#iFIRELAFTC // May 4-6, 2020
Long Beach Convention Center - Seaside Ballroom // Long Beach, CA 90802

Instructors

Our training is developed and instructed by some of most-respected leaders in their discipline. We encourage you to see who’s coming so far - and who is added each week.

Instructors

Derek Alkonis

Derek Alkonis

Assistant Chief, Los Angeles County Fire Department

Derek is a 30-year career veteran of the fire service, serving as an Assistant Chief with the Los Angeles County (CA) Fire Department. He oversees the Air and Wildland Division. Derek has been instrumental in establishing the agency as a leader in fireground safety and fire service wellness/fitness. A firm proponent of training, he has developed and implemented innovative programs supporting fireground tactics, survival, and firefighter health.

Jeff Banman

Jeff Banman

Executive Director, Operation Mindset Foundation

As a former firefighter, U.S. Army Ranger and CIA counterterrorism operator, Jeff has dedicated his life to discovering what separates success from failure. He has conducted operations and been responsible for producing powerful results in over 23 countries, including two combat zones and multiple high-threat environments. He’s worked with senior officials and personnel on the ground. Jeff is known to produce results in highly diverse cultures with tremendous barriers to success and through all of this, he’s learned how to connect, unify, enroll, inspire, move people into action, and produce results that far exceed expectations.

Dr. Corinne Bendersky

Dr. Corinne Bendersky

Founder, Morpho Leadership Development

Corinne has conducted extensive academic research on diversity and inclusion in the fire service and has consulted with numerous fire departments about their workplace cultures. She applies leading social science to provide an evidentiary basis to help the fire service leaders achieve their diversity and inclusion goals.

John Butler

John Butler

Fire Chief, Fairfax County (VA) Fire Department

John became Chief of Fairfax County in Northern Virginia in July. He joined the Howard County (MD) Department of Fire and Rescue Services in 1993. He was appointed chief in 2014. John has served as a firefighter-paramedic, battalion chief, emergency medical services chief, and administrative chief. He served in the U.S. Marine Corps for 21 years. He holds a master’s from Johns Hopkins University. He’s a graduate of the National Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer program. He is a member of the IAFC’s Human Relations Committee and Maryland’s Emergency Medical Services Board.

Scott Campos

Scott Campos

Battalion Chief, Los Angeles Fire Department

Scott has over 30 years of service with the Los Angeles Fire Department. He has held the ranks of FF, FF/PM, Engineer, Captain I, Captain II and Battalion Chief. He served as the drill master for the LAFD Academy for two years. Scott has been a part of LAAFCA’s Regional Training Group (RTG) for 5 1/2 years.

Joe Castro

Joe Castro

Deputy Chief (Ret.), Los Angeles Fire Department

Joe is a 38-year veteran of the Los Angeles Fire Department. He has served as Firefighter, Apparatus Operator, Captain I, Captain II, Battalion Chief, Deputy Chief, and Chief Deputy. Chief Castro’s last assignment was as commander of Emergency Operations, which is organized into four geographic bureaus, 14 battalions, and 106 stations with over 3,000 members, and an annual operating budget of $600 million dollars. Chief Castro has received his department’s highest honor, the LAFD Medal of Valor for bravery, and an Emmy award for his participation in an LAFD news television program.

Derrick Chapman

Derrick Chapman

Battalion Chief, Los Angeles County Fire Department

Derrick is a 21 year veteran of the Los Angeles County Fire Department, currently assigned to Battalion 1 in the high-rise district of West Hollywood and Marina Del Rey. Chief Chapman has spent many years working in a high-rise area as a firefighter, an engineer and now as a battalion chief. In addition, he is a member of the Department-recognized High Rise Committee, responsible for training and equipment.

Chad Cook

Chad Cook

Deputy Chief, Ventura County Fire Department

Chad has 31 years in the fire service, mostly with the Ventura County Fire Department. His responsibilities include managing telecommunications, fleet maintenance, supply, and information technology services. He has used his skills in wildland fire management practices and large scale all risk-incident management. He is a Type-1 Operations Section Chief and a member of a Federal Incident Management Team since 2009. Chad has a bachelor’s degree in organizational culture and leadership and an associate degree in fire science. He attended the NFA for leadership practices and holds many professional fire service qualifications.

Kenneth Cook

Kenneth Cook

Captain, Los Angeles Fire Department

Ken has been a member of the Los Angeles City Fire Department for 18 years. He has held the rank of Firefighter, Apparatus Operator, Emergency Incident Technician, Captain I, and Captain II. He’s established himself in the administration as the Chief Deputy’s Emergency Operations Liaison Officer and has pursued his passion as a training officer with the Los Angeles Area Regional Training Group since 2012. His commitment to increased firefighter safety and agency interoperability, along with his tireless evaluation of emergency responses and desire to perform at the highest level, has separated him as a fire service leader.

Kwame Cooper

Kwame Cooper

Assistant Chief (Ret.), Los Angeles Fire Department

Kwame brings his 38 years of lived experience and leadership with the Los Angeles Fire Department’s evolution in diversity and inclusion to the foundation of this training program. He provides leadership and diversity training in fire service communities throughout the U.S., internationally, and as an instructor at the Los Angeles Fire Department’s Leadership Academy, the National Fire Academy and the Carl Holmes Executive Development Institute. He is a graduate of the Executive Fire Officer program at the National Fire Academy and the Harvard Kennedy School’s executive leadership program. He is currently a candidate in pursuit of a doctorate degree in organizational leadership at Grand Canyon University.

Brian Crawford

Brian Crawford

Senior Vice President, Willis-Knighton Health System

Brian is a 30-year fire service veteran, serving as fire chief in Shreveport (LA) and Plano (TX), administrative officer for Shreveport and is currently a senior vice president and chief administrative officer for Willis-Knighton Health System. He is a Certified Public Manager, Certified Emergency Manager, and a graduate of the National Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer and Harvard University’s Senior Executives in State and Local Government programs. In 2017, he was appointed to the Louisiana State Police Commission and in 2018 to the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) Board. Brian possesses a master’s from Louisiana Tech University.

Marc Davidson

Marc Davidson

Captain, Fairfax County (VA) Fire Department

Marc is a 34-year public servant with over eight years in the U.S. Marine Corps and 26 in fire and rescue.  He has served as a volunteer in North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Maryland and is a 24-year veteran of Fairfax County Fire & Rescue Department. Marc spent 18 years as a bucket firefighter, engine and truck driver, and truck officer. With an earlier assignment in the Training Division as a basic training officer, he has recently been assigned back and charged with developing an officer development training unit for the department.  He teaches regionally and nationally on leadership and tactical fieldcraft and coordinates multiple training opportunities for aspiring and incumbent officers.

Mitch Diehl

Mitch Diehl

Battalion Chief, Los Angeles County Fire Department

Mitch is a 31-year veteran of the fire service currently serving with his agency’s Training Services Division. Prior to promoting to battalion chief, Mitch served as a Wildland Superintendent, training Captain, and station Captain at numerous fire stations. Prior to promoting to Captain, he served as a fire prevention inspector, and engineer on engines and trucks. He spent about seven years as a fire crew supervisor, becoming qualified as a strike team leader. He has also been a paramedic and served on his department’s search and rescue team. Mitch has earned an associate degree from Oxnard College and bachelor’s from California State University in fire administration. Mitch has many CICCS qualifications including Planning Section Chief Type 1. He has been the Planning Section Chief on California Interagency Incident Management Team #4 since 2012.

Sean Escontrias

Sean Escontrias

Battalion Chief, Santa Fe Springs (CA) Fire Department

Sean is a 32-year veteran of the fire service currently serving with the Santa Fe Springs Fire Department, assigned to the Los Angeles Area Regional Training Group. Prior to promoting to Battalion Chief, Sean served as a line Captain on E-32 and as a member of USAR Regional Task Force 2. Sean has earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Cincinnati in fire and safety engineering and is currently working on his master’s. Sean is a credentialed fire officer with the California State Fire Marshal’s Office.

Logan Fields

Logan Fields

Captain, Los Angeles Fire Department

Logan is a 24-year veteran of the fire and emergency service currently serving as a Captain with the Los Angeles Fire Department. Captain Fields is currently assigned to the Los Angeles Regional Training Group focusing on personal and professional development of firefighters, company and chief officers. Prior to promoting to Captain, Logan held the rank of Firefighter, Apparatus Operator, and Staff Assistant with the LAFD.

Bryan Frieders

Bryan Frieders

President, Firefighter Cancer Support Network

Bryan currently serves as the deputy chief of operations for the Pasadena (CA) Fire Department and is the president of the non-profit Firefighter Cancer Support Network (FCSN). Bryan earned a master's in public administration, a bachelor's in vocational education, and an associate degree in fire science. He has more than 29 years of fire and EMS experience, including training, fire prevention, urban search and rescue, and emergency management. He is a liaison to the International Association of Fire Chiefs' Safety, Health and Survival Section, and a member of the National Cancer Alliance.

Johnny Green

Johnny Green

Captain, Los Angeles Fire Department

Johnny began his career 30 years ago with the Los Angeles Fire Department. Prior to promoting to Fire Captain II, he held the positions of firefighter, dispatcher, chief officer’s staff assistant, planning captain, grants management officer, fire prevention officer, and Captain I. Educational accomplishments include the Harvard Kennedy School's executive program, a master's in emergency services administration from California State University Long Beach, a bachelor's in business management from the University of Phoenix, the LAFD's Leadership Academy, and the U.S. Military Academy West Point. He has expertise in large-scale incident management, aircraft rescue firefighting, arson investigations, hazmat, industrial firefighting, grant management, and fire prevention.

Robbie Grego

Robbie Grego

Deputy Chief, Long Beach Fire Department

Robbie is a 25-year veteran of the fire service, currently serving as Deputy Chief of Support Services with the Long Beach FD. Robbie has served as Firefighter, Firefighter/Paramedic, Captain, Training Captain, Battalion Chief, Assistant Chief and Director of Training. Robbie helped develop LBFD’s Officer Development Program. Robbie has completed certifications from Columbia Southern University, Santa Ana, and Cerritos College. He has been an integral part of the Rescue Task Force and is a licensed general contractor.

Jeff Hughes

Jeff Hughes

Captain, Orange County (CA) Fire Authority

Jeff is a Fire Captain with the Orange County Fire Authority with 37 years of firefighting experience. Jeff is a third-generation firefighter whose dad died of occupational cancer after serving 21 years with the Long Beach Fire Department. Jeff is currently assigned to the authority’s Risk Management Department and is the OCFA’s cancer awareness and prevention captain. Jeff is the chair for the FIRESCOPE Behavioral Health Working Group, creating plans for the mental health of future incidents for local, state, and federal partners.

Joe Jardin

Joe Jardin

Deputy Chief, FDNY, NFPA 1700 Committee Chairman

Joe has been with the FDNY for over 34 years. He serves as Assistant Chief and leads 600 personnel. Joe was previously FDNY’s Chief of Safety. He has served in rescue and squad companies and as Battalion Chief in the Rescue Battalion. A longtime member of NY-TF 1 and the FEMA Urban Search and Rescue system, Joe is currently a Deputy Incident Support Team Leader. Joe serves as chair of the NFPA 1700 Technical Committee and has a seven-year appointment to the NFPA Standards Council. Joe received a bachelor’s in Fire Protection Engineering from the University of Maryland and a master’s in management from Thomas Edison State University.

Scott Jennie

Scott Jennie

Captain, Laguna Beach (CA) Fire Department

Scott is a fire captain and paramedic with the Laguna Beach (CA) Fire Department with over 30 years in the fire service. He's also the California director for the Firefighter Cancer Support Network and member of the Laguna Beach Professional Firefighters Association Local 3631.

Frank Leto

Frank Leto

Captain, Deputy Director, FDNY Counseling Service Unit

Frank is a 35-year veteran of the FDNY. His association with the counseling unit began as a crisis counselor for line of duty deaths and mass casualty events. On Sept. 11, 2001 he responded to the World Trade Center as the leader of a rescue team. Since 9/11, he has developed outreach, counseling, and educational programs for firefighters who have experienced traumatic events. He has worked closely with the International Association of Fire Fighters and the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation to develop behavioral health protocols. .  Frank was one the first graduates of the West Point – FDNY Terrorism and Counterterrorism program and is a Certified Employees Assistance Professional.

 Rob Nielsen

Rob Nielsen

CEO / Founder, All American Leadership

A graduate of the U.S. Military Academy West Point, Rob is a former scholar-athlete, a scout and attack helicopter pilot, and Captain in the U.S. Army. In collaboration with the All American Leadership team, he has developed a unique and powerful culture-and-leadership approach for organizational performance and success. For over three decades, working with hundreds of senior leaders and their teams (including CEOs, military leaders, fire chiefs, and others), Rob has repeatedly leveraged this model to accelerate growth and performance, operating from the belief that the greatest success is achieved by inspiring, empowering, and challenging everyone in the organization.

Mynda Ohs, PhD

Mynda Ohs, PhD

Author and Mental Health Provider

As well as authoring a top new release on Amazon, Mynda provides critical incident debriefings, counseling services, as well as instructions at numerous conferences. Additionally, she comes with the experience in the EMS field as an EMT for four years and an emergency room technician. She has over 14 years of experience working in the field of crisis intervention and suicide prevention, and has been married to a Battalion Chief for over 22 years. This has given her a unique perspective of living within the first responder community and family, while adding to her education and professional experiences.

Rick Rochelle

Rick Rochelle

Director of Public Service Leadership, All American Leadership

Rick has a bachelor’s in civil engineering and a master’s in ecology. A National Outdoor Leadership School senior faculty member, he has 32 years and 340 weeks teaching leadership in the forests, glaciers, slopes, cliffs, and rivers of six continents. These include six leadership, 380 expeditions with wildland firefighters, four expeditions with NASA astronauts, 11 with executives, three with Naval Academy faculty and midshipmen, six with land managers, and many more with MBA students. With a certificate in non-profit management, Rick served for 7 years as the director of the school’s professional training.

Drew Smith

Drew Smith

Battalion Chief, Los Angeles County Fire Department

Drew is a 31-year veteran of the fire service currently working as a field Battalion Chief serving Western Los Angeles County. A second-generation firefighter, he started his career with the Los Angeles County hand crew in 1988. Drew and is currently completing his bachelor’s in leadership and organizational development. Drew has served as Firefighter, Firefighter Paramedic, Engineer, Captain, and Superintendent. Drew is a qualified FBAN, OPSC, and RXB1, an instructor for NWCG at the National Advanced Fire and Resource Institute for S-590 since 2004, and a steering committee member.

Tom Stukey

Tom Stukey

Battalion Chief, Los Angeles County Fire Department

Tom is a 31-year veteran of the fire service currently working as a field Battalion Chief serving the Santa Clarita Valley. A second-generation firefighter, he started his career with the Los Angeles County hand crews in 1988. Tom has held the positions of Firefighter, Firefighter Paramedic, Engineer, and Captain and has been a Battalion Chief for the last 7 years. As an Operations Section Chief, Tom has significant experience in both initial attack and extended attack incidents.

Jim Sullivan

Jim Sullivan

Battalion Chief, Los Angeles County Fire Department

Jim has been a member of the Los Angeles County Fire Department for 23 years. He is the current department director of training as well as a California State fire instructor. He is the chairman of the Fire Behavior Committee and has assisted with the continuing development of the fire behavior curriculum taught to the Los Angeles County Fire Department.

Jennifer Taylor

Jennifer Taylor

Director, Center for Firefighter Injury Research and Safety (FIRST), Drexel University

Jennifer is an injury epidemiologist and health services researcher at Drexel's Dornsife School of Public Health. Her research investigates the impact of safety climate on occupational injuries and related psychosocial outcomes. Taylor is the founding director of the Center for Firefighter Injury Research & Safety Trends (FIRST) at Drexel. It's home to the FIRE fellowship, an summer program for public health master's students. FIRST developed two organizational change tools, including the Fire Service Organizational Culture of Safety survey and the SAVER Systems level checklist for violence against EMS responders. Taylor holds a doctorate in health policy and management from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Derek Urwin

Derek Urwin

Engineer, Los Angeles County Fire Department

Derek is a PhD candidate in chemistry at UCLA and has been a firefighter for 13 years, currently serving as engineer with the Los Angeles County Fire Department. Derek is a member of California State Fire Training’s Behavioral Health and Cancer Awareness curriculum development cadre. His doctoral research is in the areas of applied mathematics and physical chemistry with a focus on developing computational methods to examine the structural and thermodynamic features of PAH-DNA adducts.

Dean Zipperman

Dean Zipperman

Assistant Chief, Los Angeles Fire Department

Dean is a member of the Los Angeles Fire Department with over 34 years of fire ground leadership experience. Dean is currently the Assistant Bureau Commander of Operations at the West Bureau. An officer for over 16 years, he is the LAFD FIRESCOPE representative. Chief Zipperman continues to serve as an instructor at the LAFD Leadership Academy, and he’s also a department training officer. Dean routinely shares his experience and day-to-day approach as a supervisor to help influence the culture of today’s fire service.

Contact Us

Tim Sendelbach

Tim Sendelbach

Vice President/Chief of Public Safety Operations, iFIRE International

(310) 533-2421
[email protected]

Cyndie Norman

Cyndie Norman

Conference Manager, iFIRE International

(310) 533-2551
[email protected]