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PNWD Avalanche Advisor
705 Backcountry Ski Patrol
Brad Acker is starting his second season as the PNW Avalanche Advisor. He is the past Advisor for Southern Idaho Region and a member of the 705 Backcountry Ski Patrol based out of Boise, ID. Brad is also a Level 2 Ski Guide for Soldier Mountain Ski Area in Fairfield, ID. Brad has been learning about snow science since the mid-1990’s where he helped with research at Montana State University, Bozeman and received his undergraduate in Mechanical Engineering. Brad holds a Masters in Engineering and works professionally with energy efficiency, HVAC and high performance building design. Brad splits this time between Boise, ID and Sandpoint, ID, being better positioned to hit the power highway from Sandpoint is a great benefit. Adventure racing, ultra-marathons, and commercial river guiding have all been part of his outdoor life.
PNWD Instructor Development Advisor
Santiam Pass Ski Patrol
A native New Jerseyan, I have lived in Bend, Oregon, for the past 35 years. I joined NSP in 1986 and have been a paid and a volunteer patroller at 2 ski areas in Central Oregon. Certified as an Instructor and IT in Avalanche, MTR, OEC, and ID, I also instruct CPR/AED for my present patrol: Santiam Pass. With my 2 Alaskan Malamutes and my twin sister, Katie, I hike, visit dog parks, camp in my RV, and drive cross-country every fall to visit my family in New Jersey, Georgia and South Carolina.
Oregon Region Director
Willamette Pass Ski Patrol
Andy Bechdolt is entering his 20th season as a volunteer patroller. He is a senior, OET Instructor, OET IT, OEC Instructor, OEC IT. Andy spends his time patrolling at Willamette Pass in Oregon. He was selected as an assistant Hill Chief in his rookie year. He spent time in that role for 2 years. He was a Hill Chief for 4 years, Assistant Patrol Director for 4 years, Patrol Director for 4 years, Assistant Oregon Region Director for 4 years and is currently in his second term as the Oregon Region Director. In his day job, Andy is the Tactical Training Coordinator for the State Police Academy in Oregon. He coordinates, develops curriculum and teaches every police officer in Oregon in all of the high fidelity scenario based training, building searches and DUI. He is also a senior instructor in firearms and emergency vehicle operations. Andy is also an instructor in advanced courses such as leadership, instructor development courses and staff in service training.
Andy also runs a part time professional photography business and is a full time adventure seeker. In his spare time he kiteboards, backpacks, rides mountain and road bikes and of course skis.
So Idaho Region Director
Anthony Lakes Ski Patrol
Joined the Anthony Lakes Ski Patrol in 1988, Skied all my years there. Have held every patrol office. Achieved senior in 1991. Awarded National #8774 in 1998. Awarded Yellow merit star 2009. Have been Southern Idaho OEC Administer. Currently Southern Idaho Region Director..
PNWD Certified Program Advisor
Mount Ashland Ski Patrol
I was born in Anchorage, Alaska and raised in Juneau, Alaska. It was my father’s love of skiing that first brought me to the snowy slopes of Juneau, Alaska’s local ski area, Eaglecrest. It was on these steep and rugged slopes that I found my first and longest love - skiing. As a youth, I tested my skiing ability on the groomers, steeps, parks, and backcountry. It was perhaps my third or so time interacting with the patrol director and the general manager, regarding yet another skiing infraction that I was offered the chance to change my renegade ways and work with the patrol for a few days during the month to earn back my coveted seasons pass. Quickly into my patrol restitution service, I realized I was skiing past the long lines on powder days as I schlepped heavy bundles of bamboo to various parts of the mountain under the watchful guidance of my new patrol mentor. I quickly fell in love with the roles and responsibilities of being a ski patroller and soon after I was starting my formal training as a ski patroller and I have never looked back since.
After graduating high school, I attended Southern Oregon University (SOU) to study geology. After several years at SOU, I transferred to the University of Oregon (U of O) where I finished my baccalaureate degree in geology. While in college, I was fortunate to have superb mentors who helped me to become a published student scientist. After graduation, I felt a calling to continue my education but in a different direction - education. I attended graduate school for education and earned a master's degree and teaching credential in integrated science.
I will be starting this upcoming season in yet another new ski patrol role, as Mt. Ashland's paid and volunteer patrol director. It is with great honor that I step into this role and know our patrol will continue to flourish with the never ending support and mentorship of our patrol family. Additionally I have the privilege of serving as the Criteria Coordinator on the Board of Directors for the Association of Professional Patrollers (APP) as well as serving our division as the Certified program supervisor. In these many professional settings, I turn to the collective wisdom and experience of many to continue to move our profession forward. Thank you to all of whom who serve as my mentor and offer me sound guidance on my endeavors. I look forward to using my experience and skills as we develop our division's Certified program and our profession.
PNWD SPY Advisor
Crystal Mountain Ski Patrol
Tanja began her ski career as a teen stocking boots at summer sales for Ski Chalet in Chantilly VA. She immediately fell in love with the industry. After a failed attempt at earning her masters and becoming a "real" business woman, Tanja took off to Seattle and somehow ended up managing a ski shop for a famous ski movie maker (yup, that guy). She subsequently was recruited by K2 skis, more for her trilingual skills than her ski skills… and spent her 20's traveling around Europe managing accounts for 3 brands (K2, Olin, Pre). This subsequently led to many years living in the Alps and managing international accounts for Tecnica/Lowa and other positions with Gore-Tex, Skins Compression Gear etc..
After retiring from almost 30 years in the industry, Tanja had the "brilliant" idea of investing a few weeks annually as a ski patroller…after all "how hard could it be?" Almost 4 years later, at Crystal Mountain, WA, she was awarded Rookie of the Year, is helping instruct OEC, is developing the Crystal Mountain SPY program and was recently appointed the Divisional SPY advisor. Her extensive coaching background (National's feeder programs as well as youth and adults) has been instrumental in developing a fresh new perspective on the SPY program which promises to change the way we "SPY!"
PNWD Historian & Special Projects
Hyak Ski Patrol
National #4852 - 56rd year patrolling.
Joined home patrol (Hyak (POOB-020) in 1965.
Have worked on several national NSP committees, was PNWD Secretary 35 years, Northwest Region Secretary 3 year and an assistant patrol director for many years.
During those years, I also served in the position of Division Convention Coordinator, Special Projects and more recently Historian. I graduated from the University of Washington and have been involved in UW homecoming and reunion committees. For 33 years I was a firefighter/EMT (#4415) with Vashon Island Fire & Rescue (#130015).
I began skiing in 1957 and that same year also began my first winter ski job as cashier in the Thunderbird Lodge at the top of Snoqualmie Summit. Often after my work shift, the ski patrol would bring me down the mountain in a toboggan. There began my introduction to ski patrol. My big exposure to ski patrol, however, came in 1964 when my husband managed the ski shop for REI at Hyak while we were in college; every day skied with the Hyak Patrol; we were hooked and became patrollers.
My greatest life interests have been my husband, Gary #4585 (his 57th year patrolling), my children Kevin and Katie and my grandsons-Connor, Sam, Jack and Sean. We enjoy boating, traveling, and we spend a lot of time as seasoned spectators at the many sporting events for all our grandsons as well as cheering at UW football and basketball games. In the future, it looks like my ski patrol and grandson-spectating careers will both probably start to wind down and cease at the same time. I guess I will be doing a lot of knitting.
PNWD Outdoor Risk Management Program Advisor
National Ski/Bike Patrol
49 Degrees North and Mt Spokane Ski and Snowboard Areas
Retired USAF Commander, 22 years (LtCol). Flight and Ground Safety Officer, Flight Instructor and Evaluator, Quality Assurance Engineer, General Manager, Operation Manager, Maintenance Manager, Risk Manager at Mt Spokane Ski and Granite Point Lake Resorts. 28 years of National Ski Patrol, CPR Instructor, OEC Instructor, Ski Instructor. Coached football, soccer, baseball, cross county, track and field. Absolutely loves living in the Pacific Northwest Inland Empire with a wife of 36 years and two grownup gentleman, that now help manage Mt Spokane. Currently enjoying camping, biking, hiking, skiing, snowboarding, surfing, wakeboarding, swimming, and hang gliding. Will probably ski patrol another 28 years, if I live that long….
PNWD Medical Advisor
Mt Hood Ski Patrol
James J. Hamilton, M.D. was the Rex L. Diveley Professor and Chairman of Orthopaedic Surgery at Truman Medical Center and the University of Missouri – Kansas City from 1980 to 2012. His specialty was major trauma. He served as President of multiple organizations including Truman Medical Center, the Clinical Orthopaedic Society and the Missouri State Orthopaedic Association. He was nominated to Who’s Who in Medicine and Health Care, Science and Engineering, American Education and the World.
He has been a member of the National Ski Patrol since 1967 and has served a Division Medical Advisor for both the Central Division and the Pacific Northwest Division. He is a member of the Mt. Hood Ski Patrol
Snoqualmie Pass Ski Patrol
Katjarina “Katja” Hurt (she/her/hers) is a Senior Consultant in Learning & Development for Plante Moran and the Founder and Director of the non-profit organization, Wilderness Chaplains. She has over fifteen years experience as a ski patroller, primarily at Snoqualmie Pass, with a focus on Psychological First Aid and Outdoor Emergency Care instruction. She has been a paid patroller at Summit Central (Snoqualmie Pass) for four seasons and has previously been a volunteer patroller with Snoqualmie Pass, Hidden Valley (Missouri), and Mount Rainier’s Nordic Patrol.
Katja has a background in law enforcement with Washington State and Missouri Departments of Correction. She currently serves as a volunteer chaplain with the King County Sherriff’s Office in Washington State and regularly assists local SAR and Mountain Rescue teams in the Puget Sound region. She credits her lifetime of service to the influence of her mother, Brigitte Schran, a 42-year-patroller and Katja’s “favorite OEC instructor ever!”
PNWD Safety/Patroller Advisor & Web Asst/Social Media Advisor
Santiam Pass Ski Patrol
Jodie has been with NSP for the past 20 yrs, starting with the Mt Hood SP, Wy east Region and currently with Santiam Pass SP, Oregon Region.
She started in EMS as a paramedic in Michigan and has been a Critical Care RN for the last 32 yrs specializing in Emergency, ICU & Flight Nursing. This helps support her "paw family".
While self proclaimed beginner skier, she has found other important areas to be very involved with NSP. She has been active with teaching and all things medical from the onset, serving many years at MHSP's First Aid Chief and leadership positions, & starting their safety programs.
Her participation with local, region, division and national levels started early in her patrolling years. Her interests and participation include OEC & ID, Awards, and more recently with Web/Social Media and her many years passionate about promoting Safety4All.
National level participation included OEC Refresher Committee Member, Senior Aid Module Revision & National Safety Team Advisor. She obtained her Senior Patroller and National Appt (LCA).
Her latest and ongoing projects include promoting Safety for the public and more recently developed the SafetyCulture4All Workshop Series with the PNWD Safety Team. Expanding with this training, she received multiple training programs on Psychological First Aid with the Responder Alliance and serves on their National Task Force SIG.
PNWD OEC Advisor
Soldier Mountain Ski Patrol
Karen has been a member of the NSP since the 1990-91 season and patrols at Soldier Mountain near Fairfield, Idaho in the Southern Idaho region. The first part of her patrol career was spent at Bogus Basin where she served her local patrol as OEC advisor on and off during the 2000’s and transitioned to Regional OEC Advisor in 2013. Karen has been serving the division as the OEC Administrator since November. She began teaching OEC in 1992 and has enjoyed teaching it ever since. Teaching is one of her passions. Karen recently obtained a Master of Science degree in Nursing Education and works as adjunct clinical faculty in the nursing department for a local university. She has been a Registered Nurse longer than she's been a patroller. Her specialty is Pediatrics and NICU.
Karen's other passions in life are her two children and her three adorable granddaughters
Mt Hood Ski Patrol
Dave Miller has written software for 20 years building systems in education, banking, sports apparel, and other industries. He has been a member of the Mt Hood Ski Patrol for 16 seasons, was a founding organizer of the annual ski swap, and has served on the MHSP IT committee managing the website, internal wiki, and maintaining the online scheduling system the patrol used from 1998 until 2019. He developed the MHSP’s current scheduling system, Troopiter, which has been in use on Mt Hood and a handful of other patrols since 2019.
PNWD Web/IT Advisor
Crystal Mountain Ski Patrol
Richard, better known as “Murph”, has been on a quest to modernize the Ski Patrol’s relationship with Information Technology. Murph has helped various patrols, the NW Region and the Pacific NW Division save thousands of dollars acquiring software that makes managing a volunteer organization easier. Murph graduated from the UW’s Foster business school, with a concentration in Finance, and has been a commercial electrical contractor for the past 25 years.
This is Murph's 9th year with the National Ski Patrol, starting with Snoqualmie Pass - Summit Central. While at Central Murph served on the Board of Directors as well as the patrol's bookkeeper. As bookkeeper Murph migrated the patrol's finances to Quickbooks online, established a highly automated Docusign processes to handle expense reimbursements and instituted online payments, reducing the reimbursement process from nearly 3 weeks to 2 days. Murph subsequently acquired Office 365 for the patrol using a special program offered by Microsoft enabling the patrol to securely store and share data.
Murph is also the Webmaster and IT support for both the NW Region and the Pacific NW Division, which includes the Division's convention website and online store.
For the past several years Murph has been part of the Crystal Mountain patrol where he has helped the patrol incorporate Microsoft 365 and Teams into patrol operations.
PNWD MTR Advisor
Mt Hood Ski Patrol
As a member of Mt. Hood Ski Patrol since 2009 I have been active in the Nordic and Associate programs. As a Nordic Patroller I have received the Nordic Patroller of the Year recognition in 2001 and 2014, and Pacific Northwest Division Outstanding Nordic Patroller of the Year for 2020-2021. As an Associate patroller was recognized as the Associate Patroller of the Year in 2015. As a General Patroller I was honored to receive the First Aid Instructor of the Year in 2016.
As a Nordic Patroller I have served as the Nordic APC for two seasons in 2016 thru 2017. Following the APC service, I have served on the MHSP Council as Nordic Director for four seasons starting in 2018. In my time as Nordic Director I have strived to coordinate with and follow the leadership of our Council, Region, Division, and the National Ski Patrol utilizing the recourses and guidelines provided for Nordic Training, MTR, and OET. As A Nordic and MTR Instructor and IT I have worked to establish a group of Nordic instructors, added new MTR instructors. Recently I have led in the implementation of a Teacup Lake Nordic specific OET program.
In 2021 I was honored with the PNWD Outstanding Nordic Patroller award for 2020-2021 and awarded the NSP Leadership Commendation Appointment No. 8553.
I have been active with the Boy Scouts of America for thirty-five years as a Cubmaster, Scoutmaster, District trainer and committee member. I have served as District Commissioner and District Chairman in two Scout Districts. Within the Scout District and Council organizations I am recognized as a go-to for outdoor travel, camping, and emergency medical training. This involvement led me to Ski Patrol service in 2008.
Steve Potter ,MHSP 1630, NSP 236276, NSP LCA 855
PNWD OET Supervisor
Crystal Mountain Ski Patrol
Going into my third year as the PNW Division OET Supervisor I am looking forward to accomplishing the goals I set in my first year. Barring further complications due to whatever may happen next, my goal again this year, is to attend all Senior OET final evaluations in the Division. Covid-19 kept me from most of the Senior events in 2020 and 2021. Please help me out with this by staying healthy and doing all you can the limit the spread of this and any other challenge that presents itself.
PNWD Mountain Host Advisor
Willamette Pass Patrol Host Coordinator
Dave Schweitzer was born in southern California in 1957. He was raised both
in Big Bear Lake and the Oregon Coast, where he started his first business in
1978. Dave is the owner of Schweitzer's Automotive Center in Eugene, and has
been in his present location for almost 29 years.
Dave learned to ski in elementary school, the last class of the day being ski
school where we put our skis on the side of the bus and rode to Snow Summit.
He has ski throughout the west, from southern California to Alaska.
Dave joined Willamette Pass Ski Patrol 7 years ago as a Host. He became the
Mountain Host Coordinator 5 year ago, overseeing approximately 15 hosts.
Dave has extensive experience in, and a love of, the outdoors. He is an avid
water and snow skier and enjoys hunting, fishing, boating, RV's, and
motorcycles. Dave has traveled both domestically and abroad in pursuit of his
activities, and believes that active outdoor activities enrich people's lives.
PNWD Woman's Program Supervisor
White Pass Ski Patrol
Growing up on Mercer Island in Washington State, Alpental was my ski home. Sunny days or pow days you would find me there rather than in school, whether I had to beg for rides or hitchhike. Oddly enough, my parents were fine with my missing school - so long as it was for skiing. In the mid 80s, pre-OEC and soon as I was old enough, I joined the Alpental Ski Patrol for a few years. Then life happened and skiing fell by the wayside. It took a long while before I finally found my way back, joining the White Pass Ski Patrol just a few years ago. Outside of ski season and when I'm not working selling houses, I can usually be found camping somewhere near water or in the mountains. Preferably both.
Mt Hood Ski Patrol
15 plus years patrol experience, the past four as a Pro Patroller III with
Mt Hood Meadows. Certified Toboggan Pro IT; Avy I and II certified, Pro Avy I certified;
Senior Certified; Senior S&T Instructor, Hill Captain and Patrol Director, MHSP; Region
Director-Wy’East Region; National Appointment #12082; Technical Rope Rescue
Technician (TRRT) certified.
Pacific Northwest Division Director
Santiam Pass Ski Patrol
Shelley is the current PNW Division Director since 2019.
She has been with NSP and Santiam Pass Ski Patrol in the Oregon Region for the last 22 years. During this time she has been very active at all levels from patrol, region, division and national levels contributing her experience and knowledge to all whether with Alpine, OEC, Area Management, Policy & Procedures, NSP.
To name just a few of her many experiences beyond Division Director:
*PNWD Nor Wester Editor for 9 seasons
*Santiam Pass Ski Patrol Director for 7 seasons
*Assistant Patrol Director for 3 seasons
Participation in national-level activities:
* A member of the NSP National Leadership from 2010-present
* A member of the NSP Business Process Committee from 2019 - present
* A member of the National Education Committee from 2019 – present
* Chair of the Initiative for Change Task Force from 2021 - present
* A member of the NSP Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Task Force
* Participation at Powderfall
Shelley has both her Alpine Senior Patroller & National Appointment.
Bob is the Training Manager for SAM Medical, Inc. With 47 years of EMS/EM experience Bob has an extensive & diverse background at the local, regional, national, and international levels. His excellence in EMS has been recognized by numerous organizations, agencies, and governments across America and around the world. He is dedicated to assuring every Healthcare Provider deliver the highest quality of compassionate care to all.
Bob and his wife live in Wyoming, have two adult married children, and two grandchildren who give them massive bragging rights daily