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NEW YORK CITY-As part of the effort to protect the city during the Republican National Convention this week, members of the Real Estate Board of New York are volunteering their time to man a desk at the city’s Office of Emergency Management’s Emergency Operations Center. “It’s really to facilitate communication among the public and private sectors–the critical infrastructures,” explains Marolyn Davenport, REBNY’s senior vice president.

She says the volunteers work in nine-hour shifts around the clock and will be at the site until Saturday. REBNY is serving as a liaison for members of the real estate industry with up-to-the-minute information about any possible emergency situations. Other industries involved in the effort include utilities and telecommunications.

A while ago, OEM requested that REBNY join the private sector representation for the activation of the Emergency Operations Center during the convention. Volunteers were assembled and they went through training including a command-post simulation exercise.

The Emergency Operations Center is a crisis command center activated by Mayor Michael Bloomberg and managed by OEM. It serves as the central coordination point for agency and resource response in a serious or potentially serious emergency. With over 80 representatives from the private sector and city, state and federal government agencies, the EOC acts as a central clearinghouse for information sharing. Davenport says the office was activated during last year’s blackout.

Those volunteering at REBNY’s EOC desk include Jessica Handy of Newmark & Co., Shaun Jacobsen of CB Richard Ellis, Mike Gimpel of Fisher Brothers, Lance Carlile of Jones Lang LaSalle, Irene Clifford of Newmark & Co., Jack Terranova of Colliers ABR, Nick Hayden of Jones Lang LaSalle, John Gilbert of Rudin Management and Mark Peavy of Related Management.

“As usual, REBNY members have responded vigorously to the city’s call for participation in their emergency preparedness efforts,” adds REBNY president Steven Spinola.

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