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Department of Emergency Management

Emergency Coordinators Forum

Emergency Coordinators Forum 500

The Sonoma County Operational Area’s Emergency Coordinators Forum is a working group hosted by Sonoma County Department of Emergency Management and composed of representatives from each of the cities, various county departments, state agencies, special districts, utilities, and disaster response and recovery related agencies.

These members are tasked with emergency management responsibilities in the Sonoma County Operational Area.

The Sonoma Operational Area is a joint powers agreement consisting of all of the political subdivisions within the County’s geographical borders.

The group meets quarterly to discuss and coordinate emergency management, preparedness, training and disaster recovery-related issues.

Pete Peterka Emergency Management Award

December Emergency Coordinators Forum 2021

The  December Emergency Coordinators Forum the Annual awards were presented virtually again this year. During a two hour Zoom meeting a number of important awards and recognitions were presented.


COPE-Award_NewCOPE Northern Sonoma County (Citizens Organized to Prepare for Emergencies) was awarded the 2021 Louis “Pete” Peterka Award. COPE has developed into a powerhouse grass roots organization. It has grown from a handful of interested people to more than 40 COPE communities in Northern Sonoma County (approximately 20,000+ community members participating). The organization works to develop emergency preparedness and mitigation in their neighborhoods, recognizing the need for neighbors to be networked and knowledgeable to remain safe in a disaster. The organization is built on the idea of neighbor helping neighbor. 



Cecile_Award_NewSonoma County Operations Area also congratulated and thanked Cecile (CiCi) Focha for her years of service to Sonoma County. 25 years ago, CiCi decided to take a chance and resign as an elementary school teacher, and put on a badge, and become a deputy for the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office. In her time with Sheriff’s Office, she worked on several assignments, including The Sheriff’s Office’s First PIO, Sergeant, first female detective sergeant, and countless other roles.  In 2019  CiCi started with the Sonoma County DA’s Office as the First Female Chief of Investigation Bureau. As if this is not enough, CiCi servers as the County/Operational Area EOC Operations Chief, where her role is fast pace, keeping calm, coordinating, supporting, fostering collaboration with all county departments, and Operational Area Partners. CiCi has served as the EOC Operations Chief for floods, wildfires, PG&E De-energization events, COVID-19 where she oversaw coordination for Countywide evacuations, Care & Shelter,  Public Safety Coordination, Transportation & Public Works Coordination, development of the Mass Fatality team to the County’s response to COVID-19. 

Badge for CiceleCecile_Picture New


December Emergency Coordinators Forum 2020

At the December Emergency Coordinators Forum the Annual awards were presented virtually this year. During a two hour Zoom meeting a number of important awards and recognitions were presented.


greg 2020Sergeant Greg Stachyn, Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office received a Pete Peterka Award for his work in developing a static evacuation map for the county. This map was rolled out, while in draft form, during the LNU Complex Fire.

sheriff badge

petaluma 2020The City of Petaluma was also awarded a Pete Peterka Award for their commitment to standing up shelters during fires in Sonoma County. They have sheltered thousands of residents from throughout the county in the last few years.

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scco COAD 2020The Sonoma County COAD (Community Organizations Active in Disaster) was awarded a Special Recognition Award for their work in the EOC (Emergency Operations Center) and the community in 2019 during compounded and protracted disasters.



tony 2020Santa Rosa Fire Chief Tony Gossner was recognized for his leadership as Operational Area Fire Coordinator and tireless work to prepare and respond to disasters in the county Chief Gossner will be retiring from public service in the near future.



Cathy 2020City of Sonoma City Manger Cathy Capriola was also recognized for her leadership and dedication to the City and County since 2017 and her many improvements if Emergency Operations for her community.



December Emergency Coordinators Forum 2019

The December Emergency Coordinators Forum was held on Dec 13, 2019 at The United States Coast Guard Training Center in Petaluma. A number of awards were presented.

sonoma valley

The City of Sonoma received the Pete Peterka Award, which was accepted by Sonoma City Manager Cathy Capriola and Jim Comisky, Battalion Chief for Sonoma Valley Fire and Rescue authority, Also pictured, Jeff DuVall, Deputy Director Sonoma County Department of Emergency Management.

Santa Rosa

The City of Santa Rosa was recognized for their aid and assistance during the Kincade Fire, with the award accepted by Neil Bregman, Emergency Preparedness Coordinator, Also pictured Mickie Tagle, Town of Windsor, Senior Management Analyst and  Brittany Miller, Deputy Emergency Preparedness Coordinator, City of Santa Rosa.


The City of Petaluma was also recognized for their aid and assistance during the Kincade Fire, with the award being accepted by Jeff Schach, Petaluma Fire Department Assistant Chief.

sonoma water

Lori Wyatt from Sonoma Water was recognized for her years of service as she retires from the water agency.