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Association of State Flood Plain Managers

Association of State Flood Plain Managers Association of State Flood Plain Managers
Association of State Flood Plain Managers
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Jamila Johnson received ASFPM's 2019 John R. Sheaffer Award for Excellence in Flood Proofing
Thursday, June 27, 2019

(L-R) ASFPM Chair Maria Cox Lamm, Jamila Johnson and ASFPM Executive Director Chad Berginnis.

The association created the John R. Sheaffer Award for Excellence in Flood Proofing to honor its namesake for his pioneering work in demonstrating flood proofing as a viable flood-loss reduction measure, and for his decades of work in promoting and advancing the knowledge of these measures. Jamila Johnson, this year's Sheaffer award winner, was previously the managing engineer for Houston, Texas during Hurricane Harvey and helped the city revise its floodplain ordinance that was adopted in April 2018.

The new ordinance requires elevation to the 500-year flood level +2 additional feet of freeboard in SFHAs and 500-year flood zones. These are now some of the most stringent floodplain regulations in the country. Johnson, now with the Houston Public Works Department, helped prepare the Houston Public Works Floodplain Management Data Analysis Chapter, which not only outlined the need and process for adopting the higher elevation requirements, but also helped to improve design and construction requirements as a whole. The new ordinance went into effect last September.

Her leadership has helped to guide and reduce future flood damage throughout the city. The impact of the new floodplain management requirements, in the form of elevating 2-feet above the 500-year flood elevation, should positively impact construction and reduce flood risk throughout Houston for generations.






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