International Training Conference & Expo


Fire Investigator Behavioral Health

Wednesday, April 13, 2022 (1:00pm – 2:30pm) (Ballroom 5)

This presentation first highlights the Health & Safety Committee's activities regarding fire investigator behavioral health. Then it continues with an in-depth presentation about the unique issues regarding public safety behavioral health, concerns, and solution options.


Kellie O’Dare Ph.D

Dr. Kellie O'Dare is an Assistant Professor of Health Policy and Management with the Institute of Public Health at Florida A&M University. She holds a Ph.D. in Social Work from Florida State University, where she also earned both Master of Social Work (MSW) and Masters in Public Administration (MPA) degrees. She has worked in various roles with the Florida Legislature, Department of Health (DOH), Department of Children and Families (DCF), and the Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA), as well as with several state and national University systems. She has provided overall administrative direction, strategic planning, statewide program implementation, policy development, staff supervision, and managed complex operating budgets comprised of federal, state, grant, and trust fund dollars. In addition, Dr. O'Dare has significant experience conceptualizing, designing, implementing, and evaluating large-scale quantitative, geospatial, and mixed-method research projects in academic and applied settings. Dr. O'Dare is the spouse of a current professional firefighter and is the niece of Shawn T. O'Dare, a firefighter/paramedic killed in the line of duty in Miami-Dade County in 1985. Dr. O'Dare is the principal investigator and co-director of the 2nd Alarm Project, a collaboration of local university faculty and staff, community partners, and first responder organizations from the Florida panhandle area. The lead organizations for the 2nd Alarm project are Florida A&M University (FAMU) in Tallahassee and the University of West Florida (UWF) in Pensacola. The team is comprised of clinicians and researchers with decades of experience working in trauma, behavioral health service delivery, and with first responder populations. Partners include active first responder organizations, agencies that serve first responders, as well as first responders themselves and their family members. They are also working with the Florida Division of Investigative & Forensic Services on a grant-funded fire investigator-specific behavioral health project.


Michael Brewer

Captain/paramedic Michael Brewer works for the Mesa (AZ) Fire and Medical Department and is an IAAI-certified fire investigator. Captain Brewer served as the Mesa fire investigations program manager from 2016 to 2020 and is now a Battalion Safety Officer for Battalion 204 in Mesa. Captain Brewer started his career as a volunteer firefighter in 1995. He was hired full time by the Heber-Overgaard Fire District in Northern Arizona in 2001 and he moved to the Mesa Fire and Medical Department in 2005. Captain Brewer has been on the governing board for the Heber-Overgaard Fire District since 2014.  He is a member of the IAAI Health & Safety Committee and leads its fire investigator behavioral health workgroup.