All seminars are located at the DEVOS Place Convention Center, unless otherwise noted.

The Post Critical Incident Seminar – A Proven Tool for Officer Wellness

Monday, June 26, at 8:00am

PRESENTERS: Eric Skidmore, Program Manager, South Carolina Law Enforcement Assistance Program (SCLEAP)

DESCRIPTION: The FBI originated the Post Critical Incident Seminar (PCIS) as an intervention specifically for law enforcement personnel (Lamphear, 2011; McNally & Solomon, 1999; Solomon et al, 2008). The PCIS is designed to be a means in an interpersonally safe and educationally conducive environment to provide critical incident stress management training after a traumatic event or events. Only personnel who experienced a significant traumatic event
are invited to attend, which in South Carolina is facilitated at no charge for the individual attendees. Generally, attendees are those whose symptoms have persisted or developed well past the typical initial traumatic stress response period equating to months or even years of incidents in large and
small group settings, peer support, psychoeducation (anger management, interpersonal relationship maintenance, the role of medication, and others), and, if requested by a participant, Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), an evidence-based therapeutic intervention for traumatic stress (Solomon, et al, 2008). Given that spending just a few hoursreviewing an incident, as is the case for other approaches, can open emotional wounds without sufficient time for closure after addressing meaning and impact, the 3-day format is employed (Solomon, et al, 2008). During the three days participants are able to share their stories with peer support team members, mental health professionals and others who have experienced a critical
incident providing an opportunity for validation and normalizing their own reactions (Solomon et al, 2008). They also receive education from subject matter experts in stress reactions and coping.
Preliminary data from one of only two studies to date revealed a statistically significant (n=33; p>.001) drop in Impact of Event Scale for participating law enforcement officers (Solomon et al, 2008). A second study (the only other one using PCIS data) also found a significant drop in trauma stress (n=42; p>.001) as measured by the Impact of Event Scale-Revised (Lamphear, 2011).
South Carolina began conducting the PCIS in 2000 and since that time 155 South Carolina law enforcement agencies and 105 out-of-state agencies and 9 agencies from outside the United States have participated, totaling over 1700 sworn persons and over 350 spouses/significant others of those sworn persons during 50 iterations of the PCIS. In partnership with the South Carolina National Guard, SCLEAP has hosted 18 Post Deployment Seminars (the military version of the PCIS). SCLEAP has been the model and supplied consultation and personnel leading to the formation of similar programs in North Carolina,
Virginia, Texas, Georgia, New York, Kentucky, Arkansas, Ohio, Oklahoma, Missouri, California and Louisiana. Currently SCLEAP hosts PCIS programs four times each year. A 25 minute overview of the PCIS may be streamed from the SCLEAP website by using the link For more information, please review the information under the PCIS tab located on the SCLEAP APP at:


  • Participants shall learn about the basic content and format of PCIS.
  • Participants shall understand the current research performed by the University of NC.
  • Participants shall hear from leadership of up to 13 states across the US using the PCIS.


Monday, June 26, at 9:15am





Monday, June 26, at 10:30am



A Safe Place to Remove Your Cape

Tuesday, June 27, at 2:00pm

PRESENTERS: Matthew Kelly, Miami County Sheriff’s Office, KS and Lieutenant Dan Davis, Belton (MO) Police Department

DESCRIPTION: Having immediate Peer Support readily available is crucial to maintaining mental wellbeing. Peer support does not replace professional therapy but does offer an outlet with a trained peer supporter who does the same job as you; someone who truly understands. We will discuss the 80-member, cross disciplined, Commander Level Peer Support Team, which has been featured at many national conferences, in magazines and podcasts. Their training program involves discussions on many topics such as toxic leadership, suicide risk assessment, basics of CISDs, practice scenarios and equestrian work at Morgan Farms. The Command Level Peer Support Program through the Mid America Regional Council is the only of its kind in the Nation. The goal is the provide the information to other Commanders across the Nation so this program can be widespread.


  • Suicide Risk Assessment
  • Command Level Peer Support
  • Toxic Leadership

Duty to Intervene & Police Suicide – How Duty to Intervene policies can force us to help ourselves

Tuesday, June 27, at 3:15pm

PRESENTERS: Kevin Jones, Deputy Chief, DSHS, Division of Alcohol & Tobacco Enforcement

DESCRIPTION: The Duty to Intervene is an in-vogue topic in our profession with related policies primarily intended to prevent misconduct and excessive force. However, a crucial part of any Duty to Intervene policy is intervention when a LEO exhibits signs of dealing with a personal crisis – something we all experience. This presentation covers sample Duty to Intervene policy language covering this area and addresses how I was first exposed to a LEO friend’s suicide as a young, naïve and arrogant deputy sheriff and how it changed me. We will discuss how to crush the mental health crisis stigma starting with new police recruits. I profile four LEO friends who committed suicide, tell their stories in detail, and show how a simple gesture or intervention by a friend or colleague could have saved their life.


  • Upon completion, participant will be able to write, rewrite, or amend their current or proposed a Duty to Intervene policies to address, or include greater emphasis on, officers exhibiting signs of stress, depression, or other mental health issues that affect their performance.
  • Upon completion, participant will be able to recognize that everyone deals with a personal crisis at times, whether it be financial, marital, career related. When a LEO is having problems, assess the situation and understand that a simple action(s), i.e. intervening, could save a life.
  • Upon completion, participant will be able to gain a new perspective on this topic and use this perspective to train new LEO recruits about mental health in law enforcement. Through generational change this subject will no longer be taboo and LEOs will be more comfortable talking openly about it.

Peak Performance for Law Enforcement – Forging a New Paradigm on Fitness and Control Tactics

Tuesday, June 27, at 4:30pm

PRESENTERS: Victor Zuege, Senior Instructor, Physical Techniques Division, FLETC; and Matthew Nick, Senior Instructor, Physical Techniques Division, FLETC

DESCRIPTION: Are less fit officers more likely to use excessive force? What is the difference between ineffective force and excessive force? What role does fitness have in environmental influence on de-escalation and decision-making? These questions can be difficult to answer and even more difficult to correct. The Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers (FLETC’s) Physical Techniques Division (PTD) and Enforcement Operations Division (EOD) instructors propose that the answer lies in a combination of peak performance, resiliency, and control tactics training which is grounded in a research-based curriculum approach. With time being a valuable resource, the presentation will provide law enforcement supervisors, policy makers, and practitioners a manageable plan to maintain a more prepared work force. This triad translates directly to a better quality of life, less chance for injury, faster recovery in the event of an injury, and an officer’s peak performance during police/civilian encounters.

In order for an officer to perform at a high level there must be an emphasis placed upon holistic fitness and an interleaving of all components of law enforcement training. This can be achieved through developing increasing capacity in several “pillars” or “foundations” that can be divided into the two broad categories of mind (including the domains of psychological, psychospiritual, legal, behavioral, and social) and body (including the domains of physical, nutritional, and control-tactical). When these domains are all developed in an interleaved manner the officer is in a “ready state” and more likely to perform at their peak ability during the tense, uncertain and rapidly evolving encounters they face on a daily basis. In many respects, the paradigm of law enforcement changes and begins to match those of the Olympic caliber athlete who is highly trained, extremely focused, and capable of discipling their mind and body to perform at an extraordinary level.


  • Attendees will be able to reference current case law and peer reviewed research, and use it as a foundation for new policies, procedures, and directives for their agencies officer wellness program. This methodology avoids personal bias and stagnation in training i.e. “This is the way we have always done it.”
  • To equip the audience with an understanding of “officer autonomy.”  This concept is the internally motivated force that an individual needs to apply to basic training skills and emerging trends throughout their career.
  • Attendees will be educated and inspired to embrace a new paradigm for officer wellness whereby their peak performance will be achieved.

Has this Cultural Moment had a Greater Impact on the Mental and Physical Health of Law Enforcement Officers than the General Population?

Wednesday, June 28, at 2:00pm

PRESENTERS: Sheriff Steve Kempker, Ottawa County (MI) Sheriff’s Office; Sheriff Jamie Patton, Union County (OH) Sheriff’s Office; and Dr. Joel Robertson, Robertson Health  

DESCRIPTION: Combine political divisiveness, racial and gender inequalities, de-funding police, gun control, natural disasters, and increased violence in our cities and schools with the proliferation of social media we find ourselves in a cultural moment that is changing our brain health, whether we are aware or not. Research shows an increase in anxiety, depression, lack of joy and other factors across the population. However, after almost 2 years, is research showing signs of improvement? Are there unique dynamics with Law Enforcement Officers and have they been impacted more than the general population?
One would think Law Enforcement would be especially vulnerable as many of these discussions relate to their profession. To effectively provide the support necessary to officers it is important to determine how much more or less the impact of the cultural moment is having in specific areas on Law Enforcement versus other populations. This allows us to tailor interventions more specifically to the impact the culture is having on their health, performance, and relationships.
Robertson Research Institute, a not-for-profit charity, has studied over 2,234 individuals, of which 867 are law enforcement patrol officers, on the impact of the cultural moment. Law Enforcement and general population pre-pandemic and pandemic trends are calculated and then compared to one another to determine the unique impact on officers. Studying these trends and their impact on mental health, exercise, diet, sleep, and overall brain health allows us to discover which issues are likely short-term versus those that may be indicative of longer-term brain changes. Understanding these trends, combined with new research about the brain, can help us identify parts of the brain that may be affected and what specific techniques can be used to improve or prevent the negative consequences of these changes.
In this presentation, Sheriff Jamie Patton, Union County Ohio, and Sheriff Stephen Kempker, Ottawa County MI, will discuss the impact of the cultural moment on their agencies and intervention techniques they deem important. Dr. Robertson, Founder and CEO of Robertson Research Institute, will discuss the trends, what they mean to officer safety and wellness, and how these studies show unique changes in the brain health of officers.
This seminar will show how the pre-frontal cortex (what I believe to be true) is being shaped by these cultural events and alters the “lens through which we view the world”. A change in our “lens” can trigger the amygdala, initiating the fear-stress cycle in our brain, which impacts the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis, which releases cortisol, alters our brain chemistry, and causes unwanted diseases, moods, and behaviors. A discussion around law enforcement trends and the “story” that is being told will connect the “brain health” to the responses.
Techniques on how to re-program the “lens through which you see” to redefine what causes your stress and alters the brain’s messaging system and HPA (Hypothalamus Pituitary Adrenal Axes) will be presented. By optimizing brain health in this way, we can maximize our potential in mental health, physical health, relationships, and performance.


  • The participant will understand the unique impact of this cultural moment on Law Enforcement Officers.
  • The participant will learn how understanding brain health can result in improving, preventing, or optimizing health, performance, and relationships.
  • The participant will learn several non-medication techniques that can improve brain resiliency, increase accuracy of perceptions, minimize the stress cycle, and reduce the impact of negative events from the past.

Taking Care of Our Own on Our Worst Days

Wednesday, June 28, at 3:15pm

PRESENTERS: Sheriff Daniel Miller, Florence County (WI) Sheriff’s Office; Sara Phelan, Treasurer, Wisconsin Law Enforcement Death Response (LEDR) Team; and Michael Sasse, President, Wisconsin Law Enforcement Death Response (LEDR) Team 

DESCRIPTION: Who do you turn to when the worst thing imaginable happens within your agency? The death of an employee can turn an agency completely upside down, especially if you’re not prepared. The Wisconsin Law Enforcement Death Response Team does just that, steps in and assists agencies who have experienced a death regardless of the circumstances, Line-of-Duty, suicides, off-duty, non-sworn and retirees. The team will discuss some of the ways that your agencies can prepare, things you can do if you experience a loss, and how to help your agency and communities heal. They will also discuss proactive ways they are helping to keep law enforcement’s mental health a priority from the first day in the academy all the way through retirement.


  • How to prepare for a loss within your agency: policy review, critical incident packets, death notifications, liaison personnel, etc.
  • Suggestions on things to do when you have a loss: death notification, employee notification, honor guard, funeral preparation, media, defusing/debriefing, family support, etc.
  • Preventative measures to prioritize the mental health of your employees: peer support, wellness check-ins, therapy dogs, proactive training, etc.

Leadership Longevity and Expanding Human Capacity: There is no finish line!

Wednesday, June 28, at 4:30pm

PRESENTERS: Andrew Bouck, Undersheriff, Ingham County (MI) Sheriff’s Office and Co-Owner of MACNLOW Associates and Matthew Johnson, President, On Target Living

DESCRIPTION: This journey begins with discussing the key components of high-level leadership and the impact they have on personal and professional wellness. Andy guides you through the three components of leadership success and the qualities that drive your work performance. 

Matt will then help you unleash the answers to creating limitless opportunities in your life. Do you know what it feels like to feel your personal best? This intelligent and thought-provoking presentation will guide you on what to do and how to do it. You will leanr the three pillars to expanding human capacity.

“Leadership, Longevity and Expanding Human Capacity” will leave you inspired to reach for higher levels of service, energy, fitness, and overall well-being, become invigorated and motivated to take better care of yourself, and armed with the knowledge and practical tools to take immediate action. Feeling your best will change everything, from job performance to how engaged you are at work, at home, and in all relationships. Let Andy and Matt be your guides on reaching your true leadership potential and human capacity, 


  • Understanding and applying the “Rule of Three” in leadership.
  • Unlocking your potential human capacity to achieve porfessional and personal success.
  • Making wellness a leadership strategy.