Fire & Rescue Chief Kim Zagaris (L) and Cal OES Director Mark Ghilarducci (R) in the Cal OES Broadcast Studio

Oklahoma City Bombing: California Sent its Best to Midwest Terror Response

On April 19, 1995, a yellow moving truck parked in front of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building; at 9:02 AM, it exploded. The death and devastation it left in its wake was like nothing ever seen in the U.S. The blast killed 168 people and injured more than 600 others; it destroyed half of the building that was full of employees. The enormous and dangerous rescue and recovery operation began immediately and Oklahoma officials called on California for help. Mark Ghilarducci and Kim Zagaris were dispatched to the scene because of their urban search and rescue and disaster response expertise. Unbeknownst to Ghilarducci, he would soon be assigned as commander of the management team, for an operation bigger and more complex than anything he’d ever encountered.

Mark Ghilarducci, Cal OES Director

Mark S. Ghilarducci serves as the Director of the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES), appointed July 1, 2013 by Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. Ghilarducci previously served as Secretary of the California Emergency Management Agency (Cal EMA) appointed in February 2012by Governor Brown. As a member of the Cabinet, Director Ghilarducci serves as the Governor’s Homeland Security Advisor (HSA) and oversees statewide public safety, emergency management, emergency communications, counter-terrorism efforts and the State Threat Assessment System (STAS).

Kim Zagaris, State Fire & Rescue Chief

Kim Zagaris serves as the Executive Coordinator for Cal OES Fire and Rescue Services Advisory Committee/FIRESCOPE Board of Directors. Chief Zagaris is responsible for managing the FIRESCOPE Program, California Incident Command Certification System, the California Fire Assistance Agreement, State Assistance for Fire Equipment Program, as well as serve on numerous state and national committees, associations and programs, including Cal OES representation on the California State Strategic Committee on Terrorism, the California Wildfire Coordination Group and more. He joined Cal OES in 1987.

Links / Resources

Stronger in the Broken Places: Nine Lessons for Turning Crisis into Triumph by James Lee Witt

Terror Hits Home: The Oklahoma City Bombing

Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum

For more on Mark Ghilarducci, click here

For more on the Cal OES Fire & Rescue Division, click here

Photos by: Fire Chief Kim Zagaris

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

 

Shawn Boyd

Shawn Boyd joined Cal OES as a public information officer in 2014 after a 20-year career in television news as a reporter, anchor and executive producer. He's a Cal State Sacramento alum and former US Navy yeoman and Air Force brat.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: