Hugh Roberts

Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer

Hugh Roberts, Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, has more than 14 years of experience working on essential questions of urban and coastal resilience. Roberts leads the Institute team of numerical modelers and resilience experts, with a focus on generating innovative solutions to help communities become more resilient in the face of growing challenges.

Roberts earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in civil engineering from The University of Notre Dame. Through his career, Roberts has led numerical modeling-based studies throughout Louisiana and the country to assess coastal and fluvial flood risks, support the design of ecosystem restoration and flood protection projects, and evaluate environmental impacts. He has played a leading role in recent studies in the Gulf Coast in support of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Federal Emergency Management Agency, and the state of Louisiana’s Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority including the development of the 2012 and the 2017 Coastal Master Plans.

Beyond the Gulf Coast, Roberts has experience across the country working with municipalities and regions facing climate change driven economic, societal and environmental risks. Roberts has played leading roles in the development of New York City’s Special Initiative for Rebuilding and Resiliency post Hurricane Sandy; Climate Ready Boston, a 2016 initiative to create a systematic and comprehensive framework for combating climate change; HUD funded Rebuild by Design and National Disaster Resilience Competitions projects in Bridgeport (CT) and New York City; and recently the San Francisco Seawall Earthquake Safety and Disaster Prevention Program, planning for the city’s seismic and coastal flooding challenges along its iconic waterfront.