Committed to the Cause
Chairman of the Board
Thank you for allowing myself the opportunity to introduce myself. My name is Mykal Taylor. Alongside my wife and two of my closest friends I bring our efforts to the attention of media, business, and the public. Working closely with other people dedicated to the concept of philanthropy, I look to bring new avenues for our cause to be heard.
With our wildland fire seasons growing steadily worse year by year I stand beside myself knowing that there are very few non-profit organizations involved in this fight. Our first responders rely mainly on donated funds and goods throughout the year for all occasions. But during our dry summer heat and droughts
these supplies get easily exhausted. Stepping up to bridge the gap between initial activation before state or federal funding is allocated to a disaster is where we step in to help.
Utilizing community outreach and marketing allows us to approach business leaders and community members unaware of our cause. This allows us to show the public just how bad the situation is, as well as gives us the opportunity to show exactly what we can do to help. Our pledge is simple; “Provide the highest level of service, with the lowest overhead possible”. Allowing us to make sure more donated money goes to the actual cause rather than administrative expenses.
I’d like to introduce myself. My name is Molly Taylor.
My duties include organizing and planning donation events, community outreach, organizing our volunteer work force, as well as coordinating our fund raising efforts.
During 2017 I was called to duty with my husband to help with supplies for the Rice Ridge Fire in Seeley Lake, Montana.
Alongside Mykal, we set up a donation event in Chehalis WA and over the course of two days we were able to acquire enough goods to fill the bed of our truck, as well as collect $450 dollars that was split between two of the volunteer departments in the area. I also helped deliver a load of locally acquired goods to our friend and business associate's drive he was a part of with the Jolly Mountain Fire.
The impact those fires had on myself opened my eyes to the lack of organized efforts that provide services for our first responders and communities. Having felt the warmth of charity and the faces of the people amazed that we cared for a community over 600 miles away strengthened my resolve and commitment to serve.
That same motivation is the driving force behind all of us teaming together to bring this into existence. Please take this introduction as my pledge to provide help in any manner available and my personal promise to serve no matter what the cost.
Vice Chairman-Government Relations
I have twenty-four years of uniform law enforcement experience that has included assignments in patrol; motorcycle traffic; accident investigation; narcotics investigation; air support (Observer, Command Pilot, Chief Pilot) along with several years as a Training Officer in a variety of programs, many of which yielded national recognition.
After my retirement from California law enforcement and relocating to Idaho in 1999 I was hired by the Idaho State Police, Peace Officer Standards and Training and performed as the fully Commissioned North Idaho Regional Training Coordinator responsible for in-service training, instructor certifications, program/training review and certification, decertification investigations along with a wide variety of additional related responsibilities.
I was subsequently promoted and transferred to the Meridian Academy as the Basic Academy Training Manager responsible for ten criminal justice disciplines:
I managed a permanent staff of fourteen full-time employees and 250 contract instructors to facilitate up to 3 concurrent academy sessions at any given time during the annual schedule.
I feel my greatest strengths are based on my management abilities; attention to detail; communications skills; and program development expertise accumulated from my uniform law enforcement experience along with my diverse background working for Idaho P.O.S.T. for the past 15+ years during which time I had extensive experience with both local, State, and Federal offices of Emergency Management.
I also had the privilege of working on the management team that developed and implemented “Operation Road Trip” which was a State-wide training exercise presented in Sandpoint, Idaho funded via a Federal Grant allowing several hundred first responders to participate in the multi-layered exercises at no cost to their agencies.
My aviation career spanned over 16 years, both flying for law enforcement and the private sector. During this time I attended and successfully completed the Systems and Safety Management Program at USC focusing on Risk Management.
I accumulated over 8,000 hours of pilot in command experience flying both fixed wing and helicopters and attained several FAA licenses to include: fixed Wing/single engine Land; Private/Commercial/CFI rotor Wing/Helicopter with additional training for external load operations (firefighting; swift water rescue).
Following my retirement in 2014 I remained active working with private law firms as a subject matter expert on civil investigations. Additionally, I am a minority partner with a QSR Franchise Corporation and owner and President of a not for profit performance and community service organization. Additionally, I completed the Non-profit Leadership certificate program by the University of Idaho
I have also held positions on several boards, committees, and non-profits to include (but not limited to):
Airborne law Enforcement Association
Professional Helicopter Pilots Association (Board of Directors)
California Foresters and Fire Wardens
Los Angeles County Multi Agency Swift Water Rescue Task Force
Idaho Peace Officers’ Memorial (Board of Directors / Past President)
Kootenai County emergency Management Advisory Committee
Kootenai County Airport Advisory Board
Kootenai County Area Transportation Team
I feel blessed to have an outstanding support group that allows me time to pursue additional opportunities to give back to my State and local communities. I am especially looking forward to working with Mana Wildfire Logistics to further the great work they provide to the community and fire services throughout the Pacific Northwest.
It’s a great honor to join Mana Wildfire Logistics! I am very excited to work with everyone and look forward to the onboarding process along with today’s call. In short, I have a great passion for giving back to the community and see a great need to do more to assist our first responders, fire department, and locals dealing with unfortunate circumstances out of their control. I truly believe we as a community can win together when we work as a team. From a professional experience standpoint, I’ve had a lot of fun in my career working construction around the world helping businesses, developers, and hotel owners with construction management and logistics and have extensive experience managing all phases of projects from infrastructure through closeout, contracts & budget management, purchasing and procurement, final commissioning and acceptance. My professional affiliations and volunteer commitments have been a true blessing in my life! As a father and husband it’s a great honor to be a part of such a great community!
O.J. Weiss is a retired Marine Corps Officer and current airline pilot. He joined the Mana Wildfire Logistics team in 2022, after serving 23 years as an F/A-18 pilot, among many other diverse roles, in the United States Marine Corps. Born and raised in a rural area of Northern New York, O.J. served his community through Boy Scouts, 4-H, school, and church organizations, before serving his nation as a Marine. O.J. always admired his father’s dedication to the fire service, as Chief of the Volunteer Fire Department, County Fire Coordinator, Fire Investigator, and Fire Fighting Instructor. Second only to his father’s commitment to training and organizing the rural fire services, O.J. was amazed by the resilience of the rural communities and the sense of community in managing the hardship of disaster response. He is excited to join the Mana Wildfire Logistics team, to apply his leadership and organizational skills, continuing a family legacy of dedication of bolstering rural fire services, enhancing community preparedness, and preparing community response. O.J., along, with his wife and two young children, are active members of the Coeur D’Alene, and Inland Northwest community.