Avery Gibbs, 22, of Fort Payne, has assumed Emergency Management Agency (EMA) duties as deputy director, taking over from former EMA deputy director Doug Smith who retired Sept. 29. Gibbs’s first official day on the job was Oct. 3, after spending three weeks in training before assuming the position full time.
His initial duties include serving as the Fuelman contact for Blount County volunteer fire and rescue departments, assisting with administrative duties related to grants, assisting as directed with emergency operations center (EOC) functions, serving as the day-to-day EMA point of contact, and working on other tasks assigned by EMA director Don Roybal.
Gibbs expects to graduate in December from Jacksonville State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Emergency Management. His coursework included a number of subjects that may stand him in good stead on the job: hazardous materials training, active shooter training, vulnerable populations studies, FEMA special study courses, and related topics including administration and social media communication.
He will continue working toward his basic level certification as an emergency manager, then begin working toward the advanced certification level.
His experience includes serving an internship as EMA officer for DeKalb County EMA, while concurrently working for Crabtree Management Services LLC, an EMA contractor.
Gibbs currently resides in Fort Payne where he was raised, attending and graduating from Fort Payne High School. He said he will relocate to Blount County when he can find a suitable place to live. Outside of work he said he enjoys watching sports, especially football and baseball. Other pursuits include volunteer activities at Second Baptist Church in Fort Payne, where he is a member.
“I’m looking forward to working with people here and helping them however I can,” he said.