a set of TED-style talks that highlight pivotal moments in recovery. The rest of the day is filled with breakout sessions with practical advice and anecdotes from panelists that have lived and breathed recovery.
Consider attending this unique conference that you won’t find anywhere else – we’re limited to the first 300 attendees so register soon.
Join us as we all share together what we have learned!