The Board of Directors for the International Technical Rescue Association is made up of professionals from around the world and have expertise across numerous technical rescue disciplines. The association’s constitution will set future arrangements for the governance of the organisation. The Board of Directors was seated on 10 July 2019 and replaced the interim steering committee in assuming governance for the association.
Tom joined the ITRA Board of Directors in May 2o2o. He has work around the world assisting countries improve their technical rescue capability, with a focus on urban search and rescue. As part of the team that set up the Simulations Training Network (STN) for the the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), he has extensive experience convening multi-lateral working groups responsible for governance, policy and strategy. In late 2019, he and other ITRA instructors delivered the first INSARAG First Responder Course using the ITRA training system, in Bangladesh. He has over 10 years experience deploying to international disasters including Hurricane Irma in 2017.
Tom holds the following qualifications:
Beth brings over 30 years’ experience as a trusted and visionary financial executive, including a broad range of fiduciary, legal and operational responsibilities. Her specialized expertise includes full P&L oversight, risk assessment and mitigation, forecasting and financial modeling, staff development, open book management, process improvement and scaling for growth.
She served as Chief Financial Officer and Trustee for CMC Rescue, Inc. from 2000 to 2021, working in close collaboration with the Board of Directors, and leading the charge to embrace the long-term benefits of solid corporate governance and a culture of accountability.
A lifelong learner, Beth’s education includes a Certificate in Engineering Management from California Institute of Technology, a B.A. in Business Economics from the University of California, and a Master’s in Business Administration from Antioch University. After graduating at the top of her MBA class, Beth was invited to teach Nonprofit Management, Social Business and Strategic Leadership to Antioch graduate students.
United States of America
James Falchetto founded TRAK in 2005 to support the local adventure racing and climbing market. He quickly got involved with rope rescue with Rescue 3 and with rope access by turning the company into the first ad-hoc SPRAT then IRATA training company in the region. TRAKS was the first company to train and organize for swiftwater and mountain Rescue in the Middle East, effectively helping local authorities throughout the GCC build-up their abilities to deal with natural disasters. TRAKS was the first KHDA (Knowledge and Human Development Authority) accredited occupational training company in the UAE for rope access and rope rescue. It is also the first company in the Sultanate of Oman to qualify with the ministry of Manpower for Rope Rescue and Rope Access training.
In conjunction with 4 other members, TRAKS was one of the founding members of the IRATA Middle East Regional Advisory Committee (RAC) with James chairing it in 2012 and 2018. Over the years James has sat on several committees of IRATA including Equipment and Standards, Exec and Training. James is also adviser to several government organizations throughout the region. One of TRAKS biggest achievement has been to bridge the knowledge gap for the rope access and rescue markets in the Middle East and the Indian subcontinent by launching the first training center in Cochin, Kerala entirely dedicated to the same. The company’s essential mission is to enhance work at height and rescue standards throughout a region that spans two continents. With training centers in the UAE, India, Oman, and launching soon in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, TRAKS has acquired a reputation for being the go-to company for anything technical rescue. James is also PETZL certified to deliver the PPE and EXO courses. James is an ITRA Level 3 Rope Instructor.
United Arab Emirates
Jim has worked in the whitewater industry for over 30 years. Although fortune remains elusive Jim has worked in the Whitewater Industry full time since 1984. His success has allowed him to work on many of the world’s greatest rivers in Canada, the U.S.A, Mexico, Costa Rica, Chile, Argentina, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Italy, Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia, India and Nepal. He captained the Canadian Rafting team to 5 top 10 finishes at the World Rafting Championships.
In 1990 Jim brought the Rescue 3 Swiftwater Rescue program to Eastern Canada and was trained as an instructor by Rescue 3 founder Jim Segerstrom. In 1992 Jim started teaching classes for Rescue 3 in Eastern Canada and in 2010 started a strategic alliance with Raven Rescue as a specialist in providing training courses for the recreational and professional paddlesports industry. Jim teaches contract courses worldwide particularly in Mexico and throughout Latin America where he resides during the winter months. Jim is also an accredited instructor with the American Canoeing association (ACA), a Wilderness Emergency Medical Technician (EMT-B) and is a member of the Board of Directors of the prestigious Higgins and Langley Award for Excellence in Swiftwater Rescue.
Michel has been fascinated with working and playing in the vertical environments for over 40 years. In 2003, he left his native country of Canada to start working at Petzl America located in Salt Lake City, Utah. He was recently elevated to National Sales Manager position for Petzl’s US and Canadian distribution network. Michel began rock climbing in Eastern Canada in 1976 and taught the sport as a certified Ontario Rock Climbing Association (ORCA) Instructor and Assessor for several years. His climbing school was the first in the province to receive full accreditation from ORCA. In the early 90s, Michel path changed and he began training work-at-height professionals such as; tower workers, rope-access technician, confined space workers, tactical officers and industrial, urban & wildness rescuers. He was the sales manager and training director at his own business located in Ottawa, Canada called MultiTrek Safety & Rescue Training from 1981 to 2003. Michel was also one of the first six original SPRAT Evaluators who helped develop certification standards and safe work practices for the North American rope-access community.
United States of America
Wayne Chapman is the Assistant School Director at CMC. Wayne is a retired Fire Captain having served over 30 years with the Orange County Fire Authority (OCFA) in Southern California. Wayne served in various capacities during his tenure with the OCFA including Firefighter, Paramedic, USAR Truck Firefighter, Heavy Rescue Captain, Truck Captain and Helicopter Crew Chief. Upon retirement from the Fire Service Wayne accepted a full-time position with CMC.
Wayne was also a member of FEMA’s California Task Force 5 since its inception in 1993. He spent the majority of his time with the Task Force as the Section Coordinator for the Heavy Equipment and Rigging Specialists. Wayne was also qualified Rescue Team Manager and Safety Officer. He is an N.C.C.C.O certified Level I and II rigger and a recognized rigging subject matter expert with FEMA. Wayne has sat on several California State Fire Training committees and assisted with the development of the States Confined Space Rescue Technician and Rope Rescue Technician Programs. He was also a member of the California OES Regional Task Force Working Group as well as a non-voting member of the FEMA Rescue sub-group. He is a member ASTM Internationals committee F-32 relating to search and rescue.
Wayne has been with CMC Rescue since 1993 and resides in Surprise, AZ with his wife.
Tom Gwilliam is a Director and Training Manager of Specialist Training Consultants (STC). STC provide technical rescue and industrial safety training in the United Kingdom as well as consultancy, teams and equipment supply.
Tom’s passion is rope rescue as well as studying and furthering the knowledge and understanding of those delivering rescue programmes. Tom’s recent projects include the planning, training, selection and provision of technical rescue personnel on what will be the largest offshore windfarm in the world. Tom is an ITRA Level 2 Rope Instructor.
Tom’s formal qualifications include:
Tom is also:
Randy joined the ITRA Board of Directors in May 2020, after being an active ITRA instructor and assessor, and champion for ITRA across Canada and abroad.
Many of our members may know Randy through his volunteer contribution to the association as the Editorial Coordinator for our newsletter, The Karabiner.
As a co-owner and director of a large fire and rescue corporation in the US and Canada, he has first hand experience managing complex high risk training activities.
Randy holds the following qualifications:
Eddy graduated the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in 1990 with a B.S. degree in Aerospace Engineering. Commanded armor units in Republic of South Korea and Ft Stewart, Georgia. SAPPER qualified in 1989. Law enforcement officer / tactical officer involved with rope operations since 1993 with Savannah Georgia Police, National Park Service, and the last 11 years with U.S. Forest Service. Served as team leader on several state and federal tactical teams with rope intervention duties. Eddy has been a vertical caver, ice climber, and mountaineer since 1987. National Speleological Society member for 34 years. He is a certified instructor and Small Party Assisted Rescue (SPAR) lead for the National Cave Rescue Commission, and the Pacific Northwest Regional coordinator for 7 years. Currently the NCRC Terrestrial Rescue Delegate for the International Commission of Alpine Rescue (ICAR) and European Cave Rescue Association (ECRA). International Society of Arboriculture certified arborist since 1999. Instructor for the National Park Service Technical Rescue academy since 2008. 11 year member of Portland Mountain Rescue and current wilderness EMT. Project coordinator for the 3 glacier cave projects on Mt Hood, Mt. St. Helens, and Mt. Rainier. Graduate Law Enforcement Mountain Operations School (LEMOS).
ITRA BOD member since January 2021 and current chair of Tactical working group, seeking to give this small but advanced niche of rope operations its own identity. Co-owner of Vertically Speaking LLC instructing tactical rope operations for law enforcement / military students across the globe, as well as ultra-light mountain, cave, arborist rescue, and vertical protester / aerial blockade interventions.
Eddy currently holds ITRA Rope 3 Instructor & ITRA Tactical 3 Instructor. Eddy resides in Redmond, Oregon with his wife.
The ITRA Board of Directors is assisted by a number of working groups, each lead by a convener from the Board to ensure consistency and integration across subjects.
The Working Groups operate to the ITRA Working Group Terms of Reference (TOR).
The Association would like to acknowledge the contributions made by the following who founded or were part of the Steering Committee prior to the formal appointment of the current Board of Directors. Without their dedication and support, the Association would have not come to fruition. The Steering Committee ceased to exist in July 2019, as the Directors were appointed to create the formal Board.