Tuesday, April 13, 2010
Rich Pickett Returns from Haiti
SDSU's CIO recounts his humanitarian aid trips to Haiti following the country's devastating earthquake.
Rich Pickett has flown thousands of miles to and from Haiti in the past few months.
After 10 days and 18,000 miles of flying to and from earthquake-stricken Haiti, SDSU chief information officer Rich Pickett said he was headed back for more.
"Over the 10 days we ended up flying about 30 flights, which represented about 70 hours of flying and about 18,000 miles of travel for the relief effort," Pickett said during an interview in between his two recent trips there.
"And during that time, we carried between 30 and 40 people—I sort of lost track back and forth—as well as probably close to about 30,000 pounds of supplies."
Pickett flew a variety of supplies to the Caribbean country, including diapers, medical supplies, water and other items.
Despite the time since the earthquake earlier this year, much of Haiti is still suffering from the aftermath.
"As we went through the town (of Jacmel), you see that the people were trying to really reconnect their lives, but nobody was in the buildings because either the buildings had collapsed or they're afraid they were going to collapse and so everybody is out in the streets," Pickett said.
"As we walked by a building, you'd see one building looked fine, and the next three or four would just be destroyed."Furlough days put to good use
Pickett, a licensed pilot, used a combination of furlough and vacation days for his time spent out of the office, and was included in a USA Today article on employees using furlough days for philanthropy and volunteer work in March. Pickett also posted daily journal entries on the SDSU blog.