Ms. Deanne Criswell was unanimously confirmed by the Senate on April 22, 2021 as the 12th Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Ms. Criswell is the first woman confirmed to serve as the Administrator, where she leads the nations efforts in helping people before, during, and after disasters. She brings with her an extensive career in emergency management with over 27 years of experience at all levels of government and the private sector.
Prior to her appointment, Ms. Criswell served as the Commissioner of the New York City Emergency Management Department from 2019 to 2021, where she was responsible for coordinating citywide emergency planning and response for all emergencies.
Ms. Criswell began her career in emergency management in Aurora, Colorado, where she led strategic change in the city's emergency and disaster planning. She previously served at FEMA as the leader of one of the Agency's National Incident Management Assistance Teams (IMAT) and as a Federal Coordinating Officer. She also spent two years as an executive in the private sector.
Ms. Criswell also proudly served 21 years in the Colorado Air National Guard and is a veteran of two oversees tours.
Ms. Criswell holds a Bachelor of Science from Colorado State University, a Master of Public Administration from the University of Colorado – Denver, and a Master of Arts in Security Studies from the Naval Postgraduate School, Center for Homeland Defense and Security.