Speakers at the 2019 Rosecrance Florian Symposium

  • Dan DeGryse, Director of the Rosecrance Florian Program
  • Dr. Sally Spencer-Thomas, Psychologist & Keynote Speaker, President of United Suicide Survivors International
  • Tempa Sherrill, Chief Clinical Officer for 22KILL
  • Jada Miller, Art Therapist for the Rosecrance Florian Program
  • Chris Fields, Retired Major, Oklahoma City Firefighter
  • Lt. Andrew Kane, Program Director for the FDNY Addiction Transition Program
  • Captain Christopher Bator, President & Founder of the Florida Firefighters Safety and Health Collaborative
  • Dr. Sara Jahnke, Director of the Center for Fire, Rescue and EMS Health Research at the National Development and Research Institutes
  • Ryan Parrott, Navy SEAL Veteran & Founder of Sons of the Flag and the Bird’s Eye View Project
  • Erica Gilmore, Unit Coordinator , Rosecrance Harrison Campus
  • Chief Frank Babinec, Coral Springs Fire Department
  • Jeremy Hurd, Chaplain, Palm Beach County Fire Rescue

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Dan DeGryse, BA, BS, CEAP, CADC, LAP/C

Director of Rosecrance Florian Program

Dan began his career as a firefighter with the Chicago Fire Department in 1989 and has served as an officer since 1995. Dan presently holds the rank of Battalion Chief/EMT. He also served as the Coordinator of the Chicago Firefighters Union Local 2 Employee Assistance Program (EAP) for 14 years. In his position, aside from his general responsibilities, he developed a peer support team to broaden the EAP’s reach within the fire department. Dan is a Certified Employee Assistance Professional, Certified Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselor, Certified Labor Assistance Professional, Certified ARISE Interventionist, and he holds advanced training in Critical Incident Stress Management.

Dan has been a member of the International Association of Firefighters Labor/EAP committee since 2002. He also was a member of the team that created the IAFF Peer Support Training and is a Master Instructor for it. Previously, Dan worked as a counselor at a private hospital where his experience included individual, group, and family therapy for adolescents and adults in the area of addictions and behavior management.

Dr. Sally Spencer-Thomas

Psychologist & Keynote Speaker, President of United Suicide Survivors International

Dr. Spencer-Thomas began her work in suicide prevention after her younger brother died of suicide. Known nationally and internationally as an innovator in social change, she has helped start up multiple large-scale, efforts in mental health including the nation’s first initiative for suicide prevention in the workplace. Spencer-Thomas has won multiple awards and written four books on mental health and violence prevention.

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Tempa Sherrill

Chief Operating Officer for 22KILL

Tempa provides leadership, management and vision over 22Kill’s programs and operations. As COO, Ms. Sherrill provides critical oversight in the development strategies of all programs to attain the organization’s mission-oriented goals and objectives. Prior to serving in this role, Ms. Sherrill founded Stay the Course Veteran Services. Stay the Course provides evidence-based therapies to veterans, first responders and families at little to no cost. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) with a Master of Science degree in Counseling Psychology from Tarleton State University and a Master of Education degree from Texas Wesleyan University. Tempa Sherrill is the spouse of Marine Corps and Army Reserves veteran, AJ Sherrill, who served in Afghanistan during 2008-2009 performing tactical psychological operations. AJ also served 22 years as a police officer.

As the spouse of not only a veteran, but a police officer, she understands first-hand the difficulties public servants experience and the invisible wounds that so often are ignored due to the stigma of getting help.  She is also aware of the trauma that family members endure and the importance of healing for the family. Tempa believes that those who serve our country and risk their lives for others are owed our service in order to help them heal as individuals and families.

Jada Miller, MSAT, LCPC, ATR, CADC

Registered Art Therapist, Rosecrance Harrison Campus

Jada Miller is an Art Therapist and Primary Counselor at Rosecrance’s adult campus. She is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor in Illinois, and a Licensed Professional Counselor in the state of Wisconsin. Jada is also a Registered Art Therapist and Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor.

Jada received a Bachelor’s Degree in Art Education from UW-Milwaukee and a Master’s Degree in Art Therapy and Counseling from Mount Mary College in Milwaukee. Jada has worked at Rosecrance since 2010 where she facilitates group and individual sessions, as well as other experiential therapy activities. She leads our program of bringing our military Veterans to engage in Equine-assisted Therapy. Additionally, Jada has fulfilled the role of primary counselor for various populations and facilitated specialty groups on anxiety, trauma, and grief and loss at both our adult and adolescent campuses, and our substance abuse and mental health campuses.

She completed Art Therapy practicums in various settings, which included working with children with cognitive and physical disabilities and at-risk youth in the Milwaukee Public School System, and a study abroad program in Arequipa, Peru where she participated in a community based Art Therapy program.

Jada interned at Rosecrance’s adult campus in the Health Center during graduate school where she did her qualitative research study on the importance of self-care as a therapist.

Chris Fields

Retired Major, Oklahoma City Firefighter

Chris will tell a personal story of his career, trauma, and the effects they’ve have on his life and family. In 1995, he was captured in an iconic photo cradling the body of a one-year-old in the aftermath of the Oklahoma City Bombing. He served with the OKC Fire Department for more than 31 years, retiring as a Major in 2017. He now dedicates his life to speaking with first responders in hopes of helping others.

Lt. Andrew Kane

Program Director for the FDNY Addiction Transition Program

Drew Kane is a 24-year veteran of the New York City Fire Department. He is currently the Program Director of the Addiction Transition Program for the New York City Fire Department’s Counseling Service Unit (FDNY-CSU). Lieutenant Kane responded to the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001 and participated in the search and rescue efforts that followed. In 2004, Lt. Kane was assigned to the New York City Fire Department’s Counseling Service Unit as a peer counselor. In 2009, he graduated with a Master’s Degree in Social Work from Hunter College School of Social Work.

Captain Christopher Bator

President & Founder of the Florida Firefighters Safety and Health Collaborative

Captain Christopher Bator began his career in 1996 with the Coral Springs-Parkland Fire Department. Captain Bator is also the President and co-founder of the Florida Firefighters Safety and Health Collaborative (FFSHC). The Broward County Fire Chiefs Association named him Fire Officer of the Year in 2016. He also received the Excellence Award from the City of Coral Springs in 2017. The FFSHC is the recipient of the Congressional Fire Service Paul S. Sarbanes Fire Service Safety Leadership Award 2019 and is the recipient of Broward County Fire Chiefs Association Mike Murphy Innovator of the Year award 2017. Captain Bator has spoken on national radio shows, published articles in magazines and spoken at several national conferences.

Dr. Sara Jahnke

Director of the Center for Fire, Rescue and EMS Health Research at the National Development and Research Institutes

Dr. Jahnke has served as the Principal Investigator of several large-scale studies of the health and readiness of the U.S. Fire Service funded by the Department of Homeland Security, the National Institutes of Health, and the American Heart Association. Current projects include studies focused on the health of women in the fire service, research on workplace violence, exposure assessments on the fire ground, and randomized controlled trials of wellness interventions. She serves as a co-investigator of several other studies focused on fitness, nutrition and health behaviors in both firefighters and military populations. Dr. Jahnke regularly serves as a consultant to several fire service organizations including the National Volunteer Fire Council and the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation. She is an active member of the Safety, Health & Survival Section of IAFC.

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Ryan Parrott

Navy SEAL Veteran & Founder of Sons of the Flag and the Bird’s Eye View Project

Ryan “Birdman” Parrott is an Author, Public Speaker, and the Founder of two non-profits benefiting Veterans and First-Responders. Ryan enlisted in the Navy after 9/11, and served eight years as a U.S. Navy SEAL attached to Team SEVEN, completing three combat tours to Iraq before being assigned to Advanced Training Command as an Instructor. In 2012, Ryan established Sons of the Flag to help burn survivors and their families. He is also the founder of the Bird’s Eye View Project, a web and TV series addressing the extreme needs of Veterans and First Responders through extreme sports. And, he is the author of Sons of the Flag: Real Accounts from the last 100 years of American Service.

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Erica Gilmore, LCPC, CADC

Unit Coordinator of the Rosecrance Florian Program

Erica joined the Rosecrance family in August of 2015 as a primary counselor and was promoted to Unit Coordinator in February of 2017. She has worked in the field of substance abuse and mental health for nine years with experience working with various populations struggling with co-occurring issues. Erica received a Bachelor of Arts in both Psychology and Philosophy from Augustana College and a Master of Science in Education in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at Western Illinois University. Before joining Rosecrance, Erica worked at the Center for Alcohol and Drug Services in both the outpatient program and the Scott County Jail before moving to an inpatient hospital based residential program at Unitypoint Health in their Riverside treatment program.

Chief Frank Babinec

Coral Springs Fire Department

Frank Babinec was appointed as the Chief of the Coral Springs-Parkland Fire Department in February of 2014. A native Floridian, and a resident of Coral Springs since 1991, Chief Babinec joined the department in 1993 as a volunteer firefighter and was hired full-time in 2000 as the training officer. He spent seven years as an Assistant Chief and another seven years as the Deputy Chief of Operations, dedicating over 24 years of service to the communities of Coral Springs and Parkland. Chief Babinec spent 12 years as a Lead Instructor for the Coral Springs Fire Academy. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Organizational Leadership and an MBA in Public Administration. In 2018 Chief Babinec was recognized as the Fire Chief of the Year (Southeastern Association of Fire Chiefs) (IAFC), and received the 2018 Community Leadership Award (Broward Council of Professional Firefighters). Chief Babinec serves as the President of the Fire Chiefs Association of Broward County, and the Chair for the Florida Fire Chiefs Association Safety and Health Section.

Captain Jeremy Hurd

Palm Beach County Fire Rescue

Jeremy Hurd is an EMS Captain with Palm Beach County Fire Rescue (PBCFR) and oversees the department’s professional development. He is also the chaplain for PBCFR and has helped to develop a comprehensive behavioral health program for the department. Captain Hurd is on the advisory board for the Rosecrance Florian Program, and is on the board for Trustbridge Hospice of Palm Beach County. He is currently enrolled in the National Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer Program and is pursuing a Master’s Degree in Executive Leadership and Disaster Preparedness. Jeremy serves as a Director for the Florida Firefighters Safety and Health Collaborative (FFSHC). Jeremy has also spoken on many different topics related to FF behavioral health and emotional wellness to the leaders of the Florida State Fire College, Florida Bureau of Training and Safety, and the Florida CFO. Jeremy also teaches annually at the Fire Department Instructor’s Conference, writes for Fire Engineering, and he has a monthly radio show on Fire Engineering entitled “Chaplain’s Corner.”