Our Leadership Team

Forrest Kuiper

Forrest Kuiper

Fire Chief

Fire Chief 2021-current

Started at UAF:

Student Firefighter: 1997-2000

Safety Officer: 2000-2003

Captain 2003-2017

Battalion Chief 2017-2021


Educational and/or Career Background:

Forrest Kuiper has served as Fire Chief since summer 2021. He has been working in the fire service since 1997 when he started working at UAF as a student firefighter. He became an auxiliary firefighter in 2000, then worked as a safety officer at UAF Codes and Safety until 2003. In the spring of 2003, Chief Kuiper began his full-time career position as a Captain with the University Fire Department. After 14 rewarding years serving as Captain, he continued to serve 4 additional years as Battalion Chief of C Platoon while maintaining his State of Alaska EMT III certification.

Chief Kuiper earned a and a masters degree in Public Administration baccalaureate degree in Emergency Management, an associate degree in Fire Science; associate degree in Hazardous Materials; all from the University of Alaska. He is a graduate of the National Fire Academy Executive Fire Officer Program.

Ben Fleagle

Ben Fleagle

Battalion Chief, A Platoon

Started at UAF:

Battalion Chief 2020-current

Captain 2001-2020

Educational and/or Career Background:

Battalion Chief, Ben Fleagle began his career at UFD in November of 2001.  He came to Alaska in 1996 from the Tustin Federal Fire Department in Orange County, California.  Captain Fleagle began his career with the Orange County Fire Department in 1990 as a Paid Call Firefighter, becoming full time at Tustin Fire in 1994.  Ben served at Fort Wainwright Fire Department in Fairbanks from 1996 to 2001.  Since being hired at UFD, Ben has specialized in training recruit firefighters, development of junior leaders, fire tactics and teaching fire science topics at CTC from 1997 to 2014.  In 1997 Ben joined the Rescue Company out of Fairbanks, a privately owned technical rescue team.  He continued his membership until the company moved from Fairbanks in 2007.  Ben is assigned to A Platoon while maintaining his State of Alaska EMT III certification.

Ben's college education began while serving in the U.S. Marines in 1986, but in 2008 he completed his Associates in Municipal Fire Control at UAF-TVC (CTC) and in 2013 he returned to UAF, graduating in the spring of 2018 with a bachelor degree in History.  Additionally, he has completed fire service leadership courses at the National Fire Academy, the Company Officer and Chief Officer Development Programs of the International Association of Fire Chiefs. He seeks to complete the Executive Fire Officer program at the National Fire Academy in Emmitsburg, Maryland in the near future.

Greg Coon

Greg Coon

Battalion Chief, B Platoon

Started at UAF:

Battalion Chief 2009-present

Educational and/or Career Background:

Battalion Chief, Greg Coon began working in his current position at UAF in 2009. His fire service career started in 1986 as a Cadet with Northstar Volunteer Volunteer Fire Department. Throughout the years, his career moved him to various fire departments across the state and has promoted him through the ranks with changing job responsibilities of firefighter to his current position as Battalion Chief of B Platoon while maintaining his State of Alaska EMT III certification as well.

Chief Coon earned an associate degree in Municipal Fire Science at University of Alaska in 1992.

Greg Bean

Greg Bean

Battalion Chief, C Platoon

Started at UAF:

Student Firefighter 2001-2004

Captain 2009-2022

Battalion Chief 2022-current

Educational and/or Career Background: 

Battalion Chief, Greg Bean began working as a student firefighter at UAF in 2001. After graduating from college, he went on to work at Fairbanks International Airport (FIA) Police/Fire Department from 2005-2007. His role in the department was twofold, serving as a police officer and a firefighter. After his two years at FIA, Battalion Chief Bean further pursued his role in a law enforcement career and began serving the City of North Pole citizens as a police officer at North Pole Police Department in 2007-2008. After fulfillment in the law enforcement realm, his zeal for firefighting was eventually what made his decision to return back to the fire life in 2008. After serving as an engineer for a year at North Pole Fire Department, he returned back to the University Fire Department in the spring of 2009 until January 2022.  Greg currently serves as Battalion Chief of C Platoon.

Captain Bean earned his associate degree in Fire Science from the University of Alaska and is a State of Alaska EMT III.

Joy Beth Cottle

Joy Beth Cottle

Captain, A Platoon

Started at UAF:

Student Firefighter 2001-2003

Captain 2021-present

Educational and/or Career Background:

Joy Beth Cottle was hired as a C Shift captain in June 2021.  She had spent several years as a student firefighter from 2001-2003 before being hired as Fairbanks Fire Department's first female firefighter.  After spending 17 years working for the City of Fairbanks, she returned to the University Fire Department with perspective, experience, and a zest for training.  

Captain Cottle holds an Associates in Municipal Fire Suppression and in Emergency Medical Services as well as a Bachelor of Sciences in Biology.  She is a Paramedic, Fire Officer II, Blue Card IC certified, and plans to pursue a interdisciplinary master's degree.

Joy Beth was born and raised in Alaska, and enjoys weight training, riding motorcycles, hunting, fishing, and going on adventures with her four dogs.

 

Max Heineken

Max Heineken

Captain, A Platoon

Started at UAF:

Captain 2022-present

Educational and/or Career Background:

Max Heineken  was born and raised in Fairbanks. In 2016, he began his volunteering at Steese Volunteer Fire Department then became a student Firefighter months later. He later was promoted to Engineer in 2017. With his love of Emergency services, he accepted a full time Firefighter position  at Fairbanks Fire Department in 2018, than was promoted to the rank of Driver at FFD. Max currently serves as A Platoon Captain for UFD.


Max is working toward earning his Associate of Applied Science degree at UAF. His hobbies include hunting, fishing, and pretty much anything with a motor.

David Mattox

David Mattox

Captain, B Platoon

Started at UAF:

Emergency Management Intern 2016-2017

Captain 2017-present

Educational and/or Career Background:

Captain, David Mattox grew up in Southern California. He did his undergraduate degree at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, NY and went into the U.S. Army as an officer. After his military career, CPT Mattox transitioned to a fire career. He started volunteering at North Star Volunteer Fire Department (NSVFD) while earning a Master’s Degree in Security and Disaster Management at UAF along with an AAS in Fire Science, eventually filling a career staff role with NSVFD. During his time there he worked in coordination with the University Fire Department as the UAF Emergency Management Intern and later the Coordinator. In the fall of 2017, Captain Mattox was hired on with UFD as a fire captain of B Platoon where he currently serves today.He has since earned his Paramedic license and AAS in Paramedicine. Captain Mattox is currently working on completing the Managing Officer Program at the National Fire Academy.

Captain Mattox has been married more than 20 years to his wonderful wife and together they have almost finished raising 4 wonderful kids.

Bobby Ross

Bobby Ross

Captain, B Platoon

Captain, Bobby Ross started his career in June of 2001 as an active duty Army firefighter, serving active duty until 2007. He then began his civilian career as a DOD firefighter while still serving in the U.S. Army reserves for 14 years. Originally from Naples, Florida, Bobby moved to Alaska in 2009 and worked at Fort Greely Fire Department for six years before taking a job with Fort Wainwright Fire Department in 2016. Bobby received his Bachelor’s degree in Fire Science in 2012 from Columbia Southern University.

Addition to working full time as a Captain at UFD, Bobby volunteers as a Battalion Chief with North Star Volunteer Fire Department since March of 2018. He also teaches at the UAF CTC summer fire academy as the drill instructor.

Dan Weatherly

Dan Weatherly

Captain, C Platoon

Started at UAF:

Captain 2014-present

Educational and/or Career Background:

Captain, Dan Weatherly started in the fire service with the Ester Volunteer Fire Department in 1996. After 22 rewarding years, he resigned in 2018 at the rank of Assistant Chief. He also worked for the Fairbanks Fire Department in 2004 for 10 years as a Driver/Paramedic. He pursued his career as a Captain for the University Fire Department in the spring of 2014 where he remains today. His professional experience has led him to be an instructor for UFD’s Jump Seat Qualification (JSQ) training for probationary firefighters the Lead Medic Academy and also assisted with the Leadership Academy at UFD. He is continually maintaining his instructor credentials and has taught numerous courses for extrication, various rescue disciplines, structural firefighting, wildland/urban interface and EMS courses. Captain Weatherly has an Associate of Applied Science degree in Municipal Fire Control and Hazardous Materials and is currently finishing his Associate of Applied Science in Paramedicine and an interdisciplinary at UAF-CTC. Future educational goals include the National Fire Academy’s Managing Fire Officer (3-year program), Executive Fire Officer (4-year program) as well as the International Association of Fire Chiefs Company Officer Leadership Symposium (3-year program) and a master’s degree.

Shayla Silva

Shayla Silva

Captain, C Platoon

Captain, Shayla Silva was hired as C shift captain in April of 2022.  She began her fire service career in Grand Junction, CO in 2018. In 2021 she returned home and joined the Steese Volunteer Fire Department before accepting a part-time position with the North Pole Fire Department. With a heightened interest in EMS, she decided to further her skills as a medic and attend paramedic school at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Fall of 2021 she began working with the University Fire Department as a paramedic student and it was during her time as a UFD student in which she realized her passion and purpose aligned with the mission and vision of the department. This led to her interest and success in promotion to Captain.

Captain Silva holds a Bachelor of BA in Global Logistics and Supply Chain Management. She is finishing her Associates in Paramedicine through UAF and plans to pursue a Masters in Clinical Counseling with an emphasis in Mental Health and Trauma/PTSD.

Shayla was born and raised in Fairbanks and enjoys a life of traveling and adventure.She has two fur baby cats, Gertrude and Little Mac. 

 

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Kyle Green

Kyle Green

Fire Marshal

Started at UAF: 
2018-present

Educational and/or Career Background:

Kyle started his career in the fire service in 2005 on the North Star Fire Crew, a wildland fire training crew to provide qualified applicants for the Bureau of Land Management’s interagency “Hotshot” training crew which he landed a position with his second season in 2006. Kyle transitioned to the structural side of firefighting when he started volunteering for the North Pole Fire Department in 2006, eventually being hired as a full-time firefighter and EMT. During Kyle’s time with the North Pole Fire Department, he was locally recognized over several years for his leadership with NPFD’s fire and life safety education programs, culminating in his recognition as the statewide fire service’s Fire and Life Safety Educator of the Year award in 2012. In early 2013, Kyle was hired as the Deputy Fire Marshal for the City of Fairbanks Fire Department where he was responsible for fire inspections, fire plans review, and assisting the department with their fire and life safety education activities.

Kyle has an interdisciplinary associate’s degree titled Community Risk Reduction from the University of Alaska Fairbanks, is an International Code Council recognized Fire Inspector II and Fire Plans Examiner, Alaska Certified Fire Investigator, and Alaska certified Fire and Life Safety Educator. He’s continuing his certification work through the International Code Council, National Fire Protection Association, and education through the University of Alaska in addition to the many courses Kyle has attended at the National Fire Academy in Emmetsburg, Maryland. He is a proud 4thgeneration Alaskan, born and raised in Fairbanks, third generation UAF alumni, and is now raising two sons with his wife here.

Kalen Middleton

Kalen Middleton

Office Manager

Started at UAF:

2015-current

Educational and/or Career Background: 

Kalen Middleton started her career in the fire service in 2007 as the Administrative Assistant at North Pole Fire Department. Raised in Alaska almost her entire life, she continues to call Alaska home with no intentions of moving. After serving seven years at the City of North Pole Fire Departement, she began working for UAF Fire Department in 2015.  Addition to working full time in the office, she attends UAF as a part-time student seeking her baccalaureate degree in Business Administration. She recieved her Associate of Arts degree from UAF in 2019.

Mrs.Middleton has been happily married over 19 years to Ryan and are raising their two boisterous boys. 

Katherine Janoski

Katherine Janoski

UAF Emergency Manager

BEM, MSDM

Whitaker Fire Station, Room 101

Started at UAF:

2022-current

Educational and/or Career Background:

Kate Janoski has been the University of Alaska Fairbanks Emergency Manager since January 2022. She comes to us from the Fairbanks North Star Borough Department of Emergency Operations, where she was the Emergency Program Coordinator and was in charge of planning, developing, and evaluating scenario exercises designed to measure local emergency response agencies and community stakeholder readiness and response capacities. She also organized and conducted community outreach to inform and educate the population on disaster and individual preparedness.

Originally from Sandwich, Massachusetts, Kate joined the U.S. Air Force in 1992 and trained as a medic. She has been stationed in Arizona, Germany, North Carolina, and Alaska. She has also deployed with the Army, completing a short tour during Operation Enduring Freedom. Kate retired as a Master Seargent and began attending school year-round full-time a few years later. In a few short years, Kate received her bachelor's in Emergency Management and Masters in Security and Disaster Management from UAF's Homeland Security and Emergency Management program. As she finished her MSDM, she started working at the FNSB Department of Emergency Operations as an Emergency Management Technician. Currently, she is finishing up a Master of Arts Degree in Environmental Policy in the Arctic and Northern Studies program.  

Kate has two young adult children, who decided to move somewhere significantly warmer, and two dogs that keep her on her toes. In her free time, she likes to read, travel, and paint.