Our Director, Raechel Squires, has experience spanning 20 years working with State and Local Government agencies in the emergency management sector and rural community development. She has worked on a large number of diverse grassroots local community development and emergency planning and recovery activities during this time.
Ms Squires holds a Masters of Community Development/Emergency Management. She was awarded a High Distinction for her final Masters Thesis, which analysed the NSW Mid and Far North Coast flood recovery in 2009. She also holds a Bachelor of Social Science and previously worked in the welfare sector with vulnerable and marginalised groups. She has a particular interest in rural and remote communities, Indigenous communities and developing the capacity of culturally diverse groups.
Between 2009-2013 Ms Squires led the recovery operations of 12 emergency events in NSW including the Warrumbungle, Cooma Monaro and Harden/Yass bush fires; Mid North Coast floods (2009, 2011, 2013); Far North Coast Floods (2009, 2011, 2013); the north west, far west and southern NSW floods (2012), major storms and a critical landslide which resulted in the long-term isolation of a rural community (Far North Coast).
Ms Squires has been involved in significant policy development activities and strategic planning at a State level including the NSW Treasury Review into Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements, Asbestos Management in Emergencies, the NSW Disaster Assistance Guidelines and the NSW State Recovery Plan. At a Local Government level she was instrumental in the amalgamation of the Coffs Harbour and Bellingen LEMC, the composition of local DISPLANs, Risk Management Studies and Mitigation Strategies.
Ms Squires has strong community engagement and facilitation skills. She is well versed in developing networks with local entities and groups and has a wide range of experience in working in challenging environments, conflict management and negotiation.