Supervisor, 2nd District
County of Marin
Katie was raised in Mill Valley and graduated from Tamalpais High School in 1978. She attended Sonoma State University, receiving degrees in Liberal Studies and English. For the past 25 years, Katie has lived in San Anselmo. Katie’s engagement in public service long predates her tenure with County government and is the foundation of her understanding of the depth of residents’ concerns for their neighborhoods, schools, community benefit organizations, and open space. The protection of Marin’s environmental resources is a core, long-standing value for Katie, and shows in her commitment to the protection of our natural resources and garnering her an appointment on the California Coastal Commission. She was instrumental in the bringing together stakeholders and working to get voter approval to pass Measure C that created The Marin Wildfire Prevention Authority. She is a proud graduate of the 31st class of the Marin Environmental Forum, a renowned environmental leadership training program.
Marin County Parks (2023)
Jim Chayka is a Superintendent at Marin County Parks and Open Space. Jim served as Director of Natural Resources at Conservation Corps North Bay and has been working in the field of Natural Resources & Watershed Management for the last 17 years. Jim started his career in environmental stewardship in 1999 as an AmeriCorps member at the CivicCorps (formerly the East Bay Conservation Corps), and subsequently managed education and restoration programs with Student Conservation Association, Watershed Sciences, Urban Creeks Council, and Sonoma Ecology Center. Jim holds an MS degree in Applied Geosciences from San Francisco State University and joined Fire Safe Marin in 2015. He currently resides in Novato with his wife and two children.
Wildfire and Hazard Mitigation Specialist
Central Marin Fire Department (2022)
Todd is a Marin native and has worked 32 years in the fire service. He studied Forestry and Wildfire Management at the University of Montana and Environmental Studies and Urban Planning at Sonoma State University. He is currently a Battalion Chief and Wildfire and Hazard Mitigation Specialist for Central Marin Fire Department and has worked as a fire inspector, and an urban forester specializing in community wildfire protection. Todd served as Executive Director of Fire Safe San Mateo County, and Executive Coordinator of Fire Safe Marin from 2013-2020. Todd is an NFPA Certified Wildfire Mitigation Specialist and lives in West Marin.
Fire Chief, Retired
Ross Valley Fire Department (2020)
Roger began his fire service career as a volunteer firefighter with the San Anselmo Fire Department in 1979, and in 1981, he was the last firefighter hired by the San Anselmo Fire Department before the Department consolidated with Fairfax in 1982, creating the Ross Valley Fire Department JPA. He rose through the ranks and was appointed Fire Chief in 2005. Under his leadership, the Ross Valley Fire Department JPA expanded to include the Sleepy Hollow Fire Protection District in 2010, and the Town of Ross in 2012. Chief Meagor retired in 2013. Roger is a long-time Board Member for Fire Safe Marin and serves on the Board of Directors of the Ross Valley Paramedic Authority. A third-generation Ross Valley native, he resides with his wife in the unincorporated area of Fairfax.
Eva Denegri Baker
Marin County Office of Emergency Services, Retired (2022)
Eva retired in 2018 from a long career in Emergency Services with the Marin County Sheriff’s Office. She received her B.A. from Dominican University in Humanities before settling into several careers in Editing and Program Management for Book and Electronic Publishers. She was an active member for twenty years of the Larkspur Association of Volunteer Firefighters. There, she served for most of her years as an Officer on the Executive Committee. She was awarded Volunteer Firefighter of the Year and also received several service awards from her fellow volunteer firefighters. Eva joined Fire Safe Marin as a Director in 2003, and has served continuously as a member of the Executive Committee. She and her husband, Bruce, also retired from the Sheriff’s Office, have dedicated their retirement to volunteering for Canine Companions for Independence in Santa Rosa. Bruce and Eva have three adult sons, and currently reside in West Petaluma as empty nesters with their cat, Hank, and retired service dog, Nino. They are raising a golden lab/retriever puppy named Wilbur to be a Service dog.
Retired Fire Captain
Marin County Fire Department (2023)
Pete retired as a Senior Fire Captain for Marin County Fire Department where he served as the department’s de-facto wildfire historian. As a Fire Captain, Pete responded to the 1991 Oakland Hills “Tunnel” Fire, and later was instrumental in the founding of Fire Safe Marin. After retirement, Pete worked as the Vegetation Management Specialist for Sonoma County Department of Emergency Services, Fire Division, where he authored the Fountaingrove II CWPP and Wildfire Mitigation recommendations.
City of San Rafael (2023)
Quinn Gardner is the Emergency Manager for San Rafael. She is a dedicated public servant, with over a decade of experience in disaster response and emergency management. She has designed and delivered multiple disaster-related classes focused on individual and community preparedness and volunteer coordination. Adding to an extensive list of completed courses, she recently graduated FEMA’s four-week long National Emergency Management Advanced Academy (NEMAA). Prior to leading the Office of Emergency Services in San Rafael she worked for the UC Berkeley Office of Emergency Management, the Missouri State Emergency Management Agency, and AmeriCorps St. Louis Emergency Response Team. She holds an MPA from the University of Missouri and a BA from Webster University.
Stephen L. Quarles, Ph.D.
Chief Scientist for Wildfire and Durability (retired)
Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS) (2023)
Steve served 26 years with the University of California, and 8 years as Chief Scientist for Wildfire and Durability with the Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS). His research and outreach focuses on wildfire protection for residential and light commercial buildings and improving the moisture-related durability and resilience of buildings following hurricane/high-wind events. Steve earned a bachelor’s in wood science from Virginia Tech, and a master’s and a doctorate in wood science from the University of Minnesota. Steve is a member of the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM) where he is secretary for and task group chair in the Subcommittee on Exterior Fire; the Forest Products Society, where he is Editor in Chief of the Forest Products Journal; the Society of Wood Science and Technology; the National Fire Protection Association, where he is a member of the Technical Committee on Forest and Rural Fire Protection; the International Association of Wildland Fire and the American Wood Protection Association. Steve joined the Fire Safe Marin Board of Directors in 2019. He lives in Mill Valley.
Novato Fire Protection District (2023)
Bill was appointed Fire Chief of Novato Fire Protection District in 2018, after 22 years on the job. Tyler has a bachelor’s degree in English from Cal State Hayward. He completed his paramedic training at the Stanford Pre-Hospital Paramedic Program in Palo Alto. He also holds a professional credential as a designated chief fire officer from the Center of Public Safety Excellence and is a certified chief officer through the California State Board of Fire Services. Bill has served on the Fire Safe Marin board at various points since 2002.
Marin Valley Mobile Country Club (2023)
Bio coming soon.
Fire Department Captain
Marin County Fire Department (2021)
Marin Association of Realtors (2023)
Bio coming soon
Northern California Landscape Contractors Association (2023)
Bio coming soon.
Marin Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD) (2023)
Bio coming soon.
Deputy Fire Marshal, Liaison to Marin County Fire Prevention Officers
Kentfield Fire Protection District (2022)
Larry started his fire service career in 2006, serving with the City of South San Francisco and Napa Fire Departments before joining the Kentfield Fire Protection District in 2018. During his time in Napa, Larry was part of the city’s emergency response and management of the 2014 South Napa Earthquake and the 2017 North Bay/Wine Country Fires. Throughout his career, Larry has excelled at the development and administration of fire prevention, inspection and investigation related programs. Larry is the Executive Officer of the Marin County Fire Investigation Team and the Vice-President of the Marin County Fire Prevention Officers. He holds professional certifications from California’s Office of the State Fire Marshal for Fire Prevention Officer, Fire Protection Specialist, Fire Plans Examiner and Fire Investigator. Larry resides in Novato with his wife and son.
Watershed Resources Manager
Marin Municipal Water District (2022)
Shaun Horne, MMWD’s new Natural Resource Program Manager. Shaun comes to us from Napa County Flood Control and Water Conservation District where he managed natural resources focused on flood control, habitat restoration, and invasive species management. Shaun has a bachelor’s degree from SF State in Environmental Sustainability and Social Justice and a Master’s from Sonoma State in International Water Resources Management. He holds certificates in GIS from SF State and Water Conflict Management from Oregon State. His work experience includes a stint as a Stream Biologist with Sonoma County Water Agency and as an arborist for a tree company. Shaun is running MMWD’s watershed vegetation management program and will shepherd our Biodiversity, Fire and Fuels Integrated Plan EIR to its conclusion.
Larkspur (2021) Catherine and her family have called Larkspur their home since 2005. They moved here for the same reasons that a lot of families do: the quality of life, charming neighborhoods, abundant outdoor activities, and outstanding public schools.
Catherine joined the Larkspur City Council in 2013 and was re-elected in 2017. Currently serving as Mayor, she is intent on addressing the concerns of all residents and businesses, with a special focus on public safety, efficient service delivery, and quality of life issues in the diverse neighborhoods of Larkspur and Greenbrae.
In her professional life, Catherine holds a B.S. degree in Nursing from the University of San Francisco; a Master’s Degree in Nursing from U.C.S.F. with a specialty in Nursing Administration; and a law degree from Santa Clara University. Catherine worked as a clinical nurse at U.C.S.F. on the General Surgery and Liver Transplant Service. During law school, several personal changes and the birth of her two daughters, influenced her to finish her law degree but delay the full-time practice of law. Since 2012, she has been the managing partner of her own consulting business which focuses on surgical-legal issues. This experience reinforces her unwavering commitment to public safety, and to ensuring that our first responders have the resources necessary to keep us all safe.
At large member (2023)
Jerry Meral has a Ph.D. in Zoology from UC Berkeley. He was staff scientist for the Environmental Defense Fund, Deputy Director of the California Department of Water Resources, Executive Director of the California Planning and Conservation League, and Deputy Secretary of the California Natural Resources Agency. He serves on the Boards of the Environmental Action Committee of West Marin and the Inverness Association. Fire projects he is working on include a fire and water parcel tax for the Inverness Public Utilities District, setting up Firewise Inverness, fuel reduction along Highway 1 and Sir Francis Drake Blvd, getting approval for a French Broom predator, experimental reduction of yellow Starthistle, and pyrophyte removal at Point Reyes National Seashore
Asst. Deputy Chief, San Francisco Fire Department, Retired
President, Sleepy Hollow Fire Protection District. (2020)
Richard Shortall is a retired San Francisco Fire Department Assistant Deputy Chief. He has also served as the SFFD EMS Chief, Deputy Director of the San Francisco Office of Emergency Services, and General Manager of the Bay Area SUASI Homeland Security Program. Rich is currently a member of the Board of the Ross Valley Fire Department and is an elected Director of the Sleepy Hollow Fire Protection District. He joined Fire Safe Marin as a Director in 2015 and currently resides in San Anselmo with his wife Diana.
Meg McCabe, Ed.D
Meg McCabe holds a Doctorate of Education from Columbia University. She has taught curriculum design at Teachers College Columbia and the University of Reading in the UK. She is a pioneer of online education, creating one of the first programs in the country in 1994. She has led online faculty training for The New School, University of Maryland, Millersville University and the University of N. Carolina and is the author of Essentials of Online Teaching: A Standards Based Guide (Routledge, 2018). Meg also directed educational programming for New York City Ballet and was a teaching artist for Lincoln Center Institute. Here in Marin, Meg is on the steering committee for the Ecologically Sound Practices Partnership, a group of fire professionals and environmentalists working together to assure that fire mitigation work is carried out with environmental best practices. She is a member of Drawdown Marin, Marin’s Leadership Network, Organizing for Action and Lead on Climate. She lives with her family in San Anselmo.
Director of Operations
Chief Financial Officer
Firewise USA Liaison
JP spent his career in various aspects of engineering from marine to environmental, and finally construction services. He held a number of OSHA certifications over the years and has been a subject matter expert in a variety of health and safety issues. JP and his wife are long-time Mill Valley residents and he has been privileged to serve the community in a number of roles. He served two stints as chair of the Mill Valley Emergency Preparedness Commission; a post he currently holds. He chaired the natural resources working group for Mill Valley’s 2040 city plan. He has also held a number of other positions on boards and commissions which are less public safety oriented. He is CERT trained and an NRG block captain.
Kaya Halpern grew up in Sonoma County surrounded by redwoods and the morning fog. She graduated from University of California, Berkeley with a B.S. in Conservation and Resource Management. Driven by a passion to connect people with nature, she has dedicated her career to environmental education in many different forms. She spent 4 years working as a Naturalist at Marin’s Outdoor School Walker Creek Ranch and fell in love with everything that West Marin has to offer. Living in Marin and Sonoma County, wildfire has become personal and she hopes at Fire Safe Marin she can help create a culture of empowerment to take action to prepare and be ready.
Chipper Program Manager