March 2024

Inside: Learn what to do if you are faced with an active shooter situation

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From the Top

Dear LWR CERT members and community,


Congratulations to our recent graduates of the CERT Basic Training class! Your commitment to preparedness and learning how to respond to emergencies is greatly appreciated. You make our community better.

The daylight savings time change is this weekend. Don't forget to "Spring Forward." As you change your clocks, this is a good time to test your smoke alarms and change replaceable batteries, if needed.


We are now less than 90 days from the beginning of hurricane season. Now is a great time to start those long lead-time storm preparation projects. Your family’s safety is too important to leave to luck. Luck runs out, but safety is good for life.


Happy March and stay safe!  

Jim Emanuelson (KN4VMK)

President, LWR CERT


Welcome to our newest members

Basic Training Class of March 2024 Graduates

Congratulations and welcome to the newest members of LWR CERT who completed Basic Training on Saturday, March 2: David Esslinger (Team 35), Gabrielle Field (Team 23), Greg Fielder (Team 9), Upali Fonseka (Team 26), Bernie Fuersich (Team 36), Michael Gaffney (Team 26), Nicole Haralampoudis (Team 10), John Hennesey (Team 11), Joyce Kelly (Team 26), Susan Martinez-Linares (Team 36), Gene O'Keefe (Team 17), Allen Pfaadt (Team 13), Karen Plotkin (Team 26), Richard Plotkin (Team 26), Robert Rizzo (Team 11), Bill Rogers (Team 22), Shaun Rogers (Team 22), Kristian Roggendorf (Team 10), Janelle Rydberg (Team 35), Tom Rydberg (Team 35), and David Young (Team 26).

RECAP: LWR CERT Run for the Beads Volunteers

Congratulations Presidential Award Winners!

Congratulations to LWR CERT members (pictured above, from left) Mike Modisett, Rich Raymond, Jan Kuhn, Eddie Russell and Jim Herminston for receiving the Bronze Presidential Service Award. They each logged at least 100 hours of volunteer service to the community in Better Impact.

Thank you, Rich Raymond!

At the February Board meeting, Rich Raymond announced his retirement from the LWR CERT Board. Rich (pictured on the right) received a Certificate of Appreciation from President Jim Emanuelson at the February 12 meeting.

Rich joined LWR CERT in 2015, graduating from Basic Training in October of that year. He has been a member of the Board of Directors since 2018 - serving under four presidents! Rich plans to remain an active member of LWR CERT, as a member of Team 28, as photographer at many member and public events and as a committee member.

Rich, thank you for your years of service to the Board!

RECAP: February Member Event - Active Shooter Prep

Based on his decades of experience, Manatee County Deputy Sheriff Thomas Kaczmarek shared his insights into active shooter situations with LWR CERT members at our February 29 Member Meeting. He highlighted what to do -- and what not to do -- if you ever find yourself in an active shooter situation. Click the photo to watch the FBI video "Run. Hide. Fight."

Also at the meeting, Member Engagement Manager George Haralampoudis reminded members of the importance of logging volunteer hours in Better Impact, and Pat Knowles updated members' skills with the latest tourniquet training.

We also thank Event Manager Arcinee Hermiston, Jim Hermiston, Jan Kuhn, Deb Jernigan, and Karen Emanuelson for their assistance with this event.

RECAP: Basic Training - Class of March 2024

Thank you to the tremendously talented and dedicated LWR CERT members and community volunteers who were instrumental in the success of the February Basic Training class including Basic Training Manager Mike Modisett, Alan Blair, Dave Cashbaugh, Sharon Defferding, Jim Emanuelson, Frank Giannone, Chuck Glazer, Polly Greene, George Haralampoudis, Jim Hermiston, Chuck Kennedy, Jan Kuhn, Dr. George Jenckes, Paulette Kessler-Westerman, Pat Knowles, Kalena Ostrosky, Jill Perlin, Jordan Perlin, Rich Raymond, Mike Rogers, Dr. James Schmidt, Tim Sherer, James Troeller, Valerie Voutsas, Phil Westerman, and Paula Willis.  Thank you also to our community partners at Manatee County Emergency Management and East Manatee Fire Rescue for their commitment, time and support.

Upcoming Basic Training Class

River Club CERT is offering a free Basic Training class in April. Their class is open to all Manatee County residents and meets for three Saturdays (April 6, 13, and 20) from 9 AM - 4 PM at the Firehouse Administration building on LWR Blvd. Advance registration is required. Click here for details and registration information.

Save the Date: Giving Challenge April 9 & 10

To reach our goal of recruiting, training and equipping 50 new volunteer emergency responders in 2024, LWR CERT needs your help. Please support us during next month's Giving Challenge presented by the Community Foundation of Sarasota County.

Every donation you make will be MATCHED dollar for dollar, up to $300, doubling the impact of your generosity. Your support will empower LWR CERT to enhance emergency preparedness, provide vital training, and ensure the safety of our community in times of need.

Mark your calendars for the Giving Challenge on April 9-10, 2024, and stay tuned for more details on how you can participate and maximize your impact. Together, we can make a positive difference, and keep our community safe.

Member News and Things to Know


March Birthdays

Happy Birthday to members Tricia Bauer (Team 22), Debra Chester (Team 36), Robert Flinton (Team 32), Paula Grammas (Team 28), Tony Gula (Team 17), Kay Marcus (Team 25), Cynthia Olcott (Team 8), Jack Sandelman (Team 10), Paul Townsley (Team 11), Stephen Voutsas (Team 27), Jeff Williams (Team 9), Elaine Williamson (Team 16), and Lauri Wilson (Team 25)

March Service Anniversaries

Congratulations to these members, who are celebrating March Basic Training graduations. Thanks for your years of service to LWR and LWR CERT!

17 years - Abdiel Lorente (Team 30)

13 years - Lorraine Wright (Team 35), Matthew Cangemi (Team 30), and Bill Hubbard (Team 25)

11 years - Vijay Mahadeo (Team 11), Connie Thompkins (Team 25), Brenda Vertuca (Team 2), and Tony Vertuca (Team 2)

10 years - Barb Clemons (Team 25), Larry Clemons (Team 25), Tony Gula (Team 17), and Lauri Wilson (Team 25)

7 years - Carole Bernard (Team 20), Joseph Butch (Team 22), Philippe Johnson (Team 13)

Upcoming LWR CERT Meetings and Events

  • Board Meeting - Tuesday, March 12 at 11:30 AM Location TBD
  • Training Committee Meeting - Wednesday, March 13 at 4 PM
  • VIRTUAL Operations Committee Meeting - Wednesday, March 13 at 5 PM 
  • VIRTUAL Events Committee Meeting - Thursday, March 14 at 4 PM
  • Member Event - Radio Day in the Park - Saturday, March 16 begins 9:30 AM
  • VIRTUAL Communications/Website Redesign Committee Meeting - Tuesday, March 19 at 4 PM
  • Radio Committee Meeting - Tuesday, March 19 at 7 PM
  • Leadership Meeting - Wednesday, March 20 at 7 PM
  • Radio Training Meeting - Thursday, March 21 at 7 PM
  • Board Meeting - Tuesday, April 2 at 11:30 AM Location TBD

SAVE THE DATE - Watch your inbox for details

LWR CERT Night at the Ball Park - Wednesday, May 22 at LECOM Park

Send comments, suggestions, and photos for future issues to

LWR CERT 2024 Executive Committee

President - Jim Emanuelson

Vice President - George Jenckes

Treasurer - TBD

Team Captain Coordinator - Jan Kuhn

Liaison - Jim Hermiston

LWR CERT 941.404.8606

Newsletter Editor:

Karen Emanuelson,

Communications Manager

Event Photographers:

Rich Raymond

Dave Cashbaugh


Jill Perlin

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