Each participant will receive a conference Syllabus which contains pertinent reference material, exhibits and an attendee directory.
David Bona Mitchell C. Haydon Mark S. Roth
Frank Borden Wesley Higbie Ken Roye
Brian Cardoza Garry Hubert Dr. K. Medji Sama, Ph.D. 
Alan Carlson Alan Jang Kirk Schmitt
Adam Cederberg John Koltun Dr. Phillip J. Shaller, Ph.D. 
Robert Chalfant Christine Lee Paul Steensland
Erik Christiansen Kevin H. Lewis Robert Toth
Dr. Janice Coen, Ph.D. Richard S. Linkert Robert Unsworth
Dr. Carlos Fernandez-Pello, Ph.D. Mark Loose Gary White
Randy Gimple Joe McNeil Torrey Young
Mark Grotefeld Matt Olearcyzk  
Chad Hanson, Ph.D. Michael J. ONeil  
John A. Harris    
David Bona is a partner at Carlson, Calladine & Peterson LLP, a law firm with offices in San Francisco and Los Angeles. David is an experienced trial attorney who has devoted the majority of his career to defending his clients in high-exposure, complex litigation, including cases involving wildland fire, such as the Copper Canyon Fire of 2002, Freds Fire of 2004, and the Santa Catalina Island Fire, Guejito Fire and Rice Fire in 2007. David obtained his Bachelor's of Science degree from University of Utah and his Juris Doctor degree from the UCLA School of Law. He is admitted to the State Bar of California and the U.S. District Courts for the Northern and Eastern Districts of California and is the author of "Reliability and Relevance of Expert Testimony in Federal Court.
Frank Borden is a Registered Professional Forester in California and a General Partner of Shasta Land Management Consultants since 1981. Prior to 1981, Frank worked for the U.S. Forest Service on three National Forests in California specializing in timber sale preparation, reforestation, fuel management and fire suppression. As a consultant, primary specialty areas include evaluating and appraising fire damage to wildland vegetation types, especially commercial timberland. Clientele have included both plaintiffs and defendants involving fires from San Diego to Siskiyou Counties.

Significant areas of consulting work also include preparation of Timber Harvest Plans for commercial timber harvests and permitting expertise for other projects requiring removal of wildland tree covered vegetation. Permits include Oak Woodland Conservation Plans and Tree Management Plans for projects such as subdivisions, cell tower sites, and solar arrays.
Brian A. Cardoza is a Senior Attorney in the Claims Litigation Section of the Southern California Edison Company (“SCE”) Law Department. Brian has represented SCE in all manner of litigation both as a prosecuting and defending attorney, including but not limited to: personal injury, electrocution and death cases, construction design and defect, commercial disputes, inverse condemnation, eminent domain and wildfire related litigation. Brian also cross-trained in SCE’s Qualified Facilities Section for two years. He has tried numerous cases to verdict throughout SCE’s service territory. Brian is currently a member of the SCE Wildfire Taskforce Committee charged with creating solutions to the myriad of wildfire related issues impacting the company. He currently represents SCE as lead counsel on the Malibu Fire OII, Nightsky Wildfire and Catalina Fire cases. Brian has served SCE’s Law Department as past Chairman of the Training and Education Committee and member of the Outside Counsel Committee, Offsite Committee and Pro Bono Committee. Brian was also on the Law Department Taskforce created to adopt standards for department work product. Prior to joining SCE, Brian worked for a national law firm representing clients in product liability matters. He received an undergraduate degree in History (ancient civilizations) from U.C. Berkeley and spent a year abroad at the American University, Cairo, Egypt. He received his J.D. from Boston College Law School, and later served as Vice President of the Alumni Associations. He currently is a board member and past president of VIP Mentors, a non-profit organization providing mentoring services for parolees and youth offenders.
Alan Carlson has 39 years of firefighting and fire investigation experience with the U.S. Forest Service and Cal Fire, retiring as the Deputy Chief for Fire Prevention for the Northern Region of Cal Fire in 2010. He has investigated over 1,000 fires, was a member and chair of the NWCG Wildfire Investigation Working Team, and has taught numerous wildland fire investigation classes nationally and internationally. He has participated in over 30 complex wildland fire investigation/law enforcement team assignments and has testified in court as an expert witness in both civil and criminal fire cases relating to origin and cause, investigation methodology, as well as serial wildland arson analysis. Alan Carlson currently works as a private consultant for government and non-government parties concerning wildland fire litigation issues.
Adam Cederberg is an Associate with the firm Jang & Associates, LLP. His legal career has focused on subrogation, wildland fire litigation, inverse condemnation, insurance bad faith, and personal injury. Mr. Cederberg received a Bachelor of Science in Economics and Business Management from Santa Clara University in 2004. He earned his J.D. from the Santa Clara University School of Law in 2007. Prior to joining Jang & Associates, Mr. Cederberg worked with his father's firm, Cederberg Law, P.C., based in Boulder, CO, where he worked on numerous matters, including an insurance bad faith case involving a disabled attorney. See Ray v. Unum Life Ins. Co. of America, 224 Fed. App. 772 (10th Cir. 2007). Mr. Cederberg has worked on the Witch Creek, Rich and Ophir fires and is currently engaged in subrogation litigation related to the San Bruno gas line explosion and fire. Mr. Cederberg is licensed to practice law in the States of California and Connecticut.
Robert Chalfant is a Partner at Randolph Cregger & Chalfant, LLP, a law firm in Sacramento, California. His practice includes the defense of public entities and railroads in state and federal court. Mr. Chalfant’s practice involves the defense of claims alleging civil rights, police misconduct, employment, subrogation, real property disputes and damage cases, and forest fire litigation. He is Lead Trial Counsel for Union Pacific Railroad on real property damage cases filed by individuals, and has defended Union Pacific Railroad on all of the Rich Fire (2008) cases filed in Plumas County.

Mr. Chalfant is A-V Rated by Martindale Hubbell, and was awarded the 2012 Pro Bono Lawyer of The Year Award by Northern California Lawyer Referral Service.
Dr. Erik W. Christiansen is a Senior Managing Engineer in Exponent’s Thermal Sciences practice. Dr. Christiansen specializes in fire science, combustion chemistry, fluid mechanics, thermodynamics, and heat transfer. He performs origin and cause investigations of fires and explosions, ranging from small residential fires to large-scale industrial incidents to multi-acre wildland fires. He also investigates thermal related failures of consumer appliances; commercial and residential cooking equipment; and heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems. He has performed testing and research on the ignition of wildland fuels by various causes and has over ten years of experience investigating fires and explosions.
Dr. Janice Coen is a Project Scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado. She studies fire behavior and its interaction with weather using coupled weather-fire computer simulation models and by analyzing infrared imagery of wildfires and prescribed fires. She received a B.S. in Engineering Physics from Grove City College and an M.S. and Ph.D. from the Department of Geophysical Sciences at the University of Chicago. She has been a member of the Board of Directors of the International Association of Wildland Fire and is currently an Associate Editor for the International Journal of Wildland Fire.
Dr. Carlos Fernandez-Pello is Professor of the Department of Mechanical Engineering, and Associate Dean of the Graduate Division at the University of California, Berkeley. He received degrees of Doctor Aeronautical Engineer (1972) from the University of Madrid, Spain, and a Ph.D. in Engineering Sciences (1975) from the University of California, San Diego. From 1975 to 1977 he was a Postdoctoral Fellow at Harvard University, and from 1977 to 1980 a Research Fellow at Princeton University. He joined the University of California, Berkeley in 1980, where he has been a Full Professor since 1986. Professor Fernandez-Pello teaches courses in thermosciences with emphasis on combustion His recent research emphasizes material flammability in earth and spacecraft environments, wildland fire development, micro-scale power generation and solar energy storage. His research is or has been funded by NASA, NSF, NIST, DARPA, DOE and ARO. He is co-author of the book “Fundamental of Combustion Processes” and of four book chapters on material flammability. He has published over 180 papers in archival technical journals and over 200 hundred non-archival papers.
Randy Gimple is a partner and founding member of Carlson, Calladine & Peterson LLP, a law firm with offices in San Francisco and Los Angeles. Randy has represented plaintiffs and defendants in cases involving catastrophic losses such as floods and fires for over 20 years. He typically represents defendants in wildland fire cases, such as the Poe Fire of 2001, the Freds Fire of 2004 and the Island, Guejito and Rice Fires of 2007. Randy is a member of the California Conference of Arson Investigators, International Association of Arson Investigators and National Fire Protection Association. He is also a well-known contributor to the wildland fire community's study of catastrophic loss investigations, fire scene investigation, evidence preservation, forensic investigation techniques, admissibility of expert evidence, property damage evaluation and statutory and common-law duties arising as a result of negligently caused fires.
Mark S. Grotefeld is a founding member of the national law firm of Grotefeld & Hoffman, LLP, the firm having offices in Chicago, Illinois, Geneva, Illinois, San Francisco, California, and Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. Mr. Grotefeld's trial practice is focused on civil cases involving matters both national and international in scope. Admitted to the Illinois Bar in 1981 and the Florida Bar in 1982, Mr. Grotefeld received a B.A. from the University of Arizona in 1978 and his J.D. from The John Marshall Law School in 1981. He has served as a national and regional counsel in large scale catastrophic loss cases, including many wildfire matters, and has tried matters of national prominence in courts throughout the United States. Mr. Grotefeld has lectured on law related topics in the United States, Canada and Europe. In addition to being admitted to the Federal Trial Bar and several Federal District Courts, Mr. Grotefeld is licensed to practice before the United States Court of Federal Claims, the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, and the U.S. Supreme Court. Bar Association affiliations include the American, Illinois and Florida Bar Associations, the National Association of Subrogation Professionals, the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association and the American Association of Justice.
Dr. Hanson has a Ph.D. in Ecology from the University of California at Davis, with a research focus on forest and fire ecology in western U.S. conifer forests. He has published several papers in peer-reviewed journals covering various aspects of fire ecology, including determination of fire severity in conifer forests, the evaluation of tree mortality following wildland fires and the effect of fire on various species.  Dr. Hanson is also the Director of the John Muir Project and has testified in civil cases regarding the impact of wildland fires on various habitats of flora and fauna, as well as the effect of salvage logging on those same habitats.
John A. Harris, Landscape Economist, is the Principal of Landscape Economics LLC and President of Earth Advisors, Inc. He is based in Hollywood, Florida. His environmental consulting and expert witnessing practices include work across the United States and the Caribbean. He has been working in the Green Industry for over 25 years with field practices, management, and consulting experience. His degrees include M.B.A., M.S., B.S., A.A.S., and he has industry related certifications including Registered Consulting Arborist, Certified Forester, Certified Arborist, Certified Landscape Inspector. John's expert work includes landscape and land improvements damage assessments, economic valuations, work audits, and expert witness testimony. He provides expert services to both plaintiffs and defendants in legal cases, and has been a mediated expert. He was inducted as an Elected Member of the Lambda Alpha International Honorary Land Economics Society in 1997 for his work determining and defending values of trees and landscapes. He is an author and co-author of numerous articles in trade journals, newspapers and publications. He has done TV interview appearances and serves as a resource to the media for landscape, natural areas, and forestry topics. John is an active educator, having taught over 150 different classes and field training programs for the industry and the public. He continues to learn and provide useful information in industry organizations and education programs.
Mitchell Haydon is a Registered Professional Forester and part owner of Environmental Resource Solutions, Inc. Mitch has practiced forestry in the State of California for over 17 years, and has been an RPF for 8 years. Mitch is an ISA Certified Arborist and has worked under contract with Pacific Gas and Electric Company’s Vegetation Management Program implementing applicable laws and standards for utility compliance. Mitch is also a Certified Professional in Erosion and Sediment Control. He earned his Masters of Forestry degree from U.C. Berkeley and his Forestry and Natural Resources degree from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo.
Wesley R. Higbie practices Natural Resources Law in California, dividing his time between civil litigation (primarily in federal courts), and business counseling and transactions. Mr. Higbie earned his BS in Forestry from the University of California, Berkeley, and his JD at the University of San Francisco School of Law. He was formerly General Counsel to the Western Timber Association and has extensive experience in forestry matters. From 2006 through 2009, he was a Visiting Professor at UC, Berkeley, where he taught natural resources law and policy in the College of Natural Resources.

Mr. Higbie is a member of the State Bar of California, and the bars of U.S. District Courts for both the Eastern District and Northern District of California, the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, U.S. Courts of Appeals for both the Ninth Circuit and the Federal Circuit, and the U.S. Supreme Court. He has litigated matters in all of these courts and has argued appeals in the California and federal courts of appeal, as well as the California Supreme Court. In addition, he has represented clients in numerous matters before federal agencies and administrative boards. Representative reported cases include: Sierra Pacific Ind. v. Lyng, 866 F.2d 1099 (9th Cir. 1989); Arcata Forest Products Co. v. U.S., 18 Cl.Ct 93 (1989), aff’d. 915 F.2d 1584 (Fed. Cir. 1990); Seaboard Lumber Co. v. U.S., 903 F.2d 1560 (Fed Cir. 1990); Stone Forest Ind. v. U.S., 973 F.2d 1584 (Fed. Cir. 1992), Eel River Sawmills v. U.S., 27 Fed.Cl. 604 (1993); R.C.O. Reforesting v. U.S., 42 Fed.Cl. 405 (1998); and Don Dwyer Development Co., 02-2 BCA ¶ 31,890, AGBCA No. 2000-107-1.
Garry Hubert is a California trial lawyer with almost 40 years of trial experience. While a deputy district attorney for Alameda County he taught criminal law and evidence. He has tried to jury verdict 135 plus Superior Court criminal cases and 30 Superior Court civil cases (the longest lasting 8 months). He founded Hubert & Yasutake in 1996 which specializes in civil litigation for both the plaintiff and the defense, with an emphasis on plaintiff's fire loss claims. He is an experienced arbitrator/mediator having presided over 1,000 such proceedings. Specific fire cases prosecuted by Mr. Hubert include self-igniting automobiles, construction practices causing fires, fireplace failures, electrical appliance failures, power line failures causing structure fires and wildland fires, and spontaneous combustion fires. Mr. Hubert is rated A-V by Martindale-Hubble and is a special master for serving search warrants.
Alan Jang of Jang & Associates, LLP in Walnut Creek, California, focuses on subrogation law, insurance law, wildland fire litigation and inverse condemnation. He was admitted to the California State Bar on November 29, 1978. Mr. Jang received a B.A. in Economics from the University of California at Berkeley in 1975. He received his J.D. in 1978 from Golden Gate University School of Law.

Mr. Jang has handled a number of large catastrophic subrogation cases, including claims arising out of wildland fires, construction fires, electrical fires, gas explosions, sinkholes, flooding and landslides. He has received an "AV" Preeminent rating by the Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory, the highest possible rating in both legal ability and ethical standards.

Mr. Jang has been involved in several important appellate decisions, resulting in the following published opinions: California State Automobile Association v. City of Palo Alto, (subrogation/inverse condemnation action); State Farm Fire and Casualty Co. v. East Bay Municipal Utilities District, (subrogation/inverse condemnation action); Delfino v. Sloan, (premises liability/negligence per se).
John Koltun is the co-founder and Vice President of Geographic Resource Solutions. He received his B.S. Degree from Humboldt State University in Forestry Science in 1983 with a minor in Computer Information Systems. John has over 27 years of Geographic Information System (GIS) and remote sensing experience in a broad range of applications including forestry, wildfire, utilities, transportation, real estate management, wildlife management, mining, and petroleum. As a Senior Consultant and Director of GIS Services at GRS he provides systems design, analytical consultation, training, and software development for state, federal, and local agencies as well as multi-national corporations.

John has designed and implemented complex geospatial analyses including the development of a geospatial model for determining wildfire risk and mitigation within the Wildland Urban Interface. He has also participated in wildfire litigation as a geospatial consultant on major fires throughout California. John has served on software-design advisory committees for a major remote sensing/GIS vendors and has designed and taught GIS courses as well as presented papers and workshops at professional conferences and user groups. John designed and taught a course in Spatial Database Design and Management at the University of Alaska Anchorage (UAA) where he currently serves on the Department of Geomatics Advisory Board. John is the Past President of Alaska Region of American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS) and served as a Regional Director. John is also a member of the Society of American Foresters, California Licensed Foresters Association, and International Association of Wildland Fire. He is a Registered Professional Forester in California (RPF), Certified Forester (CF), and a certified GIS Professional (GISP).
Christine Lee is a Principal with Industrial Economics, Incorporated, an environmental economics and policy consultancy. Ms. Lee’s primary areas of expertise are environmental finance and environmental economics. She has supported the assessment and estimation of damages resulting from wildland fires cases on public and private lands, for both plaintiffs and defendants, including the 1999 Pilot Fire, 1999 Pendola Fire, 2000 Storrie Fire, 2004 Early Fire, 2004 Power Fire, 2007 Moonlight Fire and the 2007 Witch and Guejito fires. She is based out of San Francisco, CA.
Kevin Lewis is the President of CASE Forensics and a Principal Metallurgical Engineer who specializes in complex and large fire and explosion investigations. He specializes in origin and cause determinations of electrical fires and gas explosion, material and product failure analysis, engineering analysis and expert witness testimony. Kevin is a Licensed Professional Engineer in seven states and is recognized as a Certified Fire Investigator by the International Association of Arson Investigators. He has testified in both Federal and State courts regarding the origin and cause of fires and explosions. His failure analysis casework includes mechanical machines and components, corrosion analysis, metallography, and physical property testing on a wide variety of materials such as metals, plastics, polymers, composites and ceramics. Kevin uses his metallurgical training to analyze failed piping, refinery equipment, gas regulators and control valves. In addition, he has authored many scientificpapers on identification of electrical arcs generated during fires in copper and aluminum wiring. His extensive fire investigation experience and NAFI Investigator Instructor Certification qualifies him to present fire investigation training seminars and to certify other investigators.
Rick Linkert is managing partner of the Sacramento law firm of Matheny Sears Linkert & Jaime. He has principally focused his practice on catastrophic injury and damages cases for the past 20 years - including structure fires, wildland fires and propane fires/explosions. Mr. Linkert has represented defendants in a number of significant wildland fire cases including the Poe Fire, the Geysers/Calpine Fire, the Sims Fire, and the federal and pending state Moonlight Fire litigation. He participated in the drafting of legislation seeking relief from governmental wildfire damages claims and in discussions that lead to the enactment of Health and Safety Code Section 13009.2. Mr. Linkert is rated A-V by Martindale-Hubble and is a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA).
Dr. Mark Loose performs failure analysis related to the breakdown of insulation systems and materials in circuit boards, cables and appliances, as well as failure of semiconductor and other components used in electronic equipment. He also investigates failures of electrical/electronic systems that are alleged to have caused fires, electrocution, and electric shocks. Dr. Loose received a PhD in Electric Power Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, where his education centered on traditional electrical engineering topics such as performance of electrical materials used in electric equipment and components and the analysis of electric systems. He has advanced knowledge of power transformers, substation equipment, and transmission and distribution systems as well as experience in modeling of power transformers.
Joe McNeil holds a Landscape Contractor’s license and lifetime Community College teaching credential from the State of California, is a Board Certified Master Arborist, a Registered Consulting Arborist and a Qualified Tree Risk Assessor. He has served on the Board of Directors of the American Society of Consulting Arborists and chaired that society’s committee on Standards of Professional Practice.

From 2004 he has been on the International Society of Arboriculture’s Plant Appraisal and Valuation Committee, working as Chair from 2007 through the present time.

Joe operated a tree service for 24 years before becoming a full-time arboricultural consultant in 1995. His practice focuses on inventory and management of mature and young trees on construction sites or for homeowner’s associations, tree risk management for various clients including public agencies, insurance companies, or individuals, and plant appraisal. Joe is often asked to provide litigation support in these categories.


Matthew Olearczyk is a Senior Program Manager at EPRI. He directs EPRI’s applied research portfolio for the electric distribution systems research area, which includes technology development/assessment and demonstrations as well as analytical studies to identify industry-leading practices, environmental impacts, applications of grid modernization and integration of distributed energy resources. He is responsible for the continuing development of the distribution systems research program and business development across the EPRI worldwide regions and has authored numerous papers and EPRI reports.

Matthew started his career at Public Service Electric and Gas Company, New Jersey, where he worked for over ten years in various management, staff, and supervisory positions. He founded a privately held consultancy practice, focused on helping utilities, regulators, and industrial users of electric services by providing information, analyses, and expertise in the area of electric distribution. Matthew received an Engineering degree from Widener University in Chester, Pennsylvania and is an active member of the IEEE PES and the AEIC.
Mike ONeil is a Registered Professional Metallurgical Engineer, CA #1815, and a certified Crane Surveyor, CA 15, with experience in conducting failure analyses and root cause investigations related to electrical equipment, both transmission and distribution, cranes, piping, pressure vessels and vehicle related components as well as other metallic structures, such as steel poles. He is a qualified Welding Engineer with over thirty years of experience in the utility, construction and manufacturing industries and has been instrumental in the design of welding procedures and processes in accordance with ASME Section VIII and IX Standards used in the construction of pressure vessels and gas/water piping and offshore rigs, as well as AWS D1.1 welding requirements used in the construction of large industrial equipment, cement kilns and associated fleet components related to cranes, material handlers, trucks and other equipment.

Mr. ONeil has been instrumental in leading successful root cause failure analyses of many construction and utility equipment failures during his career while employed by PG&E, to include: Material handler boom bearing bolt failure; boom cracking analysis and subsequent repair procedure; rear axle housing cracking issues and subsequent negotiations and repair procedure; Mobile Auto-transformer bearing failure (white paper presented to SFES); fired wedge connector failures and redesign; electrical cutout analysis and redesign; and load interrupter failures at the support stud amongst other projects.

Mr. ONeil has recently participated as an expert witness, but without any depositions, pertaining to a hoist accident, a utility fire in Southern California and a fire at the Geysers.
Mark S. Roth opened the Los Angeles office and is a member of Cozen O’Connor, a law firm with 21 offices in the U.S. and abroad. Mark is an AV-rated litigator who has secured numerous multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements, including a jury verdict of nearly $12 million featured in a California Law Business article entitled “Four of the Biggest of 1990” profiling noteworthy verdicts. Mark has authored numerous articles on subrogation and inverse condemnation and presented seminars to numerous organizations, including the California Conference of Arson Investigators, National Association of Subrogation Professionals and Metropolitan Fire Chiefs Conference. Mark has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Sciences and Communication from the University of Southern California and a Juris Doctor degree from Southwestern Law School where he served as a Note & Comment Editor on the Law Review and was the recipient of the Schweitzer Moot Court Outstanding Brief Award.
Ken Roye is a California trial lawyer with over 100 civil jury trials to verdict in twelve California counties including Los Angeles, San Diego and Sacramento. He is presently litigating wildland fire cases in Los Angeles, San Diego, Sonoma, Trinity and Ventura Counties. He represents subrogating fire insurers and private landowners and limits his practice to mass tort catastrophic loss cases. Ken is the founder and host of the Wildland Fire Litigation Conference, now in its fifth year. He litigates these cases, for the most part, with Garry Hubert of Hubert & Yasutake in Concord, California and with Alan Jang of Jang & Associates Walnut Creek, California. He is also associated with the County Counsel’s office in Sonoma County on the Geysers Fire case and with Bill Apger of Chico, California on the Sims Fire case in Trinity County. Ken has previously worked in the Legal Services program and thereafter followed a career as a criminal defense lawyer for 10 years with over 250 criminal jury trials. He is a continuing education provider for the State Bar of California, is the author of “California Consumer Protection” (1994) (Fullcourt Press) and has taught law school at California Western University, School of Law. He was a speaker at the November 2009 Annual Conference of the National Association of Subrogation Professionals (NASP) (Broadmoor Hotel, Colorado Springs) and at the 2009 Spring meeting of the Western Chapter in Costa Mesa, California.
Dr. Medji Sama is a Managing Engineer in Exponent’s Civil Engineering practice and specializes in geotechnical engineering, foundation analysis and design, and geotechnical earthquake engineering. His expertise includes investigation of slope performance and failures, including the effects of water and wildfire on slope stability, and conceptual design of deep foundations for slope failure remediation. His project experience also includes the following: evaluation of retaining structures (including tieback walls, soil nail walls, and Mechanically Stabilized Earth (MSE) walls), evaluation and analysis of shallow and deep foundations, geotechnical design and evaluation of external loads on buried pipelines (including vitrified clay, concrete, and plastic pipes), post-earthquake reconnaissance and assessment of private residential and public facilities, and evaluation of earthquake-induced ground movement and failures.
Kirk Schmitt is employed as a Senior Fire Investigator / Wildland Specialist by Phoenix, A Division of Unified Investigations and Sciences. Kirk is assigned to the Rocky Mountain Region’s Denver office, and is licensed to work throughout the western United States.

Kirk joined the fire service in 1984 as a firefighter with the Colorado Springs Fire Department. His duties included structural suppression, hazardous materials response, emergency medical calls, and wildland fire suppression. He was red carded as a firefighter, sawyer, and crew boss. In 1997, he promoted to the rank of Fire Investigator where he remained until his retirement in 2006.

As a fire investigator, Kirk was a POST certified Peace Officer, conducting origin and cause determinations and arson investigations. He has testified as an expert witness in District, State and Federal courts in structural, and wildland origin and cause, and as an expert witness in wildland suppression techniques. He completed FI 210 in 2003, and completed his NWCG task book for INV2 in 2004. Kirk has been with Phoenix Investigations since 2004.
Dr. Philip J. Shaller is a Senior Managing Scientist and head of the Geo Group within Exponent’s Civil Engineering practice. He has over 20 years’ experience as an engineering geology consultant. His relevant expertise includes fluvial geomorphology, evaluation of alluvial fan flooding patterns, field and aerial photo analysis of historical flooding patterns, assessment of potential future flood pathways, investigation of wildfire-flood-erosion hazards, geologic field mapping, debris flow identification, numerical modeling and mitigation, evaluation of debris flow recurrence intervals, analysis of remote sensing images, and investigation of dam failure and resultant downstream flooding hazards. He is a published author in the areas of geomorphology, landslides, debris flows and remote sensing.
Mr. Steensland has over 40 years of combined fire/law enforcement experience with CalFire, the U.S. Forest Service and in private practice. He has investigated hundreds of wildland fires, including the two largest fires in the history of South Dakota and Colorado. He has been recognized as an expert witness in state and federal courts.

Prior to retirement in 2005, he was the National Fire Investigation Specialist for the U.S. Forest Service, Law Enforcement and Investigations Branch. Steensland is the past chair and a current member of the NWCG’s Wildfire Investigation Working Team, which is currently developing an international training program for wildland fire investigators. He was a principal member of the NFPA’s technical committee on Professional Qualifications for Fire Investigators, (NFPA 1033), is a member of the IAAI Wildland Arson Subcommittee and is a member of the NFPA 921 Chapter 26 revision sub-committee. He is currently the owner/president of a private wildland fire investigation forensic consulting and training firm, Paul Steensland and Associates, LLC. Steensland has instructed investigators from over 40 states, as well as presenting courses in Australia, Alberta, British Columbia, Bulgaria, Greece, Guam, Holland and Saskatchewan.
Robert Toth's professional career started with nearly 21 years in the fire service. The last 10 years included law enforcement and conducting fire investigations in both the public and private sector. Retiring from the fire service in 2002, he started IRIS Fire Investigations, Inc. and now conducts origin and cause investigations in Colorado and surrounding states.

In addition to running his business, Robert is also sought after for his lectures and presentations on fire investigations, NFPA 921, interviewing, internet technology, and digital photography training. He has presented various topics to public agencies and private enterprises across the United States, in Canada, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Botswana, and South Africa. He is a past president of the Colorado Chapter, and past director of the International Association of Arson Investigators.
Robert Unsworth, Principal and Director with Industrial Economics, Inc., is an internationally recognized expert in natural resource damage assessment. Over the past two decades he has established a reputation for applying a balanced, pragmatic approach to natural resource damage assessment. He has worked on over 50 environmental damage assessments at sites throughout the U.S. and the Caribbean. His clients include the U.S. Department of Justice, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the U.S. Department of the Interior, various states and Indian Tribes, non-governmental organizations, private companies and law firms.

Mr. Unsworth is a recognized expert in wildland fire damage assessment. He has served as an expert witness on numerous fires for the Department of Justice, including the 1994 Big Creek Fire, 1999 Pilot Fire, 1999 Pendola Fire, 2000 Storrie Fire, 2004 Early Fire, 2004 Power Fire and the 2007 Moonlight Fire. He also assisted the Civil Division of the U.S. Aviation & Admiralty Office, defending the U.S. in a forest fire case, and directing the damage assessment for the City and County of San Diego as a result of the 2007 Witch and Guejito fires.
Gary White is a retired U.S. Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management Criminal Investigator. He has 30 plus years of experience in wildland fire suppression, wildland fire origin and cause determination, and natural resource law enforcement with the United States Forest Service and the U.S. Bureau of Land Management. Mr. White now owns and operates GL White and Associates, a consulting firm, specializing in wildland fire origin and cause analysis, and wildland fire origin and cause determination training. Since his retirement Mr. White has consulted on numerous major wildland fire cases.  Mr. White also teaches basic and advanced wildland fire origin and cause determination courses throughout the United States for the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, CalFire, and other public agencies. Mr. White has been a member of the National Wildfire Coordinating Group Wildland Fire Investigation Working Team since its inception in 2000, is a member of the IAAI Wildland Arson Committee, and currently is serving on the NFPA 921 Wildfire Investigations Task Group.
Torrey Young has worked in arboriculture since 1972. He ran a tree care and consulting firm TREESCAPES, Inc. for 27 years before merging with a national firm, The Care of Trees, Inc. in 2004. Torrey served The Care of Trees across the country, first as a District Manager, then as Regional Education and Development Coordinator, and completed his tenure there as Senior Consultant for the Tree Preservation and Land Restoration Division.

Torrey is now devoted full-time to the business of arboricultural consulting through his firm, Dryad, LLC. Torrey is an ASCA Registered Consulting Arborist (#282), an ISA Board Certified Master Arborist and Municipal Specialist (#WE-0131B) a CUFC Certified Urban Forester (#121) a PNW-ISA Certified Tree Risk Assessor and a CA licensed contractor (C-27 Landscaping and C-61/D49 Tree Service). He has a long history of work and leadership within professional organizations, and is a recipient of many industry awards. He is a Past President of the American Society of Consulting Arborists (ASCA), currently serving on ASCA’s Appraisal Advisory Committee. Torrey’s consulting clients include homeowners, architects, engineers, contractors, government agencies, insurance companies and attorneys. Torrey has been retained on approximately 100 cases as both a consultant and expert witness and for both plaintiffs and defendants.