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INTERNATIONAL PUBLIC SAFETY ASSOCIATION
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Board of Directors

IPSA BOARD CHAIR


Scott Edson, a Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD) retired chief, became executive director of Los Angeles Regional Interoperable Communications System (LA-RICS). Edson replaced John Radeleff, who had served as interim executive director.

Edson’s involvement with LA-RICS dates back to 2008, when he was assigned as the unit commander for LASD’s Communications and Fleet Management Bureau. He continued his involvement through the years by serving on the technology and operations committees.

Edson has more than 39 years of law enforcement experience with the sheriff’s department. He served as chief of LASD's Special Operations Division. Prior assignments included communications, technology, law enforcement information sharing, emergency management, investigations, patrol and custody.

He is a very active member of the National Sheriffs' Association, International Association of Chiefs of Police, Major County Sheriffs' Association, Major Cities Chiefs Association, the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials, and several others.  Additionally, he is the current chair of the FBI CJIS Information Sharing Subcommittee, a position he has held for nearly three years. Chief Edson is married with a son who is a deputy sheriff and a daughter-in-law who is a dispatcher.  In his free time he likes to travel with family, enjoy his ham radio, fly airplanes and play golf.

IPSA BOARD VICE-CHAIR


Chris DeChant, Assistant Fire Chief, Glendale Fire Department (AZ)

Chris DeChant is the Executive Assistant Chief for the Glendale Fire Department, where he has served for nineteen years. He functioned as an Operations Captain, Special Operations Captain, Division Chief of Special Operations, Division Chief of Training, and Emergency Medical Services Deputy Chief prior to being appointed as Assistant Chief in 2008.  Chris was appointed to Executive Assistant Chief in 2011. During the three years prior to his appointment as Executive Assistant Chief he managed various sections of the fire department including budget, personnel, planning, logistics and operations.

In 2011 he was appointed as the City of Glendale representative for the Regional Wireless Cooperative Board of Directors.  Chris holds a Bachelor Degree of Science, Public Safety Administration, and a Master Degree of Education, Educational Leadership.  He was awarded his Chief Fire Officer Designation in 2007 by the Center for Public Safety Excellence and his Executive Fire Officer by the National Fire Academy in 2013.

EMS


April Bassett, Acting Paramedic Captain, San Francisco Fire Department (CA)

April Bassett started her career in 1997 as a volunteer firefighter/EMT in Maine. She graduated from New Hampshire Technical Institute in 2000 with an A.S. in EMS/Paramedic and moved to California shortly after and worked with a private ambulance company until 2007.   In 2007, Ms. Bassett was hired as a paramedic by San Francisco Fire Department.  She is currently a member of the tactical workgroup and a 2012 graduate of the International School of Tactical Medicine.  In addition to her service with the San Francisco Fire Department, Ms. Bassett participates in various regional exercises, including Urban Shield to stay current in the field.

EMS


Todd Kerfoot, Special Operations and Safety Manager, REMSA, (Reno, NV)

Todd Kerfoot currently serves as the Special Operations and Safety Manager and Tactical EMS (TEMS) Team Commander with Regional Emergency Medical Services Authority (REMSA) in Reno, Nevada. As the TEMS Team Commander for REMSA, Todd leads a group of 8 specially trained tactical paramedics that support Reno Police Department, Washoe County Sheriff’s Office, and Sparks Police Department SWAT Teams, as well as several federal agencies, including FBI, DEA, and US Marshall Service. 

Todd is an instructor certified by Nevada POST and has developed numerous TEMS courses including: Active Assailant for Law, Fire, and EMS, Airport Response to Active Shooter Incidents,Tactical Operational Medical Support, and Law Enforcement Casualty Care.   Todd has participated in several committees including the Washoe County Regional Active Assailant Task Force, where he contributed to the development of the “Regional Active Assailant Response” protocols.

He was recently awarded the Veteran’s of Foreign War (VFW): National Emergency Medical Technician/Paramedic Public Servant Award.  After recognizing a need for police to be prepared to deal with victims during active assailant emergencies and other trauma related incidents, Todd developed a training program that has been certified and is being taught today. Todd has also received numerous commendations including the REMSA Award for Meritorious Service for actions taken in the response to Renown Regional Medical Center (2013) and Sparks Middle School (2013) Active Shooter incidents.

EMS


Wren Nealy, Director of Special Operations / Lt Reserve Division, Cypress Creek EMS/Walter County Sheriff's Office (TX)

Wren Nealy Jr. is a certified Paramedic and Licensed Peace Officer in the State of Texas. He is the Director of Special Operations for Cypress Creek EMS (CCEMS) and serves the Waller County Sheriff’s Office as a Lieutenant and former Asst SWAT Commander where he developed the departments first SWAT Team and Bike Team. In 2005, Wren was commissioned as a Special Agent of the Louisiana State Police. He has 23 years of experience as a 911 paramedic and 18 years of experience in law enforcement. He has 15 years of experience in SWAT operations and has worked in field supervision, and administrative positions in both disciplines. Wren was appointed to the International Police Mountain Bike Association (IPMBA) Board of Directors in 2012 and the International Public Safety Association (IPSA) in 2014 where he serves on the membership and Rescue Task Force Committees. He is an instructor certified by the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement (POST), IPMBA, TASER Intl., SAFARILAND Inc., and National Association of EMT’s PHTLS/TCCC. Wren is the Commander of the Cypress Creek EMS Tactical Medic Team and the Bike Medic Response Team. CCEMS provides tactical operational medical support to various local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies. He serves as the program director for the CCEMS Tactical Operational Medical Support training program, training tactical medics from across the country and abroad. He has developed several specialized training programs for public safety.

He is an accomplished author and public speaker on EMS Special Operations and Emergency Preparedness, presenting at state and national conferences. In 2013 he consulted with Indiana State Representative Wendy McNamara in the revision of HB1111 to allow law enforcement officers trained in tactical combat casualty care to intervene and perform lifesaving medical care during hostile incidents and ultimately testified before the Indiana House of Representatives on behalf of this bill. He is a former member of the Editorial Board for Texas EMS Magazine, Co-Chair of the Public Safety Committee for the Northwest Chamber of Commerce, and most recently appointed to the National Tactical Officers Association (NTOA) TEMS Council as a Section Chair.

In 2015, he received the 2015 NTOA TEMS Award for his significant contributions to the Tactical Emergency Medical Support community. Wren is a regular presenter on the Boundtree and Covidien speaking circuit Wren leveraged his professional experience and knowledge to form Triple Threat Solutions to provide training, consulting and support services to public safety agencies with a focus on surviving high threat incidents.

FIRE


Brad Havrilla, Captain, Palm Beach County Fire Rescue (FL)

Brad Havrilla is a 27 year veteran for Palm Beach County Fire Rescue.  Prior to his current assignment in the Training and Safety Division he spent 12 years as a Firefighter/Paramedic assigned to the Special Operations Team.  Brad’s work related passion was Technical Rescue instruction and Vehicle Extrication Competition.  Havrilla served as Vice Chairman of the TERC Committee and the World Rescue Organization and Judged Competitions nationally and internationally.  He also serves in several roles with the Florida Highway Patrol; and is currently coordinating Fire Rescue’s Active Shooter Response program.  This coordinated response between Law Enforcement and Fire Rescue has tightened the gap between these two agencies and is strengthening the bond of Public Safety in South Florida.   

PRIVATE SECTOR/NGO


John Thompson

John Thompson has over 48 years of experience in public safety.  He spent 34 years as a practitioner, starting as a volunteer firefighter/EMT. During his career, Mr. Thompson has worked as a public safety dispatcher, firefighter, and law enforcement officer. He retired from public service in 2002 and is currently the Deputy Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer for the National Sheriffs' Association, in Alexandria, Virginia.

Mr. Thompson also currently serves on the FBI Criminal Justice Information Advisory Policy Board, the Homeland Security Consortium, the National Domestic Preparedness Coalition, and the Department of Homeland Security Emergency Services Sector Coordinating Council Executive Committee, as well as on many other public safety committees and workgroups.

PRIVATE SECCTORS/NGO/FIRE/EMS(Retired)


James Dundas

Mr. Dundas has over forty-three (43) years of experience in the emergency response discipline, as both a practitioner and as a consultant.  His experience spans multiple facets of emergency response: from Fire Services, EMS, Law Enforcement, Emergency Management, and corporate and institutional security. 

As a practitioner, he served twenty-seven (27) years with the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department in suburban Washington, DC.  He was among the first firefighters in Fairfax County to achieve ALS certification and went on to teach Paramedicine at the Fairfax County Fire Academy and George Washington University, School of Medicine.  Following promotion to Captain, he assumed the role of Fire Dispatch Manager when Fairfax went from seven digit emergency calling to 9-1-1 and manual dispatching to Computer Aided Dispatch.   He went back to EMS for a while as a Paramedic Supervisor and then on the Fire Academy again where he managed all fire training programs.  Promoted to Battalion Chief in 1991, he served out his career in two battalions, the last being the most heavily populated area of the County. 

PRIVATE SECTOR/LAW ENFORCEMENT (Retired)


Dennis Weiner

Dennis Weiner has been a law enforcement professional for the past 33 years.  In 1996, after 14 years with the New York City Police Department rising to the rank of Sergeant, he became Chief of Police for the Village of Centre Island, NY.  He retired from that position in 2008 to become the Chief of Police for the Town of Juno Beach, FL.  Since March 2011, until September 2014, he had been the Chief of Police for the City of Coral Gables, FL.  His extensive civilian education includes earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Legal Studies from John Jay College of Criminal Justice, a Masters of Public Administration Degree from Harvard University, a Juris Doctor from St John’s University and a Masters of Laws degree in Tax Law from New York University.  

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