If people don't want to come out to the ball park, nobody's going to stop them. -- Yogi Berra
Chief Billy Goldfeder, EFO, a firefighter since 1973, serves as Deputy Fire Chief of the Loveland-Symmes FD in S.W. Ohio. LSFD is an ISO Class 2, full service ALS department providing a full range of traditional and non-traditional emergency & community services. A Chief Officer since 1982, he has served as a Fire Chief in Ohio, Virginia and Florida. Chief Goldfeder also served as a Public Protection representative covering southern New York, for I.S.O. as well as a Company Officer, starting with the Manhasset-Lakeville F.D., in Long Island, N.Y.
A 1993 graduate of the National Fire Academy's Executive Fire Officer Program, he is the former Chair of the International Association of Fire Chiefs VCOS Section. In 2001, Chief Goldfeder was honored with an appointment of Hon. Battalion Chief of F.D.N.Y. and is a member of the Board of Directors of the September 11th Families Association, the Board of Directors of the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation and provides assistance to the NIOSH Fire Fighter Fatality Investigation and Prevention Program . Additionally, he is the recipient of numerous operational and administrative awards and recognitions and received the Loveland-Symmes FD Departmental Award of Excellence in 2003, the ISFSI Fire Instructor of The Year Award for 2004, the Dana Hannon Fire Training Award for 2004, the I.A.F.C’s Presidential Award for 2005, the 2007 IFSTA Everett E. Hudiburg Memorial Award for firefighter training excellence and the 2007 Nassau County (N.Y.) Frances X. Pendl Fire Service Humanitarian Award.
Chief Goldfeder recently completed his 6th year as a Commissioner on the Commission of Fire Accreditation International. He serves as an Associate/Contributing Editor for FIRE ENGINEERING, FIRE RESCUE, FIREHOUSE as well as Firehouse.Com and is a member of the F.E.T.N. (Fire and Emergency Television Network) Advisory Board. He has spoken on, as well as published, numerous articles on subjects such as combination FD's, fire command and tactics, firefighter/fireground safety, apparatus design and deployment and fireground staffing. His monthly column "Close Calls" appears in FIREHOUSE Magazine and his bi-weekly radio show “Through The Smoke” is hosted on Firehouse.com.
Chief Goldfeder has served on several NFPA and IAFC Committees, is the Chair of the IAFC’s Safety, Health and Survival Section, serves on the National Firefighter Near-Miss Reporting Task Force (IAFC) and has been an Instructor at the Fire Department Instructors Conference (F.D.I.C.) for the past 25 years as well as a member of the FDIC Advisory Board for the past 15 years. He has and does provide consulting services for municipal and private corporations with a clear focus on firefighter safety and survival. Chief Goldfeder, along with Captain Gordon Graham, police/fire service risk management expert, attorney and California Highway Patrol Captain, founded the website: www.FireFighterCloseCalls.com, a 100% non-commercial, independent and free site with only 1 focus: Firefighter Safety, Survival and Getting Everyone Home. We also founded and host the EMS based website, www.EMSCloseCalls.com which is coordinated by the members of the IAFC EMS Section.
Gordon Graham is the co-founder of www.FireFighterCloseCalls.com.
Gordon is a 40 year veteran of California Law Enforcement. His education as a Risk Manager and experience as a practicing Attorney, coupled with his extensive background in law enforcement, have allowed him to rapidly become recognized as a leading professional speaker in both private and public sector organizations with multiple areas of expertise.
In 1973 Gordon was selected as a candidate for the California Highway Patrol. Thereafter, he proudly served as a motorcycle officer for most of his first ten years in the Los Angeles area. In addition to his patrol work, he helped design the first DUI task force, assisted in the development of the DRE (drug recognition program), was an instructor in the initial “Mod I and II” Haz Mat program, and wrote his first of many technical papers: “PCP–An Officer’s Survival Guide.”
Simultaneously he was furthering his formal education during his off hours. Spending two years at Long Beach State College under the tutelage of Dr. Richard Kaywood led to his receiving a Lifetime Teaching Credential.
Following this degree, he attended University of Southern California in their Institute of Safety and Systems Management. He will quickly tell you that this was the best education he ever received from the best and the brightest people in the field. His professors included Chaytor Mason, Ted Ferry, Bill Petak and Harry Hurt. His relationship with Professor Hurt led to his being selected as a team member collecting data for The Hurt Report. Published in 1980, this report on motorcycle fatalities was and is recognized as the single greatest treatise on motorcycle safety.
After completing his Masters, his off duty time was then spent at Western State University School of Law, where he was graduated in 1982 with his Juris Doctorate. He passed the California Bar Exam the same year and opened his law offices in Hollywood, where he focused his efforts on family law, immigration and personal injury work.
In his law enforcement life, Gordon was promoted to Sergeant in 1982 and supervised his former unit–the motorcycle cops of his agency assigned to Los Angeles. He and his fellow Sergeants on "B” shift stressed the values and beliefs and built the most productive team of motorcycle officers in the history of the department.
During this time period, he saw deficiencies in how officers were trained, and revolutionized law enforcement training in California with his SROVT program: Solid, Realistic, Ongoing, Verifiable, Training. This daily training bulletin concept resulted in his later being awarded the California Governor’s award for excellence in law enforcement training.
His personal life took a definite change for the better when he met his lovely bride, Reneé, and they were married in 1983. In 1992 Gordon was transferred to a staff position and assigned to headquarters where he continued his work in law enforcement training. He also sharpened his focus on how his education and training in systems and his legal background could work together to improve the quality of law enforcement operations by incorporating real risk management into police operations.
During this time window he commenced delivering his training programs to private sector organizations, including those involved in commercial real estate, hospital operations, manufacturing companies, aerospace operations, nuclear power plants, auto racing operations and many others.
He also expanded his efforts to assist other public safety organizations and in 2002 worked with Chief Billy Goldfeder to develop FireFighterCloseCalls.comwhich is now recognized as “the source” for information about fire fighter safety. This effort led to his assisting the International Association of Fire Chiefs with a similar effort–and the development of their FireFighterNearMiss.com safety site.
In 2005 the International Association of Fire Chiefs awarded Gordon with the Presidential Award for Excellence for his lifelong work in improving firefighter safety and performance.
In 2002, along with Bruce Praet, Gordon became a founder of Lexipol–a company designed to standardize policy, procedure and training in public safety operations. Today, most of the law enforcement agencies in California are using the Lexipol Knowledge Management System and nearly half of the States are now using this approach to law enforcement operations. This effort has greatly improved the safety of police personnel while also influencing a dramatic reduction in claims, settlements and verdicts adverse to law enforcement agencies.
In 2006 the idea of a Lexipol fire related program was discussed by Gordon and after 10 years of intense research and development, the Lexipol FIRE program was born. Here is a short video about that: https://lexipol.wistia.com/medias/debg1bshta
Gordon held his law enforcement headquarters assignment until his service retirement in 2006. In 2008, he was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award from California POST. In 2015, he received the Lifetime Dedication Award from the International Public Safety Leadership and Ethics Institute.
In 2018, the National Air Traffic Controllers Association gave Gordon two special honors before he took the stage at CFS for the fifth straight year. First, he was presented with an honorary NATCA membership that the 17th Biennial Convention voted last April in Philadelphia to bestow on him. Next, Gordon was given the James Oberstar Sentinel of Safety Award.
Today, Gordon divides his time between study, research, writing, speaking, and consulting in the discipline of risk management. His innovative programs, based on the values and beliefs he learned as a child along with a passion for continuous improvement, are the standard for any organization that wants to improve existing operations and prevent things from going wrong.
He and “Mrs. G” are the proud parents of two adult children–who hopefully will take the values and beliefs along with them in their personal and professional lives. A resident of Southern California, he enjoys spending every possible moment with Mrs. G “cruising the coast” either in their vintage wooden boat or their wooden car and finding new adventures and new places to enjoy a great meal.
Forest Reeder began his fire service career in 1978. He serves as Fire Chief of the Tinley Park Fire Department. Forest is the Fire Officer 1 & 2 coordinator for the Illinois Fire Chiefs Association and also serves as the Eastern Regional Director of the International Society of Fire Service Instructors (ISFSI).
Additionally, Forest is the author of the weekly drill feature at www.firefighterclosecalls.com and at www.fireengineering.com. He has instructed at FDIC for over 10 years and trains both locally and nationally on fire service training, safety and officer development related topics. Several articles on these programs have been published in major trade publications. Forest is a Director with the Illinois Society of Fire Service Instructors and has served as President. He is the co-author of Fire Service Instructor Principles and Practices 2nd edition published by Jones and Bartlett Learning.
Forest holds many Illinois fire service certifications including Fire Officer 3, Training Program Manager, and Fire Department Safety Officer. He has an Associates of Applied Science Degree in Fire Science Technology, a Bachelors Degree in Fire Department Administration from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, and a Masters Degree in Public Safety Administration from Lewis University. He was awarded the George D. Post Instructor of the Year by the International Society of Fire Service Instructors at FDIC in 2008.
Brian P. Kazmierzak, EFO, CTO, has been a member of the fire service since 1991. Brian is currently employed by the Penn Twp. Fire Dept. in Mishawaka, IN as Battalion Chief on C-Shift and also the Chief of Training. He was a founding member of the MABAS Division 201 Tactical Rescue Team and currently serves as a Team Leader, MABAS 201 TRT provides technical rescue response using a coordinated system of six fire departments serving a nine county area in Indiana and Michigan. Brian has an associate’s degree in Emergency Services Administration from Indiana University, an associate’s degree in Fire Science from Ivy Tech State College and a bachelor’s degree in fire service administration from Southern Illinois University. In addition, Brian completed the National Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer Program in 2006, is a CPSE credentialed Chief Training Officer.
He serves Director of Operations for www.firefighterclosecalls.com where he runs the day to day operations of the leading fire service safety and training website along with publishing THE SECRET LIST and recently launched the website www.ModernFireBehavior.com with Firefighter Close Calls and the UL FSRI. Brian was the recipient of the 2006 F.O.O.L.S. International Dana Hannon Instructor of the Year Award, the 2008 Indiana Fire Chiefs Training Officer of the Year Award Recipient and the 2011 Fire Engineering / ISFSI George D. Post International Fire Service Instructor of the Year Award at FDIC. He is a member of the International Society of Fire Service Instructors, Indiana Fire Instructors Association, Michiana FOOLS and has served as a Peer Assessor and Team Leader for the Commission on Fire Accreditation International. Brian is also a partner in the website www.TheTrainingOfficer.com as well as running his own company – KAZ-FIRE – Consulting, Simulation and Training. Brian is also a board member of the ISFSI serving as a Director at Large and serves as the Lead Author of the ISFSI Principles of Modern Fire Attack Program and is the lead instructor for that program. Brian also served on the UL FSRI PPV and Basement Fire Research Study Panels.
Barry Furey began his public safety career in 1970 and has served as Chief of the Valley Cottage New York, Deputy Chief of the Harvest Alabama, and Training Officer of the Savoy Illinois Fire Departments. He holds a Bachelor's Degree in Public Safety (Human Services) from the State University of New York, as well as numerous professional certifications. As director of large consolidated dispatch centers in four different states, he has been involved in fire service communications as both a provider and an end user. His most recent assignment as Director of Communications for the Raleigh-Wake North Carolina 9-1-1 Center placed him in command of a facility that processed more than a million inbound and outbound telephone calls, and dispatched approximately one-half million incidents per year.
A Life Member of the Association of Public-safety Officials (APCO) International, and winner of their President’s Award, he has served on or chaired numerous committees, including the APCO Editorial advisory Board and the Social Media Sub-committee of the Emerging Technology Committee, and was founder of the APCO Homeland Security Task Force. Furey has published in several trade journals including Fire Engineering, Fire Command, Fire Service Digest, Fire Chief, Law and Order, CALEA Update, American City and County, and APCO Bulletin. He is currently a contributing editor for Firehouse Magazine and regular management columnist for 9-1-1 Magazine.com. He also authored the communications chapter for the 2003 release of The Fire Chief’s Handbook and 2014 release of the National EMS Management Association Managing Ambulance Services texts, and the book, Volunteer – 25 Years of Smoke and Sirens.
He currently serves as CEO of Barry Furey Public Safety Consulting and Training Services (barryfurey.com) and can be reached at [email protected]
Rudy Horist began his fire service career in 1983 and currently is a Deputy Chief for the McHenry Township Fire Protection District in McHenry, Illinois.
Rudy serves as a Director of the Illinois Society of Fire Service Instructors and has served as President. He is also a member of the Volunteer and Combination Officer committee of the Illinois Fire Chiefs Association.
Rudy holds many Illinois Certifications including Fire Officer III and has a Bachelors Degree in Fire Department Administration from Southern Illinois University and a Masters Degree in Public Safety Administration from Lewis University. He is a graduate of the National Fire Academy's Executive Fire Officer program.
Rudy is an instructor for the Illinois Society of Fire Service Instructors. He has also taught at FDIC, regional fire schools and throughout the state of Illinois. He is also a member of the FDIC Associate Advisory Board.
Ignatius Kapalczynski has a diversity of experience in all aspects of the fire protection profession.
He conducts evaluations of municipal fire service resource deployments and operations and serves as a technical consultant on building and fire code application to enforcement and design professionals. He advises on the development of fire protection strategies and resolution of systems design issues. He conducts seminars on emergency planning, code enforcement, public safety education, and assists fire departments undergoing grading and accreditation.
He teaches in the Fire Technology and Administration program of the Connecticut Community Colleges and serves on several NFPA Technical committees. He is the author and publisher of the American Fire Services directory and maintains the nation’s most complete database of public and private fire protection services.
He was a specialist surveyor evaluating fire safety, environment and disaster planning in health care facilities, prior to joining the Bureau of Engineering in the Connecticut Office of State Fire Marshal where he provided fire protection consultation to local fire marshals and design/construction professionals.
He served as a Firefighter/EMT-I in Prince George’s County, while studying fire protection engineering at the University of Maryland.
Chris Shimer retired from the Howard County, MD, Department of Fire & Rescue Services in 2008 after 29 years of service. At the time of his retirement, Chris was the Deputy Chief of Training. He also served as Deputy Chief of Emergency Medical Services during his tenure with the department. Upon his retirement, Chris accepted a job as a contractor for the United States Marine Corps Fire & Emergency Services, a position he currently holds.
Chris holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Fire Science from the University of Maryland University College and an Associate of Science degree in Nursing from the Catonsville Community College. He is also a graduate of the National Fire Academy's Executive Fire Officer Program. He maintains his license as a Paramedic in the State of Maryland and an inactive license as a registered nurse.
Chris has been involved in Firefighter Close Calls since 2006, when he began posting stories related to EMS.
Patrick Kenny, Chief Kenny has been a member of the fire service for over 33 years. He serves as a member of the Illinois Fire Chief’s Promotional Assessment Board and is a past president of the Illinois Fire Chief’s Association. Chief Kenny recently received the highest certification in the state of Illinois for a Chief Officer and is a current recipient of Chief Officer Designation by the International Fire Chiefs’ Association. He has articles published in the areas of leadership, fire safety, mental health and fire code challenges.
David T. Phelan is a certified fire investigator and fire protection specialist who previously served for 25 years with the Bergenfield NJ Fire Department and holds a ProBoard Fire Officer 2 certification. He remains actively involved in code enforcement and the code development process serving on various NFPA committees. Dave has taken his knowledge and practical experiences into the classroom and presented on a wide range of fire service and fire code topics which focus on the cause & effect relationship between fireground operations and the codes. Through his post fire investigation experience and as a court recognized expert witness he is afforded the unique opportunity of presenting his topics with a greater understanding of the sequence of events which led to an incident failure and how similar outcomes can be avoided in the future. As a part of the FFCC team Dave developed the concept for the Line of Duty Calendar and continues to research and update the database as both a memorial and learning tool for fireground safety.
Seth Barker is a Battalion Chief and Training Officer for the BigSky Fire Department in Big Sky, MT. He is a State Fire Instructor for the Montana Fire Service Training School and a State Lead EMS Instructor. Captain Barker holds a Blue Card Instructor certification, is an ISFSI instructor, and is one of the curators for FirefighterCloseCalls.com. Captain Barker is one of the scholarship recipients to the Tampa 2 Summit held by the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation. He is one of the contributing authors for Fire Rescue Magazine and sits on multiple Wildland Urban Interface committees. Captain Barker has taught for Fire Engineering’s Fire Department Instructors Conference delivering multiple topics on Preparing Communities in an all hazard disciplines. He was most recently named one of the Principal of Modern Fire Attack instructors and Instructor trainers.
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