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Sunday, July 13, 2014

USGS Mentee Kurtis Nelson

Kurtis, Wildland Fire Science Team leader for the USGS, completed a variety of projects while a Mentee for the WFM RD&A. His insight and technical knowledge of LANDFIRE data was a win win for both sides; it helped him successfully complete analysis for the Lone Mountain fire (North Cascade NP) as well as help the RD&A improve LANDFIRE-related WFDSS online help through recommended edits. He also reviewed multiple WFDSS modules for use in NWCG courses, updated Unit 3- Fuel Model training content for S390, and started to develop a list of glossary items for the Rocky Mountain Center Fire Weather website. Kurtis was our first Mentee from the USGS and we hope to support additional mentees from the agency in the future. Thanks for all your work Kurtis!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

First Mentee for Fire Season 2014

Allan Hepworth, a Fire Planner for the Francis Marion and Sumter National Forest, was the WFM RD&A's first Mentee in 2014. Allan worked with us from June 30th through July 12th. As both an FBAN and LTAN trainee, Allan had a variety of operational and analytical skills that helped him develop analysis products for two incidents and successfully complete a variety of projects. Allan developed Near Term Fire Behavior outputs for the Diego Fire on the Santa Fe NF and Short Term Fire Behavior outputs for the Rodgers River fire in Everglades NP. He collected feedback for the RMC fire weather website, provided time-sensitive data verification for incident information in WFDSS and the EGP, and created 508 compliant video transcripts for multiple WFDSS training videos. Allan's positive attitude and initiative were an asset to both the successful completion of his mentee assignment and to the WFM RD&A, in helping us meet goals and objectives. Thanks Allan, for your help and for a job well done!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Technology Transfer Specialist Vacancy Filled

We are pleased to announce the selection of Reginald (Reggie) Goolsby for our Fire Technology Transfer Specialist Position.  We are excited to have Reggie as he comes with a unique set of skills and clear passion for transferring technology and research to the field.  Reggie was a journalist for a New York Times Company newspaper for several years before receiving his Masters Degree in Forestry (Fire Ecology concentration) from Clemson University. Goolsby is also a programmer and a database manager. He has independently developed desktop software, web based modeling applications and mobile device apps to assist with fire effects monitoring and wildland fire and fuels planning.  Reggie transferred to us in late June from his current position as a forester and fire ecologist at the Francis and Marion and Sumpter National Forest in South Carolina. He is currently detailing for the Redmond Hotshots and will be completing his tour of duty with them this summer.  Welcome to the team Reggie.

Thanks for the Great Work

Phil Graeve, previously a Lead Fire Monitor with Northern Great Plains Fire Management but now a Fuels Technician with the Payette National Forest, detailed with the WFM RD&A from January 20th- March 28th, 2014.  Phil assisted the RD&A with multiple projects including:  Growing Season Index (GSI) investigation for adjustments to WFDSS, identifying fires of interest for further research, fire behavior model output analysis and investigations into model improvements, evaluation of the Interagency Fuels Decision Support System.   Phil dove head first into difficult projects and his work was of great importance and will be applied toward fulfilling our mission of transferring useful science and technology to wildland fire managers.  Thanks for your contributions to the WFM RD&A.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Detailer Improves WFDSS Training Materials

Jhen Rawling, a fuels technician on the Bridger-Teton National Forest, detailed to the WFM RD&A Feb. 18th-April 11th, 2014.  She worked with Diane Rau to help update the WFDSS 101 series of training lessons. These lessons are available online from the WFDSS website, and are a primary source of learning for WFDSS users.  As a relatively new user, Jhen's objective view of the application and training materials was an asset and she provided valuable insight as a result.  She noted discrepancies between the lesson and WFDSS online help, and recommended changes and additions to clarify existing help content.  Jhen came to our team with some knowledge and background in WFDSS but her detail helped grow her skills so she can be an even greater asset to her home unit. Our hope is that she can actively engage in WFDSS documentation and help train other users in its use as well.  Thanks Jhen.