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Consulting Services Program

The SDAO Consulting Services Program is here to provide our districts with expert advice and guidance for reducing risk, improving services, and planning for the future. With a cadre of expert consultants at its fingertips, the Consulting Services Program can assist districts with organizational assessments, management recruitments, basic planning, board and staff training, and overall best practices for your district.

First Eight Hours Free - Member districts are eligible for up to eight hours of free services provided by our consultants. After this time is exhausted, members will have the option of continuing at an hourly rate. 

If you would like to request one or more of these services, please email us.

Be sure to check out our brochure!

We look forward to hearing from you!

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Consulting Services Manager
scarter@sdao.com
Office: 800-305-1736 ext. 251

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Meet Our Consultants:

George Dunkel 

SDAO Consulting Services Senior Consultant
gdunkel@sdao.com

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I joined the Oregon Fire Service as an eighteen-year-old volunteer and retired as Fire Chief of Columbia River Fire & Rescue after thirty-six years of combined service. Also served as a Fire District Board Member for sixteen years. Spent over 15 years working with SDAO as a consultant assisting members with various challenges and projects. I am the recipient of many National and State Fire Service awards and recognitions most notably the International Fire Service Training Association Marvin Austin Distinguished Leadership Award and IFSTA’s John Hogland Award of Excellence, State of Oregon recognitions include OFCA 9th Gold Trumpet and OFDDA Presidents Award.  I am the recent recipient of the Howard Terpenning Lifetime Achievement from SDAO for 2022.

Jim Stearns 

SDAO Consulting Services Senior Consultant
jstearns@sdao.com

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I started my fire service career in Hermiston, Oregon. Hired as a paid Firefighter in 1977 I moved up through the ranks serving as a Firefighter Paramedic, Lieutenant Paramedic, Captain, and Fire Chief from 1988 until my retirement in 2008.  After discovering that I was not ready for retirement I went to work for Umatilla County as the Emergency Manager, a position I held until the end of the chemical demilitarization project in 2012. From 2000 through 2012 I also served on a wildland incident management type II team. In 2013 I returned to the Oregon Fire Service when I went to work for SDAO serving as an Interim Fire Chief for Fire Districts who needed interim management. In my role as an Interim Chief, I served at six different districts, for a period ranging from 6 to 18 months each. I am currently a senior consultant with SDAO assisting Fire Districts with hiring processes, fiscal management, operational review as well as advice on mergers, consolidations, and annexations

Bill Anderson 

SDAO Consulting Services Senior Consultant
banderson@sdao.com

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I joined the Fire Service in 1972.  Retired in 2006 after 34 years of service. Began working for Special Districts Association of Oregon in 2006 and served as Interim Fire Chief for various Districts in addition to an interim general manager for a transit district. Specialty in organizational assessments & troubleshooting. Past adjunct instructor for Chemeketa Community College, Western Oregon University, Portland Community College. Former Incident Commander for Oregon State Fire Marshal's Incident Management Team.

I have a BS in Natural History, BS in Fire Administration, AA in Fire Science Director of Training, Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue, Operations Division Chief, Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue, Past President of Oregon Fire instructors Association

Bob Keefer 

SDAO Consulting Services Senior Consultant
bkeefer@sdao.com

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I am the former Superintendent of the Willamalane Park and Recreation District in Springfield, Oregon. I retired as superintendent in October 2016 after 16 years of service with the district.  Prior to my time with Willamalane, I was the Lane County Parks Division Manager (1990 -2000), Assistant Director at Bend Parks and Recreation District (1993-2000), and Parks and Recreation Director for City of Junction City. I served on the SDAO Board for eight years and has served on the Legislative Committee for over 16 years.  After retirement, my wife Christi and I, moved to Sisters, Oregon where I have continued to be involved in special districts through my service on the Sisters Park and Recreation District Board of Directors.     

I have a Bachelor of Science Degree from Oregon State University in Recreation Resource Management (1978). I received the Howard Terpenning Lifetime Achievement from SDAO in 2016 for my dedicated service and leadership. I also received the Distinguished Service Award from the Oregon Recreation and Park Association. Under my leadership the Willamalane was successful at creating strong partnerships with the community and with local, state, and federal agencies which led to Willamalane receiving the prestigious National Gold Medal Award from the National Recreation and Park Association in 2016; passing of a $20 million bond for parks, trails, and open space; development of a 28 acre sports and recreation; acquisition of the Thurston Hills Natural Area; and development of bike paths along the Middle Fork of the Willamette River and Springfield Mill Race. 

Dan Olsen 

SDAO Consulting Services Senior Consultant
dolsen@sdao.com

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33-year career working in Special Districts, Municipal, County and State emergency service and public safety agencies. Served as an adjunct faculty member for several community colleges and the National Fire Academy Experience working with Non-Profit Organizations and private businesses. I have developed Strategic Plans for reorganization of several agencies. Developed appreciation and recognition programs for career and volunteer personnel . Presenter at State, National and International conferences on leadership and volunteer organization. I am also a Published Author.

Greg DiLoreto 

SDAO Consulting Services Senior Consultant
gdiloreto@sdao.com

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I have 37 years' experience in the public works field, 30 years in the public sector, 17 years as a public works director and city engineer of which 12 years were with the City of Gresham; 14 years as the CEO for the Tualatin Valley Water District, retired from TVWD in 2013.  Experience in all aspects of public works management, including streets, stormwater, sanitary sewer and wastewater treatment, water systems, and public buildings.  BS degree in civil engineering, a master's degree in public administration.  Registered professional civil and environmental engineer and professional land surveyor in Oregon.  Currently a member of the City of West Linn Transportation Citizen Advisory Committee; Vice Chair of the Clackamas County Water Environment Services Committee; member of the Portland Public Schools Bond Accountability Committee and Chair Emeritus of the American Society of Civil Engineers Committee on America's Infrastructure.  Media experience in print and video, have appeared on CNN, MSNBC, major affiliates in Los Angeles, Phoenix, and other major media markets.  Experience testifying before state legislature, and Congress, including the House Ways and Means Committee.

I was the 2013 President of the 150,000 member American Society of Civil Engineers, President of the Special Districts Association of Oregon from 2007-2011, 2017 William H. Wisely American Civil Engineer Award, 2005 American Society of Civil Engineers Government Engineer of the Year Award, and 2003 Inductee to the Oregon State University Academy of Distinguished Engineers.

Mark Knudson 

SDAO Consulting Services Senior Consultant
mknudson@sdao.com

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Background: Over 35 years of experience in the water industry, including planning, design, construction, operation, and management assignments. Positions have included: Tualatin Valley Water District, CEO; Tualatin Valley Water District, Chief Engineer; Carollo Engineers, Director of Northwest Drinking Water Practice; and Portland Water Bureau, Director of Operations.

Community service roles currently include Board Member, Oak Lodge Water Services District; Board Member, Oregon Infrastructure Finance Authority; Committee Chair, Business Oregon Audit Committee.  

I have received various water industry awards, including Outstanding Service to AWWA (2019), George Warren Fuller Award (2016), Recognition of Service to the Water Profession (2014), Honorary Member of AWWA (2010). Registered Professional Engineer in Oregon, Civil & Environmental Engineering, Certified Water Treatment & Water Distribution Operator in Oregon

Teri Dresler 

SDAO Consulting Services Senior Consultant
tdresler@sdao.com

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I have 30 years of senior level management in the public sector. I specialized in the management of complex, public-facing organizations. Metro Regional Government, Portland: Oregon Zoo, Parks & Environmental Services, Oregon Convention Center, Portland Expo Center, Portland'5 Centers for the Arts. Oregon Coast Aquarium: Operations Director. Port of Newport: Interim General Manager. 

Roy Emery 

SDAO Consulting Services Senior Consultant
remery@sdao.com

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I have 38 years of fire service experience. I started as a volunteer firefighter in the early 80’s in Hermiston and Corvallis Oregon. I began my paid career in Corvallis and promoted through the ranks, achieving the position of Fire Chief. 

I have many fire service certifications and served on multiple specialty teams. I have a master’s in public administration with a certificate of academic excellence. 

Gordon Sletmoe 

SDAO Consulting Services Senior Consultant
gsletmoe@sdao.com

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I joined the fire service in 1982 and spent the next 37 years as a volunteer, military, wildland, aircraft fire and rescue, municipal, and district firefighter.  22 years with Medford Fire – Rescue working up through the ranks from firefighter to Deputy Chief - with 10 months as Acting Fire Chief.  5 ½ years at Lebanon Fire District, retiring as Fire Chief in 2019. Previously, instructor at community college for fire science courses. ​

I have a ​BAS in Management, AS in Fire Science, AS in Machine Shop Technology. 10 years on NFPA technical committee for Electronic Safety Equipment.

Jim Knight 

SDAO Consulting Services Senior Consultant
jknight@sdao.com

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I have served in executive management positions in the Port and Logistics Industries for over 25 years.  I recently retired from the Port of Astoria in 2019 as the Executive Director after nearly 5 years.  Prior to that, I was the Director of the Marine Terminals at the Port of Olympia, where I worked for nearly 8 years. I have acquired an in-depth knowledge of cargo shipping and logistics which includes management of trucking companies, warehousing, and distribution. Prior to working in public ports, I was a founding partner and VP/GM of Mountain Cold Storage, a 100,000 sq ft refrigerated cold storage and seafood processing facility located at the Port of Tacoma. I joined SDAO Consulting Services early in 2020 and serve as a Senior Consultant.     

I have been appointed Board of Director memberships with numerous organizations during my career, including 7 years with the Economic Development Board of Tacoma/Pierce County (EDB).  During my tenure with the EDB, Boeing was recruited to opening a new manufacturing facility, the new University of Washington Campus in Tacoma, and an overhaul of the downtown corridor of Tacoma. I was named the first Chairperson of Oregon’s Department of Aviation’s “Aviation Review Committee” commonly known as ARC, over 3 years ago and still maintain that responsibility. The ARC is responsible for reviewing all Oregon aviation grant requests and provides recommendations for grant approvals to the Oregon Aviation Board.  I also currently serve as the Chairperson for the City of Astoria’s Hospital Authority Board which approves bond financing for Columbia Memorial Hospital.