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SARCon Speaker/Instructor Biographies

Laurie Adams

Since 1999, Laurie Adams has been an active member of Jefferson County, Oregon's Camp Sherman Hasty Team, which is a small team that trains all members in all aspects of SAR. Laurie's primary SAR interests include mounted, navigation, and air scent, having spent considerable time in the last few years, along with Kate Beardsley, developing some searching and scanning practices to help improve mounted teams' effectiveness in the field.

Laurie's long-standing activity in the world of education and fly-fishing has had her in remote locations in the field and brings proficiency in SAR scenarios closer to home.

Jeff Beckman

Jeff Beckman has been on the San Diego Mountain Rescue Team for 9 years. He is qualified as a Type I Alpine rescuer and Technical Rescue Specialist. Jeff has been closely involved with the deployment of technology in the command post, including the use of computer-aided search planning tools and remotely piloted vehicles. Professionally, Jeff is a mechanical engineer working in the aerospace industry.

Patrick Bentley

Patrick Bentley received his Master’s degree from USU in Instructional Design with an emphasis in Adventure Programming, with a Bachelor degree in Parks and Recreation. He has been a valuable member of the Cache County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue team in Logan Utah for the past 18 years and has served as their Commander, a team lead and Quartermaster at various times. He is currently serving as the secretary for the Intermountain Region for the Mountain Rescue Association as well as the liaison for the MRA for his team.

Patrick currently works at Utah State University for the University Inn and Conference Center as the Coordinator for the Utah State University Challenge Course. He annually hires, trains and leads facilitators on how to run low and high events at the USU Course. He is also a Safety Officer/Senior Instructor for the Leadership Challenge Camp which works with the USMC JROTC and AF JROTC units throughout the nation. Additionally Patrick works as the Experiential Program Coordinator for Sherwood Hill Recovery Resort. He is certified as a Level II facilitator and a Ropes Course Manager through the Association for Challenge Course Technology (ACCT) for the past 3 years.

Ken Boell and Karl Ritchey

Ken Boell and Karl Ritchey have over 50 years of off-road experiences to draw from. Both have had numerous successful SAR missions that involved extreme off-road capabilities and recovery situations. They have a goal to share their experiences to help increase off road awareness, mission readiness and mission success.

Tim Brown

Tim Brown has been a volunteer in the service industry for over 15 years. Brown has spent the last six as a K-9 handler and Assistant Training Officer for Mountain Wave Search & Rescue. Over those years Tim has been involved in many searches that required out-of-the-box thinking and has incorporated those skills into his training techniques for beginning K9s entering the field. Tim possesses a unique ability to problem-solve using the K9 to assist finding their subjects.

Eduardo Cartaya

Eduardo (Eddy) Cartaya is a USFS LEO with Deschutes NF. He has over 20 years of SAR experience at local, regional, and federal levels. He served as a SAR Coordinator for the National Park Service and instructs annually for the NPS SAR School. Certified at Level III through the National Cave Rescue Commission, he has participated in and managed several large-scale cave rescue missions and is one of the most active cave explorers in the NW.

Eddy is a member of both PNW and Deschutes SAR MRA teams, is an active backcountry LEO, and serves as the USFS Regional RRT team leader. He is a federal firearms and use-of-force instructor, Tactical Tracking Operations School Instructor, and a graduate of the Command and General Staff Academy.

In 2012, he was awarded the USDA Unsung Hero Award for two backcountry alpine SAR saves following traumatic snowmobile crashes, as well as the investigation and apprehension of two major cases involving wildfire arson and destruction of archeological resources (pictographs) in one of the forest’s largest lava-tube caves.
Eddy is a partner and lead instructor for Crackerjack First Response Specialists, LLC and specializes in technical rescue and wilderness tactical operations.

Deb Cherachanko

Deb Cherachanko is a Chiropractic Physician and Board certified Skeletal Radiologist with 28 years of practice experience. She has lectured extensively on soft-tissue and skeletal injuries associated with trauma. She has been a member of Pacific Northwest Search & Rescue for 8 years, and currently serves on the Board as the EMS Director.

Donald C. Cooper

Dr. Donald C. Cooper retired in 2012 as the Ohio State Fire Marshal, after five years as the Chief Deputy State Fire Marshal, and has served in the career fire-rescue-emergency medical service since 1980. From 2012 to 2014, he served as the Executive Director of Medical Education and Research with Akron General Health Systems in Northeast Ohio, and currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Event Safety Alliance (ESA), as the Managing Editor for the Event Safety Guide, the ESA’s best-practices guide, and as a labor-management consultant with National Rescue Consultants.

In addition, Dr. Cooper served on the Cuyahoga Falls Fire Department in northeast Ohio for 28 years, and is an Ohio Certified Paramedic. He has the author of several well-known emergency service textbooks, including Fundamentals of Search and Rescue (Jones and Bartlett, 2005); The Event Safety Guide, Editor;  Fundamentals of Mantracking: The Step-By-Step Method; and The Aviation Survival Handbook.

Dr. Cooper has served as a researcher and principle investigator for several significant search-related research projects sponsored by the National Search and Rescue Committee and funded by the Department of Defense (DoD) and NASA; as the Operations Chief of Ohio’s Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) Task Force (OH-TF1); and is the Chair and charter member of the National Fire Protection Association’s (NFPA) Technical Search and Rescue Committee, and served as a principal member of the NFPA Disaster Management Committee.

In 2012, he was awarded the Ohio Fire Service Distinguished Service Award for contributions to and leadership of the U.S. fire service including significant contributions on a regional, statewide and national basis; and in 2002, was awarded the National Association for Search and Rescue’s (NASAR) most prestigious recognition—the Hal Foss Award—for both national and international contributions to the field of search and rescue.

Dr. Cooper earned an MBA and PhD in Business Administration from the University of California, and attended the University of Akron and Kent State University in Northeast Ohio. In September of 2005, Don led Ohio’s Incident Management Team (IMT) when they deployed for four weeks to St. Bernard Parish, Louisiana—directly east of New Orleans—immediately after hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast. He led the same Ohio IMT for two weeks in 2012 when they responded to Long Island, New York, in response to Hurricane Sandy.

Lawrence Dennis

Lawrence Dennis is the co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of Aerial Technology International. Lawrence served in the U.S. Marine Corps as a helicopter Avionics Technician for 5 years with an honorable discharge. Upon returning to Oregon, Lawrence attended Portland Community College, earning an A.S. and FAA Airframe and Powerplant certifications. He also became a FAA-certified helicopter pilot and has numerous hours as a fixed-wing pilot. Lawrence has spent the last eight years as a business owner, Chief Technology Officer and lead pilot for Northwest Aero Pix and Aerial Technology International.

Justin Dersham

Deputy Justin Dersham has been a Deputy with the Clatsop County Sheriff’s Office for 7 years.  During that time he has filled positions as a Patrol Deputy, Resident Deputy and Firearms Instructor.  Deputy Dersham currently holds the special assignment of Forest Patrol.  Duties assigned to this position include ATV instruction to youth and adults through 4H and the ATV Safety Institute, Ground Team Coordinator for Clatsop County Search and Rescue, and patrol of Clatsop State Forest lands.

Garin Duffield

Garin Duffield grew up in Eugene, OR, and has worked as a volunteer for the Dexter and Sheridan Fire Departments. He has always enjoyed the outdoors, and is an avid runner, fisherman, and backpacker. He is a member of the 2012 Reach and Treat (RAT) academy and currently works full-time on the RAT ambulance for American Medical Response.

Ian Gilbert-Ghormley

Ian Gilbert-Ghormley has been active in search and rescue in the area for the last 10 years. He is currently a member of North Oregon Regional Search and Rescue (NORSAR) and has been training search-and-rescue dogs for the last 5 years. He has assisted training new members and new dogs coming into search and rescue and helped solve training challenges with others. As the K9 Training Coordinator of NORSAR, he is responsible for helping and supporting the handlers with what they need to succeed, providing exercise ideas, and guiding new dog handlers. He also coordinates and proctors K9 testing based on the OSSA K9 standards to help prepare NORSAR’s dogs for the state certification tests. Ian is also an instructor for land navigation, searcher safety and survival and helps train support personnel in his SAR group.

His 6-year old chocolate lab, Cora, has been state certified through the Oregon State Sheriffs' Association for Wilderness Air Scent for 3 years. Together they have responded to countless wilderness and urban searches for a variety of missing subjects all over the region. They were able to locate a lost hiker stranded on the Pacific Crest Trail last spring. Ian is proud to be a K9 handler with NORSAR -- enjoying our SAR community and proud to respond to searches for the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office. As the K9 Training Coordinator for NORSAR, he enjoys training dogs and helping train K9s of all levels. He looks forward to helping new handlers learn how to work with their dogs and enjoy search and rescue as much as he does.

Robert Glaeser

Robert Glaeser has 19 years of EMS experience and joined the AMR Reach and Treat Team in 1999. Robert is currently assigned to operations in Clackamas County Oregon, and has extensive backcountry and alpine experience to help train current and new Reach and Treat Team members. With his backcountry and former military experience, Robert has been a vital component in developing new and more efficient training modules. He also has extensive experience being deployed to wildfire incidents, natural disasters, and extreme sporting events. Recreationally, Robert enjoys water sports and flying fixed-wing aircraft.

Phillip Graf

Since 2013, Phillip Graf has been the Team Captain of the Clark County (WA) Dive Rescue Team -- and previous to that role had served as its Training Director since 2005. Graf is a volunteer emergency responder for underwater diving assignments, and was a Deputy Sheriff for the Klamath County (OR) Sheriff’s Office, where he was on the Dive Rescue Team and served as Dive Team Liaison.

Edwin Grant

Edwin Grant has over 28 years' law-enforcement and K9 experience. He was assigned to the largest manhunt in the U.S. for 3 years working with all federal, state, and local agencies on the Eric Rudolph Olympic and serial bomber case. Edwin has also worked K9 search and recovery for 9/11 and major hurricanes. He has worked all disciplines of scent-detection dogs and narcotics-dog training for 12 years, ATF arson and accelerant dogs for 8 years, trailing and cadaver dogs for 27 years.

He is an expert witness in grave detection and analysis as well as water search and recovery. Edwin has been credited with over 100 water finds and recoveries. He has been involved in many high-profile cases for the FBI, SBI, and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. He has been awarded the NC Governor Award for Officer of the Year, The Southeast Officer of the Year Award, The Shikar Safari Award, The Sophia Silva Award for the saving of human lives, and the FBI award for Exceptional Service in the Public Interest. Edwin has been involved in over a thousand searches, and has instructed, coordinated, and trained K9s all over the United States and around the world.

Dan Griffin

Dan Griffin is the owner of 2Xplore, a Northwest company providing safety training and education to the Overland community. Dan is also a career Firefighter Paramedic, with over 25 years of fire and EMS service. He is an avid backcountry traveler and leader, has led many vehicle recoveries, and holds certification by the NFPA in rope and vehicle rescue.

Eric Gunnerson

Eric Gunnerson has been a member of the Cache County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue team in Utah for the last 20 years, and has held positions of Commander and team leads throughout those years. He has been the team lead of the Technical Rope Rescue Team, and he feels an important part of the team’s training is to "keep things simple and consistent in rope rescues." Eric holds a master’s degree from the University of Colorado in German, and has attended numerous SAR conferences throughout Nevada, Utah, Arizona and Oregon.

Eric spent 7 years coaching in Leadville, Colorado for the ski-jumping and cross-country racing teams, and another 23 years in Logan coaching gymnastics to preschool through college athletes. He has competed for the German National B team in gymnastics, and feels that one of the best ways to instruct others is to get them out and get their hands and feet dirty. Eric has been a professional hardwood flooring contractor for the last 23 years, as well as a strong member of the Sheriff's SAR team.

Donnie Hatch

Donnie Hatch is the National Sales Director for Globalstar Inc. Donnie has worked in the satellite-communications industry for 20 years, including periods at Globalstar & Iridium Service Providers. Beginning in Moscow, Russia, Donnie was Executive Director of Sales at "GlobalTel," the Globalstar operator for Russia and the CIS. Upon completion of his international assignment, Donnie moved to Portland, where he built and managed the dealer network across the country for Globalstar USA. In 2011, Donnie took on a special three-year project at DeLorme developing the market for the Iridium -based InReach device. He currently oversees all U.S. sales and distribution operations for Globalstar.

Sarah Holland

Sarah Holland, MSW, MPH is the Director of Programs with the Alzheimer’s Association, Oregon Chapter. Sarah joined the Alzheimer’s Association in 2013 after completing her Master of Social of Work and Public Health. Prior to completing her degrees, she spent over a decade working in the mental-health field. Since joining the Alzheimer’s Association, Sarah has utilized her experience implementing community-based health inventions to expand the Association’s support-service delivery across Oregon.

Matt Jacobs

Matt Jacobs is a W-EMT with the Bay Area Mountain Rescue Unit and Tahoe Nordic Search and Rescue. He has developed a series of high-resolution nationwide maps that are used by several popular smartphone applications, as well as the recreational trip-planning site caltopo and its SAR-specific variant sartopo.

Bill Loud

Bill Loud has been a Garmin Regional Trainer for eight years. In addition to handheld GPS units, Bill also trains on Garmin dog, running, cycling, marine and automotive products.

Matthew Marino

Matthew Marino is a member of Pacific Northwest Search and Rescue, based in Clackamas County, Oregon. His experience as a Physical Therapist, Certified Professional Ergonomist, Certified Workers Compensation Healthcare Provider, Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist and Certified Personal Trainer have developed into a passion for working with tactical personnel, workers, and athletes whose lives depend on high levels of physical and psychological performance.

Mike Maurer

In the past, Mike Maurer spent a great deal of time designing and manufacturing ultralight hiking gear for Gossamer Gear, one of the leading lightweight gears companies in America. He joined DCSOSAR in 2010 and immediately began shifting his ultralight gear ideas and techniques into more robust (yet still lightweight) applications for rescue scenarios. Mike has taught the basics of ultralight travel and gear for many years, and leads the annual gear review for SAR winter applications. Mike is currently an MRA certified Rescue level member, is AIARE III avalanche trained, and is the AIARE/SAR Avalanche Leader for the unit.

Craig McClure

Craig McClure has been active in search and rescue in the Pacific Northwest for 10 years as a searcher, manager, and instructor. Craig is trained/certified as an EMT and an MRA Rescue Leader. Residing in Central Oregon, he is a Reserve Deputy working seasonally for the Deschutes County Sheriff's Office, former team leader of the DCSSAR Incident Management Team, and a SAR Manager. He remains active as a responder specializing in medical callouts and winter response as a skilled backcountry skier and snowmobiler. He is the principal partner in Crackerjack Response Specialists, LLC. CFRS, LLC is training and service team providing contract event and remote medical services as well as training for first responders working in the wilderness environment. CFRS, LLC is a licensed EMS agency and contracts nationally for both medical and training services.

Craig is a member of the OSSA SARAC Curriculum and Standards Committee and co-author and instructor for the Oregon Ground Search Management class. He is also a certified instructor for Lost Person Behavior and Managing Land Search Operations. He has instructed for SARCon, WASAR, OSSA, NPS, USFS, NC Emergency Management, and other agencies throughout the U.S. He has proudly attended or instructed at every NW SARCon.

Blake Miller

Blake Miller received significant hands-on navigational training during his 20 years of service in the U.S. Navy. He has taught map and compass, GPS and wilderness survival classes in Central Oregon since 1998. As a part-time faculty member at Central Oregon Community College, he currently teaches land-navigation classes to Natural Resource students. He has been an active member of the Deschutes County’s Search and Rescue (SAR) team since 2009. Blake is also a featured speaker at the Washington SAR conference, Central Oregon Sportsman Show, various community groups, and Cabelas. His articles have been published in several national magazines and he writes a monthly navigation column for Seattle Backpackers Magazine.

Kerry Noland

Kerry Noland is a Lead Paramedic and currently works for American Medical Response in Clackamas County, Oregon. Noland has 21 years of EMS experience and joined AMR's Reach and Treat Team in 2001. Kerry is a Team Administrator and Training Academy Coordinator for both new recruits and current members of the Reach and Treat Team. Kerry also has extensive SAR experience with the National Park Service and brings that experience to the Reach and Treat Team to increase its overall safety and success.

Joe Rabinowitz

Joe Rabinowitz is a Lead Paramedic and currently works for American Medical Response in Clackamas County, Oregon on the Reach and Treat Team. He has 15 years' EMS experience and joined the Reach and Treat Team in 2009. Joe has quickly been gaining the necessary skills and experience to be one of the most reliable members and leaders of the team. Joe has been extensively involved in outdoor recreation for many years, and considers himself an amateur botanist. He is quickly able to answer most botanical questions as they arise during trainings or missions.

Michelle Renault

Michelle Renault is a 911 dispatcher for Hood River County. She has been employed at the agency for 18 years. Michelle is a certified 911 telecommunicator, EMD telecommunicator and FTEP instructor through DPSST. She is also an EMT-B and BLS Evaluator through the State of Washington and an American Heart BLS Instructor, and has her Associates Degree in Criminal Justice. Michelle lives in the Columbia River Gorge with her husband Mike. In their spare time they volunteer for Klickitat County Fire District #3. Michelle enjoys teaching the communication classes and CPR/First Aid with the local fire departments, law enforcement and the 911 center.

Jerry Richert

Jerry Richert is a 16-year veteran of the Indianapolis Fire Department. He currently holds the appointed rank of Captain and is the Dive Commander for IFD. Jerry is also a Corporate Trainer for Dive Rescue International, and travels the United States and Canada teaching multiple disciplines in Surface and Subsurface Water Rescue to police, fire and rescue organizations. He is a Recreational Scuba Instructor and former Commercial Diver.

Marcel Rodriguez

Marcel Rodriguez is a volunteer team member and Rope Team Leader with Pacific Northwest Search and Rescue in Portland, Oregon. Marcel currently holds qualifications as an EMT/WEMT, Advanced Swiftwater Rescue Technician and Technical Rope Rescue-Technician Level Instructor for Rescue3. When not engaged in teaching and SAR activities, Marcel works in Mergers & Acquisitions for an international software company.

Jerry Roley

Deputy Jerry Roley started at the Washington County Sheriff’s Office in July of 1998. Prior to this, Deputy Roley was a Reserve Officer for the City of Cornelius for over four years and was then transferred to the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office before being hired full-time at the Washington County Sheriff’s Office.

Deputy Roley has been working marine patrol for the last 9 years. Hagg Lake is the primary responsibility for the Sheriff’s Office, drawing hundreds of thousands of people during the summer months. Deputy Roley currently instructs at the two-week State Marine Academy for the Oregon State Marine Board. Roley also helps the Marine Board with one week of training on whitewater drift-boat operations and a week of whitewater jet-boat operations for new Marine officers once a year.

Roley also has been a field training officer for their department for several years. Deputy Roley has been named "Marine Deputy of Year" for Oregon, and has worked with the Marine Board to teach kids in schools about water safety every year. Deputy Roley also implemented a fix-it ticket program for boaters to help with education, instead of saddling boaters with high fines for minor offenses. Deputy Roley continues to work and be actively involved with  WCSO's Marine program.

Mike Russell

Mike Russell has been a member of the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office Public Information Unit since 2006. He is tasked with running CCSO's web and social-media presence -- which played a key public-information role in such  cases as the 2012 active-shooter incident at Clackamas Town Center, the 2012 manhunt for accused murderer Erik John Meiser, the 2014 manhunts for alleged violent kidnapper Kelly Vern Swoboda and murder suspect Dirck White, and numerous search-and-rescue missions. He has also joined the Sheriff's Office in offering behind-the-scenes public-information and social-media backup to other agencies during major crisis events.

Jeff Salzer

Jeff Salzer became involved with ATVs while living in Alaska, during this time he used them for many trips into to the backcountry with river crossings, glacier riding, beaches, mud flats and even plowing snow. In 2005 he moved to Washington State, where he joined an ATV/snow-machine unit located in Pierce County, Washington; while with this unit, he received extensive training and experience from the unit and working directly with the Pierce County Sheriff’s Deputies. Jeff eventually became a unit trainer and the ATV coordinator for that unit.

In 2012, Jeff’s unit was disbanded, and he switched over to the Pierce County SAR 4x4 Unit with the intention of re-activating ATVs in Pierce County. After working with the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department, they were able to have nine members certified field-ready and able to respond in June 2012. Jeff is currently the ATV Trainer for Pierce County SAR 4x4 Unit and recently became the Training Coordinator for all the unit’s training.

Jeff firmly believes that ATVs have a place in the SAR environment and can be used in a safe, efficient, and professional manner in a variety of ways to support many different types of SAR needs.

Sam Scheinberg

Dr. Sam Scheinberg knows all about splints and the variety of emergency applications in which a splint might be necessary. As a trauma surgeon during the Vietnam War and as a Board-certified orthopedic surgeon on the Oregon Coast, he saw plenty of fractures and broken bones.

Vietnam demonstrated how woefully inadequate splints of the 1960s and ’70s were. Bulky constructs of wire, cardboard, and all-too-easily punctured air splints, they couldn’t be reused, never seemed to properly fit, and frequently caused more harm than good. In Vietnam, field medics often ignored them and substituted even more old-fashioned techniques, such as lashing poles and branches (or even parts of a rifle) to the injured limb.

On his return to the U.S., Sam pondered this problem. He wondered if there was a way to make a lightweight but strong, reliable, and reusable splint. Relaxing after a 24-hour shift, Sam was playing with the foil wrapper of the gum he was chewing, curling it around his finger. In an “Aha!” moment, he realized that the foil, while flimsy in its normal state, was much stronger when bent into a “U” shaped curve.

Intrigued, Sam obtained a larger piece of aluminum and began work on his first prototype. He found that a thin sheet of soft aluminum curved in cross section into the shape of a “C,” a “Reverse-C,” or a “T,” became remarkably rigid. With the right padding materials, Sam realized it would make an exceptional splint. Having satisfied his curiosity, Sam nearly set the project aside, but his wife wouldn’t let him. Sam later remarked, “That was the luckiest ten minutes of nagging in my life.”

It took years of meticulous experimentation, but by 1985, Sam and Cherrie were selling the first SAM® Splints (structural, aluminum, malleable). Today, the SAM® Splint is the most popular emergency splint in the world, favored by emergency crews, armed services, outdoor enthusiasts, and rescue teams. The SAM Splint can even be found aboard the Space Shuttle and on Himalayan expeditions.

Chad Schroll

Chad Schroll has been an employee at Warn Industries for 25 years. His first 5 years were spent as a machinist, followed by 15 years in the test lab, specializing in vehicle testing, and over the past 5 years he's worked in Marketing as a Systems Specialist. In past years, Chad has been involved with Stop Oregon Litter and Vandalism (SOLVE) and the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office on abandoned-vehicle recoveries. Chad continues to work within Warn Industries' development, fitment, and marketing teams to bring innovative and reliable products to the recovery field.

Brett C. Stoffel

Brett Stoffel serves as Vice-President and General Counsel for Emergency Response International. In addition to his extensive outdoor experience, he flew the B-52 as an Aircraft Commander and the B-2 Stealth Bomber as a Mission Commander and Instructor for the USAF. Brett also managed the Combat Search & Rescue and SERE programs at the Squadron and Group levels for the Air Force.  Brett also serves as an instructor in Lost Person Behavior, Global Survival, Search Management & Planning as well as Basic SAR Skills. He is an accomplished author, pilot, and certified Outdoor Emergency Care provider and Wilderness First Responder. As a volunteer in Chelan County, Brett regularly provides SAR training for volunteers and agency personnel at state & national conferences and remains active with the Washington State Bar.

Robert “Skip” Stoffel

Skip Stoffel is the President and founder of Emergency Response International. In addition to his role as ERI's executive editor, Skip instructs courses and spearheads the company's train-the-trainer programs offered throughout the world.  As a trained EMT, SCUBA diver, former glider pilot and SAR Planning Specialist, Skip serves as the company’s lead instructor. Skip is a former USAF SERE instructor and an accomplished author.  He has written and/or coauthored 34 books on multiple aspects of emergency response, SAR and survival.  He has over thirty years training experience in search management, SAR skills, survival and emergency management. In 1987 Skip was the recipient of NASAR’s prestigious Hal Foss Service Award. His experience base includes working at local, state and federal levels throughout all regions of the United States.

Corey Stone

Corey Stone is a SAR Coordinator with the Washington County Sheriff’s Office in Oregon. Corey has been a SAR field-team member for 23 years and a SAR Coordinator for nineteen years. He has been instructing various SAR-related skills for two decades with a specialization in land navigation, high- and low-angle rope access and rope rescue, and managing land-search operations. Corey has taught land navigation classed to SAR organizations, narcotics enforcement, SWAT teams, fire command, wildland fire personnel and the public. Stone has been an instructor at several MLSO courses in Oregon and has presented at SARCon since 2010.

Luke Tessner

Luke Tressner has over 14 years of law-enforcement and K9-handling experience with the Clare County Sheriff’s Department in Michigan, and over 20 years of experience training K9s.  In 2012, he became an assistant instructor with the International Bloodhound Training Institute and Sleuth Hounds, LLC, becoming a full instructor in 2013.

Colin Thielen

Colin Thielen is a Partner with Sleuth Hounds, LLC. She has trained numerous dogs for herself and others. She is a K9 trainer and handler instructor for Sleuth Hounds. She specializes in training mantrailing and scent-detection K9s. Colin has attended numerous schools and seminars focusing on dog behavior and drive. She served as Chief and Deputy Chief of the HEMSI Search Dog Unit in Huntsville, Alabama, and was also a Canine Specialist with Alabama Heavy Rescue-1. She has relocated to Northern Virginia, where she runs the Sleuth Hound training facility and works cases for law enforcement in Northern Virginia and The District of Columbia. She is currently working her Human Remains K9 Izzy, and is in the process of training her new trailing dog Wheezie.

Nathan Thompson

Nate Thompson works for the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office as a Sergeant -- and previously as a Marine Patrol Deputy for over six years and a Search and Rescue Coordinator for seven years. He is an instructor in jet-boat operations, whitewater drift-boat operations, and kayaking. He has certifications as a Swift Water Rescue Technician and an Emergency Medical First Responder. He is currently a member of a type 1 FEMA swiftwater flood rescue team.

Tygh Thompson

Tygh Thompson been involved with SAR in Oregon for more than 40 years and has participated in hundreds of SAR missions. He spent 33 years with the Washington Co. Sheriff’s Office, where he was the SAR program manager for 23 years. He retired as a Sergeant in 2010. He has experience as a searcher as well as a mission coordinator and SAR program manager. He is a past president of the OSSA SAR council and has contributed to several revisions of the Oregon SAR standards. He has assisted in the development of the "Ground Search Operations Course" and has been a lead instructor in “Managing Search Operations” course for more than 20 years. Tygh has developed a number of SAR training programs for Oregon and has been a presenter at each SARCon conference. Since 2010 he has been a volunteer with Mountain Wave.

Adam Tingey

Adam Tingey works for the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office as a Marine Patrol Deputy. He previously worked as a US Air Force Pararescueman for over 9 years. He is certified as a Swift Water Rescue Technician, Dive Rescue Technician and an EMT Paramedic. He is also a member of a type 1 FEMA swiftwater flood rescue team.

304th Rescue Squadron

Based at Portland Air National Guard Base, the 304th Rescue Squadron is an Air Force Reserve Command combat-search-and-rescue unit. The 304th is trained and equipped to deploy combat rescue officers, PJs, and support personnel worldwide in support of U.S. national security interests. It provides contact, extraction and treatment for civilian and combat search-and-rescue operations. It also uses various fixed- and rotary-wing insertion/extraction assets, and employs by any means available to provide combat and humanitarian search, rescue, and medical assistance in all environments. The peacetime mission of the 304th is to train and maintain rescue capability for DoD personnel, humanitarian and disaster relief activities.

Air Force Pararescuemen, also known as PJs, are the only Department of Defense elite combat forces specifically organized, trained, equipped and postured to conduct full spectrum Personnel Recovery (PR) to include both conventional and unconventional combat rescue operations. These battlefield Airmen are the most highly trained and versatile personnel recovery specialists in the world. Pararescue is the nation's force of choice to execute the most perilous, demanding and extreme rescue missions anytime, anywhere across the globe.

Christopher Van Tilburg, MD

Christopher Van Tilburg, MD, is medical advisor to the Hood River Crag Rats mountain rescue team, a member of the Mountain Rescue Association Medical Committee, and an emergency physician at Mountain Emergency Services on Mount Hood.

He is a physician specializing in wilderness, travel, occupational and emergency medicine. He is author of 10 books including Mountain Rescue Doctor: Wilderness Medicine in the Extremes of Nature (St. Martins, 2007) and Adrenaline Junkie’s Bucket List: 100 Extreme Outdoor Adventures to do Before You Die. He serves as Editor-in-Chief of Travel Medicine News and editor emeritus of Wilderness Medicine.  He is the lead author of Wilderness Medical Society Practice Guidelines on Avalanche Prevention, Rescue, and Resuscitation and a renowned specialist in deep-snow and tree-well submersion asphyxiation.

He has taught wilderness medicine courses in Bhutan, Chile, Argentina, Peru, Tanzania, Nepal, Vietnam, and the Alps, and led four medical relief trips to Verettes, Haiti. He currently works at Providence Hood River Memorial Hospital in Hood River, Oregon.

David Weil

David Weil first began exploring ultralight techniques in 2007 for his AT thru-hike. He further dialed his gear and strategies during subsequent PCT and CDT hikes. A member of DCSOSAR since 2012, David is active with the unit’s Medical, ATV, Snowmobile, MRU, and Ski Teams, as well as teaching for the annual New Recruit Academy and Level 1 avalanche courses. He is currently the unit’s Ski Team Coordinator, an EMT-B, and an AIARE 1 Avalanche Instructor.

Brian Wheeler

Brian Wheeler is the President/Founder of the Northwest School of Survival. He has developed, run, and continues to provide safety training for most of the telecommunication, power and railroad companies in the U.S. for over 30 years. He also designs programs and trains every branch of the military in land navigation and survival, and also provides advanced instructor training. He has also been under contract with two major GPS manufacturers re: field-application how-tos.

Andrea Zaferes

Andrea Zaferes has been investigating aquatic deaths and teaching water rescue/recovery with TeamLGS for 24 years, is a medicolegal death investigator with the Dutchess County Medical Examiner’s Office, and helped start a nonprofit organization, RIPTIDE, to assist with submerged evidence/body recovery, and aquatic abuse and homicide investigations. She has spoken at more than 60 forensic conferences; is one of the leading public-safety dive trainers in the U.S. and Canada, with several national awards; has more than 100 publications; serves as a court-certified aquatic-death expert, is a pro bono consultant to NCMEC; has taught thousands of law-enforcement personnel and death investigators; and assists with adult and pediatric investigations internationally.

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Northwest SARCon

Sheriff Craig Roberts

Sheriff Craig Roberts

2015 Northwest SARCon
Sept. 25-27, 2015

Camp Kuratli at Trestle Glen
24751 SE Hwy 224
Boring, OR 97009

Julie Collinson, Conference Coordinator
Phone: 503-557-5827
Fax: 503-794-8068

Register online