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    Expert Roundup: GOP Tax Plan

    Thursday, November 9, 2017, 10:51 AM [Expert Alerts]
    0 (0 Ratings)

    Below are experts from the ProfNet network who are available to discuss various aspects of the GOP tax plan. You can also submit a query to the hundreds of thousands of experts in our network – it’s easy and free. Just fill out the query form to get started:

    Benefits and Drawbacks of GOP Plan
    Wayne Winegarden
    Senior Fellow
    Pacific Research Institute, San Francisco
    Winegarden is available to discuss the benefits and drawbacks of the GOP's tax reform bill. This year, Winegarden completed a four-part study (see link below) detailing how America can return to the days of 3 percent annual economic growth with smart tax policy. He's also a regular contributor to Forbes and Investor's Business Daily, and leads the EconoSTATS project at George Mason University. He would be a great source to speak on whether the GOP's tax reform plan meets the growth-friendly standards of his research. He also can comment on the corporate side of the bill versus the individual side of the bill. He has an extensive background and knowledge of tax reform in the United States and would be a great source for reporters covering it.
    Contact: Madeline Auerbach,

    Considerations for Finance Departments
    Nancy Manzano
    Chief Tax Officer
    Vertex Inc.
    Manzano can discuss situations and factors finance departments should be considering, as well as other recommendations for corporations now that the bill is public. She is a director in the Chief Tax Office at Vertex, providing insight regarding in-house corporate tax department operations and working on the development of the company’s income tax solutions under Vertex Enterprise. Prior to joining Vertex, Manzano was a tax director at 21st Century/Farmers Insurance and MBNA America Bank, and worked in the Philadelphia office of KPMG. She is a licensed C.P.A., has a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Drexel University and a Master of Science in Taxation from Widener University.
    Contact: Jordan Rankin,

    Corporate Tax Reform
    Graham Summers, MBA
    President and Chief Market Strategist
    Phoenix Capital Research
    Summer is available to discuss corporate tax reform: “The current tax plan, as it stands, is focusing on corporate tax reform, with the notion that an employer will somehow ‘pass on’ their savings to employees via raises. First off, while the phrase ‘corporate taxes’ is a great political prop, the reality is that nearly 50% of large corporations pay *zero* corporate income tax. That is not a typo. In 2012, the Government Accountability Office performed a study in which it discovered that 43% of companies with $10+ million in assets pay *zero* corporate income tax. It’s not as if the other 57% are picking up the slack, either. It is well known that large corporations go above and beyond to avoid paying the full, required tax rate. As Forbes noted earlier this year, Apple pays a 25% tax rate (the official U.S. corporate rate is supposed to be 35%). Microsoft pays a 16% tax rate. Alphabet (Google) pays 19%. General Electric and Exxon Mobil appear to have paid no corporate income tax in 2016. My point is this: Pursuing corporate tax reform is a pointless exercise. Few, if any, corporations pay anywhere near the official corporate tax rate of 35%.”
    Summers is president and chief marketing strategist at Phoenix Capital Research, an independent investment research firm located in Washington, D.C.
    Contact: Wendy J. Gordon,

    Corporate Tax Reform
    Bruce P. Ely
    Partner and Chair, State and Local Tax (SALT) Practice Team, Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP
    Co-chair, America Bar Association Tax Section’s Task Force on the Impact of the Federal Partnership Audit Rules on the States
    “Since House Bill (HB) 1 retains the 39.6 percent top rate, the delta between that rate and the special maximum 25 percent rate for ‘qualified business income’ will certainly give tax planners an incentive to find as much of the company’s income as possible to be attributable to ‘capital’ rather than services. But it appears the drafters have built in some intricate safe harbors and formulas that most taxpayers will probably follow in order to avoid a battle with the IRS down the road. Parsing those provisions of the Bill is challenging, to say the least. [Reference is Section 1004 of the House Bill, creating new Section 4 of the IRC.] As expected, Section 1004 of the bill prevents personal services firms such as doctors, lawyers, accountants, engineers and architects, athletes, financial services advisors and so forth from qualifying *any* of their income for the special 25 percent PTE business income rate.”
    Contact: Randy Labuzinski,

    Corporate Taxes
    Dr. Christopher Metzler
    "While big companies would get a significantly lower 20 percent corporate rate, down from 35 percent, they would face new limits on their ability to deduct interest on their loans, a new global minimum tax on their overseas earnings, and new taxes on U.S. companies heading abroad. This aspect will be very contentious for conservatives since believe that it will hit consumers in the pocket by causing a rise in the cost of essential goods."
    Dr. Metzler appears regularly on Fox News Strategy Room, CNN, MSNBC and CNBC, where he provides expert commentary on U.S. and global affairs, politics, human rights, human capital, diversity and related issues. He travels extensively speaking to colleges, organizations and businesses in the United States and globally. He has also appeared on BBC News, Sky News, C-Span, The Fox Nightly Scoreboard and The O’Reilly Factor. His radio appearances have included Brain and the Judge, The Monica Crowley Show, The Joe Madison Show, The Tavis Smiley Show, The Bev Smith Show and more. In addition to a Master’s degree in Human Rights from Columbia University, he also holds a Ph.D. from University of Aberdeen in Law, as well as diplomas and postgraduate certificates in law. He is a member of The University of Oxford and a member of Kellogg College at the University of Oxford. At Oxford, he read international human rights law leading to a law degree (MsT) in international human rights law from Oxford. A seasoned academic and legal scholar, he is a public figure with numerous TV and other media appearances.
    Contact: Stacey D. Barker,

    Debate Around Offsets Versus Lower Tax Rate
    Jon Traub
    Managing Principal, Washington National Tax Group, Deloitte Tax
    Former Staff Director, House Ways and Means Committee
    "The introduction of the House Republicans' tax bill shows a strong desire by Congress and the president to enact a long-overdue overhaul of the tax code by the end of the year. Whether that is achievable or not is another question. Uncertainty still remains a dominant concern in the tax community. One thing we hear from tax executives and CFOs is that the lack of certainty around the tax code is inhibiting business investment. The bill also affirms the concerns we hear from tax professionals about the depth and breadth of offsets needed to finance lower tax rates. The next few weeks may be among some of the busiest for tax policy that we have seen in Washington for some time. Companies will be well-served to engage in scenario modeling and planning to better understand what reform -- if it were to pass -- might mean for them."
    Traub is the managing principal of the Deloitte’s Washington national tax group and former staff director for the House Ways and Means Committee. In his current role at Deloitte Tax, Traub leads a team that identifies, evaluates and monitors legislative proposals, and interprets the practical issues surrounding the application of tax proposals on behalf of Deloitte’s clients. He assists Deloitte’s clients in their efforts to stay aware of the numerous and often complicated debates in tax policy. With considerable career experience in the legislative arena, especially in tax policy, Traub is able to provide clients with critical insight on the most complicated issues impacting their businesses and offer recommendations and guidance.
    Contact: Noelle Bensaid,

    Economics of Tax Plan
    Oren Jacobson
    Lead Market Analyst
    New Home Star
    In response to the GOP tax plan, Jacobson can address whether homebuilders/Realtor associations are right/wrong to oppose the bill in its current form; the macroeconomic impact of the potential tax bill, including short-term effects and potential mid- to long-term effects; and the potential impact on demand given the distributional impacts of the bill.
    Says Jacobson: "At first glance, the GOP plan, like all modern versions of tax reform (cuts) pursued by the GOP, is based on the belief that our economic challenges are on the supply side. As such, the benefits of this plan are supply-side focused. In other words, this plan is intended to make it easier and less expensive for those with capital to invest, with the belief that this investment will lead to economic growth. The plan, as released today, will not pass and is the opening salvo of what will be negotiations in both chambers. As such, we should temper any judgements beyond outlining the basic economic logic of this plan."
    Jacobsen holds a Master’s in Economics and Policy Analysis.
    Contact: Robin Plous,

    Impact of ‘Tax Cut and Jobs Act’ on Small Manufacturers
    Don Danner
    Chair of Accounting and Finance
    Aurora University
    “While the impact on individuals in general is muted by the restructuring of the tax burden, the big news tucked away in the GOP tax bill is in business tax. Corporate tax rates are being reduced to 20% from 35% for corporations and limited to 25% on personal service organizations (doctors, lawyers and family businesses). In addition, full deduction of capital equipment is included which in many cases will result in significant tax savings in exchange for making technological investments. This could be a boom to small manufacturers and any company looking at upgrading technology. These steps could have a significant impact on productivity and lead to the job growth and higher wages that the bill advertises as its purpose.”
    Danner is the chair of the Department of Accounting and Finance at Aurora University. Prior to this position, Danner served 24 years as the chief financial officer of several privately held companies, including Aspen Marketing Services, United Asset Coverage Inc., and Telcorp Inc., and as an employee of IBM Corporation.
    Contact: Hadley Dreibelbis,

    Impact on Businesses/Individuals
    Bill Smith
    Managing Director and Leader of the National Tax Office
    Smith is available to analyze the GOP tax plan and its impact on businesses/individuals. He has more than 30 years of experience in both the public and private sectors, including five years in the office of General Counsel at Deloitte & Touche LLP; five years as a tax lawyer for the Department of Justice in Washington, D.C.; and 12 years in private practice in San Francisco, representing businesses of all sizes and high-wealth individuals in developing and implementing tax strategies or negotiating with the IRS in Tax Court or administratively. Smith assumed his current position more than 15 years ago. In this role, he consults nationally on a broad range of tax services, including foreign and domestic transactional tax planning for corporations, partnerships, LLCs and individuals, such as mergers and acquisitions, domestic and international restructuring of businesses and investments, and negotiating partnership and other transactions.
    Contact: Rachelle Gaynor,

    Impact on Companies
    Bernadette Pinamont
    Chief Tax Officer, Income Tax
    Vertex Inc.
    Pinamont can discuss situations and factors finance departments should be considering, as well as other recommendations for corporations now that the bill is public. Pinamont is the chief tax officer – income tax in the Chief Tax Office at Vertex, providing insight regarding in-house corporate tax department operations and working on the development of the company's income tax solutions under Vertex Enterprise. Prior to joining Vertex, Pinamont was vice president tax for Endo Pharmaceuticals Inc. and head of U.S. Tax for AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals. Her 30-year tax career also includes the corporate tax departments of DuPont, Syngenta, and Tyco Toys and, initially, EY. She is a graduate of Seton Hall University, from which she earned both a B.S in Accounting and Juris Doctor. She is a licensed attorney and CPA.
    Contact: Jordan Rankin,

    Impact on Consumers
    Greg McBride, CFA
    Chief Financial Analyst
    "This is all just a proposal. Don't change your tax planning based on this. We've still got a long way to go. People don't buy houses, necessarily, because of the mortgage interest deduction but it does impact the size of the house that you buy. I'm glad to see that the 401(k) deduction has been preserved. The last thing that we need to see, particularly when so many people are under-saved for retirement, is something that takes away a valuable incentive that gets people to save in the first place."
    With two decades of experience in personal finance, McBride has the unique ability to provide both in-depth commentary and practical advice to consumers. He has appeared on hundreds of national cable and network broadcasts and is routinely quoted by major print outlets.
    Contact: Ted Rossman,

    Impact on Consumers
    Eric Bronnenkant, CPA, CFP
    Head of Tax
    Bronnenkant is available to provide commentary on a number of aspects of the plan, including how it will impact consumers, specifically investments, 401(k) charitable giving and how they can best prepare. He has more than 15 years of experience, previously working at Ernst and Young and Fidelity Investments. While at EY, he was part of the Tax Guide Editorial Board for several years. Eric holds M.S degrees in Accounting and Taxation from Seton Hall University as well as an MBA in Quantitative Finance from NYU. He also services as an adjunct taxation professor at Seton Hall University.
    Contact: Quincy Zhai,

    Impact on Corporations and Individuals of All Tax Brackets
    Joseph Perry
    Tax & Business Services Leader
    Marcum LLP
    Perry can speak on the GOP tax bill just released. He services high-net-worth individuals, so he can discuss some of the implications for those making over $200,000. For those individuals, the tax code has *not* been simplified, says Perry. He can also speak on: itemized deductions and the individual tax rate; pass-through entities; carried Interest; and the corporate tax rate. He is well-versed and experienced in serving as the media’s go-to “tax expert.” Yesterday he spoke on Bloomberg TV and Fox News to provide insights on the new tax plan.
    Contact: Christine Hardman,

    Impact on Divorce Settlements
    Christopher Melcher
    Walzer Melcher LLP
    One little-known aspect of the Republican plan is the elimination of alimony or spousal support as a tax credit, which will have a major impact on divorce settlements. According to Melcher, this change will drag out potential settlements, as the person paying the support won't want to pay as much since it would no longer be a tax credit. It would create major problems. Also, for people waiting for the right time to divorce, you can expect a number of divorce filings this month and December. The irony is that usually November and December are "slow" divorce months as people wait until after the holidays to file (making January a big divorce month).
    Melcher specializes in complex family law litigation and the preparation of premarital agreements. He also handles appeals of family law judgments and writ proceedings from family law orders. His typical client is a business owner, celebrity, or trust beneficiary.
    Contact: Olivier Gibbons, Esq.,

    Impact on Individual and Corporate Taxes
    Luo Zuo
    Associate Professor
    Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management
    Cornell University
    Zuo’s research is at the intersection of accounting and finance, and can be divided into two strands. The first explores the individual effects of managers, investors and auditors; the unifying theme is that an individual’s judgement and decision-making are affected by their incentives, information and behavioral traits. The second strand of research is focused on corporate taxes. Zuo’s paper, “Sharing Risk with the Government: How Taxes Affect Corporate Risk-Taking” (published in Journal of Accounting Research), won the Best Paper Award at the 2016 MIT Asia Conference in Accounting. His work has also appeared in leading journals, including American Economic Review, The Journal of Accounting and Economics, The Journal of Financial Economics, Management Science, The Review of Financial Studies and The Accounting Review (where he also serves on the editorial board). His research has been featured in The Economist, NBER Digest, The Wall Street Journal and other media sources.
    Contact: Brianne O’Donnell,

    Impact on Wealthy Families
    Bijan Golkar
    CEO, Senior Advisor
    FPC Investment Advisory, Inc.
    Golkar is a Northern California investment advisor that has been a licensed tax preparer since 2007 and earned the Certified Financial Planner (CFP) certification in 2013. He is frequently quoted in national media as an expert on investing and financial planning topics. In addition to his duties as the firm’s CEO, Golkar provides comprehensive advice to high-net-worth individuals and families. He often creates and leads teams of legal, accounting and insurance experts to help these clients meet their goals. He also consults with small businesses on buyouts, employee benefits and other matters.
    ProfNet Profile:
    Expert Contact:

    Impact on Workplace and Labor Market
    Brian Kropp
    HR Practice Leader
    Kropp can speak about how this tax plan will or will not affect the U.S. workplace and labor market, specifically in terms of immigration. Kropp recently spoke on this topic, saying, “There’s a lot of second-, third- or fourth-generation Americans who aren’t willing to take low-skill requirement jobs for the wages that are being offered. Employers in favor of immigration often have difficulty finding American-born workers with the necessary qualifications to fill vacancies. Because of the program’s limited size (GOP tax plan), it’s unlikely that ending it alone would have much of an impact -- positive or negative -- on American-born workers.”
    Kropp is HR practice leader at CEB, a subsidiary of consulting firm Gartner.
    Contact: Lauren Stredler,

    Individual and Corporate Tax Policy
    Shaun Hunley
    Technical Editor, PPC Products
    Thomson Reuters Tax & Accounting
    Hunley, a technical editor of PPC products for Thomson Reuters Checkpoint within the Tax & Accounting business of Thomson Reuters, is available to discuss tax reform (individual and corporate), emerging federal tax issues, corporate tax, tax policy and procedure, and mergers and acquisitions.
    Hunley has over 10 years of tax experience with national accounting firms. Early in his career, Hunley led research and development tax incentive studies for Fortune 500 companies. Following this, he specialized in tax due diligence, corporate restructurings, and international tax compliance and planning. Hunley also has extensive experience in advising small businesses and closely held companies on a variety of tax matters. He received a J.D. from Texas Tech University School of Law and an LL.M. in Taxation from New York University School of Law. Recent articles include “Can The Tax Code Really Be Simple?” in Forbes (see, and “Balancing Competing Interests in the IRS Future State” in CPA Practice Advisor (see
    Contact: Stephen Sobey,

    Likelihood of the GOP Tax Plan Becoming Law
    John Gimigliano
    Principal-in-Charge of Federal Tax Legislative Services
    “As the bill moves though the legislative process, the shape of reform will become clearer in the coming weeks and months -- but only slowly, and perhaps frustratingly so.”
    Prior to joining KPMG in 2008, Gimigliano was senior tax counsel for the Committee on Ways and Means and staff director for the Subcommittee on Select Revenue Measures in the U.S. House of Representatives. He is based in Washington, D.C.
    Contact: Robert Nihen,; or Taylor Ovalle,

    Tax Issues
    Steven Cruz
    Resuelve, Inc.
    Cruz is president of Resuelve, Inc., a Washington, D.C.-based, political campaign, issue advocacy, and corporate branding consulting firm that fights for economic freedom and equality. Prior to founding Resuelve, Cruz previously served as a Koch network spokesman for an array of issues, including healthcare, taxes, corporate welfare reform, criminal justice reform, and immigration. Cruz has publicly provided commentary to numerous media outlets regarding GOP legislation, including how Obamacare and tax issues could impact the elderly, the Hispanic community, and middle-aged men. He most recently appeared on Telemundo (see clip below) to discuss and break down the Republican's replacement bill. He has also provided commentary for countless tax-related issues in media outlets worldwide, including CNN, Voice of America, Huffington Post, Forbes, and Washington Examiner, among others.
    Contact: Alexandra Booze,

    Tax Law
    Bradley Heim
    Associate Professor, School of Public and Environmental Affairs
    Indiana University
    Heim, a tax law expert, is available to discuss any aspect of the Republican tax bill. A former financial economist at the Office of Tax Analysis at the U.S. Department of the Treasury, Heim is an expert public finance, labor economics, and econometrics. He is well-versed in the impacts of tax policies on labor supply, income and earnings, health insurance purchases, and the analysis of labor, business and household income dynamics.
    Contact: Stephanie M. Guzmán,

    Tax Planning
    Greg Hammer
    Tax and Wealth Advisor
    Hammer Financial Group, Inc.
    Hammer specializes in coordinated, holistic financial planning for Lake County, Ind., and Chicago-area residents who are approaching retirement or currently retired. Bringing tax preparation and planning, Medicare supplements, estate planning, insurance and investments all under one roof, Hammer aims to provide complete and convenient financial solutions for the best interest of the clients he serves. He trains and coaches independent financial advisors nationwide on how to build their business to better serve the holistic financial needs of American families. In particular, he has helped develop and refine processes to integrate tax preparation and Medicare supplement services into a financial advisory practice -- a unique addition within the financial industry designed for the ultimate convenience and benefit of clients at and near retirement. He earned a B.A. in Applied Mathematics with a focus in economics from Yale University and has more than 23 years of experience in the financial services industry. In addition to his series 6, 63, 65 and 26 and life and health licenses, Hammer maintains Master Elite Membership with Ed Slott’s Elite IRA Advisor Group for continued study and mastery of IRAs and applicable tax laws.
    Contact: Mindy Eras,

    Tax Plan
    Altair M. Gobo
    U.S. Financial Services, Fairfield, N.J.
    Gobo, author of “Getting to the Green,” is a certified financial planner; an adjunct faculty member, faculty coordinator and academic advisor at Farleigh Dickinson University’s financial planning program; and is on the advisory board at Montclair State University. He has served as president and chairman of the board of directors at the Northern New Jersey Chapter of the International Association for Financial Planning, and been a guest on CNBC, NBC, ABC, MSNBC, Fox News, Fox Business News, Bloomberg and CNN.
    Contact: Tracy G. Minsky,

    Tax Relief
    John McKinley
    Professor of Practice
    The Dyson School of Applied Economics, SC Johnson College of Business
    Cornell University
    McKinley is a lecturer in accounting and taxation at the Dyson School of Applied Economics at Cornell University’s SC Johnson College of Business. He teaches courses in financial accounting, auditing and assurance and federal income taxation. He has written about and studied a range of tax-related topics, including tax relief for small employer retirement plans; tax relief for student loan forgiveness; schoolteachers’ deductions; and tax relief for homeowners.
    Contact: Brianne O’Donnell,

    Tax/Retirement Planning
    Ed Slott, CPA
    Founder, Ed Slott & Company
    Slott is a New York-based nationally recognized IRA expert, television personality, and best-selling author who has dedicated his life to educating Americans on saving for retirement, and the intricacies of IRAs. He was named “The Best Source for IRA Advice” by The Wall Street Journal, and USA Today wrote, “It would be tough to find anyone who knows more about IRAs than CPA Slott." He is the author of “The Retirement Savings Time Bomb … And How to Defuse It” and “Parlay Your IRA into a Family Fortune.” His most recent books include “Fund Your Future: A Tax-Smart Savings Plan in Your 20s and 30s” and “The Retirement Decisions Guide: 125 Ways to Save and Stretch Your Wealth.” He is the host of the 2015 public television show “Ed Slott’s Retirement Road Map,” which airs in markets nationwide. He is a frequent columnist and resource for national media, and has hosted many best-selling public television specials. Through his firm, Slott provides the highest level of IRA training to financial professionals, CPAs and attorneys; and through his website, he offers free resources to consumers.
    Contact: Mindy Eras,

    Expert Roundup: North Korea

    Thursday, September 21, 2017, 2:45 PM [Expert Alerts]
    0 (0 Ratings)

    Following are experts from the ProfNet network who are available to discuss North Korea and its increasing threats against the U.S. and our allies.

    You can also submit a query to the hundreds of thousands of experts in our network – it’s easy and free! Just fill out the query form to get started:

    Srinivasan Sitaraman
    Associate Professor, Political Science
    Clark University, Massachusetts
    “The President's speech was astonishing on multiple levels, and surely played to his base in the United States. The most extraordinary aspect of the speech was when the president issued an open threat to ‘totally destroy North Korea,’ referring to Kim Jong Un as the ‘Rocket Man on a suicide mission.’ Such a direct threat is only going to be interpreted by North Korea as evidence that the United States is out to get them and it will only accelerate its weapons production and ballistic missile testing. There is no reason to believe that North Korea is going to be cowed by this threat. It likely will only help to further breed North Korean anxieties and brinksmanship. The president's speech also threatened to tear up the Iranian nuclear deal -- a poor time to back out of the UN-brokered multilateral agreement. This sends a wrong signal to the world community that the United States is not a trustworthy dealmaker. Iran will not have any incentive to follow through on the deal. Overall, the speech emphasized that the Trump Administration is more about outcomes than ideology. The speech was too in-your-face and often contradictory. Certainly, Trump did not appear conciliatory or aiming to build coalitions for collective solutions to tackle global challenges.”
    Contact: Jane Salerno,

    Michael Desch
    Director, Notre Dame International Security Center, and Professor of Political Science
    University of Notre Dame
    On North Korea’s threat to America, Desch says: “America has nearly 5,000 warheads compared to North Korea’s 30 to 60. All of ours are reliable and deliverable; the same cannot be said for the Hermit Kingdom’s Pygmy arsenal. Given this disparity, the United States can credibly threaten not only Kim Jong Un’s hold on power but his very existence. That is a very robust deterrent.”
    Desch, an expert in national security and foreign policy, is a former member of the Foreign Affairs and National Defense Division of the Congressional Research Service and a former staffer in the Bureau of Intelligence and Research in the State Department.
    Contact: Brittany Kaufman,

    Lowell Gustafson
    Professor, Political Science
    Villanova University
    “If North Korea actually sent a nuclear missile in the direction of the U.S., Guam, Japan, South Korea, or another U.S. ally, or if we had solid evidence that they were about to very soon, we would be forced to destroy at least their leadership and offensive capability. To this degree, I reluctantly agree with Trump. Before that, we need to send accurate information about North Korea, the U.S., and international/political events, as well as culture, in a variety of ways to North Korea. The long-term goal is to undermine the North Korean government. We have tried diplomacy, bribes, and sanctions. None have worked. We need to accept North Korea into the nuclear club, as long as they do not use these weapons or attack our allies or us in any way. Even then, the costs will be horrible. Short of a North Korean attack or an imminent attack, there is no justifiable way we can start a war with them.”
    Contact: Zach Chizar,

    Dr. Paul F. Diehl
    Ashbel Smith Professor of Political Science
    The University of Texas at Dallas
    “No option with respect to North Korea is a desirable one, except compared to the others.”
    Diehl is a leading expert on international conflict who can discuss the consequences of various approaches to responding to threats from North Korea. Diehl writes extensively about international conflict in academic journals and is author of several books including “The Puzzle of Peace: The Evolution of Peace in the International System” ( and “Peace Operations (War and Conflict in the Modern World ( Diehl is former director of the Correlates of War Project, the largest data collection effort on international conflict in the world and past president of the International Studies Association, the largest professional organization of its kind in the world, with membership from 109 countries.
    Contact: Kim Horner,

    Gary Cohen
    Clinical Professor of Logistics, Business and Public Policy, Robert H. Smith School of Business
    University of Maryland
    Cohen is available to discuss China’s quandary in mitigating North Korea’s aggression: “China has concerns about a flood of migrants crossing its border with North Korea, similar to what's been seen with Syrian immigrants fleeing their country, if the economic sanctions become too great and North Koreans become desperate for a better life. China may have humanitarian concerns about what happens in North Korea, but also, this is really just something that China doesn't want to have to deal with at their border. It's difficult to use leverage with [Kim Jong-un] who just doesn't put his citizens first.”
    Cohen recently helped develop, and led, the Smith School’s Beijing-based China Executive MBA Program.
    Contact: Greg Muraski,

    Dr. Monti Datta
    Associate Professor of Political Science
    University of Richmond
    “North Korea is a strategic rational actor seeking to play the 'nuclear card' in order to extract economic concessions from the international community and survive."
    Dr. Datta can discuss what North Korea really wants; whether Kim Jong Un is rational; and how to contain the North Korea nuclear threat.
    Contact: Pryor Green,

    George A. Lopez
    Hesburgh Professor Emeritus of Peace Studies, Keough School of Global Affairs
    Kroc Institute of International Peace Studies
    University of Notre Dame
    Lopez is a former member of the UN Security Council panel of experts for sanctions on North Korea and former vice president of the United States Institute of Peace. He can speak on: economic sanctions, North Korean in particular; United Nations; nuclear nonproliferation; peacebuilding. This past week, he had an op-ed published in The Hill (, and was featured in Bloomberg News ( and, WBEZ, NPR’s Chicago station (, and CNN (
    Contact: Amanda Skofstad,

    Sean Kane
    Hughes Hubbard & Reed, Washington, D.C.
    Kane is available to discuss economic sanctions with regard to North Korea, whether they are really effective, and what more can be sanctioned at this point. He is the former deputy assistant director for policy in the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) in the U.S. Department of the Treasury, who oversaw a team of sanctions policy advisors to develop and implement sanctions measures across more than 30 portfolios, including North Korea. He also played a leading role in shaping the development of new sanctions authorities, OFAC regulations, and policy guidance, coordinating closely with interagency partners at the National Security Council (NSC), U.S. Department of State, and the Bureau of Industry and Security at the U.S. Department of Commerce. Kane also regularly engaged with Congress on pending or proposed sanctions legislation, and worked closely with colleagues at the Treasury Department on Anti-Money Laundering (AML) issues, as well as Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) matters.
    Contact: Ted Mills,

    Tony Talbott
    Interim Executive Director
    University of Dayton Human Rights Center
    Talbott has taught courses in global politics, global security, nationalism and identity politics, southeast and east Asia, and Asian politics.
    The university has broadband studio capabilities.
    Media Coverage:
    Contact: Shawn Robinson,

    Raymond Kuo
    Assistant Professor of Political Science
    Fordham University
    Dr. Kuo is available to discuss: 1) All turns on whether Kim is rational -- and he's given every indication that he is. He may be extreme, but he's methodically testing nukes and even defenses against American counter-measures (salvo test in February). 2) Kim’s ability to craft an ICBM-sized warhead is very concerning, and any nuclear encounter would impose unacceptable, devastating costs on both U.S. and North Korea, if not others in the region. 3) There are no good military options that wouldn't result in deaths of thousands in the first day, and even then it might not eliminate DPRK’s capability. 4) We may ultimately have to rely on mutually assured destruction -- that nukes self-deter and no one goes to nuclear war. But that will also create great instability on a conventional and unconventional warfare level. 5) Ironically, it may be Trump that escalates and causes war.
    Dr. Kuo specializes in international security and American foreign policy, and his current research focuses on international order and security and the political effects of technology and democratization. Dr. Kuo has published in top journals, including International Security, International Relations, and Ethnopolitics. He will teach courses contributing to political science, as well as the Fordham's MA Program in international political economy and development. He was recently quoted in an AP story on North Korea and Trump (see and is available for phone and email interviews.
    Contact: Rachel Roman,

    Zhiqun Zhu
    Professor of Political Science and International Relations
    Bucknell University
    Zhu has followed the ongoing relationship with the United States and North Korea for the past several years. He’s written extensively on the subject, including multiple op-eds for U.S. News & World Report since the start of the Trump presidency. Above all, Zhu believes the two sides simply don’t understand each other’s goals or points of view and that diplomacy has been nonexistent.
    Contact: Jeff Canning,

    Thomas Karako
    Director, Center for the Study of American Democracy; Director, Missile Defense Project, Center for Strategic and International Studies
    Kenyon College
    Karako is an expert in national security issues, U.S. nuclear forces, missile defense and proliferation. He was an American Political Science Association Congressional Fellow for 2010–11, during which time he worked with the professional staff of the House Armed Services Committee on U.S. strategic forces, nonproliferation and NATO. Karako has been quoted in CBS News, the New York Times, CNBC, Fox News and WIRED, among others.
    Contact: Mary Keister,

    Ambassador Robert Holleyman
    Crowell & Moring, Washington, D.C.
    Holleyman, the former Deputy United States Trade Representative from 2014-2017, is available to discuss the UN sanctions and the impact on both U.S. and non-U.S. businesses; if secondary sanctions, which appear imminent, will target additional Chinese banks and trading companies in jurisdictions like China, Singapore, and Malaysia; additional forfeiture actions in the United States.
    Contact: Stephanie Holtzman,

    Cari Stinebower
    Partner, International Trade and White Collar and Regulatory Enforcement Groups
    Crowell & Moring, Washington, D.C.
    Stinebower is available to discuss: the UN sanctions and the impact on both U.S. and non-U.S. businesses; if secondary sanctions, which appear imminent, will target additional Chinese banks and trading companies in jurisdictions like China, Singapore, and Malaysia; additional forfeiture actions in the United States.
    Contact: Stephanie Holtzman,

    Jeff McCausland, Ph.D.
    Visiting Professor of International Security Studies
    Dickinson College
    McCausland is the former dean of academics at the U.S. Army War College. A veteran of the Gulf War, he is a retired Army colonel whose work has taken him all over the world serving in a variety of command and staff positions including the National Security Council Staff and at the Pentagon. McCausland sparred in the national media with then-candidate Donald Trump over military strategy in Iraq (see He is the founder and CEO of Diamond6 Leadership and Strategy, LLC, and a national security consultant for CBS radio and television. He has provided analysis of American national security policy and the situation in Korea for more than 14 years.
    Contact: Craig Layne,

    Douglas Stuart, Ph.D.
    Professor of Political Science and International Studies
    Dickinson College
    Stuart holds the J. William Stuart and Helen D. Stuart Chair in International Studies, Business and Management at Dickinson. He is also an adjunct research professor at the U.S. Army War College. His research focuses on the history, and proposals for the reform of, the U.S. national security bureaucracy and U.S. foreign and security policies in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region. His writings on Asian security have appeared in several journals, including Asian Affairs, the Georgetown Journal of International Affairs and the Korean Journal of Defense Analysis.
    Contact: Craig Layne,

    Jina E. Kim, Ph.D.
    Visiting Assistant Professor of East Asian Studies
    Dickinson College
    Kim’s research and teaching areas include Korea under Japanese colonial rule, transnational Asian studies, the Korean diaspora and Korean War, all of which pay close attention to the history of North Korea and North Korean relations with its East Asian neighbors. Her writings have appeared in the Journal of Korean Studies, Review of Korean Studies and Harvard Asia Quarterly.
    Contact: Craig Layne,

    Donald Mazzella
    Small Business Digest
    Mazzella is a veteran newsman, national radio host and commentator, COO of Small Business Digest publications, and author of many books, including "An American Family Sampler." Besides a long career as a foreign reporter, he has been on MSNBC and Fox News, and has been written about by the Wall Street Journal. Mazzella is a nationally known commentator covering not only great events but the intimate lives of ordinary citizens.
    Expert Contact:

    Expert Roundup: Hurricane Preparedness

    Wednesday, June 7, 2017, 11:59 AM [Expert Alerts]
    0 (0 Ratings)

    With NOAA expecting a rough hurricane season this year, following are experts from the ProfNet network who are available for interviews on various topics related to hurricane preparedness.

    You can also submit a query to the hundreds of thousands of experts in our network – it’s easy and free! Just fill out the query form to get started:

    ADA Obligations
    Robert Fine
    Shareholder; Chair, ADA, Accessibility, Building & Life Safety Codes Practice
    Greenberg Traurig LLP
    Fine can discuss ADA obligations when rebuilding, as well as how ADA codes affect rebuilding of historic properties. He authored a Greenberg Traurig alert, “Hurricane Matthew’s Shift West May Impose Requirements on South Florida Property Owners and Construction Sites” (
    Contact: Elaine Walker,

    Building Preparation
    Michael Thomas
    Shareholder; Real Estate, Litigation Practice
    Greenberg Traurig LLP
    Thomas focuses his practice on construction law and litigation matters. He can discuss what builders can do post-hurricane and to prepare for the next storm.
    Contact: Elaine Walker,

    Business Risks
    Benjamin Collier, Ph.D.
    Assistant Professor of Risk Management, Fox School of Business
    Temple University
    "Hurricanes and other natural disasters have often caught businesses unprepared. For example, in a recent study, my colleagues and I found that many New York-area businesses weren’t insured for the losses created by Sandy. Small businesses and young businesses were especially unlikely to insure and had difficulty accessing credit to finance recovery afterward."
    Collier’s areas of expertise include hurricane preparedness, climate change risks, flood insurance, disaster risk management of businesses, disaster risk and household finances, Hurricane Sandy, and insurance economics.
    Contact: Christopher A. Vito,

    Civil Infrastructure Changes and Natural Hazard Assessment/Mitigation
    Tracy Kijewski-Correa
    Leo E and Patti Ruth Linbeck Collegiate Chair and Associate Professor, Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering & Earth Sciences
    University of Notre Dame
    Kijewski-Correa’s research addresses 21st century civil infrastructure challenges. Her interdisciplinary scholarship emphasizes collaborative innovation, sensing, information technologies, and simulation frameworks to create scalable paradigms to enhance the resilience and sustainability of civil infrastructure. A hallmark of these projects and her wider body of scholarship has been the substantial engagement of municipalities, communities of practice and the public-at-large, working extensively in post-disaster planning and recovery following major hurricanes, earthquakes, and tsunamis in the US, Haiti and Southeast Asia.
    Contact: Jessica Sieff,

    Construction Defects
    Robert Epstein
    Shareholder; Co-Chair, National Construction Law Practice
    Greenberg Traurig LLP
    “All property owners should review their insurance programs to assure that they have the proper coverage in adequate amounts.”
    Epstein practices in the area of construction law and contracting. He wrote an article in the New Jersey Law Journal about rebuilding New Jersey’s infrastructure after Hurricane Sandy, and can speak to similar topics.
    Contact: Sarah Misailidis,

    Construction Litigation
    Tim Kolaya
    Shareholder; Litigation, Construction Law Practice
    Greenberg Traurig LLP
    Kolaya can speak to engineering-focused construction litigation issues.
    Contact: Elaine Walker,

    Construction Litigation
    Michael G. Murphy
    Shareholder; Construction Law Practice
    Greenberg Traurig LLP
    Murphy can discuss construction litigation, with a focus on builders.
    Contact: Elaine Walker,

    Construction Litigation
    Chris Barnett
    Shareholder; Real Estate, Real Estate Litigation Practice
    Greenberg Traurig LLP
    Barnett focuses his practice on real estate development and construction matters. He can discuss developer-focused construction litigation issues.
    Contact: Elaine Walker,

    Cyber Issues
    Alan Sutin
    Shareholder; Chair, Technology, Media & Telecommunications Practice; Senior Chair, Global IP-IT Practice
    Greenberg Traurig LLP
    “Companies sometimes fail to consider the impact of losing their key computer servers and other technology systems following a hurricane or other natural disaster. Reviewing the company’s disaster recovery and business continuity plans and making sure they meet the company’s current operational and cybersecurity standards will go a long way to avoiding significant business interruption or ongoing liability.”
    Sutin counsels companies on a wide-range of issues relating to privacy and cybersecurity. He co-authored the Law360 article "Top Tips for Data Breach Readiness and Response,” and can discuss data protection issues during and after a hurricane.
    Contact: Sarah Misailidis,

    Disaster Preparedness
    Rob DeLeo
    Assistant Professor of Global Public Policy
    Bentley University
    DeLeo is available to discuss elements of disaster preparedness including: the importance of preparedness -- not as a means to an end, but as a critical preventative, money-saving, ongoing process; why families, communities, and policy makers who think of preparedness as an ongoing process will be better positioned to deal with any disaster; the political and psychological barriers to preparedness; and why policy makers and political leaders need to approach disaster preparation with a long-term view, and the benefits this can have.
    Contact: Lauren Mucci,

    Disaster-Proofing Your Telecommunications
    Bob Ashley
    Product Manager
    FairPoint Communications
    “The consequences of being unprepared for a disaster, especially a major hurricane, can cripple a business. To survive an unforeseen event, companies must include telecommunications when they develop disaster recovery plans. After all, phone communications are the lifeblood of most businesses. Replacing a traditional phone system with a cloud-based solution provides a way to ensure voice communication that will aid in disaster recovery readiness. If a disaster strikes this hurricane season, cloud-based phone systems offer a way to keep business phones ringing even when the unexpected happens.”
    Ashley, a senior product manager for FairPoint Communications, has held many technical and managerial positions over his 37-year communications career. He has worked for a wide variety of companies, ranging from small family-owned, independent telcos, to industry giants like Contel and GTE. He also possesses a strong background in network engineering, project management, budgeting and product development. Ashley holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from Husson University and an Associate’s degree in Electrical Technologies from Southern Maine Community College.
    Contact: Matt Ormsbee,

    Document Management
    Chris Strammiello
    Vice President of Global Alliances & Strategic Marketing
    Nuance Communications
    “Damage from hurricanes can impact businesses. They harm or destroy office and business records, and disrupt operations through the lost time while dealing with outages. According to the U.S. government, 40 percent of businesses do not reopen after a disaster strikes them, and another 25 percent fail within one year. Turning paper records into digital documents rids an organization of the paper that can be damaged or destroyed during a disaster, or that can become lost in day-to-day work operations.”
    Contact: Matt Ormsbee,

    Document Security
    Chris Wong
    Flooding can threaten homes and businesses, but vital documents are also at risk, even if stored in "safe" deposit boxes. When flood prevention infrastructure is inadequate, the damage can be devastating. Most of the 7,000+ families who were forced to evacuate their homes in Louisiana last year due to flooding lost paper records that would have been saved by digital record keeping. Says Wong: “Nothing is more crucial in times of crisis than to have information ready, organized and accessible when you need to act.”
    A veteran entrepreneur, Wong is CEO of LifeSite, a Silicon Valley company providing secure digital storage solutions. Wong is available to discuss secure digital recordkeeping of medical information and important documents.
    Contact: Sheri Wachenheim,

    Effect of Coastal Oceans
    Andrew Kennedy
    Associate Professor, Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering & Earth Sciences
    University of Notre Dame
    Kennedy's research focuses on waves, surge, and currents in the coastal ocean and their effects on human activities. Parts of this work are observational, ranging from the rapid deployment of wave and surge gauges in advance of hurricane landfalls, to the analysis of very large-scale bathymetric lidar datasets to determine morphological changes during large storms. A recent focus correlates observed storm damage to observed and predicted hydrodynamics in coastal regions. Parts of Kennedy's research are theoretical and computational, and deal with water wave theory in shallow and deep water, and in the generation of near-shore circulation by breaking waves. This work has direct application to the prediction of storm waves and water levels, damage, and erosion. Undergraduate, master's, Ph.D. and postdoctoral researchers in the Coastal Hydraulics Lab are currently working on a range of topics. Projects have been funded by the National Science Foundation, Office of Naval Research, Joint Airborne Lidar Technical Center of Expertise, US Geological Survey, the US Army Corps of Engineers, and Florida Sea Grant, among others.
    Contact: Jessica Sieff,

    Emergency Communications
    Joseph Brady
    Director of Business Development
    Federal Signal Corporation
    “It’s about finding that perfect blend of communications taking environment/climate, infrastructure and location all into account. Whether it’s communicating through landlines, cellphones, text messaging, public address or intercom systems, to IP-based technologies ranging from email and instant messaging to social networks, emergency managers should define a layered approach with notifications. In fact, these new communications layers have clearly added to the complexity of developing effective, reliable emergency public warning and mass notification strategies. This is because each of these new layers of communication technology must be evaluated in context with a host of human factors relating to the behaviors, perceptions, needs, limitations and cultural differences and eccentricities of individuals, as well as the general population.”
    Based in North Carolina, Brady is NIMS and ICS-trained and has 10 years of field experience with Federal Signal, providing solutions for indoor and outdoor mass notification systems that have been deployed in cities, universities, commercial and coastline/sea port applications. Prior to Federal Signal, Brady was a 20-year law enforcement veteran, including working with Chicago's Office of Emergency Management and Communications while a member of the Chicago Police Department crime strategy and accountability unit.
    Contact: Gabriella Churchill,

    Emergency Preparedness Plans
    Peter Duncanson
    Director, Disaster Restoration Business Operations
    ServiceMaster Restore
    “Whether it's a hurricane or a severe thunderstorm approaching this season, the most important thing that all home and business owners can do to prepare is develop an emergency preparedness plan. This time-saving preparation ahead of inclement weather can help ease a potentially stressful hurricane season.”
    Duncanson share these simple steps to take ahead of a hurricane or severe storm: 1) Outdoor Precautions: Secure loose outdoor items, such as patio furniture, and put away garden tools and children's toys; board up windows; ensure rain gutters are clear to allow water to flow. 2) Indoor Preparation: Stock up on fresh batteries and emergency supplies, such as water, medication and non-perishable food, flashlights and radios; unplug electronics and elevate furniture and drapes inside the home; store valuables and important documents, like birth certificates and passports, in waterproof containers; create a call tree to provide notice of your safety with family living outside the area; create a photo and/or video inventory of essential possessions including serial numbers, make and model of item. 3) Plan for Post-Storm Repairs: Have information on-hand for professional restoration companies, so if damage occurs it can be minimized in a timely manner (within 24-48 hours of water damage); review your insurance policy to know what's covered and have your policy information easily accessible; restock your emergency supply kit if necessary.
    Contact: Bristol Whitcher,

    Employment Issues
    David L. Barron
    Cozen O’Connor
    Barron is available to discuss HR-related issues employers need to know when hurricanes and other natural disasters take place, including laws that protect employees who are absent from work during or after a hurricane; paying employees when work sites are closed due to weather; and other wage and hour pitfalls that employers should be aware of following a hurricane or other natural disaster.
    Barron focuses his litigation practice on labor and employment law. He assists his clients with all their labor and employment needs, including representing clients at trials involving wrongful termination, discrimination, harassment, collective action overtime claims and whistle-blower suits before a variety of state and federal courts. He counsels clients on labor negotiations, elections, strikes, and corporate campaigns by unions; litigates disputes before the National Labor Relations Board, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and Department of Labor; and advises management on various employment issues, including wage and hour, federal contractor compliance, employee terminations, discrimination and harassment claims, drafting and enforcement of noncompete agreements, Sarbanes Oxley, and OSHA matters. He has been quoted on employment law topics by the Houston Business Journal, The Houston Chronicle, Texas Lawyer,, and numerous other newspapers and magazines. He also has appeared as an employment law professional on talk radio and the local CBS and Fox affiliates in Houston.
    Contact: Josh Ginsburg,

    Environmental and Water Issues
    Kerri Barsh
    Shareholder; Co-Chair, National Environmental Practice
    Greenberg Traurig LLP
    Barsh represents public and private clients on environmental regulatory, permitting and litigation matters. She can discuss environmental and water issues following a hurricane.
    Contact: Elaine Walker,

    Environmental Hazards, Insurance Tips
    Robert Weitz, CMI
    Certified Microbial Investigator and Principal
    RTK Environmental Group
    Weitz is an environmental inspector and principal of RTK Environmental Group, one of the largest and most trusted independent testing firms in the Northeast. They provide testing for mold, lead, water, soil, asbestos, radon, PCBs, VOCs, indoor air quality, and more. Since they only test and do not do remediation (which is a clear conflict of interest), their results are unbiased and accurate.
    Weitz can offer tips on how to prepare for a hurricane, as well as what steps you need to take afterwards to prevent or contain environmental hazards, and protect yourself from dirty contractors and insurance companies after the hurricane. Some topics include: 1) Flooding: What do you do if there is water in the basement? What steps can we take now to minimize damage? If you do flood, what steps should you take right away to avoid a mold outbreak? 2) Leaks: Ceilings, windows, and more may leak during the storm. Place buckets and towels in areas you know tend to leak before it starts. Cleaning your gutters today can help ensure water flows properly during the storm and is directed away from your house. 3) Power Failure and Sump Pumps: If the power goes out, your sump pump will not function unless you have a generator. What can you do?
    Twitter: @AskRTK
    Facebook: RTKEnvironmental
    Contact: Jennifer Newman Galluzzo,

    Facilities Operations
    Chad Kennedy
    Industry Standards Manager
    Power Equipment for Schneider Electric
    Kennedy is available to speak to hurricane preparedness from a facilities and operations perspective. He can offer insights around ways for operations managers to ensure their buildings are fully equipped to withstand flooding from hurricanes. Kennedy understands installations in healthcare, critical power, data center, and redundant control system design, and can offer discussions on protecting the electrical equipment in these facilities from the damage hurricanes may cause. He directly participates in the integration of these electrical system controls into the existing building and life safety control systems.
    Contact: Patrick Abberton,

    Family, Home and Business Safety
    Carol Hanover
    Risk Control Field Director
    “As hurricane season approaches, there are things homeowners can do ahead of time to help keep their families safe, such as preparing a survival kit and planning an evacuation route. When it comes to a survival kit, you’ll want to include all the necessary basics: flashlight, first-aid kit, batteries, nonperishable food, medications, baby supplies and pet food, cash (in case ATMs are down) and electronic chargers, such as car chargers, for your phone or flashlight. If a storm is imminent, you’ll want to secure all outdoor objects or move them inside, in case of high winds that could turn patio furniture into dangerous, flying debris. Close storm shutters and board up windows and glass doors as needed. If possible, bring in your gas or charcoal grill, but never store propane tanks inside the house or garage; instead, chain them in an upright position to a secure object away from your home.”
    Hanover is available to discuss: essential criteria for personal and professional hurricane preparedness plans; the best items to have on-hand during a hurricane-themed emergency; how to protect home and business properties during extreme weather disaster; evacuation guidelines and tips; personal and business insurance consideration; and best practices for evaluating property damage in the aftermath of a hurricane. She has been in the insurance industry for 30 years and in her current role since 2014. As regional field director, Hanover is responsible for the management of the commercial insurance risk control staff and service deliverables in the metro NYC, Long Island and Connecticut areas. She has the privilege to work with risk control industry experts to ensure that the highest quality of risk control services is delivered to Travelers customers.
    Contact: Bonnie Paresa,

    Flood Insurance
    John Dickson
    NFS Edge Insurance Agency
    “Everyone is at risk of flood -- you’re more likely to flood than have a fire over a 30-year mortgage.”
    Flooding can happen every single day of the year and everywhere in the country -- whether due to weather events, such as hurricanes, heavy rains or snow melt, or due to burst pipes, backed-up sewers and more. In recent years, we had several major, even historic, flooding events, including Hurricane Matthew, that killed thousands of people and destroyed homes and businesses in Louisiana, Texas, Iowa and elsewhere. Dickson can explain what options homeowners have for flood insurance during hurricane season 2017, especially what private policies are available as an alternative to the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). He can lay out details of what the rates are for private policies and what they cover as opposed to the NFIP. Dickson can also explain what changes lie ahead for flood insurance policies in 2017 (rate changes, flood map changes, etc.).
    Contact: Astrid Greve Spencer,

    Flood Insurance
    Cynthia DiVincenti
    Vice President, Government Programs and Business Quality Assurance
    Aon National Flood Services
    “Historical flooding events drive reforms. The big focus for the flood insurance industry right now is to make sure Congress reauthorizes the National Flood Insurance Program.”
    Flooding can happen any day and anywhere. During hurricane season, flood insurance will be vital for millions of property owners. In 2017, the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) is at a crossroads: it is set to expire in September and is thus currently up for reauthorization. There is a lot of debate surrounding the reauthorization, and several bills have already been introduced in Congress. DiVincenti can explain all aspects about the NFIP and what they mean to property owners. In addition, FEMA is remapping flood zones, which means some property owners are now no longer required to have flood insurance, while others have higher or even lower rates. DiVincenti can explain all the options property owners have.
    Contact: Astrid Greve Spencer,

    General Preparedness

    Homer Bryson
    Georgia Emergency Management Agency and Homeland Security (GEMA/HS)
    Bryson is available to discuss the preparations citizens should take both before, during and after a hurricane. He was appointed director of GEMA/HS by Governor Nathan Deal in December 2016. Prior to that, Bryson served as commissioner of the Georgia Department of Corrections. He began his career in state government in 1983 as a conservation ranger with the Department of Natural Resources. He continued his DNR career by serving as colonel of the Law Enforcement section and then deputy commissioner before moving to the Department of Corrections. Bryson served as the hurricane coordinator for the Department of Natural Resources while assigned as the DNR Law Enforcement coastal region supervisor. He participated in security planning for the 1996 Olympic Games and the 2004 Group of 8 Economic Summit on Sea Island. He was a supervisor on a 100-officer Georgia state law enforcement detail assigned to assist with recovery efforts in Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina. He has also previously taught Critical Incident Management as an adjunct professional for the Georgia Law Enforcement Command College at Columbus State University.
    Contact: Kelsey Weiss,

    Government Preparedness
    Joel Vetter
    Chief Emergency Support Services
    Suffolk County Department of Fire, Rescue and Emergency Services
    Vetter can detail tips for hurricane preparedness. He can share best practices he’s developed from dealing with past extreme weather like Super Storm Sandy and Snowstorm Nemo.
    Contact: Emma Walter,

    High-Wind and Flood Safety
    Mike Rimoldi
    Senior Vice President of Education and Technical Programs
    Federal Alliance for Safe Homes
    Rimoldi is a high-wind and flood construction expert for the nonprofit Federal Alliance for Safe Homes (FLASH), as well as a state certified building contractor, state licensed building plans examiner, International Code Council Certified Building Official, electrical plans examiner, fire inspector, and disaster response inspector with more than 30 years of experience in the construction industry. He has appeared numerous times as an expert on CNN, local television stations and in FLASH’s consumer DIY videos.
    Contact: Zoe LaPointe,

    Hurricane Research
    Dr. Albert Owino
    Director of Meteorological Studies, Weather Center
    Western Connecticut State University
    Dr. Owino did postdoctoral research on climate variability and change over the Caribbean region and is currently working on hurricane research with the University of the West Indies.
    Contact: Paul Steinmetz,

    Insurance Coverage
    John A. Gibbons
    Partner and Insurance Coverage Group Vice Practice Group Leader
    Blank Rome LLP
    “The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration forecasts an active Atlantic hurricane season. A key piece to any pre-storm preparation is reviewing the insurance that may respond to losses caused by a weather event. Property insurance frequently protects against more than just physical damage to and loss of property. Such insurance also often protects financial losses arising from an inability to conduct business at the same levels as before; the extra expenses incurred in dealing with the effects of a disaster, including money spent to minimize any damage and losses; and the costs incurred in establishing the extent of the losses. Other types of insurance that also may respond include policies for trade disruption, event cancellation, marine cargo and storage, and directors and officers.”
    Gibbons is a partner in Blank Rome’s policyholder-only insurance coverage practice.
    Contact: Kate Tavella,

    Insurance Coverage
    Jared Zola
    Partner, Insurance Coverage Group
    Blank Rome LLP
    Zola is a partner in Blank Rome’s policyholder-only insurance coverage practice. He is available to discuss insurance coverage that may respond to losses caused by a weather event, including policies for trade disruption, event cancellation, marine cargo and storage, and directors and officers.
    Contact: Kate Tavella,

    Insurance Issues
    Fred Karlinsky
    Shareholder; Co-Chair, Insurance Regulatory & Transactions Practice
    Greenberg Traurig LLP
    Karlinsky focuses his practice regulatory, governmental, and public policy issues relating to insurance, insurers, claims and insurance coverage. He authored the article "Florida Catastrophe Fund Sees Historic $400 Million Surplus," in FORC Quarterly Journal of Insurance Law and Regulation, and can speak to insurance issues in preparation for, during, and after a hurricane.
    Contact: Elaine Walker,

    Landlord/Tenant Issues
    Ilene Kobert
    Shareholder; Real Estate Practice
    Greenberg Traurig LLP
    Kobert represents land owners and developers, tenants, buyers and sellers. She can speak to landlord/tenant issues with regard to property damages to a leased space, asking tenants to close for safety, etc.
    Contact: Elaine Walker,

    William Clayton
    Shareholder; Co-Chair, Real Estate Litigation Practice
    Greenberg Traurig LLP
    Clayton focuses on insurance defense. He won an award of $42.5 million for a developer after Hurricane Wilma, and he can speak to his experience.
    Contact: Elaine Walker,

    Preparing Data Centers
    Steve Carlini
    Senior Director, Data Center Global Solutions
    Schneider Electric
    Carlini is responsible for developing integrated solutions for Schneider Electric’s data center segment, including enterprise and cloud data centers. He is an expert on the foundation layer of data centers, and would be able to speak to preparing data centers from hurricane damage, as well as ways to ensure the Power & Power Distribution, Cooling & Technical Cooling, Rack systems, Physical Security, and DCIM Management solutions continue to operate in the event of a storm.
    Contact: Patrick Abberton,

    Protecting Electrical Equipment
    Christopher Liguori
    Global Product Marketing Manager
    APC by Schneider Electric
    Liguori is responsible for the home and small-office product launch strategy and implementation. He can speak to ways to protect electrical equipment from dangerous hurricane conditions from a home perspective, including safety plans that must be put into place as well as procedures to follow in anticipation of a major storm. He would be happy to speak about protecting backup power supplies, generators for small offices and smaller personal devices during hurricane season.
    Contact: Patrick Abberton,

    Ripple Effects of Storms
    Gregory Hall
    Associate Professor of Psychology
    Bentley University
    Bentley can discuss the ripple effects that storms like hurricanes can have on communities, such as: the mental health repercussions of natural disasters, including everything from intense anxiety and stress to irrational fear and PTSD; the need for a significant policy overhaul for better coordination of services so communities that need resources and training receive them.
    Contact: Lauren Mucci,

    Workforce Management
    Joe Fleming
    Shareholder; Litigation Practice, Labor & Employment
    Greenberg Traurig LLP
    “While the hurricane season is approaching and it is of great importance to be prepared, the same concepts of preparation also apply to labor, employment, disability, safety, pandemic, workplace environmental, cybersecurity, climate change, asymmetry in ‘technological advances’ and other disaster concerns. We are increasingly vulnerable to increasing complexities as our society involves developments that create advantages, which may bring with them new issues. So, it is always ‘in season’ to be pro-active in programs that prepare us for such problems; and, adopting systems for possible risks may have the upside advantages of being of great value in diminishing exposure to risks.”
    Fleming is an experienced litigator and labor and employment lawyer who is also familiar with historic properties. He can speak to workforce management and payroll issues during and after a hurricane.
    Contact: Elaine Walker,

    Expert Roundup: Renegotiating NAFTA

    Thursday, May 25, 2017, 8:30 AM [Expert Alerts]
    0 (0 Ratings)

    Earlier this month, the Trump administration formally told Congress that it intends to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement with Canada and Mexico. Following are experts who are available for interviews on this topic.

    You can also submit a query to the hundreds of thousands of experts in our network – it’s easy and free! Just fill out the query form to get started:

    Alex Lawson
    Senior Reporter, International Trade
    “The big dynamic to watch is how aggressive the Trump administration will be in overhauling the agreement. Trump spent his entire campaign bashing NAFTA as a disaster for the U.S. economy and flirted with completely terminating the agreement as recently as a few weeks ago. But the comments from US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer suggest that a more modest ‘modernization’ of NAFTA may be in order. The administration will also be fielding a litany of calls from industry groups and other advocates who want to see the NAFTA reshaped in their best interests. Lighthizer's notification to Congress mentioned that he was interested in improving the NAFTA's labor, environmental, digital trade and intellectual property rules, but each of those broad topics contains a multitude of policy options for the administration.”
    Lawson, a senior reporter covering all aspects of international trade, has been reporting on NAFTA for years, including many stories on President Trump’s NAFTA policies and proposed changes. He can provide other reporters with unbiased commentary – on business, legal and political implications -- rooted in research and first-party interviews. His stories for Law360 focus on trade disputes, enforcement efforts and regulatory developments. He has covered the negotiations of numerous regional trade agreements, including the passage of the largest bundle of trade legislation in two decades. Recent Law360 stories by Lawson include coverage of the first steps by the Trump White House to investigate the causes of U.S. trade deficits (, news of the $1.2 billion penalty imposed on ZTE Corp. for violating export control rules for Iran and North Korea (, and an analysis of Trump’s trade brain trust (
    Contact: Eric Sokolsky,

    Raj Bhala
    Associate Dean for International and Comparative Law; Rice Distinguished Professor
    University of Kansas School of Law
    “NAFTA has become a pillar of the American economy and stands as one of the broadest, deepest free-trade agreements in human history. One way to appreciate its significance is to see it in the light of the long, uneasy history of U.S.-Mexican relations and swings in Mexican economy policy through much of the 20th century. Another, 21st century, way to think about NAFTA is to realize that America, Canada and Mexico already spent eight years rewriting and modernizing it -- it’s called the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Unilateral threats of withdrawal or demands for renegotiations risk triggering yet more protectionist moves across the globe.”
    An expert on international trade law, Bhala can discuss free trade agreements, NAFTA, its original form, renegotiation, economic impacts of the deal on the three cooperating nations, relations between the three countries, national security related to trade and related topics. Bhala has worked extensively in all three NAFTA nations and more than 25 countries around the world, including a majority of the Trans-Pacific Partnership nations. He has written dozens of books and journal articles on international trade, including “TPP Objectively: Law, Economics, and National Security of History’s Largest, Longest Free Trade Agreement,” “Modern GATT Law” and “Understanding Islamic Law (Shari’a).”
    Contact: Mike Krings,

    Brandon Stallard
    Founder and Chief Executive Officer
    TPS Logistics
    “The impact of Trump’s public criticisms of NAFTA has been negligible. There have been no duty rate increases and no shipping pattern changes. I don’t foresee anything happening in the near future that would be detrimental to American trade. However, Trump’s newly released ‘A Better Way’ tax plan -- which proposes a 20 percent border tax -- could have a momentous economic blow to the U.S. Our North American trade relationships feature more large-item manufacturing, so minor adjustments would be a far more feasible form of action.”
    Stallard is a nationally recognized expert in transportation. His company has a strong focus on North American trade, regularly moving freight and goods between the U.S., Mexico and Canada. He brings over 30 years of experience to the table and can apply his expertise across a plethora of different industries, including retail, manufacturing, automotive, oil and gas, health and beauty, and more. His expertise includes transportation, trade regulation, North American cross-border trucking and trade, and international shipping.
    Contact: Rachel Bonello,

    Doreen Edelman
    Shareholder and Co-Leader, Global Business Team
    Baker Donelson
    “Leaders of all three NAFTA member countries have now acknowledged the benefits that might be gained by renegotiating the 1994 regional free trade agreement. And, despite criticism of NAFTA as it currently exists, President Trump recently recognized the virtues of regional trade, declaring in a recent meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau that both countries will ‘coordinate closely to protect jobs in our hemisphere and keep wealth on our continent.’ Indeed, there is a lot to be gained from renegotiation. While the U.S. economy has certainly benefitted under NAFTA, there are four main areas in which NAFTA may be improved for the benefit of U.S. business and job growth: labor and environmental standards, rules of origin, e-commerce and professional services.”
    Edelman has more than 25 years of experience counseling companies on import and export compliance, foreign investment and global expansion and her work has carried her to all corners of the world. She has helped to establish a natural gas facility in Turkey, protected a client's intellectual property in Japan, and watched out for the interests of a major fast-food chain franchisor in Latin America. She is co-author of a comprehensive analysis of NAFTA and many other trade-related articles. She recently penned an article published by The Hill, “4 Smart Ways to Improve NAFTA” (
    Contact: Jonathan Breed,

    Mohan Tatikonda
    Professor of Operations Management, and Dr. L. Leslie and Mary Louise Waters Faculty Fellow
    Indiana University Kelley School of Business
    “Changing NAFTA alone does nothing to address workers’ skills and the impact of increasing automation and productivity, but there are other ways to increase high-wage U.S. manufacturing jobs. That includes companies refocusing their product lines to be more innovative, customized and responsive to customer needs. Why don’t companies do that now? One is because executives sometimes find it easier to go down the cost minimization path rather than the innovation path. The other reason is that executives who are following the belief of maximizing shareholder returns are not always reinvesting in company R&D and worker skills.”
    Tatikonda is an expert in corporate strategy, international manufacturing and supply chains. He is an international consultant and researcher with field experience in Mexico and across the globe. He formerly consulted for the World Bank and is an international keynote speaker.
    Contact: Teresa Mackin,

    Trevor Collier
    Associate Professor, Economics
    University of Dayton
    "It is unlikely that Donald Trump will be happy with the result of renegotiating NAFTA. One of his complaints on the campaign trail was that NAFTA caused a reduction in auto manufacturing jobs in the United States. Manufacturing jobs in the automotive industry actually increased in the United States immediately following NAFTA. Automation has caused the largest decline in U.S. manufacturing jobs. No renegotiation of NAFTA is going to halt the increase in automation."
    Collier teaches principles of economics and microeconomics, public finance, economics of the environment and managerial economics.
    Contact: Meagan Pant,

    Dr. Nozar Hashemzadeh
    Professor of Economics
    Radford University
    A summary of Dr. Hashemzadeh’s research regarding the impact of NAFTA on jobs in the U.S.: “For the last decade, the U.S. labor market has been characterized by rapid technological change, intensifying competitive pressure from abroad, declining union power, automation, favorable energy prices, downsizing, and rapid expansion in information, financial and investment services. The outlook for job growth depends in large part on the growth of the domestic economy, increased exports, exchange rate fluctuations, tariffs and other potential trade barriers, official protection for intellectual property rights in other countries, and the degree of economic and political stability in U.S. trading partners. Despite genuine differences of opinion among supporters and antagonists of NAFTA, nearly all economic studies of the trade accord have concluded that relaxation of trade barriers will benefit consumers and promote economic growth in North America.
    Dr. Hashemzadeh joined Radford University’s Economics Department in 1983, where he has been teaching and conducting research on macroeconomic issues, employment disparities by race, international trade and the U.S.’s international competitiveness. He has been the advisor to the International Honor Society in Economics since 1990.
    Expert Contact:

    Steven Otillar
    Partner, Akin Gump in Houston
    President-Elect, Association of International Petroleum Negotiators
    Otillar is available to discuss the potential impact of a NAFTA renegotiation on oil and gas, and the U.S. relationship with both Mexico and Canada, in light of Mexico’s energy reforms and Canada’s recent energy infrastructure deals and focus on shale. Otillar focuses his practice on the development, finance, acquisition and divestiture of domestic and international energy projects, with an emphasis on upstream projects in emerging markets. He advises clients on public tenders and auctions and a variety of development agreements in relation to major energy infrastructure projects around the world. He is representing a number of U.S. companies involved in Mexico’s deep and shallow water auctions.
    Contact: Vasiya Kemp,

    Richard Walawender
    Principal Attorney
    Miller Canfield, Detroit
    Walawender is co-leader of the firm’s Corporate Group, and director of the firm’s International Practice and Autonomous Vehicle Practice. His practice specialties include mergers and acquisitions, corporate and commercial law, corporate governance and securities, private equity, venture capital, equity and debt financing, international transactions and joint ventures, project finance, and franchising. As director of the firm’s International Practice, he has also been the lead attorney on numerous multinational M&A transactions for U.S., Canadian, European, Asian, Mexican, and other non-U.S. clients. Walawender recently penned two articles on the future of NAFTA in the new administration: “Worries about NAFTA Take Back Seat to Potential ‘Border Adjustment Tax’” ( and “Could President Trump Really Pull the U.S. out of NAFTA? Basic FAQs” (
    Contact: Carol L. Lundberg,

    Eugene Laney
    Head of International Trade Affairs
    DHL Express
    Laney has spoken about NAFTA at length, and can share his insights, specifically on the benefits of modernizing American’s free trade agreements. Based out of Washington, D.C., Laney has more than 20 years of experience ensuring corporate compliance with regulatory requirements and tracks international trade and cargo security issues for the global market leader in the express and logistics industry, making him a great expert source.
    Contact: Sloane Fistel,

    Jay Erstling
    Petterson Thuente IP
    With the Trump administration announcing it will renegotiate NAFTA, backed by a campaign threat to withdraw, what's at stake for U.S. patent and trademark owners? NAFTA contains significant IP provisions. When Trump pulled the U.S. out of the TPP, he gave up major improvements in international IP protection that had been negotiated for U.S. IP owners. It's far from clear that new bilateral negotiations, which Trump has proposed, would secure as good a deal for US IP owners. Erstling, who served in Geneva with the World Intellectual Property Organization, can speak to IP provisions of NAFTA and TPP.
    Chapter 17 of NAFTA, which deals with IP:
    Contact: Joshua Schneck,

    Giacomo Santangelo
    Lecturer of Economics
    Fordham University
    Examples of Trump and NAFTA stories Santangelo has been interviewed on before include: 1) “Divisive policies will harm Trump’s plans to grow economy,” Feb. 1, 2017, San Francisco Chronicle (; 2) “Clinton’s, Trump’s opposition to trade pact dims growth prospects,” Sept. 25, 2016, San Francisco Chronicle (; 3) “Trade Talks,” April 29, 2015, Arise America (; 4) “Fast Track Fast Trade,” April 26, 2015, Arise Review (
    Contact: Rachel Roman,

    Mark David Witte
    Associate Professor of Economics and MBA Director
    College of Charleston
    Witte is available for interviews on the Trump administration’s plan to renegotiate NAFTA, the trade impact of currency manipulation, and Mexican sugar and Mexican trucking issues concerning NAFTA.
    Contact: Mike Robertson,

    Maia Linask
    Economics Professor
    University of Richmond Robins School of Business
    Linask’s expertise is in international trade, and her research has examined the impact of free trade agreements on foreign direct investment and the factors that influence trade policy. She has studied the effect of trade policy on the Mexican auto market. In addition, she is a member of the International Trade and Finance Association.
    Contact: Cynthia Price,

    Steve H. Hanke
    Professor of Applied Economics
    Co-Director, Institute for Applied Economics, Global Health, and the Study of Business Enterprise
    Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore
    Hanke is a senior fellow and director of the Troubled Currencies Project at the Cato Institute in Washington, D.C., a senior advisor at the Renmin University of China’s International Monetary Research Institute in Beijing, a special counselor to the Center for Financial Stability in New York, a contributing editor at Central Banking in London, and a contributor at Forbes. Hanke is also a member of the Charter Council of the Society of Economic Measurement and of Euromoney Country Risk’s Experts Panel. In the past, Hanke taught economics at the Colorado School of Mines and at the University of California, Berkeley. He served as a member of the Governor’s Council of Economic Advisers in Maryland, as a senior economist on President Reagan’s Council of Economic Advisers, and as a senior advisor to the Joint Economic Committee of the U.S. Congress. Hanke served as a state counselor to both the Republic of Lithuania and the Republic of Montenegro. He was also an advisor to the presidents of Bulgaria, Venezuela and Indonesia. He played an important role in establishing new currency regimes in Argentina, Estonia, Bulgaria, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Ecuador, Lithuania, and Montenegro. He has also held senior appointments in the governments of many other countries, including Albania, Kazakhstan, the United Arab Emirates, and Yugoslavia. His most recent books are “Zimbabwe: Hyperinflation to Growth” (2008), “A Blueprint for a Safe, Sound Georgian Lari” (2010), “Juntas Monetarias para Paises en Desarollo” (2015), and “Currency Boards for Developing Countries: A Handbook” (2015).
    Troubled Currencies Project:
    Contact: Jill Rosen,

    Expert Roundup: Summer Safety

    Friday, May 19, 2017, 1:55 PM [Expert Alerts]
    0 (0 Ratings)

    Following are experts from the ProfNet network who are available for interviews for your summer safety articles. You can also submit a query to the hundreds of thousands of experts in our network – it’s easy and free! Just fill out the query form to get started:

    Fireworks Safety
    Jenny Ziembicki, M.D.
    Medical Director, UPMC Mercy Burn Center
    Assistant Professor of Surgery, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
    Faculty Member, McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine
    “Each year, around 4th of July celebrations, we treat many people, especially children and teens, who have been injured by fireworks. Many of those injuries involve an amputation of a limb or loss of vision. We want to remind everyone that fireworks should only be handled by professionals and enjoyed at a safe distance.”
    Dr. Ziembicki has a special interest in the development of the comprehensive outpatient burn therapy program at UPMC Mercy, which allows patients a more expedient return to a productive lifestyle. She also is a dedicated advocate in burn injury prevention, especially in the geriatric and pediatric population.
    Contact: Stephanie Stanley,

    Skin Damage and Car/Home Windows
    Darrell Smith
    Executive Director
    International Window Film Association
    "Whether you're spending the summer on the road or enjoying the warm sunshine streaming through your home's windows, you may be doing serious damage to your skin without even realizing. The average window only blocks about 25% of UV rays from passing through and car windows aren't much better -- blocking about 40% of UV rays. In America, nearly 53% of skin cancer cases occur on the left, or driver’s side, of the body. Why? Because, we enjoy sunshine but aren't fully protected against damaging UV rays -- and spend a lot of time in the car! Professionally installed window film can help block up to 99% of UV rays from passing through a window, ultimately protecting your skin and eyes from cumulative damage."
    Contact: Amber Joy Dempsey,

    Fabric and Clothing Tips for Summer
    James Pruden
    Senior Director
    Cotton Incorporated
    Pruden can provide expert summer safety tips when it comes to anything and everything summer clothing, including what to wear for the best UV protection; what fabrics keep you cooler during the warm summer months; and the health benefits of natural fibers vs. synthetic fibers. Says Pruden: “All apparel provides some degree of UV protection. UV protection in apparel is dependent on a variety of factors, including thickness of fabric (thicker fabrics absorb more UV rays), tightness of construction and the fabric’s color (darker colors provide more UV protection).”
    Pruden is senior director of public relations at Cotton Incorporated, where he oversees brand image management for the not-for-profit company.
    Contact: Caleb Fernandez,

    Pool Safety Tips for Parents, Children and Pets
    Tom Casey
    Vice President of Sales
    Anthony & Sylvan Pools
    Casey is available to share pool safety tips for parents, children, and pets: “Pools are fun for the whole family, and pool safety is crucial when it comes to enjoying your pool to its fullest. By following just a few safety tips, you’ll be sure to keep this season fun and safe.”
    Casey is vice president of sales for Anthony & Sylvan Pools, the leading swimming pool and spa builder in the U.S.
    Contact: John Reynolds,

    Tips for an Injury-Free Summer
    Dr. Benjamin Domb
    “As the weather gets warmer and the days get longer, adults and kids alike love to engage in outdoor sports and fitness activities. This increase in physical activity can lead to an increased risk of injury.”
    Through his experience working with athletes, both professional and amateur, as well as fitness enthusiasts like CrossFitters and runners, Dr. Domb is available to provide effective tips for an injury-free summer. Dr. Domb is a nationally recognized orthopedic surgeon specializing in sports medicine and arthroscopic surgery of the hip, shoulder and knee.
    Contact: Rachel Prude,

    Summer BBQ Safety Tips
    Peter Duncanson
    Director, Disaster Restoration Business Operations
    ServiceMaster Restore
    Duncanson is available for interviews on summer BBQ safety tips, including proper charcoal grill safety, how to use a gas grill wisely, and how to practice good grilling habits: “Set your grill up at a safe distance from structures and overhangs, including your main building, shed, garage, trees and other potentially flammable objects. Never use your grill inside, in a tent or under an outdoor awning or carport. Doing so can pose a serious fire hazard and potentially cause carbon monoxide poisoning if you're using a gas grill. Light your gas or charcoal grill using special long-length lighters or long matches to avoid getting burned. Keep all ignition sources out of the reach of children. Never leave an actively burning grill unattended, and let your grill fully cool before you cover or store it. Clean your grill thoroughly and often to reduce flammable buildup inside.”
    Contact: Bristol Whitcher,

    Summer Safety
    Jared Staver
    Staver Law Group. P.C.
    Staver is available to discuss various summer safety topics, including sun glare accidents, motorcycle safety, pool/water safety, heat exhaustion and more. On motorcycle safety: “During the summer months, drivers and motorcyclists should take extra precautions to avoid accidents. Statistics show that more than 50% of motorcycle accidents involve riders with less than five months of riding experience. To minimize the risk of accidents, motorcyclists should always wear protective gear including proper eyewear and helmets. Make sure your bike is properly maintained before taking it out for the first summer ride and keep a toolkit on your bike at all times. Mechanical defects can contribute to road crashes.”
    Staver is a Chicago personal injury attorney and owner of Staver Law Group, P.C. His practice focuses on representing people seeking compensation after being hurt in the Chicago area, whether by a car accident, slip and fall, workplace accident, dog bite, or from an act of medical malpractice. An experienced and dedicated litigator, Jared has recovered tens of millions of dollars in settlements and verdicts for his clients.
    Contact: John Branham,

    How to Stay Safe on the Job/Keep Employees Safe
    David Quezada
    Vice President of Loss Control
    “Working in hot and sunny environments or near heat sources all day can wear employees down. To help employees rest and recharge, encourage them to take regular breaks in the shade or other cool environments. Build break times into employees’ schedules to help enforce the practice. Make sure employees know how to recognize the signs of heat-related illness and the immediate steps they need to take to help themselves or their co-workers. In the event of a medical emergency, contact 911 immediately, but also train employees so they can be proactive before professional help arrives. Fostering a safe and comfortable work environment is an important commitment every day of the year, but especially when new risks, such as extreme heat, are introduced.”
    EMPLOYERS is a specialty workers’ compensation insurance carrier.
    Contact: Alexandra Gardell Kreuter,

    Managing Medications During the Summer
    Jon Michaeli
    EVP of Marketing and Business Development
    Michaeli is available to discuss the importance of managing your medications during the summer months, whether it’s during vacations or ensuring that your children are keeping up with their medications while they’re at summer camp. Managing medications essentially helps you to manage your conditions, resulting in improved outcomes.
    Contact: Kendra Lee,

    What to Do During a Power Outage
    Keith Pinkerton
    Mr. Electric, Huntsville, Ala.
    Pinkerton is available to discuss weather precautions and backup generators during storm season. He can advise homeowners what to do when there is a power outage and how to ensure electrical safety around the house in general. He is the owner of the Huntsville, Ala., branch of Mr. Electric, a national brand of electrical installation and repair centers.
    Contact: Elise Rose,

    Safety When Completing House Projects
    J.B. Sassano
    Mr. Handyman
    Sassano is available to discuss safety when completing house projects, such as using power washers, power drills, climbing on ladders for gutter cleaning, etc. He is president of Mr. Handyman, the nation’s leading home repair and maintenance franchise.
    Contact: Elise Rose,

    Injury Trends
    Darshan Patel, M.D.
    Chief of Pediatric Emergency Medicine
    Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital
    Dr. Patel can provide commentary on a wide variety of summer conditions and their recommended treatment, as well as injury trends. As Section Chief, Dr. Patel serves as head of the Pediatric Emergency Department. He and his team are the first line of care for children in needing immediate care after injuries or at the onset of illnesses. Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital, a member of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network, is the Level 1 pediatric trauma center for a region with more than 3 million people.
    In the past, Dr. Patel has been a media resource for summer safety topics, including ATV and water safety, as well as injuries caused by trampolines and fireworks.  He has also contributed to reports regarding dehydration and heat stroke. He has television, radio and print media experience, and is adept at breaking down complex medical topics for families. He is available for media interviews when requests do not interfere with patient care.
    Contact: Andy LaGuardia,

    Water Safety Tips
    Ann Marie Buerkle
    Acting Chairman
    U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission
    Buerkle is available to discuss the many steps that parents can take to improve safety in and around water. As acting chairman of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), Buerkle offers a unique perspective into the importance of safety in and around water. One of the national public education campaigns the Chairman oversees is the Pool Safely campaign, which is aimed at reducing child drownings and non-fatal submersions, as well as entrapments in public swimming pools and spas. The campaign was launched in 2010 and has a network of over 1,000 partners that are dedicated to promoting and benefitting from the campaign.
    Contact: Christina Saull:

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