Dewberry was founded in 1956 in Arlington, Virginia, as a "small land design and surveying practice" and is now a "1,800-person professional services firm operating nationally." 
Dewberry, formerly Dewberry & Davis, has been providing professional and technical services to FEMA's flood insurance program (determining and mapping zones of probable flooding) since the early 70s, and has grown by merger acquisitions to the "family of companies" empire of today, employing more than 1,800 employees in 40 offices. 
It is one of "the largest engineering firm of its type headquartered in the Washington metropolitan area. Dewberry provides multi-disciplinary services in civil, environmental, and water resources engineering; architecture; site planning, land design and surveying; construction management; transportation planning and design; mass transit engineering; and program management." 
"The Chairman of Dewberry Sidney Dewberry, the Vice Chairman, Barry K. Dewberry, and Secretary of the firm, Michael Dewberry have been substantial contributors to George W. Bush, Virginia Sen. John Warner, the National Republican Congressional Committee, Sen. Shelby, 'Every Republican is Crucial' Political Action Committee, Rep. Virgil Goode of Virginia (also fingered in the Duke Cunningham MZM, Inc. scandal), Virginia Sen. George Allen, Virginia Rep. Frank Wolf, Virginia Rep. Tom Davis, Virginia Rep. Eric Cantor, Virginia Rep. Bob Goodlatte, the Republican National Committee, and the Federal Victory Fund of Annandale, VA controlled by Tom Davis. The Dewberrys have also contributed to the financially-tainted Democrat from Virginia's 8th District, Jim Moran." 
September 16, 2005: "Dewberry’s 31st Office Will Be in Baton Rouge, LA":
"To provide support to the growing Hurricane Katrina recovery effort, Dewberry’s Chief Executive Officer, Ronald L. Ewing, PE, RLS, announced today Dewberry will establish an office in Baton Rouge, LA. Chris S. Davis has been tapped to set up and direct office operations, as well as coordinate Dewberry’s local staff supporting the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in its response to Hurricane Katrina."
In July 2004, a joint-venture led by Innovative Emergency Management, URS Group, Inc. and Dewberry created the "Hurricane Pam" simulation, "working under contract for the Federal Emergency Management Agency." 
According to the Dewberry, August/September 2004 online newsletter:
- "Had one of the devastating hurricanes targeted New Orleans and southeast Louisiana, state and local officials would have been ready. In July, Dewberry teamed" with Innovative Emergency Management (IEM) of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, to "conduct a seven-day emergency planning exercise that gauged the region's readiness for a catastrophic hurricane. The FEMA-sponsored exercise enabled participating agencies to evaluate and fine-tune their preparation, response, and recovery plans for a wide range of emergency conditions.
- "Dewberry provided expertise in the areas of hurricane tracking and inundation modeling; debris management, including dealing with hazardous materials and leaking underground storage tanks; urban search and rescue operations; and temporary housing. The firm also provided guidance in utilizing GIS to identify critical state-owned infrastructure and facilities."
Disaster Relief Efforts: Florida 2004
Dewberry participated in the "hurricane recovery effort in the southeastern US following four major storms over a period of six weeks. Hurricanes Charley, Frances, Ivan, and Jeanne."
"The response and recovery effort was augmented by the Partnership for Response and Recovery (PaRR)," which is a Dewberry-URS Group, Inc. and SSI joint venture "that provides post-disaster housing inspection services."
In the six weeks "after Hurricane Charley came ashore in mid-August , more than 1,700 PaRR field personnel ... conducted approximately 215,000 inspections across the southeastern US and Puerto Rico. FEMA has also called on PaRR to assist with other disaster-related services such as mobile home site inspections, pre-placement interviews with residents, and preliminary damage assessments in counties outside the declaration areas to determine their eligibility for federal assistance.
NISTAC [Nationwide Infrastructure Support Technical Assistance Consultants], a joint venture of Dewberry and URS, "has also been actively involved in supporting FEMA's public assistance recovery programs in the Southeast and Caribbean, as well as areas in the mid-Atlantic hard-hit by the weakened, yet still powerful storm systems. More than 250 professionals assisted with helping to expedite emergency protective measures and restoration work for hundreds of roads, bridges, beaches, water and wastewater treatment plants, police and fire stations, schools, and hospitals.
"NISTAC personnel also played key roles in debris management, environmental and historic preservation issues, cost estimating, data management, GIS support, feasibility inspections for temporary mobile home sites, staff training, and community relations.
"In addition, Dewberry has assisted with a variety of post-disaster studies and evaluations following each storm under Hazard Mitigation Technical Assistance Program (HMTAP) and Technical Assistance and Research Contract (TARC) assignments with FEMA. The firm's building science and hazard mitigation specialists helped Florida officials conduct an initial building triage of damages after Hurricane Charley; evaluate the performance of critical facilities, including shelters, hospitals, schools, emergency operations centers, and police and fire stations, after Hurricane Frances; evaluate structural failures in coastal areas following Hurricane Ivan, and develop recommendations to help prevent future damage to a wide range of building types.
"Other assignments included high-watermark surveys of riverine and coastal areas, inland wind studies to verify the true velocity and corresponding damage patterns to buildings, and data collection to help the National Flood Insurance Program address structures that repeatedly experience losses."
Source: Dewberry, August/September 2004.
In October 2003, FEMA awarded five five-year contracts for flood studies. Dewberry was a team member in two out of five of the winning groups: 
- Mapping Alliance Partners IX-Mainland, "a joint venture consisting of URS Group, Inc. of San Francisco, Dewberry & Davis LLC of Fairfax, Va., Schaaf & Wheeler of Santa Clara, Calif., Airborne 1 Corporation of Los Angeles, and Terra Point, LLC of The Woodlands, Texas.
- R.M. Towill Corporation and URS Group, Inc., "a joint venture consisting of R.M. Towill Corporation of Honolulu, URS Group, Inc., Dewberry & Davis LLC, Airborne 1 Corporation, Terra Point, LLC and Sea Engineering, Inc. of Waimanalo, Hawaii."
- Sidney O. Dewberry, PE, LS
Related SourceWatch Resources
- defense contractors
- FEMA contractors
- FEMA relief spending in pre-Election Florida 2004
- Hurricane Katrina: FEMA
- Hurricane Katrina: preparedness failure
- Hurricane Katrina: Who's at Fault?
- Press Release: "IEM Team to Develop Catastrophic Hurricane Disaster Plan for New Orleans & Southeast Louisiana," Innovative Emergency Management, June 3, 2004.
- "In Case of Emergency. Officials hope eight days of intense training for a catastrophic hurricane will aid recovery efforts if the real thing ever hits," Times Picayune (New Orleans), July 20, 2004; posted on Louisiana Homeland Security & Emergency Preparedness website.
- "Hurricane Pam Exercise," Louisiana Homeland Security & Emergency Preparedness (courtesy of FEMA), July 26, 2004.
- Jon Elliston, "Disaster in the making," The Independent Weekly, September 22, 2004: "As FEMA weathers a storm of Bush administration policy and budget changes, protection from natural hazards may be trumped by 'homeland security'."
- Wayne Madsen, "FEMA Privatized Hurricane Disaster Recovery Planning for New Orleans and Southeastern Louisiana. Firms that received the contract are big GOP contributors," Global Research, September 7, 2005.