BOARD OF DIRECTORS
BERT NORTON- MIDWEST CITY, OKLAHOMA
Bert Norton is currently the Fire Chief at Midwest City Fire department in Oklahoma. He has been the Fire Chief for the past 5 years and has been in the Oklahoma fire service for 26 years now. He serves as the State representative for the Oklahoma on the Southwest Division of the IAFC board. He is also on the Oklahoma State Fire Chiefs Board.
CHAD ROBERSON- ST. GEORGE, LOUISIANA
Immediate Past President
Chief Chad Roberson is a 32-year veteran of the fire service and an assistant fire chief for the St. George Fire Protection District in East Baton Rouge Parish (LA). Roberson has a master’s degree in Executive Fire Service Leadership from Grand Canyon University as well as a bachelor’s degree in history from Louisiana State University (LSU) and an associate degree in fire science from Louisiana State University Eunice (LSUE). Roberson graduated from the National Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer (EFO) Program, the International Association of Fire Chiefs Fire Service Executive Development Institute (FSEDI) program and has been awarded the Certified Fire Officer (CFO) designation from the Commission on Professional Credentialing and the MIFireE designation from the Institution of Fire Engineers, United States of America Branch. Roberson currently serves on the Urban Search & Rescue (US&R) Committee for the International Association of Fire Chiefs and is a current executive board member of the Louisiana Fire Chiefs Foundation, the St. George Firefighters Foundation, the Executive Fire Officers Section of the IAFC and the Louisiana Municipal Association. He is also a Past President of the Louisiana Fire Chiefs Association.
MICHAEL DANIELS- LAS CRUCES, NEW MEXICO
2nd Vice President
Michael Daniels serves as a Deputy Chief with the Las Cruces Fire Department in New Mexico. He has been a member of the fire service since 2006 after serving as an Aviation Ordnanceman in the US Navy.
Mike holds Masters of Business Administration, is a graduate of the Executive Fire Officer Program and holds the Chief Fire Officer designation.
JAMES FULLINGIM, OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLAHOMA
James Fullingim served with the Norman Fire Department 1981-2016. He retired as Fire Chief in 2016 and worked in the Fire Protection program at OSU/OKC for the following two years. He has served on the SWD-IAFC Board of Directors for twelve years and is currently the 3rd Vice President of the Oklahoma Retired Firefighters Association.
KEN HIMEL- HOUMA, LOUISIANA
Louisiana Vice President
Ken Himel was appointed Fire Chief of Bayou Cane Fire Department in August of 2012. BCFD is located in Houma, LA which is approximately 50 miles southwest of New Orleans. BCFD began as an all-volunteer department in 1968 and has progressed into a combination department that is currently, all career.
Chief Himel began his career in 1993 with Thibodaux Volunteer Fire Department. Throughout his tenure with Thibodaux he held several company officers positions, served on the fire board, and was the department’s Director of Fire Prevention.
In 1994, he accepted an Inspector’s position with the LA State Fire Marshal’s Office. He was promoted to the ranks of Assistant District Supervisor before transferring from the inspection division to the Arson Division.
Chief Himel is a 4-time graduate of the National Fire Academy in Emmitsburg, Maryland; and is a Certified Fire and Explosion Investigator. Throughout his career Chief Himel has obtained several certifications through LSU-FETI and has also completed the Basic Law Enforcement Academy and is P.O.S.T. Certified. He is a certified Fire Instructor II; owner of 5 Horn Leadership, LLC; and teaches classes throughout the region. He has attended Nicholls State University and is currently pursuing his bachelor’s degree in Fire Administration from Columbia Southern.
Himel is a member of the LA State Fireman’s Association, LA Association of Fire Chiefs and currently serves on the executive board as the 3rd District Representative, the International Association of Arson Investigators, National Association of Fire Investigators, the National Fire Academy Alumni Association, and the International Association of Fire Chiefs.
Outside of the fire service, He enjoys hunting, fishing, golfing, and spending as much time as possible with his wife Kristy and their daughter, Katie.
DENNIS PACHECO- LAS CRUCES, NEW MEXICO
New Mexico Vice President
Chief Dennis Pacheco is a 39 year veteran of the Fire Service and the current Fire Chief with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) at the White Sands Test Facility in Las Cruces NM where he has served as a Chief Officer for the past 17 years. Chief Pacheco also spent 22 years with the Las Cruces (NM) where he retired as a Company Commander. 23 years with the Dona Ana Volunteer Fire Department with 18 of them as the Fire Chief, Past President of the Dona Ana County Fire Officer’s Association (14 years) and past Vice President for the New Mexico Professional Firefighter Firefighters Association. Chief Pacheco has been an active part of the IAFC since 1997.
CRAIG CARRUTH- MUSTANG, OKLAHOMA
Oklahoma Vice President
Craig Carruth is the Fire Chief for the City of Mustang, Oklahoma. Chief Carruth began his fire career on December 1, 1998, when he started as a volunteer firefighter with the Mustang Fire Department. On February 2, 1999, he started his career as a full time, paid firefighter with the Mustang Fire Department.
Chief Carruth holds an applied science degree from Redlands Community College with an emphasis on paramedicine. Chief Carruth became the first full time paramedic and EMS Coordinator for the City of Mustang in 2000. Chief Carruth obtained all of his certifications through Oklahoma State Fire Service Training and has taught numerous fire and EMS courses over his career. Chief Carruth has also spent many years working as a transport paramedic for multiple ambulance services across the Oklahoma City metro area. Prior to becoming Fire Chief, Carruth spent six years as a rescue specialist and paramedic for Oklahoma Task Force- 1.
Chief Carruth is an alumni member of the National Fire Academy in Emmitsburg, Maryland, and a graduate of the National Fire Academy’s Managing Officer Program. Chief Carruth is currently in the Oklahoma Executive Fire Officer Leadership cohort. Chief Carruth is a past president of the Oklahoma Metro Fire Chiefs Association. Chief Carruth currently serves on the Oklahoma Fire Chiefs Association Executive Board as the 2nd Vice President.
Chief Carruth has been in the Oklahoma Fire Service for 24 years, serving all 24 years with the Mustang Fire Department. Chief Carruth has served at every level within his department over the course of his career. Sixteen of those years, he has served at the Officer level. Over the last five years, he has had the privilege to serve as the Fire Chief.
VANCE RILEY- PEARLAND, TEXAS
Texas Vice President
Vance Riley has 43 years of fire service experience with 30 years as a Fire Chief. Vance, previously served as Fire Chief of Pearland, Texas; Victoria, Texas; Clive, Iowa; and as the Fire Marshal of Friendswood, Texas. He has served as a volunteer and Chief Officer in several other agencies.
Vance held various positions on the Texas Fire Chiefs Association Executive Board from 1998 until 2011, including President and several years as Secretary/Treasurer. He represented TFCA and was appointed by Governor Perry to the Governor’s Emergency Medical Service and Trauma Advisory Council (GETAC) in 2004 and was appointed as the Chair of GETAC in January 2010 serving until 2016. He is currently serving as the Vice Chair of the EMS Section of the International Association of Fire Chiefs. Vance has a Bachelor of Science from Texas A&M University and an MPA from Drake University. He is designated an Executive Fire Officer by the NFA. Chief Riley has been an Adjunct Faculty member for TEEX-ESTI, The Victoria College Fire Academy and College of the Mainland Fire Academy as well as a charter instructor with the Texas Fire Chiefs Academy. Vance is a licensed EMT-P and has earned several certifications from the Texas Commission on Fire Protection, the State Firemen’s and Fire Marshal’s Association and the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement.