AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – #strongAugusta continues their work and impact in the community. 

Leaders of #strongAugusta recently returned from sharing their work with other leaders in Washington. Since then, their pivotal efforts in the community have recently been featured in the National Fire Protection Association’s journal. 

Since their active shooter drill in May, hashtag strong Augusta leaders have been analyzing and addressing feedback from the event.

John Ryan of Augusta University and Brian Ozden of the FBI tell us they learned a lot about what they are doing well and are eagerly addressing areas where they can improve.

“Everybody’s thoughts on their experience out there that day- how the volunteer opportunities could have been submitted differently or, you know, ‘why did you do it on a day that it was raining?’,” said Ryan, emergency manager at Augusta University. “We’ll address that.”

They tell us taking input from volunteers helps them stay committed to a ‘whole community approach’.

Today, they continue their work by training community organizations on how they can stay safe. 

“So we’re continuing to get better, we’re continuing to adopt,” said Ozden, supervisory senior resident agent of the FBI’s Augusta Resident Agency. “New people will learn the standard and know it and they’ll take it back to their agencies. It’s just an ongoing process of us getting better and better and safer and safer.”

Ryan says the community training is focused on three specific pillars to help people prevent, protect and defend themselves quickly in active shooter and hostile events. 

“To build that same concept into someone’s subconscious- let’s talk about it as a group,” said Ryan. “How does it look here in the arena that you invited us into? Here in this school, on the third floor, what does ‘run, hide, fight’ look like.”

“We can push this forward, but it does not happen without the exceptional buy-in from the Augusta city leadership, the sheriff’s office and the fire department,” said Ozden.

Ryan and Ozden will head to Las Vegas in the coming days, where they will present at the National Fire Protection Association’s conference and expo. They say they are looking forward to sharing the work that Augusta is doing with organizations from around the country.