President Obama Awards Medal of Valor to 13 Law Enforcement Officers Who Risked Lives to Save Others; Also Calls on Nation to Support Our Men and Women in Uniform

Mission Manager congratulates the 13 police officers who were awarded the Public Safety Medal of Valor — the nation’s highest honor for law enforcement that recognizes officers who have exhibited exceptional courage, regardless of personal safety, in attempt to protect others from harm.

President Obama recognized the officers yesterday in a formal military presentation at the White House, noting that their service reflects the “highest form of citizenship.”  Obama’s remarks are published on the White House blog and media outlets across the nation.

The recipients ranged from officers who had suffered stab wounds and burn wounds to those who defused hostage situations and prevented campus shootings.

“To a person, each of these honorees acted without regard to their own safety,” Obama said during the ceremony.  “We’re so grateful they were there — some off duty, others on duty, and all rising above and beyond the call of duty.”


In his remarks, Obama also called on the nation to support and listen to its law enforcement officers.  “Medals and ceremonies like today are important, but these aren’t enough to convey the true depth of our gratitude. Our words will be hollow if they’re not matched by deeds. So, our nation has a responsibility to support those who serve and protect us.”

He vowed to give law enforcement the tools they need to do their jobs, citing the mission of the President’s newly created police task force. “We can show our respect by listening to you, learning from you, giving you the resources that you need to do your jobs,” Obama continued. “Our country needs that right now.”

The staff at Mission Manager would also like to thank every man and woman who puts on a uniform every day to serve and protect. The 13 recipients of the Medal of Valor are a testament to the true character and bravery of our first responders. They did not seek recognition; instead they put themselves in harm’s way so that others may live.

One officer was honored posthumously —  fallen Sergeant Robert Wilson III of the Philadelphia Police Department, who gave his life to protect innocent civilians. Sergeant Wilson put himself in harm’s way during an armed robbery, drawing fire from the assailants and suffering a mortal wound as he kept store employees and customers safe.

The other officers who received the Medal of Valor for their courageous actions between 2013-2015 include:

  • Officer Gregory Stevens (Garland Police Department, TX) for demonstrating extraordinary courage to save lives. Officer Stevens exchanged gunfire at close range and subdued two heavily-armed assailants preventing a mass shooting.
  • Officer Niel Johnson (North Miami Police Department, FL) for swift and valorous action to end a violent crime spree. Officer Johnson pursued a man who had shot a Miami police officer and two other innocent bystanders, withstanding fire from an assault weapon, and apprehended the assailant.
  • Special Agent Tyler Call (Federal Bureau of Investigation) for his heroic actions to save a hostage. Special Agent Call, who was off duty with his family, helped rescue a woman from her ex-husband who had violated a restraining order and held the victim at gunpoint.
  • Deputy Joey Tortorella (Niagara County Sheriff’s Office, NY) for placing himself in grave danger to protect his community. Deputy Tortorella confronted and subdued a volatile gunman who had shot and wounded his parents inside their home and by doing so prevented the gunman from threatening the safety of students at a nearby elementary school.
  • Officer Mario Gutierrez (Miami-Dade Police Department, FL) for bravery and composure while enduring a violent attack. Officer Gutierrez sustained multiple stab wounds while subduing a knife-wielding assailant who attempted to set off a massive gas explosion that could have resulted in multiple fatalities.
  • Patrolman Louis Cioci (Johnson City Police Department, NY) for courageously resolving a volatile encounter with a gunman. After witnessing the murder of his fellow officer, Patrolman Cioci pursued and apprehended the gunman at a crowded hospital, thereby saving the lives of employees, patients, and visitors.
  • Officers Jason Salas and Robert Sparks (Santa Monica Police Department, CA), and Captain Raymond Bottenfield (Santa Monica College Police Department, CA) for courage and composure in ending a deadly rampage. Officer Salas, Officer Sparks, and Captain Bottenfield placed themselves in mortal danger to save the lives of students and staff during a school shooting on the busy campus of Santa Monica College.
  • Major David Huff (Midwest City Police Department, OK) for uncommon poise in resolving a dangerous hostage situation. Major Huff saved the life of a two-year-old girl after negotiations deteriorated with a man holding the child captive at knife point.
  • Officer Donald Thompson (Los Angeles Police Department, CA) for courageous action to save an accident victim. While off-duty, Officer Thompson traversed two freeway dividers and endured first- and second-degree burns while pulling an unconscious man to safety from a car moments before it became engulfed in flames.
  • Officer Coral Walker (Omaha Police Department, NE) for taking brave and decisive action to subdue an active shooter. After exchanging gunfire, Officer Walker single-handedly incapacitated a man who had killed and injured multiple victims on a shooting spree.

Mission Manager Showcases Incident Management Software to Emergency Managers at PIEPC in Washington State; Upcoming Venues Include SWAT Conferences in New York, Louisiana and Las Vegas

Mission Manager today unveils its powerful incident management tool to emergency managers in the Pacific Northwest during the Partners in Emergency Preparedness Conference (PIEPC), which runs through Thursday in Tacoma, Washington.  The conference is part of Mission Manager’s coast-to-coast road show, which includes tactical SWAT venues in New York, Louisiana and Las Vegas over the next few weeks. Here’s a rundown of the upcoming venues:

Partners in Emergency Preparedness Conference

At Booth #19, Mission Manager’s staff will demonstrate how the cloud-based software can improve the efficiency and effectiveness of emergency management Capture34agencies during large-scale natural disasters, such as earthquakes, tornadoes and tsunamis. The venue attracts approximately 700 people representing business, schools, government, the nonprofit sector, emergency management professionals and volunteer organizations.

 In addition to its technology showcase, PIEPC features a wide array of presentations that include lessons learned from recent worldwide events such as earthquakes, workplace violence, current hazards research, contingency planning, school preparedness, technology, media interactions and public health issues.

New York Tactical Officers Association

The following week, Mission Manager representatives will head to the Northeast for the Tactical Conference & Expo 2016,  which runs April 26-27 in Verona,ny NY. This large-scale SWAT training conference and vendor show is sponsored by the New York Tactical Officers Association (NYTOA), a non-profit corporation established to promote training, professionalism and the exchange of information between members of law enforcement, tactical units and crisis negotiation teams within, and surrounding, New York state.

Mission Manager will be among 150 industry vendors at NYTOA showcasing their latest technologies and products. At booth #508, Mission Manager reps will demonstrate how the software tool can streamline an agency’s daily operations, speed response times, and help ensure a Unified Command for deployments ranging from active shooters and high-risk warrant service to large-scale public events and training drills.LTPOA-emblem-185x185

Louisiana Tactical Police Officers Association Training Conference 

Next on the tour is the Louisiana Tactical Police Officers Association Training Conference, held May 2-6, in Gonzalez, LA. The venue, hosted by the Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office, will include the vendor show on May 2, along with an incident debrief of the Lafayette Grand 16 theater shooting. The next few days will feature a SWAT competition and intensive training tracks.

TacOps West

CaptureMission Manager will then head back to the West Coast for the TacOps West show, set for May 18-19 in Las Vegas, NV. TacOps West is a tactical training conference and exposition that balances elite training, networking functions and trade show experience into a three-day event. Mission Manager, which will be featuring interactive demos at booth #111, will be among 100 industry vendors showcasing their latest technologies and products.

The conference also includes approximately 30 training tracks taught by some of the most sought after instructors in the nation. Some of the top teams presenting are Las Vegas Metro SWAT, Los Angeles County SEB, LAPD SWAT and NYPD ESU.

Sponsoring associations include the National Tactical Officers Association (NTOA), Arizona Tactical Officers Association (ATOA), Utah Tactical Officers Association (UTOA) and the California Association of Tactical Officers (CATO).

Cloud-based Mission Manager provides a one-stop integrated solution for team and asset management, real-time communications, situational awareness with robust maps, and automated reporting capabilities.

Mission Manager can help agencies become more proactive vs. reactive – and ultimately improve response times – because it is based on the core principles of “Preparation. Readiness. Execution.”larry

As a daily team management tool, Mission Manager provides the current status and qualifications of members, including training, certifications and expirations. Administrators can also easily track and manage their team’s equipment and maintenance schedules.

Because this data is readily available, emergency managers / incident commanders can quickly determine who is qualified and available to respond when an emergency strikes.

When used as an online command center, Mission Manager helps ensure 360-degree situational awareness. The software provides a common operational picture – on multiple devices – that can be shared among agencies in multiple jurisdictions that are responding to the mission.

Mission Manager features robust mapping capabilities with more than 90 mapping overlays, including topography, natural hazards, locations of hospitals and police departments, as well as social media feeds at points of interest.

Highly secure and customizable, Mission Manager’s robust database provides a second-by-second record of every event. This data can be easily exported for ICS NIMS compliant reports.


From Emergency Management to Law Enforcement, Twitter is Changing the Face of Incident Management and Disaster Response – Hashtag by Hashtag

As Twitter celebrates its 10th anniversary this week, releasing a timeline of its most memorable moments, we’ve all witnessed how the social media giant has changed the world – hashtag-by-hashtag. With its 320 million active users pounding out 140-character limit messages each month, there’s no doubt that Twitter has ramped up communications to unimaginable levels.tweets

Twitter has changed the way we monitor disasters, solve crimes, watch sports, consume news, build brands and connect with our audiences at an emotional level.

In the law enforcement community, Twitter is helping to solve crimes and prevent incidents from becoming mass casualty events.  Not only does social media humanize the force, it provides a platform for police officers to share information and quickly respond to tips from civilians.

When it comes to emergency management, social media monitoring with Twitter is a key ingredient to situational awareness during disasters. Having access to real-time information from eyewitnesses at the scene helps incident commanders/emergency managers make the right decisions – at the right time –when deploying strategic resources.

That is why we’ve included Twitter feeds within Mission Manager’s robust mapping tools. As part of our geo-coded social media monitoring capabilities, Mission Manager enables administrators to monitor tweets Mission Manager Twitter screenin real time, based on key words and related hashtags, to determine who is saying what within an area of interest.  Mission Manager’s cloud-based incident management system also allows you to capture the data and images from the Twitter feeds and quickly export the data for reports.

Revolutionizing Emergency Management with Tweets

In addition to situational awareness, Twitter has eased information bottleneck for agencies during emergencies and ensures a consistent flow of information to the public. It allows emergency managers to interact with the public and get a second-by-second account of what’s happening during a crisis in an effort to save lives and property.

As witnessed during major disasters like Hurricane Sandy – which caused an estimated $50 billion in damages – emergency crews can quickly gauge the hardest hit areas based on the volume of Tweets in the path of destruction, according to an article in the New York Times, “Twitter Storms Gauge Damage of Real Ones.”

The article was based on a scientific study by the Commonwealth and Industrial Research Organization in Melbourne, Australia, which was twitter2recently published in Science Advances.  It turns out that Twitter was slightly better than FEMA’s own models  in predicting the location and severity of damages caused by the 2012 storm, according to the report.

The study was based on 9.7 million Sandy-related messages sent by 2.2 million people during the disaster, according to the New York Times. Keywords such as FEMA, power, sandy, storm, etc., were analyzed and correlated with messages about financial data from federal, state and local relief payments and insurance claims filed after the storm.

“The more damage Sandy actually did to a neighborhood, as measured by the per capita cost of the repairs, the higher the intensity of relevant tweeting from those areas just after the storm,” according to the Science Advances report.

Even more amazing is Twitter’s swift speed when it comes to earthquake warnings. When a magnitude 5.8 earthquake hit Virginia in 2011, “the first Twitter reports from bystanders at the epicenter reached New York about 40 seconds ahead of the quake’s first shock waves,” according to the New York Times article.

As a result, federal seismologists are now experimenting with crowdsource earthquake warnings.

Is Your Agency Prepared for a Mass Shooting? 10 Steps to an Effective Active Shooter Response with Mission Manager Incident Management Software

Although mass shootings are rare occurrences for individual communities, they are sadly a disturbing trend across America. As a result, there has been an increased demand for incident management software tools like Mission Manager, which can help agencies prepare for and respond to these tragic events.

Based on the principles of Preparation, Readiness and Execution, cloud-based Mission Manager lays the foundation for the well-coordinated response needed to save lives. Designed to be used as a daily tool, Mission Manager provides a simple solution to ensure all team member and equipment data is kept current. This speeds response times, because administrators can quickly determine who is qualified to deploy.

In the field, the web-based software acts as an online Incident Command center, providing a common operational picture on multiple devices in disparate locations. This helps ensure a Unified Command.

It begins with preparation – the daily task of managing your team and assets. Mission Manager ensures team readiness by automating the management of documents, task delegation, timekeeping and scheduling.   Execution of the mission is achieved through the software’s 3-way callout system, drag-and-drop teambuilding function, robust mapping capabilities and real-time communications.

Every event is captured and logged in Mission Manager’s highly secure database – providing a second-by-second account of the incident – making the reporting process easy. Rather than re-tracing the chain of the events with pen-and-paper, administrators can quickly produce reports with a click of a button.

Mission Manager is an unprecedented one-stop solution for active shooter preparation and response. It also ensures your reports are timely and accurate. Here’s how:

Personnel data is kept current in a team member roster so administrators know who is ready and qualified to respond. Personnel data, including contact information, training, certifications and personal gear, may be managed by members themselves. 
Equipment and asset records are kept up-to-date, including maintenance records, photos and descriptions of the equipment. This enables administrators to quickly identify which assets/vehicles are available for the mission.

Floor plans and evacuation plans for potential targets, including school campuses, government buildings and airports, are stored in the document library. Checklists of Incident objectives are created in advance and uploaded into Mission Manager when the need arises.

Active shooter training drills can be organized using calendars with automated RSVPs. Individual training classes and certifications are documented / logged in the personnel roster for future reference if needed in a potential courtroom hearing. It also expedites callouts of qualified personnel.

Immediate/rapid personnel notification is achieved using SMS text, voice and email (or all three simultaneously).


ICS positions are identified and filled by responding staff.  Positions are also noted in Mission Manager’s team member functions. The Command Post location is established and indicated on Mission Manager’s maps. All responding agencies as well as local dignitaries and the media may be given staging locations.

With automated check in/out features, newly arrived outside resources are rapidly logged in. They are now part of the pool of personnel available for this event, and are easily tracked using Mission Manager’s member function. Their special skills and operational capabilities are also noted and tracked. 
Teams are created with a drag-and-drop function. As teams deploy, they can be tracked on the map that has been created for the mission.  Any new members logged into the mission may be retained as part of your permanent database for future deployments.

Real-time maps of pertinent locations/information may be displayed on a large screen TV inside or outside the mobile command vehicle.  The maps can be viewed by staff, Command staff, government officials – and sometimes the media and families – as the commander deems appropriate. Officials and other responding agencies can also view the mission events in real time on their own devices, irrespective of their physical location.

Pertinent messages are sent out to team members using Mission Manager’s messaging function, including changes in the operation, locations of team members and suspect(s), new areas to respond to, etc.   All incoming and outgoing messages are captured in the communications log for post-mission reports. All messaging is secure and cannot be picked up by radio/police scanners.

Crime scene elements, including photos and clues, are noted and tracked in Mission Manager as the investigative portions of the incident take shape.  Victim and witness information are also tracked.

 Complete, accurate details of the operation are quickly retrieved and exported as NIMS / ICS compliant reports for briefings, after action reviews and legal compliance.  Reports can include the entire spectrum of    important data that accompanies a critical incident, such as mapping feeds, crime scene information, evidence collected, witness statements, cooperating agencies, and the number of responding personnel and  victims.




2015 CATO Training Venue Attracts 1,000+ Tactical Officers; Mission Manager’s SWAT Incident Command Software Capabilities Demonstrated in Exhibit Hall

More than 1,000 SWAT personnel had the opportunity to preview the latest trends, services and technologies for tactical law officers – including Mission Manager’s incident command software capabilities – at the 2015 California Association of Tactical Officers (CATO) Conference held last week in Anaheim, CA.

The company’s booth staff was pleased to report that its incident management software was a big hit among the attendees, who were impressed by the fact that Mission Manager was an all-encompassing tool for personnel & asset management, callouts, situational awareness and reporting.

Currently, most SWAT teams are using disparate tools to perform various functions, including manual spreadsheets to manage their members,  standard dispatch systems to callout their teams, and pen-and-paper to produce reports.


Demonstration on how Mission Manager can provide situational awareness for SWAT teams, such as the recent riots in Baltimore (Photo by Daniel DiPinto / DiPinto Design)

The staff demonstrated Mission Manager’s capabilities first-hand during its Scavenger Hunt, which drew nearly three dozen participants who vied for valuable prizes including  a one-year subscription to Mission Manager. During the two-day contest, the staff deployed participants to various locations on the show floor, sending clues leading to the location of the prizes.

A big thanks goes out to the CATO organizers and participating vendors, including 5.11, ProforceAdamson Police Products, Frog Lube, American Spartan Apparel, Voodoo Tactical and Safariland. The companies handed out valuable prizes including SWAT apparel, a gun cleaning kit, weapon bi-pod and a tactical backpack.

The contest gave participants an opportunity to visit various vendors while testing Mission Manager’s user-friendly, intuitive features with their own cell phones.

How it Works

With Mission Manager, teams can callout their teams three ways – via SMS text, email and voice. Because all personnel data is kept current by the members’ themselves, including their training and certifications, the incident commander can determine within minutes who is certified and available to participate in the mission.

Using pre-set mission tools that can be easily customized, team leaders can access an instant checklist of all activities needed to support the mission – whether it be an active shooter response, dangerous suspect warrant or large-scale public event.

With real-time tracking capabilities, Mission Manager gives incident commanders a birds-eye view of the mission as it occurs.  In the field, commanders can track all phases of the event in real time on their laptops or mobile devices.

Mission Manager can provide SWAT commanders with situational awareness in the field with robust mapping tools. They can triangulate the location of the mission, the command post and surrounding schools, hospitals, fire stations and police stations as well as weather conditions, terrains and boundaries.

Every activity is captured in the system, including team locations, radio logs and suspect information. After the mission, the data can be quickly exported as NIMS ICS-compliant reports or debriefs – saving agencies significant time and money.

About Mission Manager

Since 2011, Mission Manager has supported approximately 6,000 missions, ranging from tactical operations and large-scale pubic events to single-person rescues and full-scale natural disasters. It has been adopted by agencies in all 50 U.S. states and 20 countries, and is available in 80 languages. Users include law enforcement agencies, search-and-rescue organizations, fire departments and emergency operation centers. Mission Manager is based on three core principles: Preparation, Readiness and Execution. To request a demo, please email or call 619-457-6119.

About CATO

The California Association of Tactical Officers is a professional organization dedicated to improving tactics and safety through education, peer contacts, and the sharing of tactical information. Membership entitles individuals and tactical teams to participate in CATO training, including the annual conference, at a price that demonstrates quality and value. The organization welcomes current and former members of law enforcement and the military. JOIN CATO TODAY and check out the CATO News Magazine.


CATO Mission Manager staff

Mission Manager’s booth staff display their Scavenger Hunt mascot during the CATO show. Nearly 3 dozen SWAT officers participated in the contest and won valuable prizes from participating vendors.





Mission Manager to Showcase its Incident Command Software at the CATO Training Conference, Sept. 21-22, that Highlights Emerging Trends, Tactics and Technologies for Tactical SWAT Teams

Mission Manager will showcase its incident command software to the tactical law enforcement community at the 2015 CATO Conference, Sept. 21-22, at the Anaheim Marriott –  and  also spearhead a Scavenger Hunt contest with prizes to include a  free 1-year subscription to its robust cloud-based software. Attendees who participate in the contest will also have the opportunity to win a variety of prices from participating vendors during the show.CATO flyer

During the Scavenger Hunt, players will learn first-hand how cloud-based Mission Manager helps incident commanders easily manage their personnel and assets, communicate in real time, and track and log evidence trails – as players find clues during the game.  If you plan to attend CATO, please stop by our booth #223 and participate. Here’s how it works:

  • Stop by our booth,  and we’ll log you into Mission Manager’s pre-set missions, send you email & text alerts with “clues” every other hour.
  • Simply take a picture of the clue with your cell phone, email it back to our staff and return to our booth to claim your prize from participating vendors.
  • On Day #2 we will hold a raffle drawing of all players and announce the winner of our free 1-year subscription to Mission Manager (good for up to 10 users: Valued at $750)

As noted in our sponsored article in POLICE Magazine, Mission Manager lays the foundation for a strong infrastructure needed to save lives because it is based on team preparation and readiness. Mission Manager uniquely provides an operational environment for daily team management and serves as an online command center.

Since 2011, Mission Manager has supported approximately 6,000 missions, including natural disasters, tactical operations, large-scale pubic events, campus security, search-and-rescue missions, and training. Users include law enforcement, fire departments,  search-and-rescue groups, emergency operation centers, security providers and the Civil Air Patrol.

The California Association of Tactical Officers was founded in 1997 as a professional organization dedicated to improving tactics, safety and professionalism of special weapons and tactics officers through education, training, peer contacts and the sharing of information and ideas. CATO has since become a premier professional organization and is dedicated to the continued improvement of officer safety through training, education and advocacy.

CATO’s annual training conference hosts approximately 1,000 SWAT officers, supervisors and commanders from teams throughout the Western United States. The CATO conference features educational seminars and presentations on emerging trends, tactics, legal issues, leadership and valuable ‘lessons learned’. The two day vendor trade show highlights the latest safety gear, weapons, munitions, clothing and technology provided by equipment manufacturers, distributors and suppliers.

September is National Preparedness Month! Now is the Time to Prepare your Families and Communities for Emergencies with ‘Ready Responder’ Toolkit and FEMA Resources

In recognition of National Preparedness Month in September, Mission Manager is pleased to share some valuable resources from and that are designed to enhance readiness for first responders, their families and their communities.   As noted in the READY RESPONDER webpage, first responders whose own families are well-prepared will have the peace of mind to focus on the tasks at hand. They can also play a key role in educating the public about how to prepare for and respond to emergencies ranging from hurricanes, wildfires, floods and tornadoes.

Below are some of the resources that first responders and their agencies can access to educate their communities and families should a disaster strike:






The Emergency Management Institute (EMI) offers self-paced courses free-of-charge. The courses below may have a specific interest to the law enforcement community. For a complete list of courses please visit: Emergency Management Institute Course Catalog





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