Mr. Andrés, who often rolls right over regulations and ignores the word “no,” clashed more than once with FEMA and other large organizations that have a more-seasoned and methodical approach. In meetings and telephone calls, FEMA officials reminded him that he and his people lacked the experience needed to organize a mass emergency feeding operation, he said.

“We are not perfect, but that doesn’t mean the government is perfect,” Mr. Andrés said. “I am doing it without red tape and 100 meetings.”

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