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UNCP Home News & Events State Emergency director to speak at Hurricane Matthew commemoration at UNC Pembroke
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State Emergency director to speak at Hurricane Matthew commemoration at UNC Pembroke

September 14, 2017

The University of North Carolina at Pembroke will host an event on October 5 commemorating the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Matthew.

The keynote speaker will be Mike Sprayberry, director of North Carolina Emergency Management. It will be held at 6 p.m. at the University Center Annex.

The event will include a roundtable discussion by a team of local and state experts.  

The public is invited to attend.

Flooding spawned by Hurricane Matthew has caused $1.5 billion in damage to 100,000 homes, businesses and government buildings in North Carolina, according to a state estimate. The storm was blamed for 28 deaths statewide.

“Hurricane Matthew was a transformative event in the history of Robeson County and for all of southeastern North Carolina,” said Dr. Jeff Frederick, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at UNCP.

“For many, the storm left a mark that still remains and a memory that won't soon fade. We invite folks to come together on our campus as we commemorate the tragedy and gather to discuss the response and recovery.”

Chancellor Robin Gary Cummings will provide opening remarks before introducing Sprayberry, who joined North Carolina Emergency Management in July 2005 as the Deputy Director and Logistics Section Chief.

In 2006, Sprayberry assumed the duties of the Deputy Director and Operations Section Chief. In 2013, Sprayberry was appointed as director of North Carolina Emergency Management.  He is also the North Carolina Deputy Homeland Security Advisor.

He serves as vice president of the National Emergency Management Association and is a member the FEMA National Advisory Council. Additionally, he serves on the State Emergency Response Commission and the State Radiation Protection Commission.

Frederick will serve as moderator for the roundtable discussion, which will include the following panelists; Dan Gerlach, Golden Leaf Foundation president; Patrick Woodie, The Rural Center president; Libby Turner, federal coordinating officer with FEMA; and Stephanie Chavis, Robeson County Emergency Management director.

The program will also feature a video presentation of Hurricane Matthew and the aftermath, as well as art displays and musical performances inspired by the storm.