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Opening Ceremony

March 1 @ 10:00 am - 11:30 am

Kristy Burch

SCEMA President

Kristy Burch is the Florence County Emergency Manager where she has been employed for 24 years. Kristy also currently serves on the Pee Dee Healthcare Coalition Executive Committee as the Vice-Chair and is the South Carolina Advisory Council representative for her region. She is a member of the county’s Emergency Response Team and has served as a Finance Section Chief on one of the state’s four regional Incident Management Teams. She is also a past Treasurer with the South Carolina Emergency Management Association. Kristy graduated from Anderson University with her B.S. in Emergency Services Management and is currently attending Lander University to obtain her Master of Science in Emergency Management. She also is a South Carolina Certified Emergency Manager. Kristy currently lives in Florence with her husband, Chris. They have four grown children and five grandchildren.

Kim Stenson

Director South Carolina Emergency Management Division

Kim Stenson was named Director of the South Carolina Emergency Management Division of the Adjutant General’s Office in June 2013. Under his direction, the Division provides oversight and coordination for emergency and disaster consequence management planning, and response and recovery operations for the State of South Carolina. Mr. Stenson is also responsible for coordination with emergency managers at the local and national levels.

Prior to joining SCEMD in 1998, Mr. Stenson served as an infantry officer in the U.S. Army. While in the Army, he served in a variety of assignments in the United States, Europe, Asia and the Middle East including combat service during the First Gulf War.

Following his retirement from the U.S. Army, Mr. Stenson joined SCEMD, where he served successively as the Manager, Natural Hazards Plans; Chief, Preparedness; Chief, Preparedness and Recovery; and Chief of Staff, an appointment in 2008.

Brigadier  General Jeff Jones

Deputy Adjutant General

Jones enlisted in the South Carolina Army National Guard in 1985 as a 13B, Field Artillery Cannon Crewman, and assigned to Service Battery, 3-178th Field Artillery (FA) in Chesterfield, South Carolina. Jones subsequently attended Palmetto Military Academy (OCS) and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in 1987.

A career Field Artilleryman, Jones’ military assignments have included Fire Direction Officer (FDO) and Executive Officer (XO), Battery B, 3-178 Field Artillery in Bennettsville; Fire Support Officer, 51st Aviation Group, Columbia; Battalion Fire Direction Officer and Assistant Operations Officer, HQ, 3-178th Field Artillery in Lancaster; Commander, Battery C, 3-178th Field Artillery in Cheraw and Hartsville; Senior Tactical Officer, Palmetto Military Academy, Leesburg; and, Brigade Fire Control Officer, 151st Field Artillery Brigade in Sumter, South Carolina.

In 2002, Jones was assigned as Operations Officer (S-3), 4-178th Field Artillery in Georgetown, South Carolina. Jones subsequently served as Assistant S-3, 151st Field Artillery Brigade. In July of 2004, Jones deployed as Battalion S-3, 1-178th Field Artillery in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Upon redeploying, Jones was assigned as Executive Officer, 51st RAOC in Florence, South Carolina.  In 2007, Jones was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel and served as Battalion Commander, 1-178th Field Artillery.

In May 2009, Jones was assigned as Brigade Executive Officer, 218th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade (MEB), Charleston, South Carolina.  He served as Chief of Staff during the Brigade’s mission as Headquarters, Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and High Explosive Consequence Management Response Force (CCMRF), an immediate response asset for U.S. Army NORTHCOM. In August of 2011, Jones was assigned as 218th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade Deputy Commander (DCO) and, from 2012 to 2013, deployed to Kosovo as Deputy Commander, Multi-National Battle Group-East (NATO KFOR).

From January 2014 to May of 2017, Jones served as Commander, 218th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade. During his Command, the Brigade served as Joint Task Force Operations, Command and Control, Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear Response Element (C2CRE). Jones also commanded Task Force Defense Support to Civil Authorities (DSCA) operations along the entire South Carolina coast during the 2015 South Carolina Floods and Hurricane Matthew in October of 2016.

Jones is a 1987 graduate of The Citadel and he holds Master’s Degrees from the University of South Carolina in Columbia and the U.S. Army War College. Among his military awards include the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star, the Iraq Campaign Medal, and the NATO Medal (KFOR). Jones resides in Mount Pleasant with his wife, Amanda. They have three children: Houston, Lydia, and Isobel.


Enhancing the NWS/EM Partnership and Building Resiliency in our Communities: 10 Ways

Ron Morales, Trisha Palmer, Steve Pfaff, and John Quagliariello are Warning Coordination Meteorologists (WCMs) at the National Weather Service (NWS) Forecast Offices serving South Carolina. One of the primary responsibilities of the WCM is to ensure that the NWS office delivers the highest quality weather related products and services to its customers and partners. As WCM’s, they also provide high impact weather briefings and support to key decision makers in local, state and federal government.

Ron Morales: Ron has been the Warning Coordination Meteorologist at the NWS office in Charleston, SC for nearly 14 years, and has been serving the NWS for over 30 years. As the Warning Coordination Meteorologist, Ron’s primary duties are to help build strong, lasting relationships with Emergency Management, media and other governmental partner’s, and also ensure that their weather needs and concerns are supported. Ron began his career at the National Meteorological Center (now NCEP) in the Washington D.C. area.  From there, Ron moved south to serve as a forecaster/Lead Forecaster at the Tampa Bay/Ruskin, FL Office, then was promoted to the Science and Operations Officer at the NWS office in Corpus Christi, TX.  Over the years, Ron has acquired extensive knowledge and experience with severe and tropical weather across the south and southeast U.S.. In addition to his weather duties, Ron has also been leading the first UAS/Drone team in the National Weather Service to determine the utility of drones during storm damage surveys. Recently, he was also asked by the Meteorological Development Laboratory (MDL) to fly over area beaches to help detect rip currents. This data is being used to help improve the nation’s probabilistic rip current model.

Trisha Palmer: Trisha Palmer is the Warning Coordination Meteorologist (WCM) at NWS Greenville-Spartanburg (GSP).  Before becoming the WCM, she was a Lead Meteorologist at GSP, and also spent time at NWS offices in Atlanta, Raleigh, and Little Rock.  She earned her B.S. in Meteorology (2002) from the University of Oklahoma, and M.S. in Atmospheric Sciences (2004) from North Carolina State University.  She is married to Joshua Palmer, the Senior Service Hydrologist at WFO GSP, and they have two children, Gabriel (2010) and Samantha (2015).


Steve Pfaff:  Steve Pfaff serves as the Warning Coordination Meteorologist (WCM) at the National Weather Service (NWS) office in Wilmington, NC.  As the WCM since 2008, he is responsible for promoting weather safety outreach and awareness to the public. Steve is also responsible for providing decision support services to Emergency Management as well as a multitude of local, state, and federal partners. He first arrived at NWS Wilmington, NC as a Senior Forecaster in 1998. Steve was also a Journeyman Forecaster and Meteorologist Intern at NWS Corpus Christi, TX from 1994-1998.


John QuagliarielloJohn Quagliariello is the Warning Coordination Meteorologist (WCM) for the NWS Office in Columbia, SC. In this role, he is responsible for ensuring that the NWS office delivers the highest quality weather related products and services to its customers and partners. He provides high impact weather briefings and support to key decision makers in all levels of government. He also works with emergency managers, media and other partners to increase preparedness and build resiliency in local communities through outreach, training, exercises, engaging vulnerable populations, and other force-multiplication efforts via the Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador initiative. John earned his B.S. in Atmospheric Science from Stony Brook University and began his career with the NWS in 1999.


March 1
10:00 am - 11:30 am
Event Category:


Atlantic 1-3

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