The Continuing Challenge Hazmat Workshop 2019 Instructor List
Biography : Cris Aguirre is the co-founder of the HazMatIQ training system. Professional accomplishments include: 35 years of service to Miami-Dade Fire & Rescue; an all hazards response team. Throughout those years, Cris worked as a Firefighter, before being promoted to Lieutenant of his team. As a Master Instructor for the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF), Cris has trained responders throughout the nation in the field of Hazardous Materials and WMD. He has also worked with the IAFF on developing numerous courses. In addition, Cris is a featured speaker at many national and international HazMat conferences. Cris\'s unique ability to communicate with other responders and is highly sought after as an invited speaker, keynote speaker, and seminar leader at nationally recognized Hazardous Material Conferences and professional development seminars.
Biography : Retired Fire Captain, Hazardous Materials Coordinator, LEPC Region 4 Chairperson, Instructor
Biography : Vance is an Emergency Management Coordinator/Instructor in the Hazmat Section of California Specialized Training Institute (CSTI). He is retired from the U. S. Coast Guard where he was involved in responses to oil spills and hazmat incidents for over 20 years.
Kenneth R. Beutler
Biography : An ABIH Certified Industrial Hygienist with over thirty years of experience training and providing health and safety support to first responders, inspectors, and hazardous waste workers.
Biography : Mark Bridges - Mark is a retired Battalion Chief from the Santa Monica Fire Department. He is a 35 year veteran of the fire service with expertise in hazardous materials. Mark teaching experience goes back to the 1980\\\\\\\'s and he is currently a Senior Instructor and Training Coordinator with Industrial Emergency Council-IEC. Mark also lectures at various conferences and symposiums throughout the western United States.
C Scott Bunning
Biography : Scott Bunning has been with AristaTek since 2010. His responsibilities include marketing and sales along with training new and existing customers on all PEAC products. He performs all the company\'s monthly PEAC training webinars for customers called \"Training Tuesday\'. He has trained a diverse user-base including hazmat teams, emergency managers, military personnel, SERCs/LEPCs/CUPAs, industrial fire brigades and more throughout the United States and the world. He lives and works out of Los Angeles.
Biography : 25 Yrs in Maritime Environmental Protection with State of California 29 Yrs U.S. Coast Guard Reserve 20 Yrs Service as Volunteer/Paid-Call Firefighter CSTI-Certified Haz-Mat Technician
Biography : Michael Callan is a 45-year veteran of the Fire Service. He served as a Captain with the Wallingford, Connecticut Fire Department for 20 years and since his departure from active fire fighting he has trained public and private emergency responders in the United States, Canada, Europe and Asia. Michael Callan is the author of the several books Responding to Natural Gas Emergencies, Responding to Electrical Emergencies and Responding to Utility Emergencies (RTUE) are used extensively by utilities industries for training emergency responders. In addition to traditional textbook and live training he has also developed an interactive training program called RTUE Online. He is the author of Pipeline Emergency Response DVD. He is also author of the popular Street Smart Haz Mat Response by Red Hat Publications. Michael Callan is one of the lead instructors / mentors in the Virtual Terrorism Response Academy (VTRA) developed by Dartmouth University\'s Interactive Media Lab. The VTRA developed for the Department of Justice is a reusable advanced distance learning environment that supports the development and dissemination of terrorism response for emergency responders. At the International Haz Mat Conference in Baltimore in 2013 he received the prestigious John M Eversole Lifetime Achievement Award - Given annually by the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) to recognize a living individual who has had an exceptionally distinguished career in the field of hazardous-materials emergency response. He received the in 2010 he was the recipient of the prestigious Norman Y. Mineta Excellence in Transportation Award. The Norman Y Mineta Award is given annually by the National Association of State Fire Marshals (NASFM) to an individual or team that made a significant and lasting contribution to the safety of people, products and materials in transit. In 2001 he was selected as the California Hazardous Materials Instructor of the Year. In 1989 at the Fire Department Instructors Conference (FDIC) in Cincinnati he was selected from 7000 municipal and private sector instructors, as the International Society of Fire Instructors\' - George D. Post Instructor of the Year. He is developer of traditional and interactive training modules for delivering the Department of Transportation / Pipeline Safety and Hazardous Materials Administration’s Pipeline Emergencies Training distributed by the National Association of Fire Marshals available to any state fire service training organization. Mr. Callan has conducted over twenty-five Pipeline Emergencies Training the Trainers throughout the United States. He is also the developer of the widely-adopted Propane Emergencies Training Facilitator’s Guide and PowerPoint programs used extensively by the US Fire Service. The training program has been adopted by more than 30 state training fire schools for propane emergencies. He is the lead instructor on the video training series by Emergency Resources Inc. - \"Surviving the Hazardous Materials Incident\". He is co-author of Hazardous Materials Exposures - Emergency Response and Patient Care published by Brady and Prentice Hall. His business Callan and Company conducts energy, pipeline, safety, chemical and hazardous material emergency response training around the country for Fire, Police, Industrial and Haz-Mat Teams. He lists as clients, corporations such as Airgas, Ashland Chemical, Pipeline Association for Public Awareness (PAPA), ComEd, Excel Energy, Puget Sound Energy, Wisconsin Utility Association, Vermont State Fire School, Illinois State Fire Academy, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Iowa Fire Service Training Bureau, SCANA, Northeast Utilities, Louisiana Pacific, Sprint, Pacific Gas and Electric, US DOJ - ATF, NASA & Kennedy Space Center, Duke Energy, General Motors, Ensign-Bickford Industries, Merck, DuPont, IBM, National Association of State Fire Marshals,. He has been training emergency responders for 33 years.
Biography : Mike Cashman is a Senior Trainer for Federal Resources, with a specialization in Counter-Drug Training. Previously Mike spent over 20 years with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), serving as a Clan Lab Coordinator, Special Agent, and Clan Lab Team Leader. Because of his experience and expertise in the field, Mike is a highly requested trainer and guest speaker, presenting at Narcotics, Law Enforcement and HazMat conferences/conventions world-wide over the past 20 years.
Biography : An advocate for progressive behavioral health practices with first responders, Tina Casola and her team at First Alarm Wellness provide education to individuals, departments, businesses and other organizations desiring a better understanding of emotional distress. The team is experienced in facilitating effective evidence-based treatments for PTSD and other stress related disorders with Veterans, Emergency Service Personnel and Civilians. We understand concerns of a First Responder’s family and that life itself throws curveballs on a regular basis. Whatever your concern, you can feel at ease knowing that we will understand every aspect...not just the label of the job. Interpersonal conflict, infertility, pregnancy loss, grief, family concerns, and substance misuse are just some of the other reasons why people reach out. Whatever is on your mind…we are here to help! Tina has affiliations with several emergency services departments in California and speaks across the country in support of first responder wellness. Additional services available are program consultation: creation, trouble shooting and continued support; crisis services: acute & long-term; Program management and oversight, our Sentinel program takes a behavioral health benefit from a checked box to real people who ‘get’ you. “As for Tina Casola, I really enjoyed hearing her speak. Her cutting-edge knowledge of this topic was riveting. She spoke to, but not at us with what appears to be a genuine caring for us. She was enthusiastic and eager to share her experiences as well as a hope for a better method to help and treat our Brothers and Sisters in the future. It appears that this enthusiasm has ignited a mental health discussion between not only the individuals who were able to attend her lecture but also the crews who have heard about it from their officers. I look forward to her continuing involvement in our department in the future.” -Lieutenant Fire Service
Biography : Tom Clawson has over 20 years experience in Health Physics and Environmental Safety and Health training. For the past 16 years, Tom’s experience has focused on radiological emergency preparedness and training. He helped develop the Department of Energy’s Modular Emergency Response Radiological Transportation Training (MERRTT) program. Tom has trained thousands of emergency responders and has presented at conferences throughout the United States. Tom currently serves on the NFPA Technical Committee on Hazardous Materials Response Personnel, which has responsibility for NFPA Standards 471, 472, and 473. Prior to working in the training business, he spent nine years working in Health Physics/Radiation Safety at various commercial nuclear power plants, with the US Navy, and at the Department of Energy’s Idaho National Engineering Laboratory.
Biography : Greg is a retired Haz Mat responder and CUPA program manager. He has certified well over 8,000 people in various response levels. Greg brings a street smart style of instruction to his classes that is based on his 30 plus years as a responder. Greg has taught classes at the Continuing Challange for over 20 years.
Biography : Joseph Crisologo is a registered Professional Engineer with over 31 years of experience in the areas of regulatory compliance, water quality and resource management, environmental engineering program management, emergency preparedness and response, hazardous waste/substance and site management, homeland security, and health and safety program management. Joseph serves in the role of Senior Homeland Security Engineer with the State Water Resources Control Board, Division of Drinking Water. With his colleagues, they work at enhancing public water system capacities and capabilities in security and emergency preparedness, response, and recovery, resulting in better resilience. This is accomplished through training, outreach, information dissemination, coordination, and collaboration. Better resilience ensures better public health by working towards safe, clean, wholesome potable water, and that it is delivered reliably and adequately. In Joseph’s long career in service to the State of California, he has also functioned as a District Engineer with the CDPH, regulating public water systems; a project manager with the CYA, training staff, remediating LUFST sites, and managing their environmental compliance program; and as a project engineer with the DTSC, investigating and remediating hazardous waste sites. Joseph has his Baccalaureate of Science in Chemical Engineering and a Master of Business Administration.
Biography : Keith Davis is the owner of Harmony Environmental Services inc. Harmony is one of the top bio remeadiation companies for 14 years straight. Keith is also a Certified Bio Recovery Master and an instructor for first responders presenting the latest information from many sources including The American Bio Safety Assoc., Environmental Information Association and Indoor Air Quality Association. Our combined efforts are creating a information source available on our website for all public safety officers. Keith is currently Vice President of the American Bio Recovery Association.
Biography : Ellen Dempsey is a graduate from the UCLA Environmental Sciences Department. During her time at UCLA, she participated in various research and coursework directed at the effects of Climate Change and the advancement of Environmental Stewardship. Following graduation, Ellen held a position as an Environmental Engineer at a global aerospace company managing environmental compliance and source reduction of waste and water use. Currently, Ellen is a Hazardous Materials Specialist at Contra Costa Health Services, Hazardous Materials Programs. She acts as both an inspector for the CUPA programs as well as a member of the County\'s Hazardous Materials Incident Response Team. She has been the lead for the Hazardous Materials Business Plan program since 2017.
Biography : Robert Eckroade is a Market Specialist for GORE® CHEMPAK® Products in Fire Service, Law Enforcement and Department of Defense Consequence Management applications. Robert seeks to understand the operational capabilities and CBRN PPE needs of first responders in both hot and warm zone environments; he is a member of the International Association of Bomb Technicians & Investigators and author of Understanding Performance Standards for Law Enforcement CBRN Protective Apparel (The Police Chief/July 2010). Robert has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Delaware and has worked for W. L. Gore & Associates for over 37 years. [firstname.lastname@example.org]
Biography : Brian Escamilla is a retired Criminalist from the Sacramento County District Attorney’s Laboratory of Forensic Services. While serving as the Lead Criminalist with Sacramento County in the Controlled Substances section, Mr. Escamilla responded to and analyzed the evidence for over 200 clandestine laboratory scenes. Mr. Escamilla has extensive knowledge in the assessment, processing, and sampling of clandestine laboratories and a court qualified expert in the areas of controlled substances, blood alcohol, and clandestine laboratories. Mr. Escamilla has also researched and manufactured methamphetamine, PCP, MDMA, methcathinone, fentanyl, euphoria, and various other drugs in a controlled laboratory setting. In addition, Mr. Escamilla has published over 30 papers, conducted over 70 workshops, and given numerous presentations related to narcotics and clandestine laboratories at conferences all over the United States. During his 19 years of service with Sacramento County, Mr. Escamilla also served as the Laboratory Safety Officer and was in charge of all hazardous waste handling, hazardous waste storage, health and safety programs and associated training, and ensuring the Laboratory complied with all OSHA regulations. This also included the maintenance of all respirators, air monitoring equipment, fume hoods and biological cabinets, fit-testing of employees, and record-keeping requirements. Mr. Escamilla has Bachelor’s Degrees in Biology and Chemistry, both from California State University, Sacramento. Brian has been an instructor with NES since 2002 and has trained thousands of personnel across the United States in various narcotic related classes. Brian is currently the Clan Lab Program Manager and a Principal Instructor with NES.
Biography : With over 37 years experience in chemical manufacturing and over 30 years as a industry hazardous materials emergency responder, Scott Etzel brings a depth of knowledge and experience in hazardous materials engineering, manufacturing, chemical and physical properties, personal protective equipment, loading/unloading, shipping, transport, and emergency response across all modes of transport (road, rail, marine, and air transport). Scott holds a degree in engineering from Purdue University.
Charles D. Fator
Biography : Charles D. Fator is the Grandson of John D. Hanby the Founder and Inventor of the Hanby Environmental TPH Field Test Kits for the immediate detection and analysis of hydrocarbons in water and soil samples. Hanby Environmental TPH Field Test Kits have been manufactured and deployed the world over for the last 33 years. In addition to working in his Grandfather\'s laboratory in high school, he began his college studies in Environmental Science. He obtained a BA in Finance from Sam Houston State University after which he was The President of Two Commercial Banks prior to acquiring half his Grandfather\'s business. Together they developed a hydrocarbon fingerprinting device that utilizes the same chemistry as the Field Test Kits, which Charles owns multiple patents upon. Upon the passing of his Grandfather in 2015, Charles now owns all of The Hanby business. In Nov of 2017 Charles released a mobile application he developed to complement the Hanby Field Test Kits to increase the level of accuracy and documentation of the results. Charles continues to innovate upon The Hanby technologies and is creating a Paradigm Shift in The Remediation, Emergency / Spill Response Industry by implementation of \"The New Hydrocarbon Remediation / Spill / Emergency Response.\"
Biography : Alan Finkelstein retired in 2016 after 34 years in the fire service. He had worked for the Strongsville Fire and Emergency Services Department in Ohio since 1986. Mr. Finkelstein performed inspections, code enforcement, responded to fire and hazardous material emergencies, develops and implements emergency plans, , and serves on county and state advisory committees as a subject matter expert on topics such as hazardous materials, WMD and continuity of operations. His background also includes extensive experience in emergency response, command and control, and emergency planning.. Mr. Finkelstein is vice chair of the Cuyahoga County Local Emergency Planning Committee and sits on the Emergency Management Advisory Board, and is a member of the International Association of Firefighters, the Northeast Ohio Fire Prevention Association, the International Association of Fire Chiefs and the Ohio Association of Professional Firefighters. Since 1993 Mr. Finkelstein has been a USEPA certified CAMEO instructor. He has been an instructor and course developer for Louisiana State University’s CAMEO training program since 2003 and has presented programs at numerous hazmat and emergency planning conferences including one in India. Currently he is working with the National Tribal Emergency Management Council to assist in increasing tribal emergency management resources using the CAMEO suite.
Biography : Special Agent Sheldon Fung is a Bomb Tech and WMD Coordinator for the Sacramento Division of the FBI. He has 20 years of Hazmat/WMD crime scene experience. He has a degree in Biochemistry from UC Davis and a Masters in WMD/Criminology from IUP.
Biography : Michael Haynes, Air Quality Insp. III, Toxic and Waste Unit Lead Instructor: Asbestos Compliance Class Current Assignments: Lead Smelters, Battery Manufacturing Plant, Wastewater Treatment Plants and VOC Contaminated Soil Remediation Projects Certificates: Hazwhopper, First Responder Training, Asbestos Contractor Supervisor, Haz Waste and Homeland Security-Bio Terrorism. Mr. Haynes is a 30-year plus, veteran in the Compliance and Enforcement Division -Air toxic and Waste Management unit of the SCAQMD, a regional Governmental Agency.
Biography : Ken Hayes Retired from Alameda County Fire Department in 2006 as a Captain and Haz/Mat Specialist. Was responsible for procuring and maintaining the Hazardous Material Teams inventory of gas and radiation detection equipment and all equipment related to a Type 1 team. Started Air Instrumentation of California in 2007 and has worked with many agencies maintaining and training on their equipment.
Biography : Ben is an 18 year veteran of Lancaster County\'s (PA) Hazardous Materials Response Team currently serving as the chief of the department and is the Radiological Planner for Lancaster County managing response plans to events at Peach Bottom and Three Mile Island Nuclear Power Stations.
Biography : Dan Hirsh has been a safety professional for over 25 years, the last 14 with DuPont. The first 9 years with DuPont were spent in the Hazmat PPE division, the last 4 have been with the Nomex and Kevlar fire resistant fiber business. In this roll he is a presenter for the DuPont ThermoMan demonstration team 8-10 times a year as well as presenting at professional safety conferences in the Western US. ThermoMan is a field demonstration unit that allows DuPont to teach people the differences in fire resistant fabric technologies by ultimately showing percent body burn and survivability by age group for a given garment ensemble and thermal exposure.
Biography : 26 years experience with the California Highway Patrol as a hazardous materials regulatory compliance engineer for hazardous materials containers including cargo tank design and testing engineer. Upon retirement in 2010, I have been working as a regulatory compliance consultant for general hazardous materials compliance and a cargo tank design certifying engineer, registered cargo tank inspector and instructor for cargo tank manufacturers, repair and testing facilities. Work with ASTI and WPGA on regulatory compliance.
Biography : Mr. Peter (Pete) Jensen Hazardous Materials Officer Ventura County Fire Department, Captain Jensen has been in the fire service for over 28 years. He started his career on the Ventura Co. Fire Dept. on the hand crew fighting wildland fires. In 1990 he joined the Point Mugu Fire Dept. as a civilian federal Firefighter and progressed up to the rank of Captain. After almost 9 years with that department he started over as a rookie firefighter with the Ventura County Fire Dept. and again has promoted back up through the ranks to Captain. He is currently assigned as the HazMat Officer for the Ventura County Fire Department and is the coordinator for the Ventura County Regional Hazmat Program. Pete is a certified HazMat Specialist. Mr. Jensen has a Master’s degree in Emergency and Disaster Management from American Military University, a Bachelor’s degree in Occupational Studies from CSU Long Beach and an AS degree in Fire Technology from Oxnard College. He is a certified instructor from the California State Fire Marshal, The California Specialized Training Institute, DHS and the National Sheriffs’ Association. Pete has delivered courses to Fire, Law, Health, Military, Local, State and Federal personnel. Currently he serves as the Chair of the Firescope Hazmat Specialist Group and is a member of the International Association of Fire Chiefs Hazardous Materials Committee and the NFPA 472 Committee.
Biography : Alan Jensen has been instructing HazCat methods for over 20 years with the past 15 years for Haztech. He is instrumental with course outlines and method development. Mr. Jensen is from Arizona where he has worked in the Hazardous Waste field for over 25 years. He currently sits on the safety board for biosafety at Arizona State University. He continues to teach across the nation methods of Hazcatting. For outside activities he explores the State of Arizona and is an active HAM radio operator.
Biography : Kevin W. Johnson is a Supervisory Forensic Operations Specialist/Paramedic with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Laboratory Division’s Technical Hazards Response Unit (THRU) in Quantico, Virginia. He leads one of THRU’s operational response teams, which has a global mission responsibility to provide hazmat, technical, medical, and health/safety in support of FBI operations . He has been a member of the NFPA Technical Committee for Hazardous Materials Personnel, the IAFC Hazardous Materials Committee, and the Interagency Board (IAB). Prior to joining the FBI THRU in 1999, he served 23 years as an EMS, Fire, Hazmat, Dive, and Technical Rescue responder/supervisor in Jefferson County (Louisville), Kentucky, and has an MS in adult education from the University of Louisville.
Biography : Matt Krimsky Completed a full, rich, and rewarding career of 30 years with the San Francisco Police Department, retiring September 01, 2012, in the rank of Inspector-Sergeant. He served as a Patrol and Traffic Officer, Field Supervisor, Training Sergeant, and Detective, specializing in Traffic and Environmental crimes for over 1/3 of his career. He remains a P.O.S.T. subject matter resource in HazMat and WMD. In October, 2012, he was hired as a full time Instructor-Coordinator II with the California Specialized Training Institute. At CSTI, he manages the Technician C/D Weeks, Technician-Specialist Refresher, and WMD Technician Terrorism Training courses. Matt has been honored with the James Meidl “Instructor of the year” award in 2003, and was the Keynote speaker in 2008 and 2018.
Biography : George Lane is Project Manager for University of California at Berkeley Center for Catastrophic Risk Management (CCRM) Port Security Project funded by California OES. CCRM will conduct chemical security awareness training, conduct Hazardous Material Commodity Flow Studies, and conduct field demonstrations of standoff chemical-specific detection at the 11 California deepwater ports. Lane is chemical security SME for the Emerging Technologies Subcommittee of the U.S. Transportation Research Board (TRB) Committee on Transportation of Hazardous Materials.Using TRB methodologies, the HMCFS will use TRI and RMP chemical data to assess the economic and national security impacts of the storage and use of hazardous materials transported by not only maritime, but also by rail, trucking, and pipelines that may interrupt the transportation of commerce in counties that have deepwater ports.
Biography : This is my 3rd year as a lead instructor for the Continuing challenge. I am a Haz-Mat Specialist and Special Operations K-9 handler with 24 years in the fire service and 15 with the Sacramento Fire Department.
Biography : William Miller began his Fire Service career in 1991 with the Tacoma Fire Department (WA) and accepted a position on its HazMat response team in 1995. At the time of retirement in May 2017 he specialized in instrumentation, research/analysis, system integration, and grant writing. In addition to serving as the lead HM/CBRN response instructor for TFD, he also taught at the Washington State Fire Training Academy covering subjects in chemical/ physical properties and CBRN/terrorism response. Education includes a B.S.in Business Administration from Central Washington University with extensive coursework in chemistry and biology. Mr. Miller also served on the FEMA sponsored Washington Task Force 1 USAR team for 23 years starting as a Rescue Specialist followed by 12 years as a HazMat manager. Currently Mr. Miller provides training and advice to Fire Dept. based HazMat/CBRN response teams.
Biography : Robert C. Neumann is a retired U.S. Army Chemical Corps Lieutenant Colonel. He currently is the Director of Marketing & Training Support for QuickSilver Analytics (QS). He is a recognized subject matter expert in CBRN sampling and field identification. He served multiple combat tours in Afghanistan and Iraq as part of a Special Operations Task Force, where he led or supervised sampling operations to identify possible weapons of mass destruction. He currently provides training for QS on their CBRN sampling kits and tools. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from Norwich University and a Master of Arts in Military Studies (Low Intensity Conflict) from the American University. He also has a certificate from Central Alabama Community College in Hazards Material Management.
Biography : Greg Noll serves as the Senior Planning Specialist for the South Central PA Regional Task Force (SCTF), one of nine regional task forces established throughout Pennsylvania. Greg is also the principal of GGN Technical Resources LLC, a consulting firm specializing in emergency planning, response and incident management issues. Greg has 48 years of experience in the fire service and emergency response community, and is the co-author of nine textbooks on hazardous materials emergency response and management topics, including Pipeline Emergencies. In 2011 he was the recipient of the John M. Eversole Lifetime Achievement Award by the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) for his leadership and contributions to further and enhance the hazardous materials emergency response profession. He currently serves as past Chairperson - NFPA Technical Committee on Hazardous Materials / WMD Response Personnel and is past State/Local Co-Chair for the InterAgency Board (IAB) for Emergency Preparedness and Response - Training and Exercise SubGroup. Greg also serves as a member of the IAFC Hazardous Materials Committee, the Fire Engineering Magazine Editorial Advisory Board, and the Fire Department Instructors Conference (FDIC) Advisory Committee.
Biography : Dr. Mark L. Norman is the Director of Field Forensics Applications of 908 Devices based in Boston, Massachusetts. He holds a Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where he investigated the infrared optical properties of upper atmospheric aerosols. He is an author on seven peer-reviewed publications, including a 2003 collaboration with global climatology scientists from NASA. For the past 18 years, Dr. Norman has worked with monitoring technologies for emergency response, and he holds two patents for the development of hazardous vapor identification systems. He has developed and delivered numerous scenario-based training courses for chemical detectors and has taught chemical sciences at Bridgewater State University. Dr. Norman’s areas of analytical expertise include FT-IR, Raman, IR lasers, mass spectrometry, and chemical sensing.
Biography : Gail retired after 28 years on the San Bernardino County Interagency HazMat team. She is a Registered Environmental Health Specialist with a degree in Animal Biology. Other certifications include Master Exercise Practitioner (MEP), CSTI Outreach Instructor and POST Advanced Instructor. She served as the HM/CT Coordinator for her department as well as the TLO Coordinator. In addition Gail was the Liaison to Public Health, Law Enforcement and the Hospitals. She works closely with the CSTs and the FBI designing specialized training and exercises. Currently she is also a contract instructor for the Center for Domestic Preparedness.
Biography : Miller is currently the Technical Product Manager and a member of the Research and Development Board at Kappler, where his current focus is on product development, design improvement, and customized training specific to the needs of the end user. Through multiple projects with fire/rescue, medical, and law enforcement personnel, Miller has gained valuable insight in to the demanding applications existing in the workplace today. Since 2013, Miller has partnered with Kappler’s Technical Director, Mr. Philip Mann, in providing on-site educational classes at various facilities and training centers across the country.
Biography : Michael Pixton has conducted hazardous waste inspections and emergency response actions for the Dept. of Toxic Substances Control for the last 30 years. During this time he has been the lead person/project manager on large scale removals, wildfire response (hazmat removal after the fire), establishment of a drug lab cleanup standard, and it the technical expert for DTSC in several fields.
Biography : Karen Riveles is a Toxicologist and Emergency Response Coordinator with the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) in the California Environmental Protection Agency (Cal/EPA). She provides consultation on toxicology and public health with an emphasis on hazardous material emergency planning, coordinates with other federal/state/local toxicologists and emergency response agents on issues concerning regulated hazardous chemicals, and conducts scientific reviews of guidance and regulations that affect the state’s handling of chemical disasters. Karen has worked with CalEPA’s Emergency Response and Management Committee (ERMaC) for nine years in emergency planning, preparedness and response. Karen has been teaching at Continuing Challenge since 2011.
Biography : Sergeant Roha supervises the Hazardous Materials Unit within the California Highway Patrol\'s (CHP) Commercial Vehicle Section, in Sacramento. He has been employed by the CHP for 22 years, with the last 13 years focusing on commercial vehicle enforcement and hazardous materials transportation and emergency response.
Biography : Rohner, Susanne Hazmat Manager, California Department of Transportation Work phone: 530-225-3263, Email: email@example.com An emergency responder for over 35 years, the current hazardous materials manager for Caltrans in Northeast California, a private business owner, and a former survival instructor, Ms. Rohner brings her unique perspective of cool and amazing stuff to this years continuing challenge. Bringing with her diverse experiences and insights, from 2 decades as an emergency response supervisor, bridge rescue climber, and certified hazmat and NIMS/SEMS/ICS instructor, to managing unusual hazmat incidents in some of the most remote parts of California, to leading seminars on disaster response in desolate terrain for focused-deployment disciplines, she has a wealth and breadth of knowledge to share.
Biography : 30 year veteran professional firefighter, 10-year field paramedic, original author/instructor of the California State Fire Marshals Office Hazardous Materials Technician C&D modules. Attended the National Fire Academy, Mercury Nevada Radiation Officer and COBRA training at Anniston, Alabama. Authored components of the Uniform Fire Code Article 80 and developed site mapping standards used nationally. Currently the CEO/Owner of Cobra Rescue Litters, LLC working for the past ten years developing a new approach for field rescue of non-ambulatory victims.
Biography : I have been in the propane industry for the past 35 years. I have been involved in all different aspects of the industry from training new employees to regulatory liaison. For eleven years I worked in the ASME, DOT cargo tank manufacturing industry. Currently I serve as the consultant to the Western Propane Gas Association on hazardous material issues. I am also an instructor for certified employee training for the Western Propane Gas Association, as well as an instructor for the propane transportation emergency response program. I am an instructor for the California Dept. of Forestry propane fire safety training class. I am a member of U.S. DOT (COHMED) group this is a cooperative effort between DOT enforcement and industry on hazardous material issues and also serves as a cargo tank instructor for the Transportation Safety Institute. I have also written risk management programs for compliance with the clean air act 112 (r) of the US EPA and Fire Safety analysis
Biography : Sgt. Michael J. Seligsohn, El Dorado County Sheriff\'s Office, is a thirty-two year law enforcement veteran who supervises a twelve pilot Unmanned Aerial Systems Unit that serves as an all hazards response asset of EDSO. He has flown hundreds of missions, and commanded many hundreds more. These range from tactical overwatch, to Search and Rescue, HazMat and disaster response and crime scene photography. Seligsohn\'s experience in HazMat began twenty-five years ago as a San Francisco Community College District Police Sergeant when he completed CSTI\'s incident command course and served as his agency\'s HazMat coordinator for fifteen years. Sgt. Seligsohn has also served as a Field Training Officer and Manger, a Hostage Negotiator, Crisis Intervention Team Member and Manager as well as a Search and Rescue Coordinator. As the Commander of the UAS Unit working at the front end of this emerging technology Seligsohn has been involved in developing flight protocols, and training with the Airborne Public Safety Association. Additionally he has presented classes at CSTI and CHMIA and prior Continuing Challenges.
Biography : Todd dedicated over 15 years to Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department. He was assigned to the HazMat Team (Eng Co 7) in 1992 and was soon promoted from Firefighter to Engineer to Lieutenant, within the same house. During those years spent on the HazMat Team, Todd attended over 1,000 hours of training. He was honored to serve on America’s first Fire Service Hazmat Team, where he gained an immense amount of knowledge frim his experiences. Todd began teaching as soon as he started his career with Jacksonville Fire Rescue, as a CPR and First Aid instructor. He soon furthered his instructor experience, as a OSHA Compliance and HAZWOPER regional trainer and was hired in 2006 as an IAFF Hazmat/WMD Master Instructor. Throughout his career, he was also directly involved in developing Hazmat Ops and Tech programs. In 2008, he was invited to join HazMatIQ’s Training Team, as one of its inaugural trainers. Todd is now a Senior Instructor for HazMatIQ, and has been an integral part in the development of PropaneIQ, where he is the lead instructor.
Biography : Gary served 32 years in the fire service that included 20 years as a fire chief. He has a bachelors degree in Fire Administration and is a community college and FEMA advanced degree program instructor. Gary co-founded the Ammonia Safety & Training Institute in 1991 which is a non-profit 501 (c)3 organization dedicated to making ammonia the safest managed hazmat in the world.
Biography : Dante began his career with FEMA in 2008 as a Program Analyst within the Grant Programs Directorate (GPD). As a Program Analyst, he served as a federal point of contact for the administration of the DHS/FEMA Homeland Security Preparedness Grants which focus on preventing; protecting against; mitigating; responding to; and recovering from terrorist related threats and incidents. Dante also served as the co-lead for the FEMA/GPD Preparedness Grants Division, Risk Analysis and Strategic Initiatives branch (RASI). The RASI branch is responsible for overseeing the risk analysis and methodologies, as well as grant allocations, related to the risk based Non-Disaster Preparedness Grant Programs, most importantly the State Homeland Security Grant Program and the Urban Area Security Initiative. Dante currently serves as an Emergency Management Specialist within the FEMA Office of Response and Recovery/Response Directorate/CBRN Office where he works on developing key policy document, building resources and establishing relationships between Federal, State, Tribal, Territorial and Local stakeholders within our nation to better prepare, detect and respond to natural or manmade CBRN incidents with a focus on Chemical related incidents. Prior to coming to FEMA, Dante held a position in the private sector as a CBRNE (Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and Explosive) Specialist. This position focused on the use of advanced CBRNE detection technology and the response to terrorist threats and incidents involving CBRNE agents. His role ranged from first responder to potential terrorist related CBRNE threats and incidents; to helping develop program Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for the early detection and response to such threats and incidents. Dante is a 1996 graduate of the Pennsylvania State University where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Resource Management.
Biography : Sam Summers has worked in the Fire and hazmat industry since 1989 ,he spent 15 years as a FF/Hazmat tech before becoming the Cooperate Trainer for AIM gas detection,where he taught gas detection around the world. He taught at Teex annual and spring schools for several years , and until 2012 worked with the Williamson County Hazmat team in Texas . He is currently the Operations Mgr of GASES 101 LLc in Round Rock Texas.
Biography : Chief Talbot started his career with CAL FIRE/Riverside County Fire Department in April of 1985. Chief Talbot served as a Firefighter/Paramedic and Fire Apparatus Engineer/Paramedic in various location in Riverside County until his promotion to Fire Captain in 1989. In his almost 20-year tenure as a Fire Captain; Chief Talbot served as an Engine Captain, Truck Captain, Haz Mat Captain, and Training Officer. During this same period, Chief Talbot served on the FIRESCOPE Hazardous Materials Working Group and the FIRESCOPE High-Rise Working Group. The aforementioned groups developed nationally recognized standard command and control structures for hazardous materials and high-rise emergencies. Chief Talbot promoted to Battalion Chief in July of 2009 and was assigned to the Indio Battalion. In January of 2015, Chief Talbot and the other members of the Riverside County Fire Department High-Rise Operations Cadre were recognized with a CAL FIRE Director’s Award. The High-Rise Operations Cadre has been in existence since 1998 and taught over 1000 students. In November of 2015, Chief Talbot promoted to Division Chief and oversaw the West Desert Division of Cal Fire/Riverside County Fire Department. The cities of Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage, Indian Wells, and Desert Hot Springs, along with large areas of unincorporated Riverside County make up the West Desert Division. Chief Talbot’s received a promotion in November of 2016 to Deputy Chief of the Eastern Operational Area. The Eastern Operational Area consists of three Divisions, six Battalions, 32 fire stations, and the Oak Glen Conservation Camp. There are over four hundred Cal Fire/Riverside County Fire Department personnel assigned to the Eastern Operational Area. From January to August of 2018, it was Chief Talbot’s honor to be the acting Cal Fire Unit Chef and Riverside County Fire Chief. Chief Talbot worked diligently to keep the Department moving forward towards the transition to the permanent Unit Chief/Fire Chief. Chief Talbot retired from Cal Fire in November of 2018 after 33 years of service. Chief Talbot freely acknowledges that his career would not have been possible without the support of his wife, Catherine. Catherine’s support, help, and encouragement were invaluable.
Biography : Jim is the Course Manager for Specialist F & G weeks, ASO, and Railcar courses. Serving as the HazMat Section Lead, Jim is responsible for managing the CSTI Field Training Facility, coordinating with other HazMat Program managers, and preparing updates to training. He has a background in Fire/HazMat , with over 30 years experience in response, mitigation, and management. Jim was a recipient of the James Meidle Instructor of the year award in 2014.
Biography : Myles background includes involvement with the compressed gas industry since 1996. He has successfully managed two DOT Licensed Hydrostatic testing facilities and currently consults for organizations setting up their own facilites. Along with these facilities he has been teaching compressed gas cylinder safety training for Professional Cylinder Inspectors (PCI) since 2008. In addition to this, his background includes 7 years involvement with the Army National Guard\'s 103rd Civil Support Team (CST) – WMD where he served as the Operations officer and Deputy Commander. The 103rd CST is one of 53 federally organized HAZMAT Teams. While on the 103rd CST, he was a member of the State of Alaska HAZMAT working group, Joint Terrorism Task Force, and multiple statewide exercise planning committees. Additional assignments include working in the Hawaii and Arkansas Emergency Operations Centers. Currently he serves part time in the Army Reserves as the Regional Operations Officer for the FEMA Region 6 Defense Coordinating Element. His certifications include Hazardous Materials Technician, a bachelor\'s degree and masters degree in Emergency Management (University of Alaska), and a master\'s degree in Management (University of Texas).
Biography : Curt Thompson is the Senior Training Manager for Federal Resources, the parent company of HazMatIQ. As Training Manager, Curt oversees and assists with the development and execution of customized CBRNE response management courses and exercises for various branches of the US Military and response agencies throughout the US. Previously Curt spent over 20 years in the fire service, including working full time for the Waterford Fire Department serving as Captain, Training Officer and Paramedic. Additionally Curt worked with the Waterford Police Department, as a SWAT Team Tactical Medic, the OAKWAY HazMat Team as a Hazardous Materials Team Coordinator and Michigan State Police as Program Manager for Emergency Management Homeland Security Division.
DANA VON KOLEN
Biography : Retired Phoenix Fire Department with 25 years of service including 23 years on the hazardous material team. Recipient of the Phoenix Fire Department Ricky Pierce Hazmat Award for outstanding contribution and excellence. Graduate UCLA and certified instructor since 1995. Certified in multiple technologies including IMS, GC/MS, Infrared, Raman, XRAY, etc. President of VON KOLEN Training & Consulting since 2001, specializing in customized hazmat training and education. Continuing Challenge instructor since 2003.
Biography : Nick Vent Retired from the County of San Diego, Environmental Health Department, Hazardous Materials Division (HMD) in 2014. He managed the County of San Diego’s Hazardous Incident Response Team (HIRT), which responds to all hazardous chemical releases in a jurisdiction of 4200 square miles with 18 cities. Since then he has been assisting businesses with understanding Hazardous Materials. Mr. Vent is an award winning, state certified hazardous materials response instructor with 30 plus years’ experience training and certifying fire, law enforcement, and environmental professionals who respond to chemical emergencies. He also teaches various environmental health courses at several colleges in California, across the USA and internationally.
Biography : Libby Vianu joined ATSDR and the San Francisco Regional Office in 2000 and became Regional Director in 2016. She began her Federal career in 1997 at EPA Region 3 where she was a Site Assessment Manager and On-Scene Coordinator in the Superfund Program. Prior to her federal career, Libby was a contractor for EPA Region 3, supporting emergency response to hazardous materials incidents and a geologist for a clean-up contractor. Libby earned her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Geology from Hampshire College in Massachusetts. Libby’s accomplishments at ATSDR Region 9 have included the Fallon Cancer Cluster investigation, Anaconda Mine Site, and El Dorado Hills Naturally Occurring Asbestos sites. She was a founding member of the California Air Response Planning Alliance (CARPA) and has coordinated a variety of training and preparedness courses (Chemical Agents of Opportunity for Terrorism and Health Effects of Methamphetamine Labs) for first responders, medical and environmental health professionals and tribal programs.
Biography : With 24+ years of experience in strength and conditioning, sports performance and post rehab training, Coach Eve\'s dynamic experience allows her to bring a different element to her coaching. She is excellent at providing modifications for any person and any issue presented. Her coaching style focuses on proper technique, education, dynamic programming and motivation. Her areas of expertise and passion for health and fitness are Fire, Military and Police Fitness, Strength and Conditioning, Pilates Apparatus (Postural Awareness), Pre-Operation and Post-Rehabilitation, Speed and Agility, Olympic and Power Lifting, Nutrition Counseling, Fall Risk reduction (55+adults). Eve’s educational background consists of a Master’s of Science in Exercise Science (Rehabilitation Science and Sport Psychology Dual Concentration-Completion Spring 2019), Bachelors of Science in Kinesiology (Exercise Science), Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS-NSCA), Sports Performance Coach (USA Weightlifting), CrossFit Coach Level 1, Certified Personal Trainer (CSUS), Certified Speed Specialist (NASE-CSS), Functional Movement Specialist (FMS), and Pilates Reformer 1 & 2 (Balanced Body). Eve keeps her knowledge current by continuing her studies at the graduate level and continuing education course throughout the year. She became interested in exercise science as a high school athlete on the wrestling team. Eve focused the first part of her career on special interest groups such as, clients ranging from San Jose Sharks Professional Hockey Team, CSU Sacramento, American River and Sierra College athletes from a variety of sports, Sierra College Regional Fire Academy Cadets (pre and post academy), South Placer Fire Department, Physician and Physical Therapists referrals with various health conditions such as, joint replacements, spinal issues (Stenosis, fusions, Spondylolisthesis, etc.), cardiac rehab, as well as Parkinson’s, Multiple Sclerosis, Breast Cancer, Diabetes, Stroke, Osteoporosis, Scoliosis, Arthritis, COPD and Autism in children. Coach Eve has expanded the second half of her career to a lifelong dream and goal to be the Health and Fitness Coach for Sacramento Fire Department (SFD). She began her journey with SFD in 2016, and is looking forward to many more fulfilling years as part of the SFD family. Besides her professional experience, she has a competitive athletic background including, soccer, wrestling, volleyball, basketball, and softball. When Eve is not promoting a healthy and balanced lifestyle, she enjoys spending time with her husband and daughters, practicing Jiu Jitsu, traveling and taking her dog with her on running adventures.
Biography : Michael Weisenberg is a Battalion Chief for the Ventura County Fire Department. Chief Weisenberg has promoted through the ranks and has been with the department for 21 years. During his tenure he has had a variety of assignments including being assigned to the Haz-Mat and USAR stations. He is currently assigned to the Special Operations Battalion on C shift located in Camarillo.
Biography : Bill Wennhold is a 41 year veteran of public safety serving from entry firefighter, paramedic, captain, district officer, hazmat specialist and instructor. He is a founding member of one the first inter-agency hazmat teams in California in the early 1990s. Over the course of his career he has taught over 4,000 professionals in fire science, EMS and hazmat special operations and was recognized as the CSTI/ CSFM/ Continuing Challenge hazmat instructor of the year in 2013.
Biography : Charlie Wright managed Union Pacific Railroad\'s hazardous material training programs for over 30 years before retiring in 2009 – developing and implementing both regulatory and response training programs for UP employees and response programs for local emergency response personnel. He continues to service as a principal member of the NFPA Technical Committee on Hazardous Materials Response Personnel as he has since 1986. He received the NFPA Special Achievement Award in 2017 for his work on the committee. He taught in the Fire Protection Technology Program at the University of Nebraska for over 20 years. He continues to provide training programs for members of the response community in retirement.
Biography : Sauda Yerabati is the Environmental Health Support Coordinator at the Center for Environmental Health at the California Department of Public Health. She works with the emergency preparedness and response team where her main focus is to bring the CDC’s Environmental Health Training in Emergency Response (EHTER) workshops to counties and regions across California. Sauda previously worked as the Chemical Threat Response Coordinator for the Laboratory Response Network for chemical threats (LRN-C). She entered Public Health as an Environmental Health Scientist working on statewide studies of cancer risk factors and clinical neuroepidemiological studies on Parkinson’s disease risk factors. Sauda holds a Master’s degree in Public Health specializing in Environmental Health Sciences and Toxicology, from UC Berkeley. Her Bachelor’s Honors Degree is in Applied and Human Biology from Aston University, UK.
Biography : Tom is a Certified CAMEO Instructor and enjoys conducting CAMEO training classes all over the world. In 2014 and 2015, Tom conducted CAMEO training in Istanbul Turkey, Rabat Morocco, Nairobi Kenya, and Vilnius, Lithuania. Tom has provided CAMEO training in Szezcin, Poland as part of the USDOD Partners for Peace program attended by HazMat planners and responders from the nations of Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Ukraine, Poland, and Russia. Tom has conducted CAMEO classes in 45 U.S. states, and for a number of military and U.S. government agencies, including the U.S. Chemical Safety Board, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy, U.S. Army, USEPA, NOAA, FEMA, and USDOT. Tom is the Lead Developer and Senior Instructor for the Department of Homeland Security, Office of Domestic Preparedness, “Introduction to CAMEO” courses delivered nationally by the National Center for BioMedial Research and Training (NCBRT). Tom has received several awards including the 2009 USEPA National Notable Achievement Program, CEPP State Partner Award and the 2014 Oklahoma Emergency Management Association Outstanding Contributor of the Year Award. Tom is the co-author of the “CAMEO Companion”, a CAMEO software assistance manual.