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Our Advisory Board

We are pleased to announce our inaugural Advisory Board. Our esteemed Board provides guidance on market needs, strategy, services, execution, drawing on their extensive expertise and their personal and professional networks. From improving our services to exploring new collaborations, the best way to achieve our potential is to surround ourselves with accomplished professionals; those who can point out the pitfalls, create connections, and help us become better.  

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John Degory, a 30-year executive leader across all types of technology software and platforms, is the Chairman of the BES Advisory Board. Over his accomplished career, John has provided guidance and senior leadership to several technology firms and served as CEO for three software companies.  In every instance John has exceeded organizational goals and provided outstanding service to their customers. John's expertise includes extensive experience with messaging and communication products ranging from email and instant messaging software to nearly every form of communication software products in the mobile, pc and desktop platforms.

John has extensive experience in helping customers integrate their technologies to maximize their investments.

John has served as a Board member and the Chairman of the Pittsburgh Business Coalition for Homeland Security.  He also has served on the Advisory Board for the Laurel Highlands Council (Pittsburgh, PA)  Boy Scouts of America and is an Eagle Scout.

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James G. Featherstone is currently a Principal Consultant of Themata Strategic LLC, a crisis management consultant agency. Previously, he was the Executive Director of the Los Angeles Homeland Security Advisory Council (HSAC), a position he assumed in March 2016, after serving the City of Los Angeles for thirty years. At HSAC, Jim worked to strengthen the greater Los Angeles region’s crisis readiness and resilience by convening and connecting the private, public, and civic sectors through collaborative partnerships and strategic alliances, emerging technology, and research.

 

A native of Washington D.C. and a veteran of the United States Navy, Jim began his public service to the City of Los Angeles in 1986 with the Los Angeles Fire Department.  He was later appointed Interim Fire Chief (2013-2014). In 2007, Jim was appointed General Manager of the Los Angeles Emergency Management Department, where he led a successful departmental reorganization and restructuring of Los Angeles’ emergency management protocols and processes.  From 2008 to 2018, Jim chaired FEMA’s National Advisory Council.

 

Jim holds a Master of Leadership from the University of Southern California, a Bachelor of Science in Public Administration from the Union Institute and University. An alumnus of the Executive Leaders Program at the Naval Postgraduate School’s Center for Homeland Defense and Security, he is also a Senior Fellow in the Harvard University Kennedy School of Government’s Program on Crisis Leadership.

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Joseph F. Bruno

Joseph Bruno has substantial expertise as chief executive officer of large and complex organizations, including a multi-state not-for-profit with locations in NYC, Long Island (Nassau and Suffolk Counties) and around the country.  He is a native of New York and his distinguished career includes serving In the following positions:

 

Commissioner of NYC Emergency Management

In 2004 Mr. Bruno was appointed commissioner of the New York City Office of Emergency Management (NYC OEM). He was the fourth head of the agency since it was established in 1996. Among his first major initiatives, Commissioner Bruno successfully oversaw New York City's adoption and implementation of the Citywide Incident Management System (CIMS). CIMS is now the City's standard for responding to and managing emergencies and planned events. Commissioner Bruno also oversaw the comprehensive revision of the City's Coastal Storm Plan to ensure the city is prepared for a worst-case scenario hurricane and can shelter more than 600,000 residents. OEM also developed the "What if New York City…," a post-disaster housing competition that challenged teams of architects and planners to design temporary housing for dense, urban environments. This marked a critical step in New York City's effort to plan for long-term housing after a catastrophic disaster. During this time, Commissioner Bruno was also one of the founding members of the not-for-profit, Big City Emergency Managers (BCEM), which he chaired until he left NYCOEM.

 

NYC Civil Court and NYS State Supreme Court Judge

In 1991, Mr. Bruno was elected to the Civil Court of the City of New York and assigned to the Criminal Court. In 1996, he was elevated to Acting Justice of the Supreme Court of the State of New York, and in 2002 he was elected Justice of the Supreme Court of the State of New York.

 

NYC Fire Commissioner

In 1983 Mr. Bruno was appointed as Deputy NYC Fire Commissioner and in 1987 he was appointed the 26th Fire Commissioner of the City of New York. Under his leadership, the Fire Department developed a major fire safety education campaign, with particular emphasis on children and senior citizens. He continued to serve as Fire Commissioner until  December 31, 1989.

 

City of New York, Law Department

From 1971 to 1983 he served in various Law Department posts for the city. After his retirement from the City of New York, Mr. Bruno served in a variety of positions including:

  • President and Chief Executive Officer of Helen Keller Services

  • Board Trustee, Maimonides Medical Center, Brooklyn, NY

  • Board Trustee, Health Trustees of NYS (HTNYS) – Albany NY– an affiliated group of Healthcare Associations of NYS (HANYS)

  • Ocean First Bank – Advisory Board Member