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Potawatomi reputation grows as FireLake Arena hosts ITEMC Summit

Tribal emergency management teams from across Oklahoma made their way to FireLake Arena in early June for the eighth annual Inter-Tribal Emergency Management Coalition Summit.

Founded in 2004, ITEMC is a collaboration of emergency management professionals from 22 Oklahoma tribes who address local, state and national hazard preparedness. In addition to tribal emergency management personnel, ITEMC also counts fellow Oklahoma-based emergency management agencies like the U.S. Attorney’s Office, the Oklahoma Department of Health and the Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management as partners.

“Our mission is to prepare for and minimize the effects of all kinds of disasters, from chemical, biological, technological or act of God,” said CPN Emergency Management Director Tim Zientek. “Summits like this are key in our preparations in mitigating impacts of these disasters when they occur and to our work in
response and recovery efforts in their aftermath.”

Zientek, who also serves as ITEMC chairman, organized this year’s summit and knew the large-scale event needed a large scale venue.

“The arena can accommodate up to 5,000 people and Tim Zientek reached out to us to help host the summit,” said FireLake Arena Director Tracy Peltier. “We just wanted to help out as much as we could and show the community that events like this are available here.”

During the three-day event, attendees discuss the latest techniques to use during emergency and disaster situations. Emergency management experts from around the country give presentations on the latest topics and best practices in disaster mitigation and response. Attendees use the three-day summit as an opportunity to get everyone in the same location to discuss their own situations and those occurring across the country.

In many instances, strategies in coordinating with a partner agency at the state and federal level will be carried on to a different tribal emergency response department in another part of Oklahoma when the worst happens.

“It’s been a delightful endeavor to have this event at FireLake Arena and for the wonderful hospitality that Firelake Discount Foods showed in catering the event,” said Zientek. “We’ve hosted this summit at our two great venues, FireLake Arena and the Grand Event Center, and our hospitality and reputation as a Tribe is growing.” If you would like to learn more about ITEMC and its events, please visit their website at www.itemc.org. For information on hosting an event at FireLake Arena, please call (405) 273-1637.