Thomas C. Sorensen Seminar: Voices of Katrina


Nearly a year after the storms hit, the UNL Institute for Ethnic Studies and the Public Policy Center hosted a panel of three Katrina survivors to talk about their experiences during and after the storm. Although geographically distant from the areas affected by Hurricane Katrina, Nebraska served an integral part in helping the evacuees after the storm. The University of Nebraska Public Policy Center, too, became involved in the response to Hurricane Katrina by working with the state to obtain a FEMA Crisis Counseling Program grant. This grant provided funds to provide outreach to both survivors who have relocated to Nebraska as well as to first responders. More information about the Reaching Out…Nebraska Program, a program created especially for Hurricane Katrina evacuees, supporting agencies, and volunteers is available at the Reaching Out…Nebraska Program website.

Tarik Abdel-Monem, research specialist, University of Nebraska Public Policy Center

Niya Gamble is a former resident of Biloxi, Mississippi, who lived through the storm and later relocated to Lincoln to stay with her family.

Bobby Leonard is a former resident of New Orleans, Louisiana, who lived through the flooding and was later evacuated from the city by the National Guard to Omaha. Mr. Leonard formed an advocacy organization to assist other Omaha-based survivors of Katrina.

LaTasha Madere is a former resident of New Orleans, Louisiana. She is a vocational rehabilitation counselor with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and now resides in Lincoln.

Listen to an audio recording of the seminar here.