Board of Commissioners:
Harris County Emergency Services District No. 48 Fire Department

Marshall Kramer
Board President

Marshall Kramer is the current President of the ESD48 board of commissioners. He was one of the founding members of the local fire department. As HCESD #48 Board President he helps oversee the day to day operations of the HCESD #48 Fire Department.

He began serving as a volunteer in the late 1970’s where he earned the nickname “Marshall Marshal.” After volunteering as a fire fighter he began working full-time for the Harris County Fire Marshals Office. During his 30-year tenure, Marshall rose through the ranks, earning the position of Assistant Chief Fire Marshal of Harris County. Upon retiring from the Harris County Fire Marshal’s Office, Marshall was elected to the Board or Commissioners of ESD48 in 2012.

Marshall and his wife of 52-years have lived in the Nottingham Country and Memorial Parkway subdivisions of the Katy area since the mid-1970s. They have two daughters and a wonderful heritage of grandchildren.

Sam Henderson
Board Member

Sam Henderson was born in Odessa Texas. He got married and moved to the Katy area in 1980 as a resident of Williamsburg Colony. Mr. Henderson has 3 daughters that are married and a total of 4 grandchildren.

All of the Henderson family live within the district with his grandchildren a regular fixture at the open house of the fire station. Sam got his start with the Katy Fire Department then moved on to the West I-10 station where he worked under a number of administrations. Mr. Henderson has since retired but is still active with the team as a commissioner, and was elected to the HCESD #48 Board of Directors in 2014. Sam is currently working on a plan to develop a safety and awareness program.

Bret Fossum
Board Member

Bret Fossum is no stranger to the world of emergency services. He grew up in eastern North Dakota, where his Dad served as the fire chief of a rural fire department. During this time, Bret was a junior volunteer who gleaned invaluable institutional knowledge as he served to help protect the community in which he lived.

Bret is a Registered Professional Geologist in the state of Texas and holds a B.S. degree in Geological Engineering from the University of North Dakota. He has been employed by ConocoPhiliips as a geologist for the past 34 years where he has held a number of global positions. Other professional accomplishments include being an active member of the UND Harold Hamm School of Geology and Geological Engineering corporate advisory board and the Oklahoma State University corporate advisory board. Bret is also a Certified Petroleum Geologist with the American Association of Petroleum Geologists, where he is a member of the AAPG Department of Professional Affairs, a group dedicated to promoting ethical behavior in the oil and gas industry.

Bret has been a resident of the West Houston area since 1987 and is dedicated to preserving an environment of safety within his community. Bret joined the ESD 48 Board of Directors in 2015.

Mike Fleming
Board Member

Mike Fleming has spend the last 34 years in Law Enforcement. He started his career with the Houston Police Department in 1984, and currently serves as Sergeant over Patrol Operations in the Spring Branch ISD Police Department. His past duties have involved patrol, gangs, and investigations. Mike has also served with a multi-jurisdictional SWAT team, holding positions of Team Leader and Tactical Commander. Public safety has been a passion of his, having been greatly influenced by his father, who retired with 30 years of service in the Houston Fire Department.

Mike was born and raised in Houston, Texas, and moved to the Katy area in 1990. He has spent the last 28 years living in the Williamsburg Settlement neighborhood, where his two sons have grown up attending Katy schools. Mike's oldest son is currently serving overseas in the United States Marine Corps. His youngest son is a sophomore at Katy High School.

Mike has also been active in the Katy community, coaching his son's athletic teams and working with his church.

Russell Solomon
Board Member

Russell Solomon is one of the newer commissioners for Harris County Emergency Services District 48, having been appointed in 2017. Prior to becoming a commissioner, Mr. Solomon served in the ESD 48 territory as a volunteer firefighter, driver operator, and Captain. He was Station 3 firefighter of the year in 2010 and received a Chief’s award for service in 2011. He is very excited to have this opportunity to use the skills gained in the fire service to continue to serve the district as a commissioner. He enjoys riding his bicycle, and spending time with his wife Amy and his two children.

Command Staff:

Jeff Hevey
Fire Chief

Jeffrey S. Hevey, BS, CFE is the Fire Chief of Harris County Emergency Services District No. 48 (“HCESD No. 48”) in Katy, Texas. Chief Hevey is a 44 year veteran of the Fire and Emergency Medical Service, 24 years of which he has spent as a Chief Officer. Chief Hevey holds a Bachelor of Science in Fire and Safety Technology from the University of Cincinnati, multiple certifications from the State of Wisconsin, and holds the Texas Commission on Fire Protection Head of Department Certification. He has also attended numerous classes at the National Fire Academy in Emmitsburg, Maryland. Chief Hevey was also a part-time Fire and EMS instructor for 29 years with Madison Area Technical College in Madison, Wisconsin, and spent 8 years instructing with Wisconsin Emergency Management.

In 2013, Chief Hevey was hired by HCESD No. 48 as Fire Chief of West I-10 Fire Department, where he held that position until June of 2015. In June of 2015, HCESD No. 48 assigned him to develop a new emergency services provider for Fire Suppression, Emergency Medical Services, and Rescue, now known as Harris County Emergency Services District No. 48. The District allowed Chief Hevey to hire his Command Staff made up of both local fire service members and some from out of state. On Monday, August 17, 2015, Harris County ESD No. 48 began services as an emergency service provider. HCESD No. 48 provides Emergency Medical Services, Fire Protection, and Rescue Services to a population of approximately 130,000. The population base in HCESD No. 48 is expected to grow by 20,000 over the next 7 to 8 years.

While in Wisconsin, Chief Hevey served as a member of the Southeast Wisconsin Incident Management Team, and also served one year as President of Mutual Aid Box Alarm System Division 106 in Waukesha, County. Chief Hevey started his Fire Service career with the City of Fairborn, Ohio in 1974, and before coming to HCESD No. 48, he was the Fire Chief of Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin from February 2009 through July 2013.

Brett Ellis
Assistant Chief of Operations

Brett Ellis is an experienced fire service professional with teaching focus in leadership and personal development. Brett served as a Battalion Chief on the “A” shift for Harris County ESD No.48 Fire Department and is currently the Assistant Chief of Operations over Suppression. Chief Ellis brings over 21 years of experience between Pflugerville, Sugar Land, and HCESD No. 48 Fire Departments, as well as a number of years teaching at various fire academies. Chief Ellis is a Master Firefighter, Fire Investigator, Fire Service Instructor, Hazardous Material Technician, Fire Officer, Advanced-EMT and has taken numerous National Fire Academy (NFA) courses. Chief Ellis is a Chief Fire Executive (CFE-TXFCA), serves on the Health and Wellness Committee for the State of Texas and embraces a deep passion for learning. Brett earned an AAS in Fire Protection Technology (San Jacinto Jr. College), a BA in Business Administration (Western Illinois University 04’), a MA in Leadership (Huntington University 11’), and is currently earning his Doctorate in Education with a focus in Transformational Leadership (Concordia University-June 19’). Brett’s Doctoral dissertation work centers on “how individual resilience relates to lived experiences for firefighters in response to traumatic events, who may need next level behavioral health care, which in turn will better identify higher “at risk” firefighters who could consider suicide as an option outside of peer interventions support.”

In addition to the Fire Department, Brett has served as a Youth Minister for the past 17 years, working with Adolescents, as well as leading retreats and teaching workshops for parents. Brett enjoys life with his wife and three sons by being active in their church, coaching baseball, playing guitar, fishing in the Gulf, and cheering on the hometown Astros and Texans. Chief Ellis’ philosophy is simple, be ready, be trained, be professional, be nice, be efficient, be relational, never stop learning, collaborate ideas, and have fun

Tommy Westall
Assistant Chief of Administration

A. Thomas Westall, Jr. is the Assistant Chief of Administration for Harris County Emergency Services District 48 (HCESD 48) in Katy, Texas. Chief Westall has 27 years experience in fire and emergency service. Chief Westall rose through the ranks from Lieutenant to Captain to Fire Chief of the West I-10 Volunteer Fire Department during his volunteer career, also serving as Treasurer of West I-10 for many years. In 2016, he joined Harris County ESD 48 as Administrative Assistant Chief, coordinating the administration of three stations, construction of a new station, a new administration building and a maintenance facility. He has a BS in Political Science, a Juris Doctor degree from Louisiana State University, and a MBA from University of New Orleans. Chief Westall has taught numerous classes for cadets and the public, and has completed substantial training in fire suppression and emergency services.

Eric Bank
Assistant Chief of EMS

Eric A. Bank, LP, NRP, graduated from the EMS management program at Hahnemann University in 1996, working as a paramedic in the region. Returning home to Katy, Texas in 2000, he worked as a paramedic at West Harris County (Texas) EMS, and became EMS director in 2002. In late 2009, he became the Assistant Chief of EMS at Harris County Emergency Services District 48. An active research participant in pre-hospital medicine with a focus on trauma care, he also serves as the Co- Chair for the South East Regional Advisory Council’s Trauma Committee.

Supression Command:

Battalion Chief - "A" Shift

David Raupp
Battalion Chief - "B" Shift

David J Raupp is a Battalion Chief on the “B” shift for Harris County Emergency Services District 48 (HCESD 48). Chief Raupp has over 30 years in the Fire and Emergency Medical Services. He currently holds several certifications from the Texas Commission on Fire Protection (TCFP) and is an EMT- Basic with the Texas Department of Health.

Chief Raupp started his career in 1986 as a Volunteer with the North Montgomery County Volunteer Fire Department (NMCVFD) located in Willis, Texas. He achieved the rank of Station Lieutenant with the NMCVFD, and in December of 1990 was hired by the City of Houston Fire Department (HFD). While at HFD, Chief Raupp served as a Firefighter, Driver/Operator, and as a Captain for the last 15 years of his career with HFD. Chief Raupp retired after a 25 year career with the HFD, and later joined HCESD 48. Chief Raupp has also been actively involved with numerous county fire departments in the Montgomery County area and as a part-time job, serves as a District Chief with East Montgomery County Fire Department (EMCFD). In his role with EMCFD, he serves as the Chief of Training and EMS and oversees the daily operation of the High School Fire Academy offered by the New Caney ISD. Chief Raupp joined HCESD 48 in March of 2016 as a Battalion Chief.

Wayne Buxton
Battalion Chief - "C" Shift

Wayne Buxton is a Battalion Chief on the “C” shift for Harris County Emergency Services District 48 (HCESD 48) in Katy, TX. Chief Buxton started out as a Volunteer Firefighter in 1999 with Grangerland Volunteer Fire Department. Chief Buxton worked for the New Caney Fire Department from 2007 to 2016. He started out as a firefighter and then moved up through the ranks to Battalion Chief. He was recently hired as a Battalion Chief with Harris County ESD 48.

Chief Buxton holds an advanced Firefighter certification from the Texas Commission on Fire Protection (TCFP), as well as an Officer II, Instructor II, Haz-Mat Tech, Wildland Firefighter, Driver Operator and Paramedic.

Ray Sidwell
Division Chief of Logistics

Ray J. Sidwell is the Division Chief of Logistics for Harris County Emergency Services District 48 (HCESD 48) in Katy, TX. Chief Sidwell is a 27 year veteran of Emergency Medical Services. He currently holds his Licensed Paramedic and EMS Instructor with the Texas Department of State and Health Services and has been licensed for 20 years as a Paramedic. He also holds certifications from the Texas Commission on Fire Protection (TCFP), including TCFP Structural Firefighter – Intermediate and Instructor I.

Chief Sidwell began his career as a volunteer after obtaining his EMT certification with West Harris County Emergency Medical Services in August of 1989. After several years of volunteering, he began his Paramedic career with the City of Wharton EMS, he then became a Critical Care In-Charge Paramedic with Harris County Emergency Services District 1, now called Harris County Emergency Corps. As Chief Sidwell’s career advanced, he became the Senior Paramedic Supervisor with West I-10 Volunteer Fire Department. In this position, he was responsible for managing medical supplies and various tasks assigned by the Assistant Chief of EMS. In 2015, Chief Sidwell was hired by Harris County ESD 48 to assist with the initial provisioning of the EMS Division in its transition to a new agency. Since becoming the Division Chief of EMS, Chief Sidwell has obtained his Associate in Applied Science Emergency Medical Services degree from Houston Community College. He has also had the opportunity to attend the National Fire Academy in Emmitsburg, Maryland.

Scott Strait
District Chief

Scott Strait is a District Chief with Harris County Emergency Services District (HCESD) No. 48 Fire Department in Katy, Texas. He transitioned into the paid role of overseeing communications and volunteer membership in January 2018. He remains committed to helping the Department serve its community in a positive, effective way.

Chief Strait began as a volunteer firefighter in January 1990 at the Community Fire Department, covering the Mission Bend area in West Houston. He was promoted to Lieutenant in 1994 and to EMS Captain in 1996. Upon relocating to Katy in 1999, Chief Strait joined HCESD (formerly West I-10 Fire Department). There, Chief Strait rose through the ranks again, becoming a Lieutenant in 2000 and then becoming Captain in 2003. He was promoted to District Chief in 2013, where he continues to serve today.

Since 1994, Chief Strait has been a certified EMT. He also became a certified firefighter in 1997 after completing the fire academy training at the College of the Mainland in Texas City, Texas.

EMS Command:

George Hebert
Division Chief of EMS

George W. Hebert, II is a native of San Antonio, Texas. George holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Biology and a minor degree in Chemistry from Prairie View A&M University. While attending Prairie View A&M he earned his Basic EMT and served as a volunteer for Waller County EMS. Hebert continued his practice and later earned his Intermediate and Paramedic Certifications.

After serving 10 years with Waller County EMS. George went on to serve 10 years with Memorial Hermann Life Flight and simultaneously 9 years with West I-10 and Harris County ESD 48.

Currently George is pursuing a Master’s Degree in Mental Health Counseling and will graduate in the summer of 2019.

As of April 2018, George serves as the Division Chief of EMS for Harris County ESD 48.

Kevin Leverence
Battalion Chief of EMS Training

Kevin Leverence is the Battalion Chief of the EMS Training Division which is responsible for maintaining clinical and medical-operations performance standards for all HCESD48 personnel. The EMS Training Division is home to our Continuous Quality Improvement and Field-Training programs in addition to providing continuing education and simulation training to promote and maintain our high-level medical care.

Kevin holds a Master in Public Administration degree from the University of Illinois-Springfield, a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Eastern Illinois University, and an Associates of Applied Arts in Emergency Medical Services from Waubonsee Community College. He is also a Licensed Paramedic and EMS Instructor in the State of Texas as well as a licensed EMT-P and EMS Lead Instructor in Illinois where he remains an adjunct instructor with the Silver Cross Paramedic Education Program in New Lenox, IL.

Kevin has been with ESD48 since late 2017 and relocated to Katy with his amazing wife and lovely daughters shortly thereafter. Prior to his time in Texas, served as a Firefighter-Paramedic in suburban Chicagoland since 2005 and a U.S. Marine before entering the emergency services.

Kyle Rodriguez
Captian of EMS Training

Kyle Rodriguez is the Captain of EMS Training at Harris County Emergency Services District 48 in Katy, Texas.  He assumed the role in June of 2018.  Captain Rodriguez got his start in EMS in 2007 in College Station, working for Texas A&M University EMS while obtaining his degree.  He finished with a Bachelor of Science in Health from Texas A&M University in 2010.

After graduating in 2010, he began working at West I 10, and then ESD 48 and has been working for the department since the transition.

In 2015 Captain Rodriguez began working as a Flight Paramedic for Memorial Hermann Life Flight, and is still currently.

Kyle is currently pursuing his BSN, and is scheduled to complete it in December 2020.

Tricia Vasquez
Battalion Chief EMS

Tricia Vasquez is a Battalion Chief of EMS with Harris County Emergency Services District 48 (HCESD 48) in Katy, TX. Battalion Chief Vasquez has been involved in EMS since 2002, receiving her Paramedic License in 2004. Captain Vasquez worked for West I-10 Volunteer Fire Department since 2009, and made the transition to Harris County ESD 48 in August of 2015. She has served as a shift supervisor for 6 years. She worked at Washington County EMS for 3 years as a shift Lieutenant and 2 years as a Battalion Chief of EMS. Captain Vasquez holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Sam Houston State University.

Joshua McCormack
Battalion Chief EMS

Joshua McCormack is a Battalion Chief of EMS for Harris County Emergency Services District 48 (HCESD 48) in Katy, TX. Battalion Chief McCormack is a 19 year paramedic who has over 10 years of critical care experience with Memorial Hermann Life Flight. Josh has been a shift supervisor for the past 7 years and also instructs with Lone Star Community College’s EMS program.

Jonel Sawyer
Battalion Chief EMS

Jonel Sawyer is a Battalion Chief of EMS at Harris County Emergency Services District 48 (HCESD 48) in Katy, TX. Battalion Chief Sawyer has been working in the Emergency Medical Service field for 17 years and is a certified TCFP Firefighter. Prior to EMS, Battalion Chief Sawyer served in the United States Navy. She worked for New Orleans EMS from 1999 to 2006 and then moved to the Houston area and began working for West Harris County EMS in 2007, which has seen two transitions to become Harris County ESD 48.

George Tarver
Battalion Chief EMS

George Tarver III is a Battalion Chief of EMS for Harris County Emergency Services District 48. Chief Tarver started his EMS career in 1988. Chief Tarver has been a Paramedic since 1990. He currently holds various instructor certifications in EMS education and Tactical Medicine. George also has 20 years of critical care flight experience with Memorial Hermann LifeFlight. Chief Tarver is currently pursuing his Bachelor’s/Master’s degree in Healthcare Administration.

Joseph Casciotti
Community Paramedic

Joe began his career in Fire/EMS in 1991, at the age of 15 as, as a junior firefighter in Schnecksville, PA. Joe obtained his EMT certification in 1994 and his Paramedic certification in 1997. He worked as a Paramedic for various EMS services in the Eastern PA EMS Council region over the next several years before attending St. Luke’s School of Nursing in Bethlehem PA. Joe graduated with his Diploma in Nursing in 2011 and obtained his RN license in early 2012. He worked at various campuses of the St. Luke’s Health Network in both the Emergency Department and Intensive Care Unit. In early 2014, Joe accepted a Flight Nurse position with Memorial Hermann Life Flight and moved from PA to Katy, TX. He joined HCESD48 as a part time Paramedic in January of 2018 and was hired full time as the Community Health Paramedic in September of 2018. Joe recently completed his BSN in early 2019.

Joe has obtained several specialty certifications in the past few years. He is a Certified Flight Registered Nurse (CFRN) and Certified Emergency Nurse (CEN) by the Board of Certification for Emergency Nursing as well as a Certified Community Paramedic (CP-C).  Joe is a licensed RN in the State of Texas as well as a state certified and Nationally Registered Paramedic.

The opportunity to utilize his knowledge and experience in both pre-hospital care and inpatient nursing is what attracted him to taking a more preventative medicine and community health education role within the Fire Department. Joe lives in the Katy area with his wife and three daughters.

Training Division:

Glen Trahan
Division Chief of Training

Glen Trahan is the Division Chief of Training for Harris County Emergency Services District

48 (HCESD 48) in Katy, TX. Chief Trahan started in the Fire Service with the City of LaPorte Volunteer Fire Department in February 1998. He went to San Jacinto Community College for his TCFP and EMT-Basic Certification Academies, and joined The Port of Houston Authority Marine Fire Department in May 1999. He stayed with LaPorte VFD until moving to the opposite side of Houston where he joined with the Plantersville/Stoneham Volunteer Fire Department for a time, until joining the Tri County Volunteer Fire Department.

Chief Trahan was hired by West I-10 Volunteer Fire Department as their Training Captain in March 2015, and was transitioned over to the Harris County ESD 48 Fire Department in August of 2015.

Chief Trahan has been married to his wife, Chelsea, for over 20 years, and together they have 5 children. In addition to his work in the Fire Service, Chief Trahan volunteers for his church and with the Boy Scouts of America.

Vincent Moreno
Training Captain

Vince Moreno is the Training Captain for Harris County Emergency Services District 48 (HCESD 48) in Katy, TX. Captain Moreno has been in the Fire Service since 1994 when he started with the United States Air Force. He joined Houston Fire Department (HFD) in 2002, and upon completion of his EMT-Basic certification, joined West Harris County EMS.

Captain Moreno joined West I-10 Volunteer Fire Department when they took over West Harris County EMS in January 2010. He stayed with them until July 2015, when they transitioned over to Harris County ESD 48 to help with the final transition details. Captain Moreno was promoted to Captain of the Training Division, where he continues to assist the District Members and new Volunteer Cadets in their fire education needs.

Jean Burg
Training Administration

Jean Burg is the Training Administrative Assistant for Harris County Emergency Services District 48 (HCESD 48) in Katy, TX. Jean has worked in the fire service since November 2014. She began as a Volunteer with the Rehab Unit and has recently been hired as the part-time paid Administrative Assistant for the Training Division. Jean has been married to her husband, Michael, for 33 years. They have two grown daughters and a son-in-law. In addition to working for Harris County ESD 48 Fire Department, Jean manages her husband’s law practice. Jean truly enjoys her work at Harris County ESD 48 and finds it a very fulfilling and rewarding experience.

Community Outreach:

Jason Tharp
Community Risk Reduction (Lt.)

Jason Tharp is the Lieutenant of Community Risk Reduction for Harris County Emergency Services District 48 (HCESD48) in Katy, Texas. Lt. Tharp has worked in the Fire Service for over 12 years and is a certified TCFP Advanced Structural Firefighter, Instructor III, Fire Officer IV, Incident Safety Officer, Wildland Firefighter, Advanced Fire Investigator, Driver Operator - Pumper, Driver Operator - Aerial, and Fire and Life Safety Educator 1 as well as an EMT Basic. Lt. Tharp has graduated from the Fire Service Chief Executive Officer program by Texas A&M TEEX and the Mays Business School, and completed year one of the Texas Fire Chiefs Academy from the Texas Fire Chiefs Association. He started as a volunteer firefighter for the West I-10 Volunteer Fire Department at Station 1 in 2006, and worked up to a Station Captain and department Safety Officer in 2010. Lt. Tharp was hired to the Day Crew in 2014 as a part-time firefighter and in July of 2018 became the Lieutenant of Community Risk Reduction.

Lt. Tharp has an Associates Degree in Fire Science from Lone Star College and is currently enrolled at West Texas A&M studying for a Bachelor's of Emergency Management Administration. He is also a full-time District Chief for Eastex Fire Department (HCESD10) in Northeast Harris County.

Simon Vandyk
Public Information Officer (Lt.)

Simon VanDyk is the Public Information Officer for Harris County Emergency Services District 48 (HCESD 48) in Katy, Texas. Lt. VanDyk has worked in the Fire Service since 2009 when he began as a volunteer firefighter for West I-10 Volunteer Fire Department at Station 3 while living in the house directly behind the station and would respond to calls through a gate he had installed. He is a certified TCFP Structural Firefighter, Driver/Operator and Instructor I. Lt. VanDyk has been a line Firefighter, Driver/Operator, Officer in Charge on both Engine and Ladder companies and was ultimately promoted to Lieutenant of Station 3 in the spring of 2015.

After the District’s August 2015 transition to a combination fire department model, Lt. VanDyk was pursuing education and training towards a career path in fire and life safety. However, in November of 2015, he was asked to take on a new role as Harris County ESD 48’s dedicated Public Information Officer. This position is responsible for being the spokesman for Harris County ESD 48, attending community meetings throughout our District, and keeping the residents we serve informed whenever a major incident arises.

Administrative & Support:

Walla Mourad
Office Manager

Walla Mourad is the Office Manager for Harris County Emergency Services District 48 (HCESD 48) in Katy, Texas. Walla is responsible for the day-to-day management of the office, including human resource management, payroll, financial management and administrative operations.

Walla has nearly a decade of professional experience in Office Administration, with an emphasis on compliance, operations, and resource management skills.

Walla received her Bachelors of Business Administration in Management from The University of Houston (C.T. Bauer College of Business) in 2010. While attending U of H, she was offered an internship to work for the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, where many of her skills sets were acquired. She is also certified in specializing in Human Resources, Entrepreneurship and Middle Eastern Studies.

Prior to joining the Harris County ESD 48, Walla spent 4 years working in the banking industry as a Branch Associate Manager for BBVA Compass and another 4 years for First Data (Telecheck).

Walla is a member of the International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP). In her free time, Walla enjoys the outdoors, traveling, and spending time with her family.

Jackie Tobar
Assistant Office Manager

Jackie Tobar is the Assistant Office Manager for Harris County Emergency Services District 48 (HCESD 48) in Katy, Texas. Jackie has been a member of the Fire Service since September of 2013. Jackie enjoys spending time with her family and learning new and exciting things that Harris County ESD 48 has to offer. She has a passion for helping people, not only in the office, but in her community as well. She is an excellent problem solver and takes great pride in everything she does.

Jackie was born and raised in California, but has called Texas her home since 2009. Jackie feels extremely honored to call these brave and heroic men and women she works with on a daily basis her family.

Matt Weber
Fleet Maintenance Supervisor

Matt Weber is the Fleet Maintenance Supervisor for Harris County Emergency Services District 48 (HCESD 48) in Katy, Texas. Matt started the Fire Service in June 1978 with the Houston Fire Department (HFD) and retired after serving 34 years. Matt held the ranks of Firefighter and Engineer. While at HFD, he joined the Westlake Volunteer FD where he served as Firefighter, Lieutenant, Captain, and Fire Chief. He was active for 16 years, and is a lifetime member. In February 2001, he was hired as a part-time Firefighter with West I-10 Volunteer Fire Department. In 2004, he took over as the Maintenance Officer for the West I-10 VFD. In August 2015, he transitioned to Harris County ESD 48 and continued as the Maintenance Supervisor.

Matt is a TCFP Master Firefighter, TCFP Driver Operator, and an EMT. He has numerous training certificates from Pierce Apparatus for Fire Apparatus Maintenance.

Adam Strudevant
Fleet Maintenance Assistant

Adam Sturdevant is the Fleet Maintenance Assistant for Harris County Emergency Services District 48 (HCESD 48) in Katy, Texas. Adam started the Fire Service in the Katy area in 1999. Adam entered the Houston Fire Department (HFD) in 2003 and currently holds the rank of Firefighter with HFD. In 2008, Adam was hired as an additional Maintenance Technician.

Adam has certifications with the ASE for Automobile Technician, career diploma for Automotive Mechanics, and factory training certificates for maintenance and repair of Pierce fire apparatus.

Pat Gorden
Fleet Maintenance Assistant

Patrick started working with the fire service in 1994 as a repair technician for the Pierce dealership in the Texas, New Mexico, and Louisiana areas. During his employment as a Pierce technician, Patrick received many certifications in all areas of fire apparatus maintenance and repair. Patrick is a certified EVT for all levels of fire apparatus, ambulance, and law enforcement vehicle design and performance standards, which includes all systems related to those vehicles. In addition to being a certified EVT, Patrick is also a Pierce Master certified technician.

In 2010, Patrick joined the West I-10 volunteer fire department as a volunteer firefighter. Patrick is a certified structural firefighter, as well as, a certified driver/operator. Once Patrick completes his medical training, Patrick will be a TCFP certified firefighter and EMT-B.

Lou Fabricant
Purchasing Officer

Lou Fabricant is the Purchasing Officer for Harris County Emergency Services District 48 (HCESD 48) in Katy, Texas. Lou moved to Katy in 1977 working for the Gerber Products Company. In 1978 he was voted onto the Cimarron Subdivision homeowners’ association and helped form West-I 10 Volunteer Fire Department as a founding member.

Lou became a Lifetime Member of West I-10 in 2000 and continued until July of 2015 when he transitioned to Harris County ESD 48. He held various ranks from Firefighter, Lieutenant, Captain, District Chief and Purchasing Officer. Lou served many terms on the Board of Directors during his 37 years as a member of the department. Lou completed all requirements to become an SFFMA advanced certified Firefighter with over 6,000 hours of training.

Lou became a founding member of Harris County ESD 48 in July 2015 and is currently the Rehab Coordinator, Purchasing Officer, and Knox Box liaison.

In 2006, Lou married Rene and between them they have 10 grandchildren with the oldest being in her second year at the University of Arkansas.

Jay Shepard
Quartermaster (Lt.)

Jay Shepard is the Quartermaster and a Fire Suppression Lieutenant for Harris County Emergency Services District 48 (HCESD48) in Katy, Texas. Lt. Shepard joined West Harris County EMS in 2007 as a Paramedic and worked for West I-10 FD as a Firefighter until the change to Harris County Emergency Services District #48.

Lt. Shepard started his Fire Service career in Marlin, Texas in 1991 as a volunteer firefighter. Later, Lt. Shepard moved to Lago Vista, Texas and continued his volunteer service with Travis County ESD#1 until going to the Temple Fire Academy in 1999-2000. Lt. Shepard worked on the side for TX-BAR (Dept of Interior) as a wildland FF and deployed to fires in Colorado, Utah, Idaho and was given a Letter of Accommodation from Governor Rick Perry. Lt. Shepard became a paid firefighter for Travis County ESD#1 & 7, which later became North Lake Travis Fire & Rescue. Lt. Shepard was awarded “Rookie of the Year”, “Career Firefighter of the Year”, and received several valor awards for rescues, CPR saves, and work done with Austin Travis County Strike Team during a Hurricane Katrina deployment in New Orleans, LA. Lt. Shepard became the President and one of the founding members of the IAFF local union for North Lake Travis Fire & Rescue.

In 2006, Lt. Shepard joined the Houston Fire Department and is still currently employed there with the rank of Engineer Operator at Station 51/C in the Southwest side. Lt. Shepard was awarded the “Academic Excellence Award”, “Leadership Award”, and most recently the “Meritorious Unit Valor Award”. Lt. Shepard also works as a Fire Suppression Captain at Sealy Fire Department.

Lt Shepard is a certified Texas Paramedic, TCFP Advanced Structural Firefighter, Fire Officer II, Instructor II, Incident Safety Officer, HazMat Technician, Wildland Firefighter, Driver Operator - Pumper, Driver Operator - Aerial, and Field Examiner.

Lt. Shepard enjoys being home with his family and is also a Board of Directors- Secretary for WCF Municipal Utility District and the President of Willow Creek Farms HOA.

Maria Cardenas
Assistant Quartermaster

Maria Cardenas is a Firefighter/EO and Assistant Quartermaster for Harris County ESD 48. She obtained her Texas Commission on Fire Protection and EMT-Basic certification in 2012 from Houston Community College.

Maria started her Fire Service career as a volunteer firefighter with West I-10 VFD on Feb 2012. May 2014, she became part of the duty crew as a part time firefighter. She transitioned to Harris County ESD 48 on July 2015 as a part time firefighter and became a full time firefighter in April 2018. She has completed the OIC (Officer in Charge) boot camp within the department, which has opened opportunities for her to ride up as an officer. Maria currently holds her TCFP Intermediate Structure Firefighter, Officer I, Driver Operator- Pumper and Aerial, Instructor I/II and Field Examiner certifications. Maria also obtained her Associates in Arts degree from Houston Community College in 2012. She will continue to expand her education in the fire service and pursue a Bachelor’s in Emergency Management Administration in the near future.

Throughout the years, Maria has been involved in many projects within the department. She started volunteering her free time with Quartermaster in 2014. In November 2017, Maria was named Assistant Quartermaster. She is responsible in making sure every member is 100% compliant by following the NFPA 1851 standard.

Maria has been a resident of Katy, TX since September 2004 along with her spouse and two beautiful daughters, Isabel and Sadie. As a taxpayer and employee of HCESD 48, Maria takes pride on everything she does within the department for the safety of her family and for the best interest of the community.