With over 35 years of experience in all-hazards emergency incident management responses and training, Don retired from the United States Forest Service prior to joining EMSI’s cadre. His last assignment prior to retirement was as the Deputy Chief on the Tahoe National Forest, where he oversaw suppression activities, Incident Management Teams, and the coordinated activities with twenty-four State, local government and volunteer fire districts during fire events.
Having served on four Incident Management Teams, Don bring immeasurable knowledge and experience to the EMSI cadre and our clients. As a member of a National Incident Management Team during Hurricane Katrina, Don was first assigned to Baton Rouge, LA, to assist in setting up a staging camp for incoming crews, individuals, and equipment. After accomplishing that within four days, he turned the camp over to others to manage and was subsequently sent to the French Quarter in New Orleans to establish two base camps to provide food, shelter, sanitation, and other necessities for 7,000-plus relief personnel, including the police, firefighters, military, and utility workers.
Currently, Don is assigned to California Interagency Incident Management Team 4. He has deployed to numerous complex incidents over the years, to include wildland fires and hurricane response and recovery throughout the United States. During the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010, Don was assigned as an Incident Command System (ICS) Advisor to senior leadership and as a trainer working with the U.S. Coast Guard and BP Oil.
A nationally recognized expert in incident management, Don has served as a position evaluator, coach, and instructor for EMSI, working with a myriad of Federal, state, and local government, as well as our private industry clients. He is a certified instructor for the National Wildfire Coordinating Group (NWCG), California State Fire Marshal, State Fire Training suppression and basic leadership courses, including sand table based Tactical Decision Games. Don has remained active in all-hazard incident management and holds qualifications as Type 1 Operations Section Chief and Type 1 Safety Officer.
Don has an Associate of Science degree in Park Management, successfully completed a two-year graduate level course of study in Technical Fire Management, and completed Advanced Incident Management, S-520, at the National Advanced Fire and Resource Institute in Tucson, Arizona.