Director – Lt. Chad Gessner
Office Mgr – Kari Laird

Non-Emergency Number: (815) 802-7172
Contact Us


EMA stands for Emergency Management Agency and is an important part of the Kankakee County Sheriff’s Department. EMA works closely with surrounding communities and businesses to develop detailed procedures and preparations in the case of an emergency or disaster.

The department has a training division headed by Bill Chigaros. Bill is a former Fire Chief of Kankakee City, and Instructor with the Illinois State Fire Marshall’s Office. Bill is in charge of fire department training and training on hazardous materials for both the fire and police departments. Bill is also available to public and private organizations for training severe weather/disaster preparedness. Contact Kari Laird at 815-802-7172 to schedule an appearance.

Events and Activities of the Department:

  • Testing of sirens on the first Tuesday of every month. If your local sirens do not function properly, please call us at (815) 802-7172 to make a report.
  • For information regarding the annual severe weather spotters seminar call 815-802-7172.
  • IPRA – The Illinois Plan for Radiological Accidents. This plan is in association with the Braidwood Nuclear Power Plant to ensure safety in case of a nuclear disaster. The IPRA is graded on 16 objectives by a Federal government team.
  • EMA coordinates with the National Weather Service to notify the public in case of a severe weather alert. Each March there is a Severe Weather Seminar for the public. This seminar is to educate the public to recognize severe weather conditions. A local meteorologist is scheduled to present an informative program that will take place at Kankakee Community College. Please watch for details.
  • LEPC – The Local Emergency Planning Committee works with companies in the local area that deal with hazardous materials. Bonnie Schaafsma is the Chairperson and is responsible for developing this plan.