Meet our Rosecrance Florian Program advisory council
The Rosecrance Florian Program benefits from the experience of an advisory panel made up of firefighting leaders from across the nation, both active and retired. The clinical team regularly consults with the panel for ongoing guidance. Panel members are:
Derek Bergsten was sworn in as the tenth chief of the Rockford, IL Fire Department on Nov. 14, 2008. He has served with the department since 1994, coming to Rockford from the Loves Park Fire Department, where he worked for 3 years as a firefighter/EMT-B. Before he was appointed chief in Rockford, Bergsten served as a company officer in the positions of lieutenant and captain.
Bergsten furthered his education after joining the department, obtaining associate degrees in science and fire science from Rock Valley College, a bachelor’s degree in business and organizational development from Western Illinois University, and a master’s degree in public administration from Northern Illinois University. In addition to holding many specialized fire certifications, he is also the first member of the Rockford Fire Department to be accepted into the Executive Fire Officer Program of the National Fire Academy. Bergsten is also designated as a Chief Fire Officer and Chief EMS Officer through the Center for Public Safety Excellence.
In addition to his duties with the Rockford Fire Department, Bergsten also serves as a Rock River Valley Pantry board member and as a volunteer with the YMCA of Rock River Valley and Rockford Public Schools. He is happily married and the father of three children.
Joe Casalino has served 28 years with the North Providence, RI Fire Department and currently holds the position of battalion chief. He has been the director of the fire department’s employee assistance program for the last 9 years and spent 8 years as a member of the Rhode Island Critical Incident Stress Management Team.
Casalino is trained in suicide prevention, intervention and postvention as well as individual crisis intervention, peer support training, group crisis intervention and advanced group crisis intervention. He is a certified ARISE Interventionist and co-owner of Code 3 Interventions. Casalino is a certified LAP-C, SAP and NCAC-1.
He is married and has three children.
Aurelio De La Rosa
Aurelio De La Rosa is a lifelong resident of Rockford, IL who works as an investigator assigned to the Rockford Police Department’s Training Unit. He is also active with the Police Benevolent and Protective Association Unit 6, serving as president and as a member of the Executive Board.
De La Rosa began his law enforcement career in 1991 with the Rockford Police Department. He also serves as chairman of the Rockford Police Peer to Peer Support Unit and is assigned to the SWAT Team as a scout sniper and a member of the Use of Force Review Board.
Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner appointed De La Rosa to be a police commissioner on the State Commission on Professional Policing. He’s been honored for his law enforcement work, receiving the 2011 Officer Brian Jackson Award for “Courage Under Fire” from the Warrior SOS Foundation and the 2016 Exceptional Service Medal from the Rockford Police Department. He is a certified instructor in many areas, including master firearms, control/defense tactics, ground fighting, Taser use, active shooter and cultural diversity.
De La Rosa also is a decorated combat Army veteran. He joined the Army in 1986 and served 4 years as an infantry sergeant. He then served 2 years in the Illinois National Guard and another 2 years in the Army Reserve. De La Rosa earned a Purple Heart for wounds he suffered while serving in Operation Just Cause in Panama.
In addition to his military and law enforcement background, De La Rosa is the proprietor of DeLaRosa Submission Wrestling Academy. He is ranked in Jiu-Jitsu, Brazilian Luta Livre and Shotokan Karate.
Richard Dory was born on the southwest side of Chicago in 1955 and entered the Chicago Fire Department in 1976 after graduating as valedictorian of his paramedic class. He rose through the ranks as a firefighter, engineer, lieutenant and captain. He was a battalion chief for 13 years and retired with nearly 37 years on the job.
While Dory was a lieutenant, he taught three firefighter-candidate classes at the fire academy. He served on the Chicago Firefighters Union Local 2 Health and Safety Committee for several years during the 1990s. While a member of the committee, Dory attended the Jeffrey Mitchell Critical Incident Stress Management class in Kansas City, Missouri. He currently serves on Local 2’s Public Relations Committee, which is primarily involved in numerous charity activities. Dory also has been an instructor for the Illinois Fire Service Institute for more than 20 years.
In September 2001, Dory was sent with several other members of the Chicago Fire Department to New York City by the Federal Emergency Management Association to provide peer support to firefighters working at the World Trade Center. Dory is retired but still actively volunteers with organizations such as Make-A-Wish, the Muscular Dystrophy Association, Cure It Foundation and the International Association of Fire Fighters Warrior Program. He’s also a member of Local 2’s Gatekeepers peer support team.
Dory’s hobbies include fixing anything mechanical or electrical. He plays ice hockey and loves to backpack and hike in the mountains, and he’s very passionate about doing the right thing.
Frank A. Farias
Frank Farias started with the Chicago Fire Department in 2001. He spent 13 years with the organization as a firefighter/EMT, earning numerous unit performance awards until he retired because of a disability.
Farias is certified as a Firefighter II, EMT-B, air-sea rescue dive boat pilot, rescue diver, Hazardous Materials Technician A, heavy-vehicle and farm-vehicle extrication technician, WMD technician, and airport rescue firefighter. He is also certified to do high-angle technical (Vertical 1 and 2), confined-space, and trench and collapse rescues. He was certified as a Chicago Fire Department apparatus driver on the tower ladder, engine, squad, hazmat, ambo, air mask and dive boat.
A veteran of the U.S. Coast Guard, Farias served with the organization from 1985 to 1990. He is a member of the Chicago Firefighters Union Local 2 Gatekeeper Program and owned his own business, F&M Snow Plowing, from 2007 to 2013.
Bobby Halton is the editor-in-chief of Fire Engineering magazine and has been the education director of the Fire Department Instructors Conference since 2005. Halton is a native New Yorker whose family has deep roots in the fire service and law enforcement communities.
He began his career in structural firefighting with the Albuquerque, NM Fire Department and rose through the ranks to become chief of training. Halton was chief of operations until his retirement from the department in 2004. He then became chief of the Coppell, TX Fire Department. He left Coppell to take over leadership of the magazine, which is published by PennWell Corp. and based in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Halton is a graduate of the University of New Mexico. He left duty as a member in good standing with the International Association of Fire Fighters, is a member of the International Association of Fire Chiefs, has served on several of the National Fire Protection Association technical committees, and is seated on the National Advisory Committee of the Congressional Fire Services Institute.
He also has worked as a subject matter expert in National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health firefighter line-of-duty death investigations and served with the U.S. Department of State Diplomatic Security Anti-Terrorism Assistance Program. Halton is active with the National Fallen Firefighters, the Firefighters Cancer Support Network, the Fire Smoke Coalition, and the Fire Service-Based EMS Advocates. He has done extensive speaking and training for the fire service in the U.S. and Canada and internationally.
Before becoming a firefighter, Jeremy Hurd was a high school teacher and coach, and then a special-event fundraiser for two national not-for-profit charities. He was a part-time pastor intermittently in supporting roles for a few churches while maintaining a full-time career.
Hurd has been employed by Palm Beach County, FL Fire Rescue for over a decade and has been a Captain for about two years. Nearly seven years ago, the department began discussing the need for a chaplain program, which resulted in Hurd becoming the chaplain. He volunteers in that role, which supports the spiritual needs of the 1,400-member department. Hurd also is working to build the regional chaplain team in southeast Florida.
To keep current on National Incident Management System and fire training, Hurd continually takes Emergency Management Institute and National Fire Academy classes both online and on campus. He has taken many classes locally and has state certifications in the following: Live Fire Training Instructor, Inspector I, Investigator I, Instructor III, and Fire Officer I and II. He is an instructor in basic and advanced cardiovascular and pediatric advanced life supports. Hurd has a bachelor’s degree in youth ministries from Bob Jones University, and he recently received an associate degree in Fire Science from Health Career Institute. He also has been accepted in the master’s degree in Business Administration program with a specialization in public administration at Liberty University.
Hurd is scheduled to be promoted to A.R.F.F. captain next spring and is on the promotional roster for the district captain (EMS) position. He has an advanced chaplain certificate from the Federation of Fire Chaplains (FFC) and teaches classes for the FFC locally.
Patrick J. Kenny
Patrick Kenny has been a member of the fire service for more than 32 years. He retired from the Hinsdale, IL Fire Department with more than 24 ½ years of service — 14 of them as the fire chief — and he currently serves as the fire chief in Western Springs, IL.
Kenny is a member of the Illinois Fire Chiefs Association Promotional Assessment Board and the Illinois Fire Chiefs Association Educational & Research Foundation. He’s also a past president of the association. He earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Loyola University and an associate degree in Fire Science from the College of DuPage.
Recently, Kenny received the highest certification in Illinois for a Chief Officer. He is a graduate of the National Fire Academy Executive Fire Officer program and received the Chief Officer designation from the International Association of Fire Chiefs. Kenny has twice been awarded the Fire Prevention Achievement Award by the Illinois Fire Inspectors Association as well as the Richard Arthur Lifetime Achievement Award. He was recognized by the Illinois Fire Chiefs Association as Fire Chief of the Year in 2004 and was nominated for the same award by Fire Chief Magazine for the International Association of Fire Chiefs that same year.
Kenny is an instructor for the Illinois Fire Chiefs Association, Illinois Fire Service Institute and Northeastern Illinois Public Safety Training Academy. He has articles published in the areas of leadership, fireground safety, mental health and fire code challenges.
Anthony Lancellotti is a 26-year veteran of the Providence, RI Fire Department. He is currently assigned to Ladder Co. 6, which protects the downtown and Federal Hill sections of the city. Lancellotti has been a member of the Providence Firefighters Local 799 Employee Assistance Program since 1995. He was one of six members of that group sent to assist the New York City Fire Department after the September 11 terrorist attacks. In 2003, he was asked to be the EAP’s director.
He is also the president of the Labor Assistance Professionals Rhode Island Chapter, a member of the MA/RI EAPA, and has earned certifications as a LAP-C, NCAC-1 and SAP. Lancellotti has served on the Providence Firefighters Local 799 Honor Guard and ran the hockey team that raised more than $50,000 for various charities through the city.
Lancellotti is married to Dawn, who is a schoolteacher in the nearby city of Cranston. They have three sons.
Jim Neary has been a member of the Chicago Fire Department for the past 17 years and currently holds the rank of lieutenant. He is working toward a degree in Fire Science.
His certifications represent multiple areas, including hazmat, EMS and terrorism response. He has been on the Chicago Firefighters Union Local 2 Health and Safety Committee since 2007 and has served as a Battalion Steward for 12 years with the Chicago Firefighters Union. Neary is a member of Local 2’s Gatekeeper peer support team and has had many personal experiences with assisting members in need.
Neary said he’s considering changing his future focus from management to something more involved with employee assistance programs.
Jim Purl has served 28 years with the Chicago Fire Department and currently holds the rank of battalion chief. He distinguishes himself from the rest of the department’s battalion chiefs because he’s one of only three designated as a Special Operations Chief.
Purl has received many awards during his distinguished career, including the Lambert Tree. That honor is the highest award for bravery, which Purl received in 1993 for saving lives during the Paxton hotel fire. He also won the Illinois Medal of Honor for rescues he made at that same fire.
He started working with the Chicago Firefighters Union Local 2 Gatekeeper Program in 2013 after several trainings that included suicide awareness information. Purl has intervened in several suicide situations both on the job and as a Gatekeeper. He’s passionate about helping others.
Purl was born in 1961, the youngest of five children, to Pat and William Purl. He has been married to his wife, Lynn, for nearly 30 years, and they have three daughters.
Rev. James E. Swarthout
The Rev. James E. Swarthout is the clergy community relations coordinator for Rosecrance in Rockford, IL. Swarthout lives with his wife, Claudia, in the suburban community of Barrington Hills. He served as a priest for more than 27 years and ministered to parishes in the Illinois communities of Crystal Lake, Algonquin, Rockford, West Dundee and McHenry.
Swarthout also has served on mental health boards at local and state levels. He has been a member of Rotary Club boards in Crystal Lake and Fox Valley, and is a recipient of the Paul Harris award, one of Rotary’s top honors. Swarthout is the founder of the St. Paul Diaper Bank Partnership and is a board member for the National Diaper Bank Network, which distributes more than 97 million diapers annually to children throughout the country.
He has been certified as an advanced addictions counselor in Illinois for more than 25 years, and he became certified as a relapse prevention therapist in 1991. He has served as an adjunct faculty member with Columbia and Webster universities, where he taught undergraduate and graduate courses in counseling and leadership. Swarthout also has been a columnist and op-ed writer for the Northwest Herald and Kane County Chronicle, and a contributor to McHenry County Living Magazine. He recently became a certified intervention professional through ARISE Interventionist Training and the Pennsylvania Certification Board. He is also a member of the Illinois Corps of Fire Chaplains and Federation of Fire Chaplains.
Here’s what people say about their experience with the Rosecrance Florian Program
“I am doing amazing! I am living in sober living, just with two other girls. I have just stayed super busy and loving my sober time in the city! I have 70 days today! Made it past my 60-day curse! I have been meeting up with Jim at meetings, and have talked to the other guys over the phone, along with Jess! Life is great right now! Can’t thank you enough for everything! Hope you are well!”
— Nikki P.
“All is well here! Today is Day 172 for me, I’m on duty at the firehouse, and I’m grateful that I’m not having any significant problems walking the straight and narrow.”
— D. O.
“Today, I celebrated one full year clean and sober. I cannot express how HUGE this is for me. You all were such a huge part of my success with this. Rosecrance started my path to recovery, and a year later here I am. I have a great job, I’m in school working toward a degree in social work and human services, and heavily involved with my recovery with my recovery community here. I’m so grateful to all of you for this gift and I look forward to doing for others as you all did for me. You helped save my life and give me life.”
— Jess G.
The Birds Eye View Project is a web series & documentary chronicling the epic extreme-sports journey of former Navy SEAL, Ryan “Birdman” Parrott, raising funds and awareness for veteran & first-responders charities across the United States.
For more information on the Rosecrance Florian Program for uniformed personnel with substance abuse and mental health disorders, call 888-928-5278.