Reporting

VIDEO: How California business and nonprofits are adapting post-wildfires

April 10, 2019 by John Guenther

The wildfires of California have taken a toll on our regions, but they're also providing lessons for the public and private sector about responding to disasters and disruption, both natural and economic.

In the video above, we talked to Danielle Cagan of CSAA Insurance, Peter Rumble of the Santa Rosa Metro Chamber of Commerce, and Mike Lemryre of Ygrene Energy Fund about how their organizations and networks were impacted by the 2017 wildfires that hit Sonoma County.

As California's regions are learning lessons about how to help residents and businesses get back on their feet after a disaster, the California Economic Summit has focused on the longer-term challenge: institutionalizing joint state-local systems and strategies that have broad benefits beyond specific disasters—and that can move all communities toward lasting resiliency.

Sonoma County, along with regional partners, has built a strategic framework focused on planning and preparedness before disasters occur. And the region has worked together on housing strategies to rebuild the area faster than they would normally and address the larger housing crisis.

"The work being done to pursue solutions to expand a regional economy that is prosperous, equitable and sustainable is not only necessary to address the future here, but also can help other regions in California develop best practices on how to address their needs,” said Jim Mayer, president and CEO of California Forward, which co-manages the Summit with the California Stewardship Network.

These resiliency efforts by the Summit network continue this year and through the 2019 California Economic Summit happening November 7-8 in Fresno. Find out more about the Summit work in the 2019 Roadmap to Shared Prosperity