It’s good to be back at work in New Orleans!
City Of New Orleans
NEW ORLEANS, LA — Mayor Landrieu announced that Hazard Mitigation Specialist Miriam Belblidia completed a prestigious Fulbright Fellowship in Water Management. This grant was one of two Netherlands-American Foundation (NAF)/Fulbright Fellowships in Water Management awarded in 2010-2011. While the Fellowship was established in response to the devastation of New Orleans by Hurricane Katrina, this was the first time it was awarded to a Louisiana resident.
“We congratulate Miriam on her impressive achievement and look forward to putting her research to good use now that she is back in New Orleans,” said Mayor Landrieu. “Water management is not only about quality of life, but also a matter of life and death for so many of our residents.”
The Fulbright Program’s Fellowship in Water Management provides grant awards through the U.S. Department of State and the Netherlands-America Foundation for advanced research in assessment of flood risks, spatial planning in flood-prone areas, and mitigating flood impact. This is the first time a City employee has received this award, and Ms. Belblidia’s work will support ongoing efforts by the Hazard Mitigation office to reduce local flood risk.
Ms. Belblidia has worked for the City of New Orleans since 2009 and took a temporary leave of absence from the Hazard Mitigation office to complete the Fulbright grant research. She was affiliated with the Technical University of Delft and assessed Dutch water management policy and flood mitigation strategies. As part of this research project, Ms. Belblidia developed recommendations to improve New Orleans’ approach to water management and is working to implement these changes in her work with the City’s Hazard Mitigation office.
“Even though the City missed her hard work for 9 months, this opportunity will bring a direct positive impact to our office and the work we do,” said Brad Case, Acting Director of the City’s Hazard Mitigation office.
The Hazard Mitigation office is a branch of the City of New Orleans’ Office of Public Safety and Homeland Security. The office is responsible for identifying hazards that threaten the City of New Orleans and pursuing measures to reduce the loss of life and property from future hazard events.
The Fulbright Program was established in 1946 under legislation introduced by the late U.S. Senator J. William Fulbright of Arkansas, giving approximately 300,000 students, scholars, teachers, artists, and scientists the opportunity to study, teach and conduct research, exchange ideas and contribute to finding solutions to shared international concerns.