Emergency Management News

Office of the City Manager - June 28, 2018

City Manager Lee Garrity, with the concurrence of County Manager Dudley Watts, today announced the nomination of August Vernon to be director of the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Office of Emergency Management. Vernon is tentatively scheduled to assume his duties August 20, pending confirmation by the City Council and Forsyth County Commissioners during their meetings in early August. 

Vernon will succeed the late Mel Sadler, who unexpectedly passed away Jan. 4. 

Vernon has more than 17 years of experience in the field of emergency management, including serving for the past three and a half years as the Emergency Services Manager for Wake Forest University. Prior to that, he served for 13 years under Sadler as the operations officer for the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Office of Emergency Management. 

He also has extensive military and private sector experience and specializes in terrorism response, incident command/management, crisis management, emergency management and mass violence/active shooter response.  

"Mel Sadler left big shoes to fill," Garrity said, "but as one of Mr. Sadler’s protégé's, August is well-versed in our local emergency management operations, and he brings a wealth of outside expertise to this critical public safety position."

Vernon said, "As the fourth-largest county in North Carolina and as a rapidly growing community, Forsyth brings unique issues and challenges for emergency management and our planning efforts. I’m looking forward to working with our numerous local, private, non-governmental, state and federal partners, as well with city and county residents, to ensure that we’re adequately prepared for any emergencies that come our way."

Vernon currently serves as the chair of the N.C. Active Assailant/Active Shooter Working Group. He has taught more than 600 public safety and emergency management classes in more than seven states, written more than 50 articles about public safety in national publications, and authored/co-authored two books on emergency management issues. Vernon is married and has two children.

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