James Thomas Jr.
Disaster Action Team Leader
“I have been with the Red Cross for almost three years now. And in that time, I have had some memorable experiences. But this is not my first exposure to the Red Cross. I have previous experiences and was exposure to the Red Cross in action in New Orleans, doing Hurricane Katrina, where I was involved with The Los Angeles County Disaster Service. There I was able to see the Red Cross first hand. When I retired from the County, I applied to be a Volunteer with the Red Cross In January 2012. Since then, I have been deployed to two major Hurricane disasters(Isaac and Sandy), Oklahoma Tornado, Wild fires , And a host of local disasters. My area of focus has been in Health & Safety teaching CPR for Lay and Professionals, and in Community Disaster Education. Because of the recent Earthquakes that we have experienced in the past few weeks, I feel that it is very important to educate my community, and other communities on being prepared for any disasters, other than Earthquakes. I love and enjoy being a Red Cross Volunteer. If I had one word to describe what I do with the Red Cross, It would be “HOPE”. I bring Hope to those who have lost pretty much Everything!. I can’t replace the unreplaceable, but I can bring to them the hope of tomorrow, and encouragement to start over again. Renew, Rebuild, Rediscover. I look forward to continue many more years with the Red Cross, and to meet the challenges that are before us with great hope and determination.”
Nominator Amy Lin says: I have worked with James Thomas in the Preparedness Education Program. Over the past few months, I have been delighted by his dedication and commitment to the Red Cross. James is an enthusiastic presenter and is fully committed to preparing Los Angeles. During March, we had an exceptional number of presentations. James signed up for presentations every week. Furthermore, I have called him for last minute help at presentations, and he has stepped up to present. James has offered to train new presenters, and when the time comes, I know new presenters will benefit from observing his personable and engaging style and from his observations about public speaking. James also teaches CPR/First Aid classes and is on the leadership team for Disaster Health Services in Long Beach. When I first came to the Red Cross, James allowed me to shadow him and answered all my questions about teaching CPR classes. James is a tremendous asset to the Red Cross, and without him, the South Territory preparedness team would be debilitated.