Toni McElroy

Toni McElroy is a native Houstonian, living and working in the city her whole life. Throughout her time in Houston, she witnessed many tropical storms and hurricane-related disasters. McElroy discusses her experience at a hospital in Houston when Tropical Storm Allison hit. She details the flooding and lack of power. For Hurricane Katrina, McElroy served as a volunteer at a community organizing group that helped meet the needs of residents, evacuees, and survivors.

McElroy discussed the politics behind the scenes – how government agencies were not responsive enough for the needs of those afflicted by Katrina. When Hurricane Harvey hit, McElroy lived in an area unaffected by the storm, making it surreal for her to watch the news and see media revealing the areas heavily flooded and damaged. Upon reflecting on Harvey, McElroy discusses the lack of coordinated evacuation and a certain lack of preparation. She concludes her interview thinking of how cities and individuals can learn from Harvey and other hurricanes on preparing for times of disaster more adequately.