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“I have known Bob Olson and worked with him since his early days as Executive Director of the California Seismic Safety Commission. Since beginning my consulting career 30 years ago my firm and I have worked with Bob on a range of projects -- from local safety elements to fire service studies to land use planning guidelines for tsunami hazards.When I'm putting together a project team, Bob is always the first person I contact to address natural hazards and public safety issues. He not only knows the technical aspects of these issues but is invaluable to me and the teams for his perspective on crafting appropriate public policy responses.”

J. Laurence Mintier, FAICP
Principal, Mintier Harnish


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“Bob Olson has been a personal mentor and friend for over 20 years, a reliable business partner for over 10 years, and an AMEC partner to our Hazard Mitigation planning efforts in California since 2003. We developed the Sacramento County and City multi-hazard mitigation plan which served the dual purpose of each community’s CRS floodplain management plan, where ROA was a subcontractor to AMEC. We developed similar FEMA-approved plans for Placer and Kern counties, where AMEC was a subcontractor to ROA! Bob’s extensive knowledge and experience coupled with his worldwide professional network has been a tremendous benefit to AMEC’s program and success. I do not hesitate in telling you that you can rely on ROA to provide current, accurate and comprehensive emergency management services.”

Clancy Philipsborn
Technical Director, Hazard Mitigation & Emergency Management Programs
AMEC, Earth & Environmental, Inc
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“Robert Olson Associates (ROA) provided valuable assistance in the area of fire protection services to the Colma Fire Protection Joint Powers Authority (JPA). The JPA was formed in 2004 by the Town of Colma and the Colma Fire Protection District to implement a plan for sustainable fire protection services for the District. During the six month study period, ROA prepared a report that included an analysis of the current fire protection system, identified the problems preventing its sustainability, and evaluated and quantified several options for consideration of the Board. The information presented was complete and clear, with a frank and honest appraisal. The expertise and experience demonstrated by each member of the ROA team provided the credibility that was essential in getting decision-makers to accept and understand the issues. This enabled Board members to make a difficult decision in an emotionally charged environment.

The professionalism of the ROA team and its unique ability to clearly communicate the technicalities of modern fire suppression operations to a “lay” audience made the difference that allowed this community to understand the issues and move toward an appropriate resolution. Upon dissolution of the JPA, the Town retained ROA to consult with staff and City Council as they consider options for cost effective, sustainable fire service for the Town.”

Diane McGrath
City Manager, Town of Colma



“Robert Olson has served for fourteen years on the National Institute of
Building Sciences' Earthquake Committee that has overseen the
development of methods used in HAZUS, the Federal Emergency Management
Agency's nationally applicable GIS based tool for estimating earthquake
damage and economic loss. HAZUS is used to plan for hazard resistant
construction, prudent land use, emergency preparedness, and promoting
awareness of threats. Federal and state agencies use HAZUS to support
real time response after a disaster occurs.”

Philip J. Schneider, AIA
Director, Hazards Risk Assessment Program
National Institute of Building Sciences
Washington, DC




“I have known Robert Olson for nearly thirty years, starting with the time that I became an official at the National Science Foundation directing a program of research on natural hazards and disasters. Bob became one of our outstanding researchers. And since he is also a practitioner, he has been in a unique position to also further the application of research results both he and others have produced. Since becoming a staff member at the National Research Council, I have continued to call upon Bob because of his unique combination of relevant skills and experience. Most recently, for example, he contributed to one of our major reports entitled Facing Hazards and Disasters: Understanding Human Dimensions.”

William Anderson, Ph.D.
National Research Council