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NCSRT Re-named, Adds Stephenson Disaster Management Institute to its Organization

July 22, 2011
BATON ROUGE – The National Center for Security Research and Training, which is housed at LSU, will be renamed the Stephenson National Center for Security Research and Training, or SNCSRT, in honor of Emmet and Toni Stephenson, long-time supporters of the university.

Along with the name change, SNCSRT will welcome the Stephenson Disaster Management Institute, or SDMI, into its organization, which includes the National Center for Biomedical Research and Training, Law Enforcement Online, Fire & Emergency Training Institute and the National Center for Disaster Fraud. All of these organizations are located on the LSU campus.

“It’s an honor to lead the newly renamed Stephenson National Center for Security Research and Training,” said Executive Director Jim Fernandez. “Having SDMI join SNCSRT will complement the programs we already have established, and the additional resources offered to them under the new organization will enhance their ability to grow as an institute.”

The SDMI works to save the lives of humans and animals during disasters through improved disaster response management. It was founded in 2007, with a donation from the Stephensons, as a direct result of LSU’s outstanding performance during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

The institute brings its unique private sector collaboration expertise to the SNCSRT portfolio. Serving as the interface where research meets practice, SDMI will continue to enhance LSU’s ability to focus its existing programs and research capacity on the particular problems of disasters. SDMI’s disaster research interests span across the university’s academic disciplines. Under the SNCSRT umbrella, SDMI will gain a broader university presence, enhancing collaboration with other departments and units at LSU. Because of SDMI’s private sector focus in homeland security, it will remain strategically affiliated with the LSU E. J. Ourso College of Business, where it was formerly housed.

“The mission of the SDMI is simple but powerful: ‘To save the lives of people and animals by continuously improving disaster response management through leadership in applied research and executive education,’” said Eli Jones, dean of the E. J. Ourso College of Business. “And part of the purpose of the National Center for Security Research and Training is to coordinate the activities of existing units that focus on security and emergency preparedness. Thus, SDMI’s move to the NCSRT makes sense. I believe the move better positions the SDMI to more fully realize its true potential on a national and international scale,” Jones said.

Col. Joseph Booth, executive director of SDMI, agrees. “This is a natural step in the alignment of all of LSU’s homeland security and emergency services programs,” Booth said. “The SDMI focus on applied research, leadership and private sector engagement will become even more successful as part of the new SNCSRT. We will continue to enjoy a great working relationship with the College of Business and its terrific faculty as we fulfill our goal of bringing best business principles to bear on disasters. We’re honored and excited about this partnership with Jim Fernandez and the entire SNCSRT team.”

Of the relationship with the E. J. Ourso College of Business, Fernandez said, “I look forward to working with Eli Jones and the Dean’s Advisory Board he is coordinating. This group will allow us to establish a dialogue on how to best utilize the assets within SNCSRT to work with campus faculty in research and scholarly activity.”

“We are looking forward to our new association with the National Center for Security Research and Training and Executive Director Jim Fernandez to expand the scope and impact of the Stephenson Disaster Management Institute under the continued leadership of Executive Director Joseph Booth,” said Emmet and Toni Stephenson. “We are equally committed to our existing relationship with the E. J. Ourso College of Business and Dean Eli Jones, since we strongly believe that the continuous improvement of processes needed to save human and animal life during major disasters is still essentially a management and education problem. The combined resources of these organizations and LSU as a whole offer formidable capabilities to solve huge problems created by unprecedented natural and man-made disasters.”



Stephenson National Center for Security Research and Training (SNCSRT)
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