Gordon Barwell PEM Scholarship

Awarded by VIRGINIA EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATION

Gordon Barwell Biography

The Gordon Barwell Professional Emergency Manager (PEM) PEM Scholarship is awarded annually by VEMA to recognize the effort of individuals in furthering their professionalism in obtaining certification as a VEMA PEM and in remembrance of Gordon Barwell, the first director of the Local Support Services (LSS) Division of the Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM), 2003 – March 2, 2008.  During Gordon’s tenure as the Local Support Services Director, he was instrumental in improving the delivery of emergency management support to localities.  He increased the number of Regional Coordinators from three to seven, which allowed for closer coordination between VDEM and local emergency managers.  Gordon was an inspirational leader to “his” Regional Coordinators, and provided unwavering support for them in the field.  He recognized the uniqueness of each individual in their style and approach in the delivery of support to their region.  He was the “go to” person that VDEM leadership approached when a special project needed to be accomplished.  Gordon, distinguished by his Australian accent, was highly respected by all those who knew him in the emergency management field. Born in Melbourne, Australia, Gordon enlisted in the Royal Australian Army Corps in 1969. His distinguished career included service in Vietnam, America and Malaysia. He served as the Instruction Branch Chief teaching at the Australian Command and Staff College and Commanding Officer of the 1st Armored Regiment. He retired as a lieutenant colonel after 25 years of service in Royal Australian Army Corps.

Gordon immigrated to the United States in 1994, and joined VDEM in 1997. Prior to leading LSS in 2003, Gordon served as Senior Training and Development Coordinator and as Chief of State Plans and Special Projects. During his time at VDEM, he received commendations for his contributions during response efforts for September 11 and hurricanes Isabel and Katrina. He earned a Master’s degree in Management Studies from Australian National University and the Professional Development Series Certification in Emergency Management from the Emergency Management Institute (EMI). Gordon served passionately until Sunday, March 2, 2008, when he passed away after a battle with cancer. Gordon is survived by his loving wife, daughter and son. 

Award

The Gordon Barwell Professional Emergency Manager (PEM) Scholarship is awarded annually by VEMA to recognize the effort of individuals in furthering their professionalism in obtaining certification as a VEMA PEM and in remembrance of Gordon Barwell. Award recipient(s) will receive $75 towards reimbursement of their PEM certification application.

Criteria

  • The recipient must be able to provide proof he/she was awarded a VA PEM.
  • The recipient must be a VEMA member.
  • The recipient must complete this application.
  • All applications must be received by February 15, 2019 March 8, 2019 (deadline extended!!).