NRC Plan Incident Commanders
The NRC Plan has several Incident Commanders (ICs) located in Washington State with two on call at all times, ready to direct response operations for a Covered Vessel spill as the representative of the responsible party. The NRC Plan ICs are recognized leaders in response management, each with decades of experience covering all types of oil spill events.
Michael A. LaTorre
Michael (Mike) A. LaTorre is an experienced professional gained through working with major companies in ocean transportation, facilities management and rail transport. He started his career as a seagoing marine engineer in the U.S. Merchant Marine and after coming ashore continued in the maritime field managing container terminals and tank farms. He continued to progress, overseeing safety and contingency planning for a petroleum distribution company servicing the states of Hawaii and Alaska. His operations and maintenance experience lead him to join Marine Spill Response Corporation (USA) becoming the Regional Operations Manager for the U.S. West Coast and eventually Vice President for the U.S. West Coast and Hawaii. He was then seconded to Oil Spill Response Limited (UK) in Southampton as Operations Manager focusing on various enhancement programs addressing training, safety, systems readiness, and response. Mike is qualified as an Incident Commander experienced in the various ICS
section lead roles. He has responded to oil spills worldwide and well versed in safety management systems, contingency compliance assessments, and readiness drills and exercises.Mike was the Shoreline Cleanup Assessment Technique (SCAT) Coordinator for the MC252 well blow out in the Gulf of Mexico supporting that role for over three years. With over 20 years within response management, Mike’s philosophy is that READINESS is the backbone of contingency plans and emergency preparation. It is the needed foundation for senior management truly committed to safe, environmentally sound, and EFFECTIVE contingency plans
Kelly Post comes to us with 24 years of active duty service in the U. S. Coast Guard. While in the Coast Guard Ms. Post gained experience in numerous incident command roles including Operations Section Chief, Liaison Officer and Incident Commander while responding to both spills and maritime accidents. Ms. Post was deployed with to Coast Guard to Lafourche Louisiana for the Deepwater Horizon response and served as a Parish President Liaison. Ms. Post served in many leadership positions in the Coast Guard, including the Chief of Prevention at Coast Guard Sector Baltimore. Ms. Post directed Officer in Charge Marine Inspection, Federal Maritime Security Coordinator and Captain of the Port missions for the Port of Baltimore Maryland. She ensured compliance with federal regulations and prevented maritime casualties, oil spills, waterway closures, security breaches, transportation security incidents and accidents. Prior to her retirement from the Coast Guard, Ms. Post served as the chief of the Investigations Division at Coast Guard Headquarters, responsible for policy for all incident investigations including pollution investigations. Ms. Post directed the marine casualty and pollution investigation program for the US Coast Guard ensuring proper procedures and regulatory guidelines were followed.
Gary Reiter has over 36 years of experience in the oil and hazardous substance spill response field including incident management, on-site response field operations, planning and strategy development, spill management training, incident command system training, equipment training and equipment evaluation. He has participated in spill events from both government oversight positions and as a private industry response manager. As a Coast Guard officer who served as Marine Environmental Protection Officer at Marine Safety Field Offices and as Executive Officer and Commanding Officer of the Pacific Strike Team, he had leadership positions in numerous major spill events. Since his retirement from the U.S. Coast Guard in 1991, he has served as the Incident Commander, Deputy Incident Commander, Operations Section Chief, IC advisor and SCAT/Operations Liaison Supervisor on many major spill events throughout the United States representing the responsible party. Since 1991, he has also conducted response training and exercises for major oil companies, foreign and domestic shipping companies, and the government. Under contract to the U.S. Coast Guard, Mr. Reiter developed the original National Incident Management System (NIMS) Incident Command System (ICS) Incident Management Handbook (IMH), the primary resource for teaching and guiding response organizations in the management of all emergency incidents. Since 1993, Mr. Reiter has served as a Qualified Individual (QI) under the OPA 90 regulations and as a member of Spill Management Teams for a majority of firms providing Spill Management Teams Services in the U.S.
David Sawicki has over 21 years of expertise in managing, reviewing, developing, implementing & maintaining emergency and crisis management programs. During his career in the petroleum industry, Mr. Sawicki filled a variety of leadership roles in emergency response management including Crisis Management Director for the Western US and Emergency Response Advisor. Mr. Sawicki is Founder and President of the Sawicki Group LLC, Emergency and Crisis Program Management providing management of, and responsibility for, delivering safe and effective emergency and crisis management programs services to clients throughout the world. His direct, hands-on, project and actual response experience includes serving as Incident Commander (IC), Deputy IC, Planning Section Chief and Situation Unit Leader for responses around the world encompassing 10 states and 14 countries. Mr. Sawicki has also been recognized as an industry leader in spill preparedness through his participation in a variety of initiatives, including Washington State's Governor's Oil Spill Task Force and the Puget Sound Oil Spill Task Force, and as a board member on several oil spill response cooperatives including Clean Sound Inc. (Washington State), Clean Rivers Inc. (Oregon), Clean Bay Inc. (California) and Clean Coastal Waters Inc. (California). Recognized for his success in enhancing collaboration between industry, agencies and communities, Mr. Sawicki was the recipient of the Washington State - Governor's Letter of Recognition (2013), Whatcom County Peace Builder Award - Crisis Management with agencies & industry (2013) and a Legacy Award Recipient - Pacific States / British Columbia Oil Spill Task Force (2008).
Joe Smith has over forty years of operational and project management experience in spill response manufacturing, field operations, training, and spill product development and sales. He has hands-on and management experience from the arctic to the tropics in dozens of spill events of all types and sizes, worldwide, involving open water, shoreline, inland and river operating environments. Mr. Smith’s extensive marine experience also includes having held both a USCG 100 Ton Ocean License for passenger vessels, and a USCG Tankerman’s License with Sulphur Endorsement; serving active duty as USNR-Vietnam Service on AO-51 USS Ashtabula (Fleet Oiler) 1968-1970; and as Chairman of the Local Emergency Planning Committee (SARA-Title III) for Nashville/Davidson County TN. From 1992 - present he has been an active member in the American Society for Testing and Materials: F-20 Committee (Oil Spill and Hazardous Materials). Mr. Smith attended Louisiana State University earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1973. His career in the marine industry began in the 60’s working for a barge company in Louisiana eventually coming to the PNW while working for Crowley Environmental Services, which then became Burlington Environmental Services, later acquired by Foss Environmental Services, and eventually by NRC. In addition to his operations and management history, he is a published author with numerous industry related articles to his credit.