Program Manager’s Moment- October 2018

October is here bringing changing colors, falling leaves, and lots of CERT activities. We continue Friends and family CPR classes, GoTeam drills and planning, general meeting presentations, 800 MHz radio training, and outreach events. As I look at the list of volunteers and events, I am reminded that as in most volunteer groups a same percentage of folks do a large percentage of the work.

I am deeply grateful to our dedicated volunteers who come through over and over for us… without them there would be no CERT program. But this leads me to pose a challenge to those who have not stepped up: why not? The number one reason people offer is a lack of time. We are all busy of course. Still, I’ll point out that the commitment of time is entirely up to you: Why not step up and engage for anything from a couple of hours at an outreach table, to spending a few days in Emmitsburg becoming a CERT instructor. This is a “cafeteria” style program, where you only put as much on your plate as you desire.

Please remember the future and success of this program is in the hands of those who choose to serve and engage, far more than in mine or anyone on the county staff.  Step forward, step up, and let’s step into fall together.

Oh, and Happy Halloween!


Greg St. James

Community Emergency Response Team (C.E.R.T.) 
Program Manager
Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service
100 Edison Park Drive
Gaithersburg,  MD 20878
From Left to Right: Lisa Orcutt, Thomas Espina, Theresa Gilcrist, David Contois, Kevin Barth. MC CERT provides first aid and preparedness info at the Silver Spring YMCA playground construction event.