County Manager Makes Key Appointments for Public Safety

Published on February 23, 2023

County Manager Mark Schwartz is announcing permanent appointments of Dr. Aaron Miller as the Deputy County Manager for Public Safety and Information Technology and Mr. William Flagler, Jr. as the Director of the Department of Public Safety Communications and Emergency Management (DPSCEM).  

“Both Aaron and William offer a wealth of experience in managing emergency operations and public safety and are well positioned to provide leadership for our community,” stated County Manager Mark Schwartz. “I could not be more pleased to have both of them in these critical roles in Arlington.”

About Dr. Aaron Miller

AaronMiller.jpg Prior to serving as the Acting Deputy County Manager for Public Safety and Information Technology, Dr. Miller held the position of Director of DPSCEM. He was instrumental in leading the COVID-19 response and recovery efforts in Arlington County.  

Dr. Miller’s leadership roles include overseeing 9-1-1, ensuring interoperability, and managing all-hazards emergency and special incident planning. As Deputy County Manager, he will oversee police, fire, emergency management, and information technology.

He serves as a member of the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency’s State, Local, Territorial and Tribal Government Coordinating Council (SLTTGCC), supporting the advancement of critical infrastructure issues at the SLTT level and working with the Federal government on national cyber and infrastructure security plans, policies, and programs.  

Earlier in his career, Dr. Miller served as the Director of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness for the City of New Orleans, LA, where he led key reforms in public safety planning, response, and technology, including the design and implementation of the award-winning Real-Time Crime Center. 

Dr. Miller holds a Doctorate in Public Health from the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine and a Master of Public Health from Tulane University. His research and professional interests include emergency response delivery systems, crisis leadership and leadership development, and management of complex, novel incidents. 

Dr. Miller is married to Sarah Robertson Miller, a nonprofit executive. Together they are the proud parents of Josephine and Charlie.

About William Flagler, Jr.

Will-Flagler_800x1197.jpg Prior to this appointment as the Director of DPSCEM, Mr. Flagler served as the Acting Director for the Department of Public Safety Communications and Emergency Management (DPSCEM) and as the Deputy Director of DPSCEM. 

In addition to being a member of the COVID-19 response and recovery leadership team, he has been instrumental in directing emergency management operations, including local emergency alert systems, strategic planning, policy and budget development, grants administration and 9-1-1 operations as the Acting Emergency Communications Center Administrator. 

Director Flagler has nearly 20 years of progressively responsible executive leadership experience. Past roles include serving as the founding and first Black Director of the Department of Emergency Management and Safety at Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA) and as an Assistant Coordinator for Loudoun County Fire, Rescue, and Emergency Management. He is an adjunct professor at Virginia Commonwealth University and George Mason University and previously served as a Visiting Scholar at Virginia Tech University. 

Director Flagler earned a Master’s in Public Administration from the University of North Carolina at Pembroke and a Master’s in Homeland Security and Emergency Management from American Military University. He holds certifications as a Certified Emergency Manager (CEM®), and Certified Public Manager (CPM).  

Director Flagler graduated from the Naval Post Graduate School’s Center for Homeland Defense and Security Executive Leadership Program and the Harvard University Crisis Leadership Program and is an alumnus of Leadership Arlington. The International Association of Emergency Managers and the Leadership Center for Excellence designated him a “40 Under 40” honoree. 

Director Flagler was awarded the Meritorious Service Award from the Arlington Chamber in 2017, has held various leadership positions and is an active member of the Virginia Emergency Management Association (VEMA). Outside of work, William enjoys cooking, traveling with his family, and biking.  

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