COVID-19 Webinars

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CARES Act Budgeting

August 7, 2020 at 10:00 a.m.
Florida's local governments received $3.747 billion in federal assistance through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act).

Of that, $2.472 billion was directly distributed to counties with a population that exceeds 500,000 while the state has begun disbursing a portion of the remaining $1.275 billion to counties with populations lower that 500,000.

Since the release of funds, counties across the state have been creating plans and programs in order to best serve their communities' needs during the coronavirus pandemic, but deciding which programs to prioritize and how much should be allocated towards different programs can be challenging.

Join the Florida Local Government Investment Trust (Florida Trust) as they discuss best practices when it comes to budgeting your CARES Act funds. Click here to register.

Demographics and Destiny: How Demographic Trends are Reshaping Florida and the United States

August 5, 2020 at 2:00 p.m.
As the third largest state in the nation, Florida faces numerous challenges in meeting the demands of its residents. The state’s population is forecast to increase on average annually by more than 305,000 between 2020 and 2025 and by more than 255,000 between 2025 and 2030. Of significance is the how the state’s demographics are expected to change during this period, with 1 in 4 Floridians expected to be listed as elderly. Of equal significance is the anticipated change in household size and composition, where forecasters project an increased number of households with no children. These and other changes in the state’s demographics will create new challenges for counties as it relates to housing, infrastructure, healthcare, and the environment. How Florida balances these issues in the future will depend in larger part how counties prepare themselves for the next generation. Dr. Chapin, Dean of Social Sciences at Florida State University, is a leading expert on these issues and will offer insights on what counties can anticipate with the 2020 US census count underway. Click here to view the PowerPoint presentation.
Dr. Tim Chapin
Dean & Professor at Florida State University
Dr. Tim Chapin is Dean in the College of Social Sciences and Public Policy and a professor of Urban and Regional Planning at Florida State University. Prior to stepping into the interim dean’s role, Chapin served a six-year term as chair of the Department of Urban and Regional Planning and two years as Associate Dean for Development for the college.

Since joining FSU in 1999, Chapin has undertaken research on the effectiveness of Florida’s growth management system and the role of sports facilities in the promotion of urban redevelopment. He is a noted expert on land use and comprehensive planning, growth management, and urban redevelopment. Chapin’s current research interests revolve around how Florida’s demographic trends influence urban patterns and transportation systems in the state.

Navigating Public Employees’ Speech Rights

July 29, 2020 at 2:00 p.m.
The First Amendment prohibits public employers from taking adverse employment action against public employee, such as demoting or discharging the employee, in retaliation for the employee’s protected speech. A public employee has a First Amendment right to freedom of speech. However, the right applies to speaking as a citizen on a matter of public concern but not to speech that is personal in nature or within the scope of the employee’s duties for the public employer. Join Ray Poole from Constangy, Brooks, Smith & Prophete, LLP as he provides a proper analysis on whether the public employee has engaged in protected speech under the First Amendment. Click here to watch the webinar. For materials from the webinar, please click here.
Ray Poole
Senior Counsel at Constangy, Brooks, Smith & Prophete, LLP
Ray has a wealth of experience representing secondary and postsecondary educational institutions in all areas of labor and employment law. He is one of only three attorneys in Florida who holds two board certifications from the Florida Bar in Labor and Employment Law and in Education Law. He has represented universities, colleges, and school districts on a wide variety of labor and employment law matters, including tenure cases, employee discipline cases, labor arbitrations, and collective bargaining. He previously served as the Chief of Legal Services for a school district in Florida, where he handled all employment law and labor relations matters on behalf of the school district.

Aside from his work representing educational institutions, Ray has extensive experience representing both private and public sector employers in a full range of employment law matters in state and federal courts, as well as before governmental agencies. His work includes handling trade secrets and non-compete cases, defending employers against claims of discrimination in numerous lawsuits, defense of whistleblower cases, and handling wage and hour matters.

Lieutenant Governor Jeanette Nuñez Provides an Update on the 2020 Census

July 23, 2020 at 5:00 p.m.
Census participation is crucial in ensuring communities across Florida receive the appropriate amount of federal funds and accurate political representation. Join Florida's Lieutenant Governor, Jeanette Nuñez, as she provides an update on that status of the 2020 Census in Florida. Click here to watch the webinar.

New Tech Entering the Market to Help with Reopening

July 22, 2020
James Bond tech has come to America and it can help counties balance the need to bring back their workforce and serve the public while providing preventive screenings. Mask recognition and thermal imaging cameras allow users to screen every person entering your facility. New tech is exploding onto the market to help businesses and governments cope with COVID-19. Join FAC Business Solution and Corporate Partner, Inspired Technologies, as they walk you through some of the coolest and practical tech on the market today. Click here to watch the webinar. A copy of the PowerPoint presentation is available here.
Craig Goodson
Founder & CEO at Inspired Technologies
Craig Goodson is the founder and CEO of Inspired Technologies, a leading Information Technology service provider headquartered in Tallahassee, FL. Craig founded Inspired Technologies in 2002 after information technology leadership roles in public sector agencies with the State of Florida and a stint with private sector telecommunications company ITC^DeltaCom. Under his leadership, Inspired has experienced exponential growth from its inception seeing the company grow from it’s original shared office space to 5 locations peppered across the nation occupying over 50,000 square foot of office/flex space today. Early on he made the decision to operate a technology services company focusing on business to business IT support and providing comprehensive solutions for their customers. The company employs 150 people in 7 states and has enjoyed 15 straight years of double digit growth.

Craig remains passionate about service delivery and is proving that scalability can occur without sacrificing the characteristics and principles in which the company was built on. He sees enormous competitive advantages in maintaining a highly skilled workforce that adopts a “customer first” philosophy which through direct and honest interactions allow Inspired Technologies to forge long lasting customer relationships. He will discuss reasons behind the growth of Inspired Technologies, including his management philosophy, which is to hire quality people and give them the tools they need to succeed without micromanaging. He encourages employees to learn from their mistakes, provides ongoing support and training, and believes strongly in competitive wages and benefits packages in order to attract and retain dedicated staff. He is committed to continuous improvement and customer satisfaction; Inspired Technologies continues to provide a unique service delivery that allows for fixed rate pricing bundled with “all-inclusive” Managed IT Support.

Campaigning and Communicating in a COVID World

July 15, 2020
Political campaigns were previously centered around gaining support through meeting and talking with voters face to face. However, as COVID-19 has paralyzed the nation, candidates across the country are facing unprecedented challenges with campaigning.

Campaigning in 2020 now means getting creative with how you communicate your message. Traditional door-knocking and town hall meetings have transitioned to text or phone banking and virtual meetings and webinars.

Beyond campaigning, constituents are requiring increased communication from their public officials as they navigate this new normal.

Join John Sowinski, a veteran consultant for numerous successful statewide issue and corporate campaigns, as he discusses the keys to running a winning campaign despite the challenges COVID-19 presents and how best to communicate with your constituents during this turbulent time. Click here to watch the webinar.
John Sowinski
Communications Strategist at Consensus Communications
John Sowinski is a founding partner of Consensus. He is a veteran of numerous statewide political, issue and corporate campaigns and has more than 20 years experience in public policy, media relations, message development, and paid media management. John has consulted for a number of successful statewide issue and corporate campaigns and served as general consultant to the successful Mel Martinez for Senate campaign in 2004.

John is regarded as the premier expert on statewide referendum campaigns in Florida, having accomplished an unmatched record in statewide ballot initiatives. He has led nine successful statewide campaigns in Florida – more than any other consultant. His notable victories include the 1992 “Eight is Enough” term limits campaign; the 1994 “Net Ban” campaign; the 1994 “No Casinos” campaign; the 1996 campaign against a proposed tax of Florida sugar; the 2000 campaign in support of high speed rail; and the 2002 Smoke Free Workplace initiative; the 2006 Youth Tobacco Education initiative, and the 2010 “Vote No on 4” campaign, which defeated the so-called “Hometown Democracy” Amendment in an unlikely landslide.

John was Student Body President at the University of Central Florida, where he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Public Administration.

Florida Caucus Meeting

July 15, 2020 at 10:00 a.m.
A Zoom meeting has been scheduled for the NACo Florida membership to caucus in advance of the virtual NACo Annual Business Meeting which will be held on Monday, July 20, 2020 at 2:00 pm, ET. Click here to attend via Zoom.

5G, Public Safety & Cybersecurity

July 8, 2020
Please join an informative deep dive webinar into all things Verizon including: network, public safety, cyber security and 5G technology. This presentation will discuss the transformative impact of technology. And, most importantly, Verizon understands that they only transform the industry if they also offer a 5G ecosystem made up of innovative partners and customers who drive the industry together. The way a network is built can determine a lot about the benefits it can provide. Click here to watch the webinar. (Please note the recording started late due to technical difficulties.) A copy of the PowerPoint presentation is available here.
Jay Bidlack
Senior Real Estate Manager
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Ryan Lopez
Manager Solutions Architect
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Michael Buerki
Sen. Manager Gov. Bus. Sales
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Crystal Chubeck
Bus. Development Manager
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Troy M. Dunning
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Is your virtual BOCC meeting secure?

July 1, 2020 at 2:00 p.m.
Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, counties and businesses have been operating in a virtual world. But the business of government must be transparent, secure, and accessible. Join FAC's new Business Solution Partner, Inspired Technologies as they walk you through the capabilities and security of virtual meeting platforms like MS Teams and Zoom. Click here to view the PowerPoint.

Pictured right: Zack Dunlap, Vice President of Business Development, Inspired Technologies

What Now? Clean Waterways Act - New Requirements on Florida Counties

June 30, 2020 at 2:00 p.m.
The unanimous passage of the Clean Waterways Act in Senate Bill 712 is the culmination of several years of focus on statewide protection and improvement of our water resources. While we all support these protections and the goals of the Act, many sections of the bill will have an ongoing fiscal impact on local government and require operational changes to your utilities. This webinar provides a high-level overview of the provisions, requirements, and timelines outlined in the bill and some of the potential financial and political implications resulting from its passage. Click here to register.
Susan Harbin Alford
Deputy Director, Public Policy
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Terri Lowery
Senior Vice President
Jones Edmunds
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Brian Icerman
Vice President
Jones Edmunds
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Maximizing Federal Assistance: Seeking, Obtaining, and Using CARES Act & Federal Assistance Funds

June 26, 2020 at 3:00 p.m.
As counties begin to develop a more comprehensive picture of their funding needs related to COVID-19, accessing federal assistance programs for potential reimbursement will be key. Join the Florida Association of Counties and experts from Witt O'Brien's for Part II of the Maximizing Federal Assistance webinar series.Now that the State of Florida has issued guidelines for the Treasury Funding under the CARES Act, Witt O’Brien’s experts will expand on Treasury Funding Guidelines, outline the steps you should take in anticipation of utilizing funds, and share key insights on other sources of funding to pursue to ensure your county is maximizing cost recovery opportunities. Click here to watch the webinar.
Brad Gair
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William Roche
Senior FEMA Program Advisor
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Jonathan Hoyes
Subject Matter Expert
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Matthew Erchull
Senior Consultant
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Making the Most of Libraries During COVID-19

June 17, 2020
Community leaders have a tremendous opportunity. At a time when it is critical to reduce cost, it is also possible to enhance community service and optimize return on investment. How? By leveraging one of the most valuable community resources - the public library. While not always top-of-mind, public libraries are a major contributor to economic development and community health. Join this webinar to see how an innovative approach to library service can yield excellent community service and strong return on investment while reducing cost. Click here to watch the webinar.
Debbie Joy, MLS
Marketing Directors at Library Systems & Services (LS&S)
Debbie is a library professional with experience in public library strategy, development and marketing. At Library Systems & Services, Debbie collaborates with community leaders and library staff on strategic planning and library assessments.

Previously, Debbie’s work at the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore included design, planning and funding of literacy programs for children, teens and adults. Debbie has designed outcomes measurement of library programs to help secure grant funding, and brings a strategic, results-driven approach. Debbie brings deep dedication to the mission of the public library and its significant impact on communities.

Debbie earned a Master of Library Science from the University of Maryland and a Bachelor of Science in Journalism from the University of Kansas.

CARES Act Webinar: Distribution of CARES Act Monies

June 17, 2020
Last week, Governor DeSantis announced the State of Florida's plan to disburse up to $1.275 billion in CARES Act funds to the remaining small and mid-sized counties. Counties whose population exceeds 500,000 previously received over $2.472 billion in funding directly from the United States Treasury.

This money is crucial to Florida's communities but getting it into the hands of Floridians comes with it's challenges. Counties will need to follow the Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM) distribution process and reporting requirements all while adhering to the U.S. Treasury's guidelines on spending and sticking to their tight timeline.

Join FAC on Wednesday, June 17 at 10:00 a.m. (EDT) as we discuss the next steps including how to receive the funding, what you can spend it on, and counties' other responsibilities. Click here to watch the webinar.
Davin Suggs
Director of Public Policy
Florida Association of Counties

Virtual Town Hall With Florida's Agriculture Commissioner

June 4, 2020
Join Florida's Commissioner of Agriculture Nikki Fried for a virtual Town Hall meeting. Commissioner Fried will address agricultural priorities, food issues, and COVID-19 reopening during the Town Hall. Click here to watch the webinar.

Planning & Working with Utilities during the Pandemic and Hurricane Season

June 3, 2020
The past few months have shown us that there is no such thing as being too prepared. While counties prepare for a possible hurricane during a pandemic, Florida's utilities are doing the same. Join FAC as we discuss how electric utilities are preparing to ensure they keep the lights on in Florida's communities. Just like our county emergency managers, Florida's utilities regularly train and drill for unplanned events and crises. Presenting sponsor, the Florida Power & Light Company, will also be sharing insight on how the company prepares year round for storm season, as well as special measures being taken to ensure the safety of their employees and the community in light of the current COVID-19 pandemic. Click here to watch the webinar.
Pamela M. Rauch
Vice President of External Affairs and Economic Development at Florida Power & Light (FPL)
Pamela Rauch is the vice president of external affairs and economic development for Florida Power & Light Company (FPL), one of the nation’s leading electric utilities. Ms. Rauch is responsible for local government relations, community engagement and economic development. She has held this position since January 2008.

From 2011-2015, Ms. Rauch’s responsibilities also included project development, where she spearheaded development of all new power generation for FPL, including the addition of a natural gas pipeline to serve the state and growing the company’s solar generation by installing the first three cost-effective, universal scale solar projects that went online in 2016.

Prior to 2008, she served as an associate general counsel for FPL, overseeing the real estate, land use and environmental matters focusing on local government permitting and licensing issues for FPL and development of its unregulated subsidiary’s wind portfolio.

Prior to joining FPL in 1999, Ms. Rauch served as assistant and then deputy city attorney for the City of West Palm Beach, where she played a significant role in downtown redevelopment activities in the mid-1990s, including the development of City Place. Prior to her role with the City, she was in private practice with Jones, Foster, Johnston & Stubbs and Gunster in West Palm Beach with a concentration on local government and real estate law.

Ms. Rauch is Past Chair of Leadership Florida and a member of its Cornerstone Class XXVII, Chair of the Economic Council of Palm Beach County, a member of the Orange Bowl Committee, a member of the American Heart Association’s Founder’s Circle, Past Chair of the Florida Chamber Foundation, Past Chair of Palm Beach County’s 2016 Go Red for Women campaign and Past Chair of the Palm Beach Zoo. Ms. Rauch graduated from Florida State University College of Law with honors and earned her undergraduate degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she was a varsity athlete and captain of the women’s tennis team.

White House COVID-19 Call for Florida's Counties

June 2, 2020
The White House will be hosting a call for Florida's county commissioners and staff regarding the COVID-19 pandemic and Florida. Federal agency leaders, such as FEMA, will present on some of the key issues for Florida, followed by a short Q&A session.

Preparing for Hurricane Season During COVID-19

May 27, 2020
Monday, June 1 marks the start of the 2020 hurricane season. While that official date is quickly approaching, the tropics have already been active with the first named tropical storm (TS Arthur) having formed off the coast of Florida on May 17. According to storm forecasters, the 2020 hurricane season is likely to be very active, with the possibility of having six to nine named storms. As one of the most storm-vulnerable states in the nation, how Florida prepares and responds to a major storm is critical. By statute, Florida counties - and the commissioners that lead them - have a broad range of authorities and responsibilities to deal with disasters. Please join us for this webinar where Joe Myers, the former Director of the Florida Division of Emergency Management, will provide an overview of the state’s emergency management system, the authorities granted to counties, and the role of the county commission. Click here to watch the webinar.
Joseph F. Myers
CEO at Disasters, Strategies & Ideas Group (DSI)
Joseph F. Myers, CEO of Disasters, Strategies & Ideas Group (DSI) served as the Director of the North Carolina Division of Emergency Management for nine years, and the Director of the Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM) for over eight years. He has been involved in emergency management in city, county and state government for more than 30 years. As the Director of FDEM, Mr. Myers was responsible for the State’s Emergency Response Plan after Hurricane Andrew and ensuring coordination among cities, counties and the State in preparation for natural disasters and in response to them. He also designed and implemented the Florida Emergency Management System, which is the foundation in use to this day.

Mr. Myers came to his position in Florida from North Carolina after serving in that State’s Division of Emergency Management for approximately twenty years. While serving as Director in North Carolina, Mr. Myers developed the Model Systems Project, which was designed to assist FEMA with the transformation from the cold war to all hazard emergency management.

Mr. Myers was twice elected President of the National Emergency Management Association, and has received numerous awards, including, The Lacy E. Suiter Distinguished Service Award, The Neil Frank Award, The Distinguished Service Award from the North Carolina National Guard and the Florida Fire Chief’s, the Bob Sheet’s Award and The Governor’s Award for the State of Florida, and has served on Governor Jeb Bush’s Florida Terrorism Advisory Board. As a State Director, Mr. Myers served as a State Coordinating Officer for numerous disasters, including Hurricanes Gloria, Hugo, Andrew, Opal, Floyd and in addition managed Gulf War Repatriation, Cuban Mass Migration, and the 1998 Florida Fires. Mr. Myers also served on the NEMA Mitigation Committee for two years and played a key leadership role in the development and implementation of national and state mitigation strategies and programs—including those found in the current Stafford Act.

Making the Most of Your County Cash Flow During COVID-19

May 20, 2020
Public entities are trying to determine how to provide services to their communities amidst economic uncertainty. In the wake of impeding revenue decreases, counties will face funding challenges and must find new ways to stretch reduced tax receipts.

FAC Corporate Partner, Three + One, will be hosting a webinar on Wednesday, May 20th at 1:00 PM ET to show counties how to use liquidity analyses and data to maximize the value on current tax dollars and any CARES Act funding received. New opportunities exist to increase the value on public funds during a time it’s needed most, this webinar will highlight ways to look under every stone for taxpayer benefit. Click here to watch the webinar. Click here to view the PowerPoint.
Garret Macdonald
Vice President at Three+One
Garrett has been partnering with public officials to generate measurable and sustained public value through increased interest earnings and savings since joining three+one® in 2015. He has worked cooperatively with governing bodies, public finance officials, and financial institutions to help bring strategic initiatives to the public sector that lowers internal costs and tax levies.

Prior to joining three+one®, he traveled widely, both domestically and internationally, bringing efficiency resource management to non-profits in places as far-flung as Singapore, Indonesia, and Great Britain. Garrett attended St. John Fisher College in Rochester, N.Y., where he graduated magna cum laude with a B.S. in Corporate Finance. He went on to earn his MBA there with high distinction. While at Fisher, he received recognition for his scholastic accomplishments and community service. Garrett was also invited to join Beta Gamma Sigma, the highest honor a business scholar can receive from an AACSB-accredited institution.

He was a research contributor to and co-author of a textbook and academic publication that concentrated on financial instruments and corporate sustainability. Through the Association of Finance Professionals, Garrett earned his Certified Treasury Professional® designation. More recently, he earned a certificate in “Artificial Intelligence: Implications for Business Strategy” from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

The Florida Economy

May 6, 2020
As the coronavirus continues to spread throughout Florida and the rest of the world, governments have been forced to implement proven public health measures, such as social distancing, in order to weaken the strain on the healthcare system and disrupt the contagion. However, in doing so, its severed the flow of goods and services, stalling the economy and potentially delivering a global recession. Join Dr. Jerry D. Parrish, the Chief Economist and the Director of Research for the Florida Chamber Foundation, as he provides data on how COVID-19 has impacted our state and some key trends and variables that will determine how our economy fairs moving forward. Click here to watch the webinar.
Dr. Jerry Parrish
Chief Economist and Director of Research at the Florida Chamber Foundation
Dr. Jerry D. Parrish is the Chief Economist and the Director of Research for the Florida Chamber Foundation. In that role, he is responsible for conducting in-depth analyses on the Florida economy and on solutions to help secure Florida’s future.

Dr. Parrish previously was the Chief Economist and Director of the Center for Competitive Florida at Florida TaxWatch. Prior to that position, he served as the Associate Director of the Center for Economic Forecasting & Analysis (CEFA) at Florida State University, and has many years of experience in the private sector in management roles at international manufacturing companies.

Dr. Parrish is currently an Adjunct Instructor in the Masters in Applied Economics Program at Florida State University. He earned a B.S. in Agricultural Business and Economics from Auburn University, an M.B.A. from Bellarmine University, an M.S. in Economics from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and a Ph.D. in Economics from Auburn University. He regularly publishes research reports and articles on the Florida economy and Florida’s competitiveness.

COVID-19: Getting the Highest Reimbursement Dollars

April 29, 2020
As counties begin to assess their spending in response to COVID-19, reimbursement from the federal government is going to be key. Will reimbursement come from FEMA, Treasury or Congress? On Wednesday, April 29, the Florida Association of Counties and experts from Witt O'Brien's for a webinar that will walk counties through the CARES Act and its impact on FEMA reimbursements. Understanding actions recently taken by the Federal Government will be key to ensuring that your county is reimbursed the maximum allowable amount but also is protected during future audits. Click here to watch the webinar.
Brad Gair
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William Roche
Senior FEMA Program Advisor
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Jonathan Hoyes
Subject Matter Expert
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Matthew Erchull
Senior Consultant
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Unprecedented Leadership: How to Lead During COVID-19

April 15, 2020 (Commissioners) & May 13, 2020 (County Staff)
The COVID-19 pandemic has tested the structure of how we live, work and lead. For local governments, keeping communities safe goes beyond closures and safer-at-home orders, keeping communities safe means continuing to provide essential services and infrastructure upkeep while keeping employees safe as well. Dr. Matthew Sowcik, Associate Professor at the University of Florida IFAS Extension, will explain how to effectively lead your employees during these unprecedented times. Click here to watch the webinar for county staff. Click here to download his PowerPoint presentation.
Dr. Matthew Sowcik
Assistant Professor & CLD Specialization Coordinator at University of Florida
Dr. Matthew Sowcik is an assistant professor in the Department of Agricultural Education and Communication (AEC), and serves as the coordinator for the department's undergraduate communication and leadership development specialization. Additionally, Sowcik serves as a faculty member of the Challenge 2050 Project, a program aimed at developing human capacity to meet the needs associated of a population projected to exceed 9.6 billion by the year 2050.

Sowcik focuses his research on humility and the creation of organizational leadership programs. He also he teaches undergraduate and graduate-level courses concentrated on interpersonal leadership development, organizational leadership and advanced leadership theory, while similarly teaching some of the courses offered through the Challenge 2050 Project.

Outside of his research and teaching, Sowcik serves as a consultant to The New York Times. There, he focuses on the newspaper’s educational programming for faculty and students within leadership studies.

Dr. Sowcik co-authored two articles on how to best lead and work remotely. Click here to read the article on leading remotely and click here to read the article on working remotely.

The Science of COVID-19: Today & In The Future

April 2, 2020
On Thursday, April 2, the Institute for County Government (ICG), UF/IFAS Extension, and UF Health hosted a webinar which allowed Florida's leaders to speak directly with the leading epidemiologists and researchers on the science of COVID-19. Click here to watch the webinar. For a summary of the webinar including the responses from the Q&A, please click here.

The Future of COVID-19: Research, Vaccines, & How to Move Forward

April 23, 2020
The Institute for County Government and the University of Florida IFAS Extension hosted a panel of experts from UF Health to provide an update on testing, research and vaccines as well as discuss steps on moving forward. This webinar is a follow up to the above mentioned webinar. For a summary of the webinar including the responses from the Q&A, please click here. Click here to watch the webinar.
Organizers: Dr. David Nelson (Senior Vice President - UF Health), Ginger Delegal (Executive Director - FAC), Dr. Nick Place (Dean & Director - UF/IFAS Extension)
J. Glenn Morris, Jr.
Director at the Emerging Pathogens Institute (EPI) & Professor of Medicine (Infectious Diseases) at University of Florida
Dr. Glenn Morris became the director of the Emerging Pathogen Institute in August 2007. He was recruited from the University of Maryland, Baltimore, where he was a professor and chairman of the department of epidemiology and preventive medicine in the university's school of medicine, as well as an interim dean of the school of public health. In addition to his position as EPI director, Dr. Morris is a professor of infectious diseases in the UF College of Medicine.

Morris has worked in public health and pathogen related fields for more than 30 years, and has had a continuing fascination with emerging pathogens. At EPI, Morris has helped to shape the creative vision behind a web of campus-wide projects to anticipate, understand and control the emergence of new, disease-causing microorganisms.

Current research initiatives at EPI include work with vector-borne diseases (Zika, malaria, dengue, West Nile, equine encephalitis, citrus greening, tuberculosis, multi-antibiotic resistant bacteria [such as methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus or MRSA] and many others), and food safety and diarrheal infections (including cholera and E. coli O157:H7). Studies range from evolutionary genetics to the use of real-world data and bioinformatics to develop predictive mathematical models for disease transmission within populations.
John Lednicky, PhD
Research Professor at the University of Florida
John Lednicky has BS, MS, and PhD degrees in microbiology. After graduation with a BS degree, he worked as a clinical microbiology technician and attained two professional certifications: M(ASCP) and RM(NRCM). For both certifications, his specialty areas were in bacteriology and mycology. Thereafter, he worked with Staphylococcus aureus for his MS degree, and had planned on pursuing a PhD in biochemical physics. Instead, he studied transcription regulation by transcription factor SP1 in a macaque polyomavirus (SV40) model for his PhD work.

Prior to joining the University of Florida, Dr. Lednicky was an assistant professor of pathology at the Loyola Medical Center in Illinois. He then worked in industry, where he engaged in biodefense-related work, aerobiology related to inhalation exposure studies in small animal models, various projects with avian influenza H5N1 and other influenza viruses, and the production of biodiesel from alga.

Dr. Lednicky’s current research focus areas at UF are: (a) aerovirology, (b) virus discovery, (c) virus surveillance with emphasis on arthropod-borne viruses, and (d) influenza virus studies. His laboratory discovered Rhinovirus C-51 and a unique variant of Human polyomavirus 9, and was the first to detect Zika and Mayaro viruses in Haitians. More recently, his laboratory was the first in the world to discover Madariaga and Keystone viruses in humans. His laboratory is also involved with the isolation of viruses that are causing lethal infections in farmed deer of Florida.
Ira Longini, PhD
Professor of Biostatistics at the University of Florida & Co-Director of the Center for Statistics and Quantitative Infectious Diseases
Ira M. Longini, Jr., is a professor of biostatistics at the University of Florida and is Co-director of the Center for Statistics and Quantitative Infectious Diseases (CSQUID) at the Emerging Pathogens Institute. Dr. Longini has worked on the analysis of epidemics of Ebola, influenza, HIV, tuberculosis, cholera, dengue fever, Zika, malaria, plague, Lassa fever and other infectious agents.

Dr. Longini also collaborates with the DHHS, WHO, the CDC and other public health interests on mathematical and statistical models for the control of a possible bioterrorist attack with an infectious agent such as smallpox, and most of the other natural infectious disease threats such as pandemic influenza, cholera, Ebola and Zika.

Dr. Longini is author or coauthor of over 190 scientific papers and he has won a number of awards for excellence in research, including the Howard M. Temin Award in Epidemiology for “Scientific Excellence in the Fight against HIV/AIDS.” He is a Fellow of the American Statistical Association and a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.