Tonya is the President of Responder Wipes and Florida PPE Services. Many years ago, while working for an architectural firm that specialized in designing public safety facilities, she became passionate about improving the health and wellness of first responders, specifically firefighters. She worked with researchers and chief officers in the fire service to develop specific design strategies for mitigating exposure to carcinogens and other toxins. Twice yearly she presented these strategies to fire chiefs across the country at a “Public Safety Facility Planning” seminar.
After hearing story after story of firefighters being diagnosed with cancer, Tonya and a fire chief from Texas used this knowledge to start Responder Wipes. The company provides on-scene decontamination wipes and other personal care products to the first responder community.
She has continued pursuing her passion for firefighter health and wellness by consulting with organizations such as “Healthy Firefighters–the Skellefteå Model,” the Swedish collaborative project aimed at preventing occupational health hazards among firefighters. Now adopted as the standard in 17 European countries, Tonya works with the group to bring the “Healthy Firefighters” project’s concise decontamination protocols to U.S. firefighters. She has also presented to groups such as the National Association of State Fire Marshals on “Cancer in the Fire Service.”
Tonya is the co-founder of Carney Strong Initiative, a non-profit dedicated to combatting occupational cancer among firefighters. Carney Strong Initiative donates decontamination supplies monthly to small, rural, and volunteer departments across the United States.
While Tonya is not a firefighter, she is no stranger to the first responder community. She was previously married to an Air Force Special Operations officer and her stepfather was a career law enforcement officer. The brotherhood and camaraderie she found there has served her well in working in the fire service.
President | Responder Wipes
President | Florida PPE Services LLC
Education: Bachelor of Science, Business Administration; University of Central Florida
@ResponderWipes (Twitter and IG)
@FloridaPPE (Twitter and IG)
@TangoHotel19 (Personal IG)
Here is the Lavender Ribbon Report - https://www.nvfc.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/Lavender-Ribbon-Report-Final.pdf
Here is “Healthy In Healthy Out” - https://www.wscff.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/Digital-Copy-of-Healthy-In-Healthy-Out.pdf
And lastly, here is the “Healthy Firefighters – Skellefteå Model” publication - https://www.msb.se/RibData/Filer/pdf/27621.pdf
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