Meet the Steering Group

Porfirio Chavarria, Wildland Urban Interface Specialist – City of Santa Fe Fire Department, Santa Fe, New Mexico
Porfirio Chavarria, Wildland Urban Interface Specialist – City of Santa Fe Fire Department, Santa Fe, New Mexico

Porfirio began his wildland firefighting career on a hand crew in 1998 working for the Bureau of Indian Affairs. In 2001, he transitioned to Santa Clara Pueblo tribal forestry program as a forestry technician. The tribe was recovering from the 2000 Cerro Grande fire which burned over 200 homes in Los Alamos and 8,000 acres on tribal land. Porfirio joined the City of Santa Fe Fire Department in 2005, implementing fuels reduction projects, wildfire assessment rankings, and a wildfire mitigation program. During the 2010 fire season Porfirio formed the Atalaya Hand Crew that has grown into a fully funded wildland fire division within the Fire Department. Porfirio is currently involved with the Fire Adapted Communities Learning Network, New Mexico FAC Leaders Network, and the Greater Santa Fe Fireshed Coalition to create fire adapted communities in Santa Fe.

Paul Cada, Wildland Program Administrator, Vail Fire and Emergency Services – Town of Vail, Colorado
Paul Cada, Wildland Program Administrator, Vail Fire and Emergency Services – Town of Vail, Colorado

Paul is the Wildland Program Manager 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. 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 has been a wildland firefighter for 15 years and has fought fires in nearly every western state including many of the large nationally recognized fires in Colorado. Paul holds a BS in Natural Resource Management from Colorado State University and is also an International Society of Arboriculture Certified Arborist. In addition to his work in Vail, he is an active Executive Board Member of Fire Adapted Colorado (FACO), a non-profit organization dedicated to building a strong network of wildfire practitioners throughout Colorado.

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Craig Daugherty, Ret. Fire Chief, San Juan County Fire Department - Aztec, NM

Craig Daugherty has been involved in wildland firefighting for over 30 years. He got “the bug” to be a firefighter at a young age working alongside his father as a volunteer. He fought wildland fires in the summer as seasonal firefighter or the U.S. Forest Service, putting himself through college at Texas A & M University and earning a degree in Forestry. Over his professional career he worked for the U.S. Forest Service, Idaho Department of Lands, New Mexico State Forestry Division and San Juan County Fire Department (SJCFD). While at SJCFD he served as the Wildland Division Chief, Deputy Chief of Operations and retired in December of 2019 after serving 5 years as the Fire Chief. Since retirement Craig started a consulting business focusing on community wildfire protection. In 2002 he started serving as a member of National Incident Management Teams (IMT). In 2006 he started traveling with a Type 1 IMT, and currently is qualified as a Type 1 Operations Section Chief. Chief Daugherty continues to respond to wildland fires with his IMT. In his travels with IMT’s he has been in many diverse areas of the country, where fires were impacting interface areas with a large number of homes either threatened or burned. Craig is also member of the IAFC’s wildland policy committee, focusing on national wildland fire issues affecting local government. 

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