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Instructors are being updated now for 2015. Check back frenquently for updates. There will be 20+. All of the instructors were selected not just by their resumes but by their experiences that qualify what they will teach. They donate their time to be part of this symposium.

*Instructors available for Saturday, September 12 will be indicated under their bio and course description.

Alex Collins
The Will To Survive (Debrief)

Alex joined the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department in 2007. He graduated from the academy, served time at the Glen Helen Rehabilitation Center and was eventually stationed in Big Bear. Alex's two older brothers are also on the department which helped lead him into a career in law enforcement.

In February of 2012 Alex was critically injured in the shootout that ended the manhunt for Christopher Dorner. In the shootout, Alex was shot four times in the face, arm, chest, and leg. After about a month in the hospital, 20 surgeries, and physical therapy, Alex returned to work full duty just seven months after the shooting. Alex is currently a Detective working in Intelligence. Alex will tell the story about the days leading up to the end of the manhunt as well as the day of and moments before the shooting. He will talk about how his Will to Survive instincts kicked in and how he vowed to keep on fighting. He will talk about his survival, rehabilitation and determination to get back to work.


Stacy Lim

Even If the Odds Are Against You, It May Not Be Your Time, So Don't Quit! (Debrief)

Sergeant Stacy F. Lim has 27 years with the Los Angeles Police Department and is currently the Officer-In-Charge of In-Service Tactics. She teaches Use of Force, Tactics, critical thinking and Will to Survive mindset. She has designed a 4-day POST certified Tactics Course which is available for all LAPD patrol officers. Its purpose is to update officers’ in field tactics and the articulation of use of force.

Stacy will debrief her incident and discuss lessons learned and mental toughness. She openly shares her experience with a deadly encounter in hopes of helping, even one to survive.
Stacy was awarded the LAPD Medal of Valor and LAPD Purple Heart. Additionally, she was named the American Police Hall of Fame’s Officer of the Year in 1992. She has given numerous presentations across the United States and in Australia. She continues to share her survival story in hopes to inspire others to never give up.


Ron McCarthy

Officer Survival: Counter Ambush Tactics 2015

Ron McCarthy is a trainer for the Safariland Training Group and provides instructor training for SWAT and Patrol less lethal and tactical options. Rod served as a Los Angeles police officer for 24 years. He was assigned to the Department's Tacticl Unit, Metro Division, for 20 years and retired from SWAT as the senior supervisor and assistant commander in 1984. Ron served as the Chief of Tactical Operations for the US Department of Energy from 1984-1986. He was the Director of the Deadly Force Training Grants for the US Department of Justice and the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) from 1986-1992 and served as Manager of IACP's Center for Advanced Police Studies from 1988-1992.

In 1993, Ron serverd as a member of the view team at the request of the US Department of Justice regarding the WACO-Branch Davidian Confrontation with ATF and FBI. He testified before the US Congress on behalf of the agencies involved. In 2006, Ron served as a review member and tactical expert regarding the FBI's confrontation with a major terrorist in Puerto Rico. He has conducted format reviews of critical incidents for Portland, OR, the State of GA, Albuquerque, NM, Tulsa, OK, New York City, and Cobb County, GA, to name a few. Ron is qualified in federal and state courts as an expert witness in police tactics, field operations, SWAT and use of force.

Ron was awarded the LAPD Medal of Valor for action against the Symbionese Army in 1975, and the Police Star for the rescue of hostages in 1983. He was presented with the National Tactical Officers Association Award for Excellence in 1990, the All-American Hero Award for his service to law enforcement throughout the US in 1995, the National Tactical Officers Association's Lifetime Achievement Award in 1996 and the California Association of Tactical Officers Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006.

In the lecture, Ron will talk about tactics and technology that help officers recongnize an ambush, and how to defend against one to win.


Gene Ramirez

What do Body Worn Cameras and Social Media Accounts have to do with the Militarization of Law Enforcement?

Eugene P. Ramirez, a founding member of the firm, Manning & Kass, Ellrod, Ramirez, Trester LLP, Attorneys at Law, graduated from Whittier College School of Law (J.D., 1987), where he was Notes & Comments Editor of the Law Review, a member of the Moot Court Honors Board and President of the Student Bar Association.  At Whittier, he received an award as the Best Oral Advocate and the Outstanding Moot Court Graduate Award.  He received his undergraduate degree in Political Science from California State University, Long Beach (B.A., 1983), where he minored in Criminal Justice & Public Policy. Before joining the firm, Mr. Ramirez worked as a Deputy District Attorney for the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office, where he conducted numerous misdemeanor and felony jury trials, including murder trials. He has also worked as a reserve police officer for the Whittier Police Department and the Monterey Park Police Department. He serves as an advisor to several public entities on the issues of use of force, canine and SWAT issues and policies and procedures.  He has provided training to thousands of police officers and supervisors, from around the country and Canada, over the past 20 years. Mr. Ramirez regularly speaks to Chiefs of Police Organizations on liability and supervision issues. He also addresses supervisors of all ranks on how to recognize risk management issues. Mr. Ramirez is an instructor on liability issues for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s Basic SWAT School.  He is also an instructor for the California Association of Tactical Officers (CATO) and for the National Tactical Officers’ Association (NTOA).  He was a member of the State Attorney General’s Blue Ribbon SWAT Committee and he was a member of POST’s Executive Advisory Committee for SWAT Teams. He was a member of the LAPD Board of Inquiry, which examined LAPD SWAT operations. He is an approved California POST instructor.
Mr. Ramirez was profiled in the April 2003, California Lawyer Magazine, for his work in defending law enforcement.  He was honored with the 2004 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Association of Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs (ALADS).  He has been named as a 2005-2011, 2014 Super Lawyer for Southern California.  He was also named to the distinguished American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), in 2005, an award only bestowed upon proven trial attorneys. Mr. Ramirez is also an Associate Fellow in the Litigation  Counsel of America.             He was selected as the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department’s Trial Lawyer of the Year in 1993 and, 2006, by two different Sheriffs.  He was selected as the 2009 Alumni Attorney of the Year for Whittier School of Law.  He has been selected twice as one of the Top 25 Municipal Attorneys in California by the Daily Journal.  Mr. Ramirez has been awarded Certificates of Appreciation from the United States Army Special Operations Command (Fort Bragg, North Carolina) and from the United States Secret Service.



Dan Stepleton
Critical Incidents While Working Undercover Operations (Debrief)

Dan Stepleton started his career in law enforcement in 1985 as a Trooper for the Iowa State Patrol. In 1989 he was promoted to Special Agent for the Division of Narcotics Enforcement. Dan spent the first twenty years of his career working Narcotics in East Central Iowa. In 2013 Dan was promoted to Special Agent in Charge of Zone #4 in East Central Iowa.
Dan has been a part of the clandestine laboratory Emergency Response Team since 1996 and has worked and conducted tactical entries on over 400 meth labs. He has worked undercover over 1000 times in the past 26 years and participated in well over 1000 search warrants in his career.

Dan talks about working undercover during two critical incidents which occurred in 2003 and 2012 while working in an undercover capacity. The 2012 incident was a planned robbery which ended in the shooting of two subjects. Dan will talk about mistakes made during the UC process and the aftermath of the shooting and administrative investigation.

Brett Titus Course:
SWAT's Most Overlooked Tool-K9

Brett started his career in law enforcement in 1993 with the Denver Police Department. In 1999, he was assigned to the full-time METRO SWAT/K9 Unit where he continues to work today. With well over 1000 deployments his training comes from experience not theory.

Brett breaks down almost every aspect of the K9/SWAT world. From beginning of K9 selection to deploying with a team this presentation will benefit all patrol K9 teams, SWAT operators and all levels of supervision.

With a properly selected and trained K9 team everyone becomes safer. There is reason why Brett's team has coined the phrase, "Paws Before Boots".





Kathleen D. Vonk

Designing Functional Fitness Sessions for Tactical Teams

Kathleen Vonk has been a police officer since 1988. She retired from the Ann Arbor Police Department in Michigan, and is currently with the Nevada Highway Patrol. She designed and implemented the Public Safety Wellness Instructor Course for the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards, for which she is a subject matter expert, consultant and instructor-trainer. She is the Fitness Chairperson for the National Tactical Officer's Association, and the column editor for the National Strength and Conditioning Association's Tactical Strength and Conditioning program. She is a part-time faculty member of the Washtenaw Community College in Ann Arbor Michigan and has been the primary fitness instructor for the WCC Police Academy since 2001. She is an adjunct instructor for Team One Network teaching officer survival skills courses, and has taught survival and pistol courses for Heckler & Koch International Training Division (H&K). She is a certified firearms instructor, H&K Pistol Instructor, RedMan Simulation Training Instructor, Simunition Supervisor, Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist by the National Strength and Conditioning Association, Health Promotion Director and Certified Physical Fitness Specialist by the Cooper Institute, and is a field training officer for her agency. Since 1993 she has been a certified Police Cyclist and Police Cyclist Instructor-Trainer by the International Police Mountain Bike Association, and a certified League Cyclist Instructor by the League of American Bicyclists. In 2004 she consulted with and wrote the "Model Policy" and "Concepts and Issues" publication for the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), which is still being disseminated by the IACP today. Kathy has published numerous articles in many national and international publications regarding police cycling, officer survival, firearms and tactics, fitness, and police performance under stress.

This lecture will cover how to use a mixture of SWAT gear and fitness equipment to design hands-on fitness sessions for tac teams.

The hands-on practical session "Tac Team Fitness" will cover the following:
-Attendees will have the opportunity to participate in functional fitness activities which can be implemented into individual or team training.
-Dynamic warm up activities will be explained and demonstrated as each drill translates to peak performance on the job, and attendees will then participate in this warm up.
-Operators will discover proper intensity levels and work: rest ratios in order to achieve optimal performance. Drills will include speed, agility, quickness, plyometrics, hand-eye-foot coordination, and reactionary drills.
-Participants are encouraged to compete in a timed obstacle/agility course to display individual and team fitness, as well as team performance.


Chad Zentner

Course: OIS-2 Snipers and an Explosive Breach (Debrief)

Chad Zentner is a 19 year veteran with the Seattle Police Department currently assigned to their full-time SWAT team. The last 4 years with the team he has been as one of their snipers. Chad is also one of their departments firearms, less lethal, and tactics instructors.

Officer Zentner will be discussing his OIS that occurred during an 8-hr standoff with an armed barricaded mental suspect in July of 2013.


John Zuniga

Trends Policing The SW Border: What You Need To Know

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