Dougherty co-authors resiliency paper
By R.J. Marx
Cannon Beach Gazette
Seaside’s Doug Dougherty will be among the presenters at a major national event — the Eleventh U.S. National Conference on Earthquake Engineering: Integrating Science, Engineering and Policy, June 25-29, in Los Angeles.
The former Seaside School District superintendent led the effort to raise awareness of the district’s at-risk schools in the event of a Cascadia Subduction Zone earthquake and tsunami. Dougherty and others developed and promoted a 2016 measure successfully raising $99.7 million for new schools outside of the tsunami zone.
Dougherty achieved national attention in the Pulitzer Prize-winning New Yorker piece “The Really Big One,” by Kathryn Schulz. He was also extensively profiled in Bonnie Henderson’s “The Next Tsunami,” which chronicles his efforts to build safer schools.
Dougherty, who retired from the district in 2016, serves on the Oregon Seismic Safety Policy Advisory Commission and is working on Senate Bill 850 to develop the Mass Care and Shelter plan for Oregon. Dougherty co-authored “Oregon Schools Face ‘The Really Big One: Advancing School-Centered Community Resilience,” with researchers Yumei Wang and Ted Wolf.
Wang is an engineer at the Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries. Wolf is a writer and advocate with interests in sustainability, natural history, and earthquake safety.
The report comes after 25 years of state investments to make schools safer. More than $310 million has been spent toward retrofits of K-12 buildings, completing projects in more than 80 school districts since 2009.
The report presents case studies from three statewide perspectives: Portland’s aging buildings; adopting resilient design in Beaverton; and facing tsunami risk in Seaside.
One of the goals of the Seaside school bond, Dougherty said in a 2016 interview, was to use the a new campus facility to act as an emergency shelter.
The new buildings will be built to safely withstand a 9.0 earthquake, he said.