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EXECUTIVE BOARD MEMBERS

Jeffery Denholm

Jeffery Denholm

Chief Executive Officer

Jeff wears many hats in life, including entrepreneur, professional athlete, inspirational speaker and environmental steward. ATIRA Systems is the professional nexus of Jeff's entrepreneurial spirit and passion for the environment. While seeking a fire retardant for his Wildfire Equipment Company Jeff was struck by disturbing statistics about the toxicity of current offerings. "What if we could come up with a nontoxic product that is more effective at fighting fires of all types without doing unnecessary harm?" Jeff discovered that annually there are millions of gallons of flame retardant dumped into natural ...

Jeff wears many hats in life, including entrepreneur, professional athlete, inspirational speaker and environmental steward. ATIRA Systems is the professional nexus of Jeff's entrepreneurial spirit and passion for the environment. While seeking a fire retardant for his Wildfire Equipment Company Jeff was struck by disturbing statistics about the toxicity of current offerings. "What if we could come up with a nontoxic product that is more effective at fighting fires of all types without doing unnecessary harm?" Jeff discovered that annually there are millions of gallons of flame retardant dumped into natural resources-- further destroying precarious wetlands and large population centers throughout the world. So began Jeff's drive in creating a business that not only saves lives and structures, but does no harm to earth.

Starting at a young age, Jeff pursued a diverse professional background — taking him out of the typical business environment — into the iconoclastic and adventurous world of a professional Mariner and commercial diver. The seasonal contract work of the Maritimes enabled him to pursue and excel at a variety of outdoor sports, which strengthened his connection to the environment. Further quenching his thrust for adventure, Jeff landed a position as Team Diver and Logistics Coordinator for The Whydah Expedition Society.

It was a life-changing injury, sustained in his work as a mariner that redirected the course of Jeff's life forever. His personal mission focused on what he would give back to the world. Rebuilding from his injury delivers a daily sense of gratitude for family, friends and the experiences that so positively shape Jeff's life. It further motivated Jeff to taking the first career step in 'sustainable business' as project manager and brand development for The Flatbread Company. Parallel to his career, Jeff remained dedicated to adventure-sports, despite the effects of his injury, and is currently well rewarded as an athletic ambassador for the Patagonia Company. To Jeff, this honorable nomination serves as an inspirational springboard in creating a sustainable and socially responsible business. Jeff aims to build upon the Patagonia business model and lead ATIRA Systems into the lucrative, rewarding and untapped landscape of truly non-toxic fire protection systems. ATIRA Systems represents the culmination of Jeff's diverse vocational experience coupled with his desire to protect the natural world.

Jeff's charismatic 'can do' spirit benefits several audiences worldwide. He serves as a motivational mentor to those who are surviving traumatic injuries while also contributing tirelessly to his community including, The Woodruff Foundation Tahoe Paddle, Ghostryders Watermans Club, and the Ride-A-Wave Foundation.

Stephen J. Haddix

Stephen J. Haddix

CTO/COO

Steve has extensive experience in the manufacturing industry, in all phase of management, with strengths in product development, marketing, and accounting. He is responsible for ATIRA product technology — chemical and mechanical, and early stage business development. Steve's vision and engineering prowess serve as the foundation for ATIRA's unique offering, future roadmap, and ultimately, our sustainable competitive advantage. As son of a regional Campfire Administrator, Steve adopted a deep love ...

Steve has extensive experience in the manufacturing industry, in all phase of management, with strengths in product development, marketing, and accounting. He is responsible for ATIRA product technology — chemical and mechanical, and early stage business development. Steve's vision and engineering prowess serve as the foundation for ATIRA's unique offering, future roadmap, and ultimately, our sustainable competitive advantage. As son of a regional Campfire Administrator, Steve adopted a deep love and healthy appreciation of the environment. He enjoys most any form of outdoor recreation and is a passionate organic hobby farmer.

Steve's resume includes President/CEO of NorPac-GSE Inc, an Aviation Ground Support Equipment manufacturer, providing specialty products to Boeing and the world airlines, and President/CEO of SEM Manufacturing, an Environmental Reprocessing equipment manufacturer, having produced Insulation and Drywall reprocessing systems and products. He has significant experience as a career firefighter/EMT III for the City of Corvallis and the Boring Rural Fire Departments, and he leads our Gel Strike Team on large scale wildfire incidents. Steve holds a degree in Engineering and Accounting from Oregon State University.

Joel A. Comer

Joel A. Comer

Business Strategist

Mr. Comer works with Principal, Fixed Income Sales, Sandler O'Neill + Partners, L.P. commercial bank and thrift clients in the areas of asset liability management, balance sheet restructuring and strategic business planning. He joined the firm in 1988.

In 1990, the firm created Sandler O'Neill Mortgage Finance Corp. in response to growing client demand for whole loan mortgage portfolio valuation and securitization. Mr. Comer was responsible for daily operations of the Memphis based unit, including ...

Mr. Comer works with commercial bank and thrift clients in the areas of asset liability management, balance sheet restructuring and strategic business planning. He joined the firm in 1988.

In 1990, the firm created Sandler O'Neill Mortgage Finance Corp. in response to growing client demand for whole loan mortgage portfolio valuation and securitization. Mr. Comer was responsible for daily operations of the Memphis based unit, including client/firm relations, transaction negotiation, audit reviews and structuring mortgage securitizations and whole loan transactions. In 1992, Mr. Comer returned to New York and resumed sales and trading activities in the Fixed Income group. In 2004, Mr. Comer relocated to San Francisco to expand and manage the firm's business on the West Coast. The San Francisco office has 19 professionals in banking, fixed income and research. Prior to joining Sandler O'Neill, Mr. Comer held several positions with Bear Stearns & Company.

Mr. Comer holds an undergraduate degree from Ithaca College and a graduate degree from Harvard University.

Peter Getman

Peter Getman

Brand Strategist

Peter brings more than 25 years of branding experience to the ATIRA Systems team. Drawing from his experience in having been a key strategic player in the launching of more than 300 new brands, Peter is leading strategy and positioning to ensure ATIRA is more than just a product - it is a brand that becomes synonymous with safe, sustainable and effective fire suppression.

As the CEO and founder of Portsmouth, New Hampshire-based MicroArts Creative Agency, Peter has used his creative prowess to help grow major brands such as ...

Peter brings more than 25 years of branding experience to the ATIRA Systems team. Drawing from his experience in having been a key strategic player in the launching of more than 300 new brands, Peter is leading strategy and positioning to ensure ATIRA is more than just a product - it is a brand that becomes synonymous with safe, sustainable and effective fire suppression.

As the CEO and founder of Portsmouth, New Hampshire-based MicroArts Creative Agency, Peter has used his creative prowess to help grow major brands such as GE Healthcare, Waste Management, Lindt and Bauer. He also has extensive experience growing fledgling brands from the ground up, having played a key role in launching and acquisition of dozens of B2C and B2B brands in a diverse set of market categories. He is also an entrepreneur and author of LAUNCH - a playbook of proven strategic principles that guide his approach to branding.

When Peter isn't enjoying the waves with his family, he can be found skiing or brainstorming his next big project. He is passionate about building brands that solve problems while remaining true to the environment.

William C. Acevedor

William C. Acevedo

Legal Counsel

Bill is a partner with the law firm of Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean LLP, a pioneering law firm in the sustainability space that achieved third-party certification as a green business in 2003. Simultaneously, the firm launched a Green Business Practice Group to serve clients that wanted to do well by doing good. Bill is the Chair of the firm's Green Business Practice Group - an experienced group of attorneys who advise companies that value health, the environment, and a sustainable ...

Bill is a partner with the law firm of Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean LLP, a pioneering law firm in the sustainability space that achieved third-party certification as a green business in 2003. Simultaneously, the firm launched a Green Business Practice Group to serve clients that wanted to do well by doing good. Bill is the Chair of the firm's Green Business Practice Group - an experienced group of attorneys who advise companies that value health, the environment, and a sustainable economy. Under Bill's leadership, Wendel Rosen's Green Business Practice Group has developed a significant client base of forward-thinking and innovative companies; joined 1% for the Planet, an organization where member businesses donate one percent of annual revenue to approved environmental non-profits; gained certification as a B Corporation; and co-authored and advocated the passage of AB 361, which established Beneficial Corporations as a legally recognized business form in California. Bill works with all manner of sustainable businesses, such as energy efficiency contractors, organic foods and natural products companies, and media-based companies that focus on sustainability issues. Bill provides his clients with legal services pertaining to entity formation, general business advice, contract negotiation/drafting, trademark and licensing issues, employment counseling and business litigation. Bill is also a frequent speaker at green industry events, including Opportunity Green.

ENVIRONMENTAL ADVISORY BOARD MEMBERS

Nell Newman

Nell Newman

President, Newman's Own® Organics: The Second Generation

Nell Newman launched Newman's Own® Organics: The Second Generation with business partner Peter Meehan in 1993. Great tasting products that happen to be organic is the company's motto. She is the President of the company, which started as a division of Newman's Own and became independent in 2001. Nell's responsibilities are in the areas of product development and public relations.

The daughter of actors Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward, Nell had an early introduction to natural foods ...

Nell Newman launched Newman's Own® Organics: The Second Generation with business partner Peter Meehan in 1993. Great tasting products that happen to be organic is the company's motto. She is the President of the company, which started as a division of Newman's Own and became independent in 2001. Nell's responsibilities are in the areas of product development and public relations.

The daughter of actors Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward, Nell had an early introduction to natural foods at their rural Connecticut home. The family had a small apple orchard and a few chickens. Nell learned to cook from her mother and how to catch fish from her father. While in college, she continued to experiment in the kitchen, and is still the designated chef when home for family holiday dinners.

Nell attended the College of the Atlantic in Bar Harbor, Maine, graduating with a B.A. in human ecology. She worked briefly at the Environmental Defense Fund in New York, but, preferring a more rural environment, moved to Northern California. There she became the Executive Director of the Ventana Wilderness Sanctuary, which was working to reestablish the bald eagle in central California. After two years, she left to become the Development Director for the Santa Cruz Predatory Bird Research Group, the non profit responsible for the captive breeding and restoration of the peregrine falcon in California.

Nell's commitment to organic foods and sustainable agriculture led her to convince her father to let her establish an organic division of Newman's Own. She won him over by creating a completely organic Thanksgiving dinner, and then suggesting organic food products for the new Newman's Own Organics' line. "All of Newman's Own Organics' products are ones that Dad enjoyed, so we chose ones that he really loved," states Nell. She credits her parents, too, with teaching her by example to be socially responsible, politically involved, and philanthropic.

An ardent supporter of sustainable agriculture, Nell has participated as a featured speaker and as a panel member talking about her commitment to organic products and producing snacks that appeal to the general public. "By utilizing organic ingredients, we're supporting the environment through the growth of organic agriculture," says Nell.

Nell has served on the Peregrine Fund board in Boise, Idaho and currently serves as a board member of the Wholesome Wave FoundationEcoTrust, and Allergy Kids.

Nell's thoughts on how to make a difference are highlighted in her book, The Newman's Own Organics Guide to a Good Life: Simple Measures That Benefit You and the Place You Live (Villard, 2003), written with science writer Joseph D'Agnese. It is filled with realistic, practical advice on why living a more environmentally conscious life helps us all.

Rick Ridgeway

Rick Ridgeway

Patagonia's Vice President of Environmental Initiatives

Rick Ridgeway is currently Patagonia's Vice President of Environmental Initiatives and Special Media Projects. Rick and his team develop, implement and promote the second two of the company's three-part mission statement to make the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, and use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis. In this capacity, his department oversees the company's environmental grant-making, internal and external environmental education, and special multi-year environmental projects including Freedom to Roam ...

Rick Ridgeway is currently Patagonia's Vice President of Environmental Initiatives and Special Media Projects. Rick and his team develop, implement and promote the second two of the company's three-part mission statement to make the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, and use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis. In this capacity, his department oversees the company's environmental grant-making, internal and external environmental education, and special multi-year environmental projects including Freedom to Roam, a coalition founded by Patagonia to seek protection for wildlife corridors. Rick also manages Patagonia Productions, the company's division that publishes book and produces films.

Before joining Patagonia, Rick was owner/president of Adventure Photo & Film, building it into the world's most recognized outdoor stock photo and film agency before successfully selling it to focus on writing and filmmaking. At the same time he was active in the outdoor equipment industry, working as consultant for the Kelty Pack Co. for over 20 years.

In addition to his business history, Rick is recognized as one of the world's foremost mountaineers and adventurers, and is known to many through his writing, photography and Emmy award-winning filmmaking. Along with three companions, Ridgeway became the first American to summit K2, considered the hardest mountain in the world to climb, and he has done many other significant climbs and explorations on all continents. He has produced and directed over 30 adventure shows for television. His 40 articles have appeared in Outside, National Geographic and many other magazines. He is the author of six books, including the highly acclaimed Seven Summits, The Shadow of Kilimanjaro and Below Another Sky. Rolling Stone magazine called Ridgeway "the real Indiana Jones", and recently National Geographic honored him with its "Lifetime Achievement in Adventure" award. Rick lives with his wife in Ojai, California, and they have three grown children.

Arlene Blum

Arlene Blum

Executive Director of the Green Science Policy Institute

Arlene Blum PhD, biophysical chemist, author, and mountaineer is a Visiting Scholar in Chemistry at the University of California, Berkeley and executive director of the Green Science Policy Institute. The Institute brings government, industry, scientists and citizens groups together worldwide to support chemical policies to protect human health and the global environment. Blum's research and policy work has contributed to stopping the use toxic flame retardants in children's sleepwear and other products globally. Her current "mountain," which she considers her life's most challenging ...

Arlene Blum PhD, biophysical chemist, author, and mountaineer is a Visiting Scholar in Chemistry at the University of California, Berkeley and executive director of the Green Science Policy Institute. The Institute brings government, industry, scientists and citizens groups together worldwide to support chemical policies to protect human health and the global environment. Blum's research and policy work has contributed to stopping the use toxic flame retardants in children's sleepwear and other products globally. Her current "mountain," which she considers her life's most challenging and important, is to change policy to reduce the use of harmful chemicals.

Arlene Blum also led the first American—and all-women's—ascent of Annapurna I, considered one of the world's most dangerous and difficult mountains, co-led the first women's team to climb Denali, completed the Great Himalayan Traverse across the mountain regions of Bhutan, Nepal, and India, and hiked the length of the European Alps with her baby daughter on her back. She is the author of Annapurna: A Woman's Place and Breaking Trail: A Climbing Life.

Blum's awards include selection by the UK Guardian as one of the world's 100 most inspiring women and National Women's History Project selection as one of 100 "Women Taking the Lead to Save Our Planet," selection as an American Association for the Advancement of Science Fellow, and recent election to the Hall of Mountaineering Excellence. Her research paper on flame retardants in baby products was chosen the outstanding paper of the 2011 by the Journal Environmental Science and Technology.

She currently serves on the board of ISET which solves climate, water and disaster problems in South Asia and advisory boards for Environmental Building News, Healthy Child Healthy Word, and the Plastic Pollution Coalition.
More information at greensciencepolicy.org and arleneblum.com

FIRE INDUSTRY ADVISORY BOARD

Shane Glaze

Shane Glaze

Agency Technical Sales

Shane has 24 years experience in the fire service. 21 of these years was working in the urban interface of Southern California. Shane worked for the California Department of Forestry and as a Captain for a large County Fire Department in Southern California specializing in training fire fighters in wild land fire suppression. Shane has worked on engines, dozer operator, and incident command on numerous large incidents throughout California.

Shane is a Certified Firefighter 1&2, Haz-Mat, USAR, Fire Officer, Division Supervisor, Field Observer ...

Shane has 24 years experience in the fire service. 21 of these years was working in the urban interface of Southern California. Shane worked for the California Department of Forestry and as a Captain for a large County Fire Department in Southern California specializing in training fire fighters in wild land fire suppression. Shane has worked on engines, dozer operator, and incident command on numerous large incidents throughout California.

Shane is a Certified Firefighter 1&2, Haz-Mat, USAR, Fire Officer, Division Supervisor, Field Observer, Display processor, Strike Team Leader, State Fire Instructor 1, State FSTEP instructor.

With this vast experience, Shane has become a strong supporter of the use of gel for wild land fire suppression and structure protection. We have saved numerous homes in the past 8 years with the use of gel that otherwise would have burned to the ground. Gels, are much safer for firefighters, and have a better outcome for homeowners and precarious wild lands, than typical structure protection. Shane's passion is his family and the outdoors where he enjoys fishing, hiking, boating, and playing baseball with his son.