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2018 Conference Speakers
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2018 MSFCA Annual Conference Speakers

St. Paul RiverCentre | 175 West Kellogg Blvd, St. Paul, MN 55102
October 10 - 13, 2018

Opening Symposium

Thursday, October 11, 2018 | 9:15am - 11:15am

Developing Resiliency: On the Job and Off:
Ali Warren Rothrock, Founder, Hope Lives Publishing & Author, Where Hope Lives
Ali Warren Rothrock will share how gender discrimination and sexual trauma in the fire service negatively impacted her mental health and her outlook on the world. She will discuss her PTSD diagnosis and how that affected all aspects of her life. She will talk about finding her way back to the fire service and what positive coping skills she learned to integrate into her life to stay well. She will also discuss how to create more inclusive and respectful work environments. Ali focuses on how we can build more resilient firefighters to be able to withstand the mental health demands of the job, process incidents of mass violence, and create more supportive work environments. It provides mental health education around compassion fatigue, vicarious trauma, suicide, acute and Post Traumatic Stress, and how to process grief as a firefighter. 


MSFCA Round Tables - Thursday October 11, 2018

With the changes in the conference format this year, the Education Committee will be conducting round table discussions along with some vendor venues on Thursday afternoon, October 11, during the vendor show.

We will also be conducting hour and a half round table discussions on Firefighter Rehab, MNFIRE, Legislative, Hot Topics, FirstNet Update, HSEM Update, Going Paperless and continuation of Ali Warren Rothrock Discussion.

Round Tables | 1:00pm - 2:45pm

Fire Service Legislative Initiatives, Not Just Committee Work, We Need Everyone's Help
Chief BJ Jungmann, Burnsville Fire Department
Legislative Chair BJ Jungmann will facilitate an interactive session covering highlights from the last legislative session, as well as a discussion about ideas for next year’s session. One initiative that is being pursued and will need statewide support is Fire Taxing District legislative that will improve the ability of agencies to combine services under a singular governance model. The session will explain what a Fire Taxing District is and what benefits it can bring to both rural and urban communities. Lastly, the session will give ideas of how you can engage legislators and assist in supporting the statewide legislative effort. 

Facility Issues Related to Cancer Prevention in the Fire Service
Michael Clark, Architect, Five Bugles and Retire Fire Chief, Jim Schmidt
Join this interactive discussion that will present back ground information on cancers in the Fire Service and then lead the group in a discussion of best practices, practical applications, and most importantly, what is currently being done to prevent cancer exposures in new and existing fire stations. Come prepared to learn what your contemporaries are doing across the state as well as to share what measures your department is implementing or considering.

Fire Ground Rehab at Fire Scenes: What is it and Why it's Done
Assistant Chief Mike Dobesh, Richfield Fire Department, Assistant Chief Steve Baker, Golden Valley Fire Department
The focus of this discussion will be to review the Rehab Program that was created with a number of organizations, including the MSFCA. This program has medical guidance and easy steps for implementation (it is also currently available on the MSFCA website).

The discussion is designed to highlight how a department can apply the NFPA 1584 standard and use the program within their department. If participating departments have already implemented the program, the discussion will get into the current best practices in Rehab.

Topics will include:

- Staffng
- Record keeping
- Medical training
- Regional models
- Basic equipment
- Recognized "Best Practices"

This discussion will be led by program practitioners and Safety Committee members. 

Certification vs. Licensing
Steve Flaherty, Minnesota Board of Firefighter Training & Education, Theresa Zikmund, Minnesota Fire Service Certification Board
Have you ever wondered: what’s the difference between being a certified firefighter or a licensed firefighter in Minnesota? Who is eligible for Firefighter Licensing in Minnesota?
What impact does firefighter licensing have on MBFTE training reimbursements?

Experts will be on hand to explain the process and differences of Firefighter Certification and Firefighter Licensing in Minnesota. Discussion will include the impact of certification and licensing on MBFTE training reimbursements. Staff from the Minnesota Board of Firefighter Training & Education will be on hand with staff from the Minnesota Fire Service Certification Board. 

Round Tables | 3:00pm - 4:45pm

Homeland Security Emergency Management (HSEM) Update
Bob Berg, Hazardous Materials Response Planner, John Kreuser, Hazardous Materials Response Planner, Rick Luth, State Emergency Response teams Coordinator, Joe Neuberger, Operations Branch Director & Kevin Reed, Deputy Director
Regardless of your position or department, this round table discussion will offer insight into the decision making process to request a Minnesota State Special teams(s). HSEM staff will discuss CAT/ERT's, 55th CST, TF 1 and Bomb squads and in broad term what each team brings to your scene. The focus will include scene size up, MNDO notification, team conference calls, response times, and how costs of the response are recovered. At the conclusion of the round table you should have the knowledge to quickly make informed decisions as to a state team request and their response.

After attending the round table, attendees will be able to identify what state team is needed, procedures to receive a state team response, what equipment and skills the team brings to your scene.

Reduce any concerns or anxiety regarding the process of requesting a state team, what financial responsibilities the requestor has, how reimbursement is recovered.

Provide an open forum for discussing what information state teams will need to best assist your agency with a response.

What training and outreach state teams and MN HSEM offers before the event occurs, to better prepare you and your agency to successfully respond to the incident. 

Firstnet: Evaluating Cellular Service for Your County or Agency
Melinda Miller, State of Minnesota Department of Public Safety
We will review putting together a project for evaluating cellular service. Coverage, Capacity and Cost are the top three issues to address, although “Subscriber paid plans” should be reviewed for volunteers in particular. We will also talk about new tools and technologies that could be seen on the job in the next ten years. 

The discussion Continues on PTSD & Mental health:
Ali Warren Rothrock, Founder, Hope Lives Publishing & Author, Where Hope Lives
Ali will continue her discussion on PTSD, Mental health and the impacts it had on her. She will talk about finding her way back to the fire service and what positive coping skills she learned to integrate into her life to stay well. She will also discuss how to create more inclusive and respectful work environments. Ali will provide mental health education as it’s relevant to first responders including suicide prevention, practical coping skills and relevant resources. Ali will also be able to answer any questions you may have about her presentation.

Click, Submit & Done! Documentation Made Simple:
John Hamilton, Jots Computer Services, Chief Jeff Leuer, Loretto Fire Department & Chief Justin McCoy, Maple Plain Fire Department
This round table discussion highlights how two fire agencies moved from paper forms to digital apps on their mobile devices. We know documentation is important and even mandated, but is your agency doing it? Learn how your agency can save time, increase efficiency, improve documentation work-flow and create professional documents. The Chiefs share how they updated their data collection process, made it simple for the firefighters to use, easy for the administration staff to manage and budget friendly. Demonstration on apparatus inventory/inspections, meeting and training records, SCBA Inspections, PPE and other department records. 

Vendor Education Sessions - Thursday October 11, 2018

Introduced in 2017, attendees will again have the opportunity to hear 30-minute presentations on Thursday afternoon, October 12th from 1-5 PM during the vendor show. Session descriptions will be published in the on-site Conference Program and Directory, and will be posted to and listed within the Conference App.

Presenters and topics include:

1:00pm - Understanding Public Safety DAS Solution for Providing Critical Communications for First Responders, Westell, Inc., Mark Kerschner

1:30pm - Reducing Toxin Exposures in Fire Station Buildings, CNH Architects, Quinn Hutson

2:00pm - Fire Damage Restoration 101, Paul Davis Restoration, Cian Chase & Eric Lundeen

2:30pm - 5 Policy "Hot Spots" for Fire Departments - Essentials for Limiting Your Risk as Fire Chief, Paul Clark, Lexipol

3:00pm - Medicaid Cost Recovery Opportunity: Are Minnesota EMS Providers Leaving Money on the Table?, Public Consulting Group, Megan Morris & Alissa Narode

3:30pm - Coordinated Response Exercise, Paradigm, Steve Roberts

4:00pm - How Incidents are Managed on the Roadway Matter, Central MN Towards Zero Deaths Regional Coordinator, Thomas Nixon

4:30pm - The ISO Grading Schedule; A Guide to Improving Your Community's Fire Protection Class, Insurance Services Office, Doug Robinson & Steve Ungericht

Educational Opportunities - Friday October 12, 2018

Educational Opportunities | AM/PM Sessions
8:00am - 12:00pm | 1:30pm - 4:30pm

"Lessons Learned" | AM/PM Session
The workshop will be a classroom setting typically addressing special incidents that have happened over the past year in Minnesota and the lessons learned from these events from the responders of these incidents. Please note: AM and PM sessions are the same.

State Fire Marshal | AM/PM Sessions
Stump the Fire Marshal
Bruce West, MN State Fire Marshal
Marshal West will give updates on division activities and you will have an opportunity to ask him any question you want. There will also be a chance to provide input and feedback of the State Fire Marshal Division. 

Getting Ahead of the Silver Surge
Amanda Swenson, Fire/Life Safety Educator North, Kathi Osmonson, Fire/Life Safety Educator South, Deputy State Fire Marshals
The total number of older adults (65+) is anticipated to double between 2010 and 2030, according to projections. By then, more than 1 in 5 Minnesotans will be an older adult. According to our statewide incident data, older adults are at higher risk across the state to be injured or killed in a fire. Join us to learn more about how we age, risk factors for older adults, and ways to increase your reach to older adults.

Attendees will recognize developmental changes due to normal aging process. Participants will develop skills in coordination, planning and presenting fire prevention to older adults. There will also be discussion on ways to evaluate the effectiveness of the fire and fall prevention program for older adults and identify what groups in the community are likely partners for presenting prevention programs to older adults. 

Squeeze the Right Data Out of your Reports
Jon Nisja, Supervisor, Data/Fire Protection Systems/Fire Life Safety Education
Jon Nisja provides information on how to improve ImageTrend accuracy using a standardized coding method. This program reinforces proficiency within the ImageTrend system, as well as provides them the requisite knowledge to become a skilled advisor within their own departments. 

ImageTrend's Elite Incident Reporting System
Scott Radke, Analyst, Forensic Investigation, Deputy State Fire Marshal
For individuals whose job consist of creating, recording, auditing fire incident reports, or for those who manage fire department operations this program is for you! ALL departments, if not currently using MN Fire Elite, will be migrated by year end 2018. This is an opportunity to talk and ask questions about the new Elite system as the regional training is only available online. Program will Feature: Navigation, Permissions, Forms, Management Tools, Setup, Migration, Resources and Question & Answer. 

New Officer Workshops | PM Session
(This class is for "new" fire officers in the fire service.)
MSFCA, MSFDA, Minnesota State Fire Marshal Office, MBFTE, Minnesota League of Cities, Minnesota Township Association, State Fire Marshal Office of Fire Investigation, NSWA, USAR/Chiefs Fast Team, Minnesota HSEM
This workshop will include a panel of experienced Chief Officers who will share ideas with new Chief Officers that include direction, information and suggestions to make their abilities more effective.

Some of the Fire Organizations that will be reviewed are the MSFCA, MSFDA, MARAC, IAAI, FMAM, OSHA, and SFMO, HSEM and other state and federal agencies.

Along with the overview will be a summary of legal, fiscal and liability issues that today’s chief officers face, as well as model standards and policies that cover such issues as training, human resources, budgets, leadership, fire cause determination and arson responsibilities. 

Health and Wellness | AM Sessions
Minimizing Exposures to Products of Combustion
MnFIRE, Assistant Chief Mike Dobesh & Deputy ChiefJohn Wolff
Participants will come away from this program with an enhanced understanding of how to minimize exposures to products of combustion in addition to how to implement simple and inexpensive solutions to improve firefighter safety through on-scene DECON.

What Are We Dealing With?
This awareness level training will review the chemical components of smoke and the impact that products of combustion and chemical flame retardants have on firefighter health and wellness. You will learn the most common ways you are exposed to these noxious hazards. Hear real life examples from firefighters on how their health has been impacted by products of combustion. 

The Fire Service Response & Best Practices
This program also reviews what leading agencies are doing to better understand the problem and what participants can do immediately to minimize exposures to products of combustion. This program will review current research, best practices, sample SOG’s, and a variety of supplies and equipment available to improve health and wellness. 

Chiefs Issues Workshop | PM Session
Understand and Apply Applicable Industry Standards and Regulations
Chief Doug Cline
This program will take an eye opening approach to help the participant understand and apply fire service related Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and National Fire Protection Association standards. OSHA requires employers to implement safety standards to include the general duty clause and how that relates to the fire service industrial standards. This program will be based upon the instructor’s experience of working through a fire department state OSHA complaint inspection and lessons learned.

Safety | 4 Hour AM/PM Session
Decision Making Under Stress and Training for Adaptability:
David Rhodes, Rhodes Consultants Inc.
Students will identify the differences in decision making under normal conditions and decision making while under stressors. Students will identify naturalistic and heuristic decision making processes. Students will identify training methods that enhance decision making in stressful situations. Students will participate in activities that reinforce training methodologies improving adaptability. 

Influencing Change | PM Session
Community Risk Reduction: How Burnsville Operationalized It:
Chief BJ Jungmann & Retired Chief Andy Hamlin
In this session you will learn what community risk reduction is and how you can analyze risks within your community. The session will also cover how to develop, implement and assess a community risk reduction program. The presenters will use Burnsville’s case study of apartment fires to show how community risk reduction can keep not only citizens but firefighters safer.

Professional Development Workshop | AM/PM Sessions
Your Leadership Ladder (AM Session):
Presenter: Ted Schick, Corporate Trainer, Speaker & Consultant
In this fun and comprehensive presentation, we examine what it takes to lead, especially as it applies to serving as a senior leader within the department. From leading professional distance and ourselves to communication, to holding people accountable, to having and communicating a strategy and direction for our department. Technically, we are experts in our professions  this is an examination and discussion of the “soft skills” it requires to be truly successful. Filled with stories and examples, take a leadership assessment of YOUR leadership with this presentation. 

Engaging Non-Career Firefighters for Performance Retention (PM Session):
Chad Weinstein, Educator, Manager & Consultant
The Minnesota Fire Service depends on non-career firefighters to serve most of our communities, using a variety of deployment models. The success of any of these models depends on leadership: the ability to motivate firefighters with increasingly busy lives to respond, train, and maintain agency readiness over the course of a career. One leadership challenge in particular is the reality of ongoing change and the natural tendency of firefighters of all ranks to resist it. This session, aimed at both line and chief officers, will present practical concepts and techniques for stimulating firefighter motivation and engagement, and addressing the specific challenges associated with organizational and operational change.

Topics will include:

- Deliberate professionalism
Personal accountability and ownership
- The science behind motivation
Six factors that stimulate engagement
Understanding and leading through change
Real case examples will be used to illustrate and explore many of these topics.

Thee entire session will be interactive, combining brief presentations with extended discussions and exercises. Participants will work to create their own “handout,” capturing learning from their classmates in the course of the program, which will be distributed to interested participants via email following the session. 

Emergency Management | AM Session
The Forgotten Mission: When the Shooting Stops - Recovery from Active-Shooter Incidents in K-12 Schools - Are you Ready? Is your Department Ready?
Deputy Chief Doug Berglund, Hennepin County and Emergency Management Staff
This session will focus on emergency management issues and emergency management opportunities in Minnesota. The session will focus on hot topics in emergency management, emerging technology for emergency management use, intrastate mutual aid, and communications in an EOC and in the field. The session will identify resources for use within the State of Minnesota. 

Administrative Support | 9:00am - 3:00pm
Scott Radke, Analyst, Forensic Investigation
This session is FREE if the department's chief is a registered attendee.
For individuals whose job duties consist of processing or completion of the following administrative functions: MFIRS Reporting, Workers Compensation Claims, OSHA requirements, Recruitment issues such as background checks, Minnesota Board of Fire Training and Education reimbursements, Public Employee’s Retirement Association pension reporting, Office of the State Auditor Volunteer Pension Plan reporting requirements, Data Retention, Data Privacy, Critical Incidence Stress Debriefing and more.

This track will feature representatives from a few key agencies who will provide updates on new changes, an overview of their system and requirements, and time to interact to provide answers to your questions. Information packets for some of the agencies/areas who are not presenting will also be provided to attendees. A fantastic opportunity to actually meet the people you currently just talk on the phone or email with! Come check it out, network with other professionals, and take time to view the vast vendor display. For an additional charge stay and join us for our annual awards dinner. 

Relief for Chiefs | AM Session
Rose Hennessy-Allen, Pension Director, State Auditor Office; Brian McKnight, Partner, Parr McKnight; Kristie Strum, State Program Administrator, Department of Revenue; Luis Argueta, PERA
If you are a volunteer chief and your department has a relief association (you have not joined the state plan) this class is for you. All volunteer chiefs that have a relief are ex-officio members of the relief association. You have the same responsibilities and liabilities of all other board members. You can be sued if you breach your fiduciary responsibility! This class will address what you, as the Chief, need to know about your relief association operation. The class will cover your responsibilities, duties, and liabilities along with sharing information on how the funding works, understanding the required municipal contribution, how to build a plan to obtain increases in benefits, and how to interact with councils. The class will also touch on fire state aid, State Auditor oversight, and provide information on the state plan. 

FITOAM Track | 8 Hour Session
Human Behavior: The Stealth Killer of First Responders:
Dr. Rich Gasaway
This program shares the powerful findings of Dr. Gasaway’s extensive research on issues related to first responder decision making and flawed situational awareness. In his review of hundreds of near-miss reports, case studies, line of duty death reports and videos, he continually found himself being frustrated because there were so many clues, indicators and signs that the incident was going to end in disaster.

This program will focus on some of the most pervasive situational awareness barriers first responder will face while operating in stress filled, dynamically-changing environments. 

Educational Opportunities - Saturday, October 13, 2018

Symposium | 8:30am - 11:30am

Chief Doug Cline
Professional development is the planned, progressive and lifelong process of education, training, self-development and experience that one gains during their development. In the fire service, professional development is a critical element of being a leader and a professional. When we step up to accept the responsibility of leadership, we also accept an obligation to continue our training, education, learning, personal experience and growth as we strive to improve our effectiveness. Professional development is an excellent tool for meeting that obligation. As fire service organizations, we must strive to provide continuing guidance to our most valuable resource, our personnel, through a carefully crafted professional development plan that meets the specific needs of the organization. This program will help students with a guide to developing themselves as well as the ability to develop an organizational professional development model for their department. 
Minnesota State Fire Chiefs Association • 6737 W. Washington St. Ste. 4210 Milwaukee, WI 53214
MSFCA Office • 800-743-0911 •
Jennifer Rzepka, CAE •

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