Staff, Florida Daily, August 2, 2019

On Thursday, as expected, Gov. Ron DeSantis tapped Dr. Julia Nesheiwat to be Florida’s first Chief Resilience Officer (CRO) who will be in charge of looking at how the state will deal with the “environmental, physical and economic impacts of sea level rise.”

In her new role, Nesheiwat will work with the governor, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, the Florida Department of Transportation, the Florida Division of Emergency Management, the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity and local governments and communities

“Developing resilience goals for the state will help to protect our coastal communities and fortify Florida’s pathway to continued prosperity,” said DeSantis. “Today, we take the step of appointing Florida’s first Chief Resilience Officer to coordinate a statewide response to prepare for the environmental, physical and economic challenges facing our state. Dr. Nesheiwat’s more than 20 years’ experience operating at the highest levels of government and academia focusing on renewable energy, environmental and critical infrastructure issues make her an excellent choice for this position. She has a proven track record of public, private and military service that will serve Florida well.”

“Thank you Governor DeSantis, it’s an honor to have the opportunity to serve the State of Florida on the important, cross-cutting issue of resiliency,” said Nesheiwat.  “As a Floridian from Lake County, I know how important this issue is for the people of Florida. With 1,350 miles of largely low-lying coastline, the impacts from climate change and sea level rise present a significant challenge; but with Governor DeSantis’ leadership and vision, Florida will be a leader for the entire country on how best to confront these issues.”

“Surrounded by water, our state is ground zero for sea-level rise and is leading the country in resiliency efforts with the leadership of Governor DeSantis. This appointment of Dr. Nesheiwat is the first of its kind,” said Florida Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Noah Valenstein. “She is an exemplary representation of public service with more than twenty years of experience leading our country’s environmental policies at the highest level.”

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