Our March meeting featured guest speaker Al Kenyon from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Department of Homeland Security. Al discussed the Emergency Alert System (EAS) network of Primary Entry Point (PEP) radio stations, the protection of broadcast equipment from electromagnetic pulse (EMP), and a few "take aways" learned from the National IPAWS/EAS test. Thanks to many good questions, we had a fun and interactive discussion!
PEP radio stations, including our host WFED(AM), cooperatively participate with FEMA to provide emergency alert and warning information to the public before, during, and after a national or local emergency. As we saw at WFED, PEP stations are equipped with back-up communications equipment and emergency power generators designed to enable continued broadcasting of warning and safety information, as well as national alerts and warnings from the President, even under conditions of a national catastrophic event.
Al Kenyon’s 50+ years of experience in broadcasting started as an announcer and eventually Chief Engineer at a ten watt high school FM station.
In the years following college he was Chief Engineer at radio stations in Kansas City and Cincinnati. He was VP Engineering for Jacor Communications and Senior VP Projects and Technology with Clear Channel Communications.
He became government contractor in 2006 serving FEMA as a Subject Matter Expert on alert and warning systems and joined FEMA Integrated Public Alert and Warning System Program Management Office as a Project Manager in 2010.
- Charter Member and Co-Chair, Kansas City Area Emergency Communications Committee
- Charter Member, Missouri State Emergency Communications Committee
- Supported the National Weather Service’s initial development and field testing of NOAA WRSAME system
- Member, Cincinnati Area Tri-state Emergency Communications Committee
- Member, Ohio State Emergency Communications Committee
- Charter Member, and President, Primary Entry Point Advisory Committee
- Served as an Advisor to the Board of Directors
- Vice Chair and Chairman, FCC EAS National Advisory Committee
- Served on the FCC Media Security and Reliability Advisory Committee and the FCC Commercial Mobile Service Alert Advisory Committee
Al has a degree in physics, is an Associate Member of the Association of Federal Communications Commission Consulting Engineers (AFCCE) and resides in Alexandria, Virginia.
A bite to eat was kindly provided by our friends at Digital Alert Systems. We had a bit of Chapter 37 business after dinner and our presentation began shortly thereafter.
Digital Alert Systems, a division of Monroe Electronics, is a designer and manufacturer of products and solutions for emergency communications and advanced EAS that serve broadcasting, public safety, governmental and other customers.