The VaPEM and VaAEM

“The hallmark of the Virginian Emergency Manager”

NEW! VEMA Comprehensive Certification Program Policy

Jointly administered by the Virginia Emergency Management Association and the Virginia Department of Emergency Management, the certification program is intended to recognize the knowledge, skills, and abilities of applicants and their achievements as an Emergency Management Professional. Obtaining certification proves that one can effectively accomplish the goals and objectives of a certain level within emergency management in the Commonwealth of Virginia.  A certification indicates an individual’s experience, hard work, continuing education, and dedication to the field of emergency management. 

There are two certification levels available from Virginia’s Certification program: Professional Emergency Manager (VaPEM) and Associate Emergency Manager (VaAEM).  

Virginia Certifications are available to Emergency Management professionals in neighboring states. Potential applicants do not have to be a member of VEMA in order to become certified. However, VEMA members receive a discount on the application fees. Specific fees are listed below.

NEW! The Virginia Requirement: New to VEMA’s certifications, this requirement enhances the value of a VaPEM and VaAEM by requiring half of all Professional Contributions to have been performed in and/or directly impacting emergency management operations in Virginia.  Meeting this requirement can be accomplished by submitting documentation that supports the candidate’s involvement in any of the professional contribution activities in Virginia.

Discontinued VaEMA and VaEMV: Approved by the Board in early 2017, VEMA has discontinued the offering of the Emergency Management Assistant and the Emergency Management Volunteer certifications.  Holders of these certifications will need to meet the requirements of the VaPEM or VaAEM in order to maintain certification at the time of recertification.

VEMA Certifications are due for renewal on or before December 31, five (5) years after initial certification or five (5) years after a recertification.

Helpful Resources

Current List of Individuals with Certification
Application & Renewal Guidelines Document 
Training Allocation Table 
Certification Criteria Matrix
Renewal Criteria Matrix


When you're ready to apply, please refer to the Application & Renewal Guidelines Document for step-by-step information / guidelines for successfully completing your application. Applications must be submitted in a simple three-ring binder or folder using properly labeled, plain section dividers.


Initial Application

Recertification Applications

Professional Emergency Manager (VaPEM) and
Associate Emergency Manager (VaAEM)

Professional Emergency Manager (PEM) and
Associate Emergency Manager (VaAEM)

Upon completion of the appropriate application, applicants should send their packet to:  Virginia Emergency Management Association, Certification Program, P.O. Box 29069, Henrico, VA  23242-0069.

All applications MUST be mailed to VEMA in advance; applications will not be accepted on-site at the meeting.  

Application Received by

Notification by

April 1st

May 15th

July 1st

August 15th

September 1st

October 15th

January 1st

February 15th


If you have questions about this program or the status of your current application, please e-mail: [email protected].

Application Fees (not refundable)


VEMA Members

Non-VEMA Members







Mail your check or money order with your application, made payable to Virginia Emergency Management Association, or pay by credit card online.  All application fees MUST be mailed directly to VEMA in advance of the Certification meeting; application fees will not be accepted on-site at the meeting.