Rob Farmer serves as the Director of Public Safety for Lee County. He is responsible for all countywide Department of Public Safety operations, which include emergency telecommunications and countywide fire/EMS dispatch, emergency management, emergency medical services, and all E9-1-1 / government communications network infrastructure, for the more than 1200-square-mile, Cape Coral-Fort Myers metropolitan area. He also serves as the County's Director of Emergency Management (in accordance with Florida Statute 252), and as a member of the Board of Directors for Southwest Florida's Urban Search and Rescue Team / Florida FEMA Task Force 6.
Director Farmer holds a Bachelors Degree in Management from Hodges University.
Benjamin Abes serves as the Deputy Director of Public Safety and Chief of EMS for Lee County. He is responsible for providing senior leadership and management to all programs in the Department of Public Safety, with an emphasis on providing direct oversight to all administrative, command and supervisory staff in the EMS division.
In 2011, he was appointed by the State Surgeon General as the non-fire-based EMS representative to the Florida Department of Health Emergency Medical Review Committee, and also serves on the Florida EMS Advisory Council Data Committee. He previously served as Chair of the Southwest Florida Health Care Preparedness Coalition.
Chief Abes holds a Bachelors Degree in Management from Hodges University and a Masters in Public Health from the University of South Florida. He also completed a Graduate Certification in Disaster Management at the University of South Florida, focusing on global disaster response and management. He holds the designation of Certified in Public Health from the National Board of Public Health Examiners.
Joe Lemmons, DO, FACOEP, FACCWS
Dr. Lemmons serves as the Physician Medical Director for the Department of Public Safety, in accordance with Florida Statute 401. He supervises and assumes direct responsibility for the medical performance of the emergency medical technicians and paramedics employed by Lee County Emergency Medical Service, and the non-transport agencies serving under Lee County Public Safety's Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity (COPCN). This responsibility includes all ground transport agencies, as well as emergency and intra-facility rotor-wing transport.
Dr. Lemmons develops and oversees medical/trauma protocols and standing orders for Lee County EMS, Lee County Hazardous Materials Team, Lee County Emergency Medical Priority Dispatch, and the LeeFlight rotor-wing medical transport program. He also promotes an open line of communication for the local EMT/Paramedic training programs, Lee County Employee Health and Wellness, Lee County Health Department, and area emergency departments including the Trauma Center.
As a residency-trained, board certified emergency physician, Dr. Lemmons has been serving Lee County since 1989. He has worked in the capacity of Medical Director of Emergency Services at Lee Memorial Health System, and presently as Medical Director of Emergency Services at Lehigh Regional Medical Center. He serves as Chief Medical Officer for FL-2 Federal Disaster Medical Assistance Team and Medical Officer for Southwest Florida Urban Search and Rescue Team / Florida FEMA Task Force 6.
Douglas Higgins serves as the Deputy Chief of Operations and is responsible for the management and coordination of county wide emergency medical response. The division responds to more than 86,000 requests for emergency service each year, with nearly 300 employees, 37 ambulances, six district supervisors, and the LeeFlight helicopter program. In his role, Deputy Chief Higgins works with the EMS leadership team to establish operational policy and program management.
Prior to joining the Lee County EMS team, Deputy Chief Higgins served for more than 10 years in the United States Army, while also beginning his civilian EMS career in 1992.
In his tenure with Lee County EMS, Deputy Chief Higgins has served as a Paramedic, Field Training Officer, District Supervisor and Shift Commander. He has also provided oversight, coordination, and leadership to several Lee County EMS special operations teams.
Deputy Chief of Training & Staff Development, Division of EMS
Joseph Maguire serves as the EMS Deputy Chief of Training and Staff Development for the Lee County Department of Public Safety. He is responsible for the development and delivery of all education, training and clinical oversight for Lee County EMS, and the agencies serving under Lee County Public Safety's COPCN. As part of this role he administers the total quality management program, Lee County common medical guidelines, and oversees the American Heart Association training center.
Prior to his current position, Deputy Chief Maguire served as a Captain with Collier County EMS, where he administered the quality assurance and management program. Deputy Chief Maguire is a past chairman and alumnus of the Leadership Bonita program. He served as a member of the United States State Department's Overseas Security Advisory Council and the FBI's Infraguard program.
Deputy Chief Maguire holds a Bachelors Degree in Biochemistry from Florida State University and a Masters of Business Administration from Florida Gulf Coast University. Additionally, he is a graduate of the University of Florida Healthcare Risk Management program.
Jim Bjostad serves as the Chief of Emergency Management for Lee County, responsible for coordinating and planning the preparations for, and responses to, all hazards and threats to the citizens and visitors of the Fort Myers - Cape Coral metropolitan area.
Chief Bjostad came to Lee County from Washington, D.C., where he spent five years with the Department of Defense. He worked closely with the Department of Homeland Security, including the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Department of the Interior, to improve and enhance the Department of Defense's geospatial-information mapping support for state and local first-responders throughout the nation following natural disasters.
Previously, Chief Bjostad served throughout the United States as a United States Coast Guard officer for 29 years, retiring at the rank of Captain in 2009. As the Coast Guard Sector Commander in Mobile, Ala. from 2004 to 2007, he led all Coast Guard operations and activities in Mississippi, Alabama and the Florida Panhandle. He also served as the Coast Guard Incident Commander for the Coast Guard rescue and response missions following five hurricanes during 2004-2005, including Hurricanes Ivan and Katrina.
During his Coast Guard career, Chief Bjostad also trained and served as a volunteer firefighter for his home communities in Virginia, New Jersey, and Michigan; and he was a U.S. Navy-trained Emergency Medical Technician. He is a graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University with a Bachelors Degree in Journalism, the National Intelligence University with a Masters of Science in Strategic Intelligence, and the U.S. Naval War College with a Masters of Arts in National Security.
Sandra Tapfumaneyi serves as the Operations Chief for Lee County Emergency Management. She is responsible for the supervision and execution of operations activities related to the County's Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan (CEMP) including coordinating with local emergency responders and ensuring Lee County Emergency Operations Center (EOC) readiness. During an activation of the EOC, Chief Tapfumaneyi oversees the operational elements of the county's emergency response organization, including public health and medical, fire rescue, law enforcement, critical infrastructure, and mass care services.
Prior to her current position with Lee County, Chief Tapfumaneyi worked as a Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) contractor for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) emergency management program in Atlanta. Her work involved developing emergency response plans and training teams at CDC facilities in the United States and abroad. Chief Tapfumaneyi started her emergency management career as an intern for President Jimmy Carter's Human Rights Center in Atlanta. While there, she prepared emergency response scenarios for international election monitors and prepared human rights documents and correspondence from President Carter to foreign dignitaries. In addition to her career in emergency management, Chief Tapfumaneyi served three years with AmeriCorps Vista as a volunteer math and music teacher for inner-city youth in St. Petersburg. She holds a Bachelor's Degree from Eckerd College in International Relations and Global Affairs, and a Masters in International Peace and Conflict Resolution from American University.
Lee Mayfield serves as the Planning Chief for Lee County Emergency Management and comes to Lee County after working as an Emergency Management Coordinator and EOC Operations Chief at Collier County Emergency Management.
Chief Mayfield has also worked for the Florida Division of Emergency Management and was a State regional liaison to ten County Emergency Management programs in Southwest Florida. While working for the State, Chief Mayfield served in the Operation and Planning Sections in the State Emergency Operations Center during disasters and was involved in statewide catastrophic disaster planning efforts. Recent disasters worked include the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill, Haiti Repatriation post Earthquake, and numerous severe weather events.
Chief Mayfield holds an undergraduate degree from the University of Florida, a Masters of Public Administration from Florida State University, and was born and raised in Miami.
Casey Allo serves as the Chief of "Lee Control" - the Emergency Dispatch Center for EMS and Fire Operations in Lee County. Lee Control is an International Academies of Emergency Dispatch (IAED) Dual-Accredited Center of Excellence (ACE) in Emergency Medical Dispatch and Emergency Fire Dispatch.
Chief Allo began his career in Public Safety at the White Plains, NY, Police Department. He began in communications as a 9-1-1 dispatcher for police, fire, and EMS in 2003. He graduated from the NY State Fire Academy's 9-1-1 Dispatcher program and quickly worked his way to being a "Lead Dispatcher."
Chief Allow and his family looked to relocate to SW Florida, and in April 2010, was hired by Lee County Public Safety in Lee Control. He began as a Communications Officer II, and quickly became a Certified Training Officer. He worked closely on revamping the Standardized Evaluation Guidelines and DOR process. He was promoted to Senior Operator in 2012, and less than a year later to Lieutenant, where he had served for four years. Chief Allow was promoted to Chief of Lee Control in October 2016.
Rob Sewell serves as the Training Coordinator and Operations Supervisor for the secondary E9-1-1 Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) known as "Lee Control" in Lee County. Lee Control dispatches Emergency Medical Services and most of Lee County's Fire Districts. His primary responsibilities include quality assurance/improvement and training and development of staff. Captain Sewell ensures that Lee County Public Safety maintains International Academies of Emergency Dispatch (IAED) Accredited Center of Excellence (ACE) Standards. Lee Control holds Dual-ACE level Certifications. Captain Sewell has served Lee County Public Safety since 2002.
Captain Sewell has 21 years of employment between two careers: Public Safety and the U.S. Navy. His Navy career began in San Diego in 1990 where he attended boot camp and Radioman "A" school. After graduating he was stationed at Guantanamo Bay for 3 1/2 years. Rob held a top secret clearance and was routinely responsible for the screening sensitive and top secret information prior to release. After serving in Guantanamo Bay, he was stationed at the Naval War College in Newport, R. I., where he served the remaining five years of service. Sewell also attended Community Colleges of Rhode Island while in the Navy.
Paul Filla serves as Public Safety Program Manager for the Department of Public Safety. He is responsible for ensuring departmental compliance of Federal, State and local rules and regulations, as well as providing guidance and support of information technology systems throughout the department. Mr. Filla coordinates the Department of Public Safety's information technology initiatives in concert with Lee County's Information Technology Group, third-party solution providers and other stakeholders. In this capacity, Mr. Filla also serves as an advisor for departmental planning, performance management and other strategic initiatives.
Mr. Filla has spent the last 13 years of his career directing and supporting the technology needs of emergency response organizations. He rejoined Lee County Public Safety after working in the private sector where he managed projects for State and municipal-based emergency responder organizations across the country. This position required him to apply and align technical solutions to the operational and regulatory requirements of the clients. Prior to his work in the Public Safety industry, Mr. Filla guided technical solutions at the National Cancer Institute and the Department of Defense.
Mr. Filla received his Bachelors Degree in Public Relations from Purdue University.
Program Manager, E9-1-1
Matt Rechkemmer serves as the E9-1-1 Program Manager for Lee County. He is responsible for the countywide Enhanced 9-1-1 System communications network, which includes public safety answering points (PSAPs) at the Lee County Sheriff's Office, Lee Control, the city of Cape Coral Police Department, the city of Fort Myers Police Department and the city of Sanibel Police Department.
Mr. Rechkemmer is an active member of the National Emergency Number Association (NENA) and the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials (APCO).
Andrew Stadtler serves as the Communications Systems Manager for Lee County Public Safety. He is responsible for the Lee County Public Safety Radio System, which consists of seven dispatch centers, 65 agencies, and nearly 8,000 end users. This includes eight Public Safety Land Mobile Radio (LMR) voice radio systems, mobile data, and a video downlink system.
Mr. Stadtler has 36 years of experience engineering, maintaining and managing Public Safety radio systems. He began his career with Federal Signal in 1979 and Motorola in 1985. He joined Lee County in 2002. He was appointed as an Interim Radio Systems Manager in 2008 and promoted to his current position in 2010.
Mr. Stadtler is a member of the Lee County Fire Chief's Association and serves as Chairman of the Lee County Fire Chief's Communications Committee. He also Chairs the Florida Region 9 for Sub-Region 6 that provides for 821MHz and 700 MHz regional planning. He is also an active member of the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials (APCO).
Dave Grumney serves as Program Manager for Lee County Public Safety Logistics. He is responsible for overall operations of the warehouse, supply depots, and a staff that provide logistical support to EMS, Emergency Management, and the Emergency Dispatch Center. Mr. Grumney also serves as Logistics Chief for Lee County during EOC activations.
Mr. Grumney has 30 years of experience in public safety spanning several fields. He previously worked in fire and EMS, where he was an EMT, Rescue Tech, Hazmat Tech, Instructor, and Honor Guard Commander. Mr. Grumney was a member of several regional response teams as well as a member of Ohio Task Force 1, a FEMA Search and Rescue Team. Mr. Grumney was involved with responses to Hurricane Irene and Katrina and received a meritorious service award from his department for his contributions during these emergencies.
Jennifer Fenske was born and raised in Lee County. She has been with Lee County Government since 2006. She worked in Lee County administration in the Fiscal pool as a Senior Account Clerk, and Fiscal Officer. Jen started her journey with Public Safety in 2014 as a Senior Fiscal Officer. She is on various financial committees throughout Lee County government and is a member of the Florida Government Finance Officers Association. She worked for Lee Memorial Hospital from 2013 to 2015 as a Financial Counselor for the Rehabilitation hospital.
Ms. Fenske received her Bachelors Degree in Business Management at Florida Gulf Coast University. Recreationally, she plays softball for a local church and our EMS team.
Rebecca "Becky" Hanna serves as the Office Manager for the Lee County Department of Public Safety. She is responsible for the day-to-day operation of the Public Safety administrative office, coordinating office functions and supervising a team of four administrative specialists. Ms. Hanna came to Lee County Public Safety in 2001 and was promoted to Office Manager in November 2008.
Ms. Hanna is a native Floridian. Prior to joining Lee County, she worked in a local hospital and medical office. She served as a coach and competitor with a local Junior Olympic sports team for more than 20 years.