Eye of the Storm: Inside City Hall During Katrina by Sally Forman
When Hurricane Katrina, the worst natural disaster in the history of the United States, hit the Gulf Coast on August 29, 2005, few people could believe the horror and destruction that would unfold in the days that followed. As Communications Director for the City of New Orleans, Sally Forman went to work two days before the storm approached with no indication that she or the city were in harm's way. But within 72 hours, hurricane force winds were shattering windows throughout the downtown hotel where she had bunkered down with other members of the City Hall Executive Staff. The next ten days, chronicled here, became an unforgettable time in our nation's history. With almost 2,000 deaths, destruction covering four states and a million and a half people needing shelter, the world responded quickly and fiercely. Over 75 countries and 80 percent of Americans contributed to the relief of hurricane survivors and aid workers. Throughout the world, Katrina raised questions of humanity and exposed the vulnerabilities we still face as a nation. Through this personal and historical journal, Forman offers an insider's view of life in a disaster zone where communications and resources were practically non-existent. She also examines her own role and the role of other officials as wide-ranging disaster struck a major American city.