Project Staffing

Debra van Opstal, Executive Director of the US Resilience Project, launched resilience programs immediately following 9/11 when she was the Senior Vice President of the Council on Competitiveness. She focuses on the business case and business best practices, authoring such reports as, Transform. The Resilient Economy  (2007); Prepare: Findings from the Workshop on Risk Intelligence and Resilience (2008), , “The Resilience Imperative” in Innovations, special edition to the World Economic Forum (2009); the report of a USRP Resilience Roundtable with the National Security Staff,  Priorities for America’s Preparedness: Best Practices from the Private Sector (2011) and Supply Chain Solutions for Smart Grid Security (2012) Van Opstal has served on national resilience policy groups such as Steering Committee of the Community and Regional Resilience Initiative, the Resilience Policy Forum, the Global Business Policy Forum, National Resilience Coalition and the National Infrastructure Advisory Council study on Electric Power Resilience.

William Booher, Senior Advisor USRP, was formerly an Executive Vice President of the Council on Competitiveness. Booher gained first-hand experience in local government, serving as a press secretary and primary spokesperson for elected officials at the city and state level, including the Mayor of Knoxville and the North Carolina Commissioner of Labor. Moving into the private sector, he had senior executive positions at Fortune 500 corporations and founded Sunbelt Wireless Company, which acquired, built and managed broadcast radio stations in Texas. He served as deputy assistant secretary for Technology Policy in the first Bush Administration. Booher has served on numerous boards of directors and commissions including the New York Board of Trade; chairman of the Dallas Cable Television Oversight Board; and most recently Governor O”Malley’s Commission on Community Resilience.

Denise Swink, Senior Advisor USRP, developed expert knowledge of electric power issues—reliability, safety, security, and resilience—as deputy director and acting director of the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Office of Energy Assurance, and deputy assistant secretary of DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy and Office of Industrial Technologies. A member of the Senior Executive Service, Ms. Swink has more than 35 years of experience in management and supervisory positions, with key expertise in public-private partnerships, electric infrastructure development, and interdependencies with other infrastructures.

Alison Walsh produces the USRP publications and reports. Ms. Walsh is a freelance consultant with more than 10 years of experience writing, editing and creating publications for a broad range of industries.