2023 AFN Conference

2023 Getting it Right: A “Plan With” Access and Functional Needs Conference

Register online: 2023 Getting it Right: A “Plan With” Access and Functional Needs Conference Registration 

  • Conference sessions, workgroups and speakers will include topics on Access and Functional Needs Resource Framework using the CMIST memory tool, Core Capabilities, Collaboration, Whole Community Inclusion Emergency Management and much more.
  • Keynotes, workshops and activities will include interactive workgroups.

Conference Goals

  • Increase whole community inclusive "planning with" with the I- Independence Resource Focus
  • Highlight the tools for emergency managers, emergency management partners, and stakeholders to be successful in whole community inclusion
  • Good and promising practices and information sharing for whole community inclusion and the emergency management lifecycle

Core Concept

  • Engage the whole community using a "Plan With" approach to save more lives and property before, during and after disasters.
  • Highlight CMIST "I - Independence" resources and their impacts.

Learning Objectives

  • Implementing the Access and Functional Needs Resource Framework and CMIST Memory Tool into everyday practice.
  • Better understand CMIST "I - Independence" resources and their impact.
  • Better engage with community resource partners using a "plan with" approach.


  • Workshop sessions with practical ways to use resources and information shared.
  • Breakout groups with subject matter experts to facilitate deeper discussions.
  • Evening networking social to interact with others who are engaging with, and using the Access and Functional Needs Resource Framework and CMIST Memory Tool.

Pre-Conference Opportunity

This is an excellent opportunity with limited space available. Please visit the Pre-Conference registration page

  • Date: April 11, 2023
  • Time: 12 - 4 p.m. MT

Subject matter expertise tied to “I"

  • June Kailes: Magical Thinking of Registries - Resource Registries
  • The Partnership For Inclusive Disaster Strategies with Atlantis (Center for Independent Living): Independent Living Movement and systems tied to emergencies and disasters
  • Independence during Active Threats session

Keynote Speakers

  • Sherman Gillums, Jr. Office of Disability Integration and Coordination
  • Sadie Martinez, Colorado Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management,  AFN Coordinator
  • Mike Houston, Regional Disability Integration Specialist, FEMA Region VIII


Wednesday, April 12, 2023, from 11 a.m. - 7:30 p.m. MT

  • Exhibitor Set up and Networking
  • Lunch and accessibility briefing
  • Ice Breaker
  • Welcoming and Opening Remarks
  • Introduction: What is Access and Functional Needs tied to the CMIST Resource Memory Tool? Independence Resource Focus
  • Keynote: Rethinking Equity in Emergency Management Director Sherman Gillums, Jr. Office of Disability Integration and Coordination FEMA
  • Regional Disability Integration Specialist - What, So What, Now What
  • KEY Interactive Session: “How To” Supporting the “Must To”
  • Ignite Session
  • Closing Remarks and Networking Reminder
  • Networking Social/ Exhibitor/ Break

Thursday, April 13, 2023, from 8 a.m. - 1 p.m. MT

  • Breakfast, welcome remarks and opening
  • Exercise
  • Interactive Session: Planning for Disruptions to CMIST “I - Independence” Resources with community connectors and partners
  • Interactive Session: Community Engagement
  • Award Ceremony
  • Closing remarks
  • Thank you and lunch

We strive to ensure inclusive, accessible meetings that enable all individuals to engage fully. English language CART services, American Sign Language Services, portable hearing loop, and Spanish Interpretation services will be provided. Accommodations will be provided upon request.

**In order to protect ourselves and those with underlying health conditions, we encourage all conference attendees to be up-to-date on their COVID-19 boosters as well as their seasonal flu shots.