All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

Erin L Borry

Advisory Committee Members

Nevbahar Ertas

Thomas A Jacobs

Document Type


Date of Award


Degree Name by School

Master of Public Administration (MPA) College of Arts and Sciences


Long-term disaster recovery is an important aspect of public administration, especially as the United States is more frequently affected by natural disasters. Federal, state and local governments must adapt and respond to their citizens’ needs. This research analyzes one small Alabama community’s recovery following a devastating series of tornados. This case study on the City of Cordova is conducted via a document analysis of local newspaper articles, government documents and personal communication. The experiences of Cordova are analyzed using principles outlined in FEMA’s National Disaster Recovery Framework. The analysis suggests that disaster recovery in a small city or town is inherently different from urban recovery, thus the recovery process should be tailored according to the size of the community. These observations conclude with recommendations for other governments faced with the challenge of disaster recovery.