Team Leader Roles in the Deployment Process

The TERT team leader is ultimately responsible for the management and safety of all TERT team members, as well as the team members’ performance in the deployment area. This responsibility may vary considerably depending on the deployment phase. The following table provides a brief illustration of the different job responsibilities of team leaders by phase:

Phase Involved Persons Primary Responsibilities
Departure to Deployment Area Team Leader
Team Members
State TERT Coordinator
Receiving TERT Contact
  1. Update team on any changes
  2. Personnel accountability
  3. Coordinate/communicate  with state TERT
  4. Review housekeeping items/expectations
  5. Develop relationships with team members
  6. Identify team member strengths and incorporate in work plans
Deployment Team Leader Team Members State TERT Coordinator(s)
Receiving TERT Contact
Receiving TERT Agency Members
TERT Team Families
  1. Coordinate with receiving TERT Contact for updates
  2. Develop work plans for team members
  3. Brief team members
  4. Conduct safety briefing
  5. Accountable for team members
  6. Supervise and manage team members
  7. Provide logistical and operational support
  8. Personnel management
  9. Departure Planning
Departure Planning and Return Team Leader
Team Members
State TERT Coordinator(s)
  1. Coordinate with Receiving TERT
  2. Review/plan logistics for the return
  3. Review “Departure to Deployment Area” above
Post- Deployment Team Leader
Team Members
State TERT Coordinator
  1. Ensure demobilization requirements are met
  2. Complete all administrative paperwork
  3. Complete an after-action report

This table only represents a summary of team leader roles and responsibilities. Each phase of deployment contains a significant amount of sub-roles/responsibilities that are quite dependent on the nature of the deployment. For example, a deployment a short distance (less than 100 miles) to provide support to a PSAP that experienced little damage would be quite different than a deployment a long distance and using several modes of transportation to an area that experienced total devastation to a PSAP. While the roles and responsibilities of team members may vary, the MRTD guidelines were designed to assist team leaders in the deployment process by providing a standardized set of recommendations in the deployment process.

Team Leader Testimony:

TX-TERT Team Leader, Roxanna Johnson home base Frisco Police Department:

This deployment went from worst case scenario, to truly one of the best experiences I have ever had.  There were challenges in the beginning, but friendships were forged and life-long relationships were established.  I was astounded that those with the best attitudes had lost everything in the hurricane.

I could not be prouder of those that I served with.  My team was beyond dedicated and took initiative to self-teach themselves the other agency’s CAD and phone system. They maintained a positive attitude and kept pushing through when the going got tough.