Fire Adapted Colorado Staff
Nicole Reese, Network Coordinator
As a resident of Fort Collins, Nicole has spent the past ten years studying and working for conservation efforts in Northern Colorado. She earned her Masters from Colorado State University in the Human Dimension of Natural Resources with a focus on conservation leadership. Her research of stakeholder engagement while working internationally with an endangered dolphin species in New Zealand spurred her desire to facilitate collaboration to resolve complex environmental issues.
Nicole began her career as a biologist, and has experiences with a variety of conservation issues ranging from prairie dogs to mountain lions, assisted in field experiments in rangeland ecology and water quality, and communicated conservation issues to diverse audiences as an environmental educator.
To further pursue her goals, Nicole founded the non-profit Crowd Conservation in 2015 with the mission to provide community engagement services. In 2016 Nicole became a trained facilitator through the International Association for Public Participation as she delved into collaborative conservation, citizen science, and conservation communication. Nicole is a network builder, facilitating meetings to foster collaboration between organizations, local researchers, and stakeholders.
Nicole enjoys sharing her passion for nature with others, and spending time outdoors throughout the year.
Fire Adapted Colorado Board of Directors
(FACO CHAIR) Jonathan Bruno is the Chief Operations Officer with the Coalition for the Upper South Platte (CUSP). Jonathan began his career with CUSP as a field technician, leading volunteer events in the Hayman Fire area and beginning a fledgling forestry program in the upper south platte watershed. Since then Jonathan has worked to build a robust forestry program that manages two slash sites, a biomass facility, operates a fuels reduction program that treats approximately 1000 acres annually, leads an eight-person
wildland fire team, and develops and leads numerous CWPPs and initiatives. Jonathan was elected as the Vice Chair for Fire Adapted Colorado and is excited about the opportunity to connect with other groups that are working to protect their homes, forests and communities. Jonathan has received numerous awards for his work including, the White House Champion of Change Award and the 2015 IAFC’s Fire Adapted Communities Innovation award. Jonathan holds a Masters Degree from the University of Colorado with an emphasis on Environmental Management, Policy and Law. Jonathan, his wife Jennifer, and daughter, Kailey, currently live in the South Denver area, and enjoy playing in the wonderful Front Range Forests.
(FACO VICE CHAIR) Eric Lovgren, a Wildfire Mitigation Specialist with Eagle County, works to reduce wildfire risk through thoughtful planning and permitting. Eric interacts with homeowners, developers, fire districts, land management agencies, and numerous citizen and environmental groups. Eric is also responsible for the design, implementation, and oversight of all county-led hazardous fuel reduction and forest health projects. Eric maintains numerous professional certifications including Wildland Fire Fighter. He facilitates the Eagle County Wildfire Council and Ready! Set! Go! program, and is active managing wildfires in Eagle County. Eric joined FACO to engage with other wildfire professionals throughout the state, sharing knowledge and best practices aimed at creating fire adapted communities. Eric spends his winters skiing as much as possible, and summers floating down the Colorado River. Eric is also a bluegrass addict, and banjo player. Wanna talk music or wildfire? I’m your guy.
(FACO TREASURER) Lilia Falk is the Director of the West Region Wildfire Council. Lilia joined the Council in 2011- focusing efforts on expanding the organization’s homeowner wildfire education program, fuel reduction cost share incentive programs, and developing regional wildfire planning initiatives. Lilia enjoys working with partners across the region and state to leverage resources that provide fire adapted messaging, educational tools and outreach mechanisms. She a member of an interdisciplinary wildfire research team (WiRē), the current Treasurer of Fire Adapted Colorado and has served as a Director for the Montrose Fire Protection District since 2014. Prior to joining the WRWC, Lilia worked in emergency management for the Westminster Fire Department. Lilia holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Geography with an emphasis in natural hazards from the University of Colorado, Boulder.
(FACO SECRETARY) Paul Cada is the Wildland Program Administrator for Vail Fire and Emergency Services. In this role he is responsible for the department and Town’s preparedness and response to wildland fires. Paul works closely with Town staff, community partners and cooperating agencies to build a more fire adapted community in the popular resort town. The Town of Vail is committed to reducing it risk to wildfire and providing its citizens with world class services. The numerous wildfire prevention, mitigation and response programs the town supports all work to build a “Fire Adapted Vail”. Prior to joining Vail Fire Paul held the position of Assistant District Forester for the Colorado State Forest Service, Granby District where he worked on many projects to measurably reduce wildfire risks to mountain communities in Grand, Summit and Eagle Counties as well as create more healthy and resilient forests. Paul holds a BS in Natural Resource Management from Colorado State University and is also an International Society of Arboriculture Certified Arborist.
(FACO BOARD MEMBERS)
Schelly K. Olson wears many hats. Schelly is Assistant Chief of Administration & Public Education, Wildland Fire Mitigation Specialist, Public Information Officer at Grand Fire Protection District No. 1. In 2013 Schelly formed the Grand County Wildfire Council, which involved designing and maintaining www.bewildfireready.org, the website “helping Grand County residents and visitors live and play more safely with the threat of wildfire.” Schelly recruited volunteers and agency representatives to form a Board of Directors to establish goals, objectives and action plans for the Council. Schelly is the Chairman of this non-profit organization, working collaboratively with members from local, state, and federal government agencies; local fire departments; homeowner groups; businesses; and concerned citizens in promoting wildfire prevention, preparedness, mitigation, and survival through education and action. We have created a regular news column in the local paper called “Fully Involved” that addresses a range of fire prevention, preparedness, mitigation, and survival techniques, including fire adapted concepts. Schelly enjoys participating in wildfire events, incident exercises and the wildfire academy incident management team as a PIO. Schelly recently completed the NFPA course “Assessing Wildfire Hazards in the Home Ignition Zone” and is enthusiastically meeting with homeowners to discuss how they can create a fire adapted home. Schelly is excited to be on the board of Fire Adapted Colorado, not only to contribute to reducing the impact of wildfire on communities across Colorado, but to network with others to bring ideas and fire adapted learning back to Grand County and my own Fire District. Schelly lives in Grand Lake with my husband of 20 years and our two daughters. We enjoy boating in the summer and skiing in the winter.
Pam Wilson served as the Director for FireWise of Southwest Colorado from October 2008 to Dec 2018. FireWise works closely with residents and agency partners to help residents understand their wildfire risk and actions they can take to reduce that risk. Firewise offers a variety of incentive programs for homeowners and facilitates the development and implementation of subdivision-level Community Wildfire Protection Plans (CWPPs).
In 2014, FireWise became a member of the Fire Adapted Communities Learning Network. Their local work has included strengthening partnerships across the five-county region by sharing information and working on regional issues, like biomass utilization. In 2015, FireWise started a collaborative effort in Montezuma and Dolores Counties to address forest health and wildfire resilience in an effort to protect the water supplies in McPhee Reservoir.
The FAC LN has provided numerous venues for peer-to-peer learning opportunities and the Fire Adapted Colorado BOD hopes to provide similar opportunities for organizations, agencies, and residents in Colorado. I am very excited to be working with a group of talented and passionate individuals who want to help create a more fire-adapted Colorado.
In 2015, Pam was a recipient of the IAFC’s Wildfire Mitigation Innovation award and four of FireWise’s Neighborhood Ambassadors have received the IAFC’s Wildfire Mitigation Pioneer awards for their efforts.Pam retired from the U.S. Forest Service in 2007 after 23 years of service, most recently on the San Juan National Forest in Durango as a Public Affairs Specialist for the fire and fuels program. Pam is a Type 1 Public Information Officer and has worked wildfire and hurricane assignments throughout the U.S. When not busy with FireWise, Pam and her husband Thurman spend their free time outdoor with their dogs, Rocket and Cisco, exploring the red rock county of Utah or hiking in Colorado’s mountains.
Fire Adapted Colorado Liaisons
Sheryl Page is a Fire Protection Specialist with the USDA Forest Service Rocky Mountain Region works on activities related to the Forest Service Cooperative Fire Protection Program that supports the Fire Adapted Community concept. I work in the program to support: interagency agreements that address how fire agencies can work together; grant programs that help communities address mitigation needs; and fire prevention/mitigation education and outreach regarding preventing the ones we can and mitigating for those we can’t. Working with FACO will be essential so that we all have a united voice in how to better adapt communities to be more resilient when faced with wildfire. There are some tough issues communities face and it helps to have great group partners to help overcome those obstacles. Sheryl is a native to Colorado – Born and raised in southern Colorado, I have always had a love for the outdoors. My husband and kids are very blessed to be able to call southern Colorado our home.
Michelle Medley-Daniel is the Co-Director of The Fire Adapted Communities LearningNetwork and The Watershed Center. Michelle’s previous fire adapted communities experience includes working directly in her community on CWPP development, building local capacity to implement prescribed fire projects, and collaborative landscape management. Currently, she directs the operations of the FAC Network for The Watershed Center. She is a liaison in the FAC Network—providing support and connections to core network members in the US. In particular, Michelle’s focus is in working with State and regional sub-networks to launch effective network-based approaches to wildfire resilience. Michelle has over ten years of experience in coordinating networks and providing communications and development services to non-profits. Michelle loves working with people who are passionate about their communities’ relationship to fire. We are at such an important crossroads in the way we relate to wildfire. These are high stakes, and with climate change impacts and WUI development adding to the pressure, it can be daunting work. Michelle is continually inspired by the individuals, organizations and agencies out there that are working toward a better wildfire future. FACO has enormous potential to support communities around Colorado on their fire adaptation journey! Michelle enjoys backpacking, kayaking and local history. She loves to share the Klamath-Siskiyous with visitors and friends—if you’re ever in Northwestern California give her a call!
Kirk A. Will is Unit Chief of Prescribed Fire and Fuels with the Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control. Kirk works on planning, implementation, and administration of prescribed fire and hazardous fuels reduction projects on State of Colorado lands. Kirk also administers the Colorado Certified Burner Program. Kirk joined FACO to work with the citizens and fire cooperators of the State of Colorado promoting safe, fire adapted forests for everybody to enjoy. Kirk loves spending time in the forests and outdoors of Colorado camping, hunting, hiking and fishing with my family every chance he gets.
Chris Asbjorn, is the Fire Mitigation and Education Specialist for the Bureau of Land Management Southwest District Fire and Aviation Management Unit. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Forestry with an emphasis in Fire Ecology and Management from Northern Arizona University. His professional background includes fire operations, mitigation, education and prevention work for both the BLM and U.S. Forest Service throughout Arizona, Utah, and Colorado. He also serves as a member of the Rocky Mountain National Fire Prevention and Education Team. Chris views research, adaptive management strategies and collaboration as keystones to holistic land management. He is pleased to serve as a liaison to Fire Adapted Colorado and strives to achieve resilient landscapes across public and private lands.