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Brunacini Hazard Zone Conference

3rd Annual Brunacini Hazard Zone & Leadership Conference

University of Notre Dame
DeBartolo Hall
South Bend, Indiana 46556 United States

Monday, October 15, 2012 8:30 AM - Wednesday, October 17, 2012 12:00 PM (Eastern Time)


Alan Brunacini’s 3rd annual Hazard Zone Conference now includes a leadership track. The 2012 conference will feature Gary Klein, a research psychologist famous for his work in the field of decision-making. The conference will continue to include interactive panel discussion sessions. This conference is becoming noted for the interaction between the speakers and the attendees. This year’s leadership panel includes Gary Klein, Gordon Graham and Alan Brunacini. The Hazard Zone & Leadership Conference will continue to highlight the latest fire research as it applies to tactics, strategy, incident command, protective gear and fire fighter safety. A Blue Card Instructor’s meeting will follow the close of the conference. Come join us at the University of Notre Dame for Big Al's 3rd annual conference.

 Speakers - Brunacini Hazard Zone Conference  Agenda - Brunacini Hazard Zone Conference  Lodging - Brunacini Hazard Zone Conference

Register Now!


Alan Brunacini

Alan Brunacini

Fire Chief (ret.) Phoenix Fire Department

Alan Brunacini joined the Phoenix Fire Department in 1958. He served in every department position. He was promoted to Fire Chief in 1978 and retired in 2006. He is a graduate of the Fire Protection Technology program at Oklahoma State University. He has a degree in Political Science and MPA from Arizona State University. He is the past Chairman of the Board of the National Fire Protection Association and the NFPA Fire Service Occupational Safety Committee (standard 1500). He is the current Chairman of the NFPA Career Fire Service Organization and Deployment Committee (standard 1710). He and his two sons John and Nick have developed and are teaching the local command level Blue Card hazard zone management program. This is being distributed globally by their partner Global Risk Innovations/Medteq Solutions CA Ltd.

They also present workshops, seminars and conferences to fire departments throughout North America on various topics. He is the author of Fire Command, Command Safety, Timeless Tactical Truths, Essentials of Fire Department Customer Service and The Anatomy and Physiology of Leadership. He is currently working on several other fire service books.

John Brunacini

Captain (ret.) Phoenix FD, AZ

John Brunacini is a retired Fire Captain from the Phoenix Fire Dept (Oct. 2006). He served 26 years in the positions of Firefighter, Engineer and his last 14 years as a Captain. As a Captain he developed and managed the Phoenix Fire Network, he worked in the field as the Company Officer on Ladder 11 B-shift for 9 years and he managed the Command Training Center his last 3 years on the job, where he developed the curriculum media packages used for Blue Card Command and Battalion training. John is currently the Training Chief of Clay Fire Territory, IN while he continues instructing and developing curriculum packages for the Blue Card Command Certification program.
John Brunacini

Nick Brunacini

Nick Brunacini

Deputy Chief (ret.) Phoenix FD, AZ

Nick Brunacini began his fire career in 1980. He worked as a firefighter for 7 years, 10 years as a captain, 5 years as a battalion chief and 7 years as a shift commander. He is a co-author of the Blue Card training and certification program. In 2002 Nick was a member of the group that produced the first Command Training Center. He has co-authored Fire Command, Command Safety and the Anatomy & Physiology of Leadership. Nick has also written the book, B-Shifter, A Firefighter’s Memoir.

Gordon Graham

Graham Research Consultants

Gordon Graham is a 33 year veteran of California Law Enforcement. During his tenure as a police professional, he was awarded his Teaching Credential from California State University, Long Beach. He was later graduated from University of Southern California with a Master's Degree in Safety and Systems Management. Subsequent to this he was graduated from Western State University with a Juris Doctorate. His education as a Risk Manager and experience as a practicing Attorney, coupled with his extensive background in law enforcement, have allowed him to rapidly become recognized as a leading professional speaker with multiple areas of expertise.

Mr. Graham has centered his efforts in providing knowledge to other law enforcement, fire officers and other first responders in the area of Civil Liability, Job Based Harassment, Professionalism, Ethical Decision Making and related topics. Instead of focusing solely in after incident damage control, he focuses his efforts in the prevention of mistakes through his program SROVT (Solid Realistic Ongoing Verifiable Training). He teaches first responders and others why things generally go wrong, and how to prevent these unfortunate situations from happening. His CATSINRO analysis of Job Based Harassment has received rave reviews as a practical method to eliminate Sexual Harassment prior to an incident occurring. He follows up his prevention efforts with a dynamic presentation on how to recognize the incidents that have a likelihood of ending up in litigation. He concludes his program with a detailed examination on how to prove proper conduct. Each of his presentations includes the appropriate written "rules" for the topic covered. These risk management rules allow the informed listener to make immediate, progressive changes in operations to better protect themselves and their organization.
Gordon Graham

Gary Klein

Gary Klein

Research Psychologist

Gary Klein, Ph.D., is a Senior Scientist at Macro Cognition LLC. He was instrumental in founding the field of Naturalistic Decision Making. Dr. Klein received his Ph.D. in experimental psychology from the University of Pittsburgh in 1969. He spent the first phase of his career in academia as an Assistant Professor of Psychology at Oakland University (1970-1974). The second phase was spent working for the government as a research psychologist for the U.S. Air Force (1974-1978). The third phase began in 19878 when he founded his own R&D company, Klein Associates, which grew to 37 people by the time it was acquired by Applied Research Associates (ARA) in 2005.

Dr. Klein developed a Recognition-Primed Decision (RPD) model in 1985 to describe how people actually make decisions in natural settings. This research was subsequently incorporated in Army doctrine for command and control. He presented a PreMortem method of risk assessment in 1998. In 2007 he developed a naturalistic model of sensemaking, the Data/Frame model. In 2009 he presented a Management by Discovery account of how people plan when faced with ill-defined goals. He described a multi-path model of insight in 2011. He is a Fellow of both the American Psychological Association and the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society.

He has written: Sources of Power: How People Make Decisions (1998); The Power of Intuition (2004); Working Minds: A practitioner’s guide to Cognitive Task Analysis (Crandall, Klein, & Hoffman, 2006); and Streetlights and Shadows: Searching for the keys to adaptive decision making (2009).

Dave Dodson

Lead Instructor, Response Solutions

Chief Dodson is a 33-year fire service veteran – spending time as a Battalion Chief, Duty Safety Officer, and Emergency Manager for several Colorado Fire Departments. Chief Dodson has authored and lectured on many firefighter safety topics including the popular "Reading Smoke" program and the Incident Safety Officer Academy. In 1997, Dave was chosen as the ISFSI "George D. Post Fire Instructor of the Year."
Dave Dodson

Joe M. Starnes

Joe M. Starnes

Leadership and Quality Consultant

Joe M. Starnes, a volunteer firefighter, officer, administrator and retired chief with 34 years of experience, is currently a volunteer at Oak Grove Volunteer Fire Department in Kings Mountain, N.C. He works for AT&T in national security and emergency preparedness and is on the command team for network disaster recovery. For the past decade he has served as the incident command consultant and the plans section chief. Joe is the owner of Joe Starnes.com and a Leadership and Quality Consultant. You can learn more about Joe at www.joestarnes.com.

Curt Varone

Deputy Assistant Chief (ret.) Providence, RI, Fire Department

Curt Varone has over 39 years of experience in the fire service, retiring in 2008 as a Deputy Assistant Chief with the Providence, RI, Fire Department. He is a practicing attorney licensed in both Rhode Island and Maine, and served as the Director of the Public Fire Protection Division at the NFPA. Curt has written two books, Legal Considerations for Fire and Emergency Services, and Fire Officer's Legal Handbook. He writes the Fire Law column for Firehouse Magazine and is a deputy chief with the Exeter (RI) Fire Department.
Curt Varone

Matthew Tobia

Matthew Tobia

Battalion Chief, Anne Arundel County, MD Fire Department

Matthew Tobia is a Battalion Chief with the Anne Arundel County, MD Fire Department, a metropolitan combination department of over 1300 members located in Suburban Baltimore, MD. With over 20 years of diverse experience, Chief Tobia is currently working as the Executive Officer to the Deputy Chief of Support Services.

Chief Tobia holds a Bachelor of Science Degree from the University of Maryland and is a nationally certified Fire Officer IV and Instructor III. He teaches extensively throughout the United States, and is a contributing editor and back page columnist for Fire-Rescue Magazine. He has served on the faculty at both the Pennsylvania State Fire Academy and the Maryland Fire Rescue Institute.

Chief Tobia is a member of the International Association of Fire Chiefs and is currently serving as Chairman of their Safety, Health, and Survival Section. Matt is active in supporting the families of fallen firefighters, serving as a member of the Command Team for the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Weekend. And in his spare time, Matt is a counselor at the Mid Atlantic Burn Camp for children who are survivors of burn injuries. He can be reached at fdtobia@aacounty.org.

Daniel Madrzykowski

National Institute of Standards and Technology

Daniel Madrzykowski is a fire protection engineer with the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Gaithersburg, Maryland. He has a master’s degree in fire protection engineering from the University of Maryland and he has conducted research and investigations to improve firefighter safety. In 2009 received the ISFSI/ Fire Engineering Instructor of the Year Award. Dan is a Fellow of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers (SFPE) and currently serves on the NFPA Technical Committee on Fire Service Training.
Daniel Madrzykowski

James M. Dalton

James M. Dalton

Coordinator of Research and Development Chicago Fire Department

James M. Dalton, FF/EMT is currently the Coordinator of Research and Development and a fire service instructor for the Chicago Fire Department. Mr. Dalton also serves as an adjunct instructor for the City Colleges of Chicago Fire Science and Technology program and is a technical consultant for the Illinois Fire Service Institute specializing in Structural Collapse Operations. Mr. Dalton holds an Associates degree of Applied Science in Fire Science and Technology from the City Colleges of Chicago. He also holds a Baccalaureate and Masters Degree of Architectural Structures from the University of Illinois. Mr. Dalton is also currently a candidate in the Public Safety Administration Masters program with Lewis University.

Mr. Dalton’s experience in the fire service is preceded by over 15 years of combined academic and professional experience in areas of structural engineering, architecture and construction management. Mr. Dalton has served as an educator in the areas of structural design and building technology at numerous architectural programs throughout his tenure. His past experiences include the following: Assistant Professor and Structures Program Chair for the School of Architecture at the University of Illinois at Chicago, Adjunct Associate Professor of Architecture at Washington University in St. Louis and Adjunct Associate Professor of Architecture at Judson College.

Mr. Dalton has served as a fire service subject matter expert for the Department of Homeland Security’s Assistant to Firefighters Grant research programs entitled, "The Structural Stability of Engineered Lumber Under Fire Conditions" and "Firefighter Exposure to Smoke Particulates". He currently serves as a subject matter expert for "Improving Fire Safety by Enhancing the Fire Performance of Engineered Floor Systems and Providing the Fire Service with Information for Tactical Decision Making", awarded by the Commerce Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology Recovery Act Grant Program. Mr. Dalton has presented at numerous national fire service venues.

Peter Van Dorpe

Director of Training Chicago Fire Department

Peter Van Dorpe is Director of the Chicago Fire Department’s Training Division and a 32 year veteran of the CFD. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Fire Science Management from Southern Illinois University. He has made presentations on modern fire ground challenges at FDIC, Firehouse Expo, Fire Rescue International and the National Fire Academy. In addition to his work as a Field Instructor for the Illinois Fire Service Institute, he has been a lead instructor for the Chicago Fire Department's Fire Officer School, and teaches building construction for the fire service through the City Colleges of Chicago. He has recently participated as a Subject Matter Expert for Underwriter's Laboratories' research on "Structural Stability of Engineered Lumber Under Fire Conditions", and the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s, "Evaluating Firefighting Tactics Under Wind Driven Conditions".
Daniel Madrzykowski



Monday, October 15

7:30-8:30 AM Registration

General Session:

8:30-8:45 AM Welcomes and Greetings, Chief Brunacini
8:45-10:00 AM Dr. Gary Klein, Decision Making
10:00-10:30 AM Break
10:30-11:30 AM Gordon Graham, Risk Mgmt. & Personnel Evaluations
11:30-12:00 PM Unplugged

12:00-1:15 PM Lunch

Breakout Sessions:

1:15-2:45 PM Gordon Graham – Risk Management & Personnel Evaluations
1:15-2:45 PM Gary Klein – Decision Making
1:15-2:45 PM Curt Varone - Legal Issues, Training for Competence
1:15-2:45 PM Matt Tobia – Managing Safety Programs

2:45-3:15 PM Break

3:15-4:45 PM Gordon Graham – Risk Management & Personnel Evaluations
3:15-4:45 PM Gary Klein - Decision Making
3:15-4:45 PM Curt Varone – Legal Issues, Training for Competence
3:15-4:45 PM Matt Tobia – Managing Safety Programs

5:00-7:00 PM Legends of Notre Dame, Restaurant & Alehouse Pub Hospitality Event

Tuesday, October 16

General Sessions:

8:30-8:45 AM Greeting
8:45-10:00 AM Peter Van Dorpe/James Dalton, Latest from UL
10:00-10:30 AM Break
10:30-11:30 AM Peter Van Dorpe/James Dalton, Latest from UL cont’d
11:30-12:00 Panel Discussion

12:00-1:15 PM Lunch

Breakout Sessions

1:15-2:45 PM Terry Garrison – Great Expectations; Meeting the expectations of today’s fire departments
1:15-2:45 PM Peter VanDorpe/James Dalton - Latest from UL
1:15-2:45 PM Dave Dodson, Art of Reading Smoke
1:15-2:45 PM Joe Starnes, Flashover Study

2:45-3:15 PM Break

3:15-4:45 PM Terry Garrison – Great Expectations
3:15-4:45 PM Peter Van Dorpe/James Dalton – Latest from UL
3:15-4:45 PM Dave Dodson – Art of Reading Smoke
3:15-4:45 PM Joe Starnes – Flashover Study

Wednesday, October 17

General Session

8:30-8:45 AM Greeting
8:45-9:30 AM Nick Brunacini & John Brunacini, State of Blue Card
9:30-10:00 AM Alan Brunacini
10:30-11:30 AM Dan Madrykowski
11:30-12:00 PM Panel Q & A

12:00 Tour of CTC
12:00 Tour of ND Stadium


All reservations are the responsibility of each attendee.  Reservation Method: Call in

Hilton Garden Inn South Bend
53995 Indiana State Route 933, South Bend, IN 46637
Phone: 574-232-7700
Fax: 574-232-7711

Room Type: Queen/Queen
Includes parking
Breakfast not included

Group Discount Name: 2012 Brunacini Conference
Early breakfast 6:00am start
Room Block Availability: October 14 - 17, 2012
Rates: $109.00 plus tax


Inn at Saint Mary's Hotel & Suites
53993 US 933, South Bend, IN 46637
Phone: (574) 232-4000
Fax: (574) 323-2188
(800) 947-8627

Room Types:
1 King Bed
2 Double Beds
Includes parking and breakfast buffet

Group Discount Name: 2012 Brunacini Conference
Room Block Availability: October 14 – 17, 2012
Rates: $99.00 plus tax


Fairfield Inn & Suites South Bend at Notre Dame
1220 East Angela Boulevard
South Bend, IN 46617
Telephone: 574/234-5510
Fax: 574/234-0995
Reservations: 800/228-2800
(Within walking distance of Notre Dame Campus and Conference Site)

Room Types:
Standard = 1 Queen bed
King Suite = 1 King bed
Queen Double = 2 Queen beds
Includes continental breakfast

Group Discount Name: 2012 Brunacini Conference
Room Block Availability: October 14 – 17, 2012
$104.00 plus tax/Standard Room
$109.00 plus tax/King Room
$109.00 plus tax/ Queen Double
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