If you judge Wes Maul by his online résumé, his tenure at the state Division of Emergency Management has seen the full spectrum of natural and human disasters: hurricanes, mass shootings, public health emergencies. Tropical storms and infrastructure failure. Floods, mass migration, protests.
The director of the state’s emergency management agency has also, according to his bio, led the division through space launches and presidential inaugurations, national sporting events and political conventions. Maul “has successfully led the State Emergency Response Team … through more incidents than many will face in a career,” it brags.
You could be easily forgiven for forgetting that Maul, who recently turned 30, has officially been the division’s permanent director only since Dec. 13, 2017.
After catapulting from a job fresh out of law school as the governor’s travel aide, Maul spent a year and a half as the emergency division’s chief of staff before being appointed interim director, then permanent director, after Hurricane Irma. But as storm season approaches — with Subtropical Storm Alberto already threatening the state and early forecasts suggesting a near-normal or above-normal storm season — the state’s disaster preparedness lies in the hands of a political newcomer whose first official job experience with emergency management began two years ago.
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