James A. Banaski, Jr., MS, MEP, CEM
Mr. Jim Banaski is the Director of Capacity Development for The Critical Mass LLC, focusing on building sustainable programs with international partners. Mr. Banaski recently retired after 28 years of combined federal service. Mr. Banaski’s last 13 years of service were with the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention where he served numerous assignments to include Deputy Branch Chief/Acting Branch Chief for the Workforce & Institute Development Branch, Senior Public Health Emergency Management Advisor for the National Public Health Institute Program, and Team Lead for the Global Response Preparedness Team, all within the Division of Global Health Protection, in the Center for Global Health. Mr. Banaski worked with Ministries of Health to assist in the development of preparedness and response programs to help them meet their requirements under the International Health Regulations (2005) to detect, respond to, and report public health threats of international concern.
Previous to his work in Global Health, Mr. Banaski served in the Division of the State and Local Readiness, in the Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response, at the CDC. Mr. Banaski served as a Public Health Emergency Preparedness cooperative agreement Project Officer for the state of Illinois and as a Program Services Consultant for Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, Indiana, and Ohio. Prior to his work in DSLR, Mr. Banaski was an Emergency Management Specialist with the Office of Terrorism Preparedness and Emergency Response in the National Center for Environmental Health where he served as an Emergency Coordinator, coordinating plans, training, exercises, and responses to environmental public health emergencies. Mr. Banaski also served as the Exercise Lead in the CDC’s Division of Emergency Operations and as the PHEP Project Area Exercise Coordinator in the Division of Strategic National Stockpile. Mr. Banaski has served in numerous public health emergencies to include H1N1, numerous hurricanes, the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill, the American Samoa Tsunami response, the Japan Earthquake and Tsunami response, the Joplin, Missouri tornado relief, the worldwide Ebola response, the worldwide Zika response, and the COVID 19 response.
Before to coming to the CDC Mr. Banaski worked with the US Army North, conducting training and exercises for the Weapons of Mass Destruction Civil Support Teams. Previous to that Mr. Banaski served as a Training Specialist at the US Army Chemical School at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri. Mr. Banaski is an 11 year veteran of the US Army Chemical Corp and served in various locations in the United States, Europe, and the Middle East.
Mr. Banaski has a dual Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Science and Biology from Drury University and a Master of Science degree in Environmental Management from Webster University. He also holds a Master Exercise Practitioner certification from the Department of Homeland Security and the Certified Emergency Manager designation from the International Association of Emergency Managers.