Robert J. Fenton

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Robert J. Fenton
FEMA - 45336 - FEMA's Robert Fenton in the FEMA studio.jpg
Acting Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency
In office
January 20, 2017 – June 23, 2017
PresidentDonald Trump
Preceded byCraig Fugate
Succeeded byBrock Long

Robert J. Fenton Jr is an American governmental official who worked for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in 1996 and was appointed Regional Administrator for FEMA Region IX: Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, and the Pacific Islands in July 2015. He had a leadership role in the development of the National Incident Management System and the National Response Framework.

He was FEMA's acting administrator under President Donald Trump[1] from January 26, 2017[2], until his successor Brock Long was confirmed on June 23, 2017.


Fenton served as the Chief of Field Operations for Portable Water Supply System, based in Redwood City, California. In that capacity, he deployed to Central Africa as a lead member of the U.S. emergency response relief effort to bring lifesaving assistance to Rwandan refugees.[3][4]

He then joined FEMA in 1996, where he has worked on large-scale response and recovery operations in the U.S. and has responded to more than 50 Federal disasters, including Hurricane Katrina, the four Florida Hurricanes of 2004, the Southern California Wildfires of 2003 and 2007, the Typhoon Pongsona in Guam, and the 9/11 World Trade Center terrorist attacks.[3][4]

Fenton next served as the Deputy Associate Administrator in the Office of Response and Recovery at FEMA headquarters and was responsible for coordinating the federal response during major disasters. He coordinated and integrated federal interagency all-hazards disaster planning and response operations; managed emergency response teams; and oversaw disaster emergency communications programs.[3]

From 2006 to 2009, Fenton served in the dual roles of Director of Disaster Assistance and Acting Director of Disaster Operations in the FEMA Region IX Office. Fenton was responsible for the delivery and coordination of all hazards disaster planning, and response and recovery activities in the Region, which serves Arizona, California, Nevada, and Hawaii, as well as Guam, American Samoa, the Mariana Islands, Marshall Islands, and Micronesia. Fenton also served as Chief of the Region IX Response Branch, where he led interagency work groups in the development of the National Incident Management System and the National Response Framework. He was also responsible for conducting interagency training, coordination, and exercises with Federal Emergency Support Function agencies in preparation for disaster response.[3]

Fenton worked at FEMA Headquarters as the Acting Deputy Operations Branch Chief in 2007, leading the development and implementation of the Incident Management Assistance Teams. Fenton transferred to FEMA Headquarters in July 2009 to serve as the Acting Deputy Assistant Administrator for Response, where he was instrumental in crafting the reorganization of the Response Directorate and the Office of Response and Recovery, as well as leading the Response Directorate's focused efforts on whole community catastrophic planning, doctrine development, staff training/credentialing, and exercises.[3]


  1. ^ Mark Rockwell (February 28, 2017). "Why FEMA needs a new administrator, now". FCW. Retrieved March 13, 2017.
  2. ^ "2017 Transition Leadership at FEMA Announced". National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians. Retrieved March 13, 2017.
  3. ^ a b c d e "Robert J. Fenton, Jr". Department of Homeland Security. Retrieved 2017-03-04. This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  4. ^ a b Rich Cooper (October 7, 2016). "After Fugate, Prospects for FEMA's Top Job – Part 1". Security Debrief. Retrieved March 13, 2017.

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Political offices
Preceded by
Craig Fugate
Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency

Succeeded by
Brock Long