COL (Retired) USAR Stan Zezotarski

COL (retired) Stan Zezotarski has nearly 30 years of emergency response experience. He has the advantage of hindsight with activation for the Loma Prieta and North Ridge Earthquakes, the 1992 Los Angeles Riots, the 1999 Northern California Floods, 2000 Y2K, numerous winter shelter activations, and the 2008 and 2009 San Diego Wildfires.

He owns foresight from: his experience of designing and directing the first exercise to test the Dual Status Command (DSC) concept to organize National Guard and Federal Active Duty Forces under a National Guard commander for the purpose of responding to a catastrophic emergency; and for cutting government bureaucratic red tape to include private-public partnerships in emergency response planning and exercises.

During the first decade of the 21st Century, COL (Retired)Stan Zezotarski witnessed the Nation’s revisions of the National Security Strategy, its philosophies, and methods for protecting the Homeland land. He was an integral player in incorporating Private-Public Partnerships into Homeland Security exercises as encouraged by Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Craig Fugate in 2011.

He was the key participant in facilitating the State Military Department’s Pandemic Influenza Operations Plan, the emergency response plan, and designing the plan to surge California National Guard forces for the 2010 Border Security mission.


Media and Writing Awards:

  • 1996- International Association of Business Communicators “Crystal Communications Award” for Feature Writing: New  Horizons–California  National Guard Nation Building  Mission in Bocas del Toros, Panama. The article featured a five-year-old girl whose  life would have been  saved if villagers had the roads that California National Guard were assisting  them  build existed a year  earlier. Article was published in  both  military magazines and the Eureka Times Standard.
  • 1996-International Association  of Business Communications “Merit Award: promotional Campaign: Special Event “Nuevos Horizontes”A strategic communications campaign to influence Californians support for  the  California National Guard to help villagers  in Bocas  del Toro, Panama to build schools,  hospital clinics, and roads necessary for community vitality,
  • 1996-Sacramento  Public Relations Association (SPRA) CAPPIE Silver Ward Feature Writing “Nuevos  Horizontes.” Story of how the California National Guard, National  Guard Bureau, and United States  Southern Command projected American Values of hard work,  dignity, and prosperity by  helping villagers build critical  infrastructure–schools, medical clinics, and roads–with  military  engineering, logistical, and  transportation support and resources. Through the mission emerged  Sacramento’s Teachers Reaching Out” –a public private partnership through which  Sacramento Schools became  pen pals  with  Bocas del  Toro  schools,  interfaith  organizations  donated much needed  schools supplies with  the Panama  schools, and a professional teacher dialogue between  teachers  in  Panama  and Northern  California.
  • 2004-National Guard Media Contest-First Place -Senior Level Writing.  Recognized for  the  high  level feature  writing,  commentaries, hard-news articles published in the California National  Guard’s  “Grizzly Magazine” among all senior grade officers  in the entire National Guard public relations and command information commands.
  • 2004-National Guard Media Contest-First Place-Commentary “Where Justice Begins.” An opinion that officers and senior  non-commissioned officers have a responsibility  to  train  their  soldiers  to “disobey an  unlawful  order” to  avoid  the human rights violations and torture committed at Abu Grab Prison in Iraq
  • 2005-National Guard Media Contest. First Place-Story  Series. Three part  story arguing  for consolidating California National  Guard’s Camp  Roberts,  Camp  San Luis Obispo with the United  States Army Reserve’s Ft. Hunter  Liggett into a Joint Training and Mobilization Center  for all Military Branches. The series explored the efficiency, tactical, and strategic  of using all  three  installations–located within a 50 mile radius–as a single  mobilization  and  training  center.

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