A 34-year fire service veteran, Gary served 26 years with the Los Angeles City Fire Department, rising to the rank of Assistant Chief, as well as eight years as Fire Chief for the Hillsboro Fire Department in Oregon. During this time, he gained invaluable knowledge and experience while assigned to several Incident Management Teams as an Area Commander, Incident Commander, Operations Section Chief, and Planning Section Chief. He is a published author, course developer, job aid designer, and senior instructor and evaluator for EMSI.
Throughout his time in the fire service, Gary gained extensive experience in a wide range of local, regional, and national level incidents and special events. Some of these noteworthy IMT responses include: Deepwater Horizon, World Trade Center, Salt Lake City 2002 Winter Olympics, Northridge Earthquake, Los Angeles Civil Disturbance, Los Angeles Academy Awards, Sacramento Floods, TOPOFF 3 & 4, Columbine High School Shooting, as well numerous wildland incidents.
Recognized as a subject matter expert, Gary has presented to international audiences on numerous fire service topics. Speaking on a myriad of issues, his topics have included command and control/strategy and tactics, urban search and rescue, swift water rescue, weapons of mass destruction, emergency management and incident command courses. Additionally, he has served as an instructor and course developer for the Department of Justice, Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency, and the National Fire Academy.
Gary maintains a connection to his roots though his involvement on many ancillary projects. He served as an Advisory Board member for Fire Engineering Magazine from 2000 to 2013 and as a member of the Steering Committee for the Pacific Northwest Wildland Coordinating Center. Committed to developing tomorrow’s emergency planners, Gary has served as an Adjunct Professor for Concordia University’s Homeland Security Emergency Preparedness and Management Course and for Portland State University’s Emergency Management and Homeland Security Program – Emergency Leadership Course.
Gary holds an Associate of Arts Degree in Fire Science, Bachelor of Arts Degree in Environmental Biology (California State University Northridge), and a Masters of Public Administration (Portland State University). He is also a graduate of the National Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer Program, as well as a Chief Fire Officer Designee from the Commission of Public Safety Excellence & Professional Credentialing.