Houser, Kim R.

Mears, Smith, Houser & Boyle, P.C.
127 North Main Street
Greensburg, PA 15601-2403

(Work) 724-832-8700
(Fax)    724-832-2245

Web Site:

Kim close up image

U.S.A.F Academy 74 [60+ credit hours]
W & J College – B.A. Business & Economics 78
Duquesne University – Juris Doctorate 1982
W & J College – 32 Credits Psych. Masters 77-81

Greensburg Fire Department
     Deputy Chief – 1999 to present
     Fire Fighter since 1986
     EMT since 1972


Deputy Chief – Greensburg Fire Department (6 stations, 5 engines, 1 aerial, 3 heavy rescues, 4 special operations teams – 2300 calls per year) (1997 – present); Federal: Pennsylvania Urban Search and Rescue Pa. Task Force #1 – Rescue Specialist/Safety Officer; Pa. Region 13 Response Member. Dept. Captain (1994 – 1997); EMS Service 1969 – Present; Air Rescue and Search; Basic Engineering; Cave Search & Rescue; Washington & Jefferson College Grad Level – Psych; U.S.A.F. Survival Tracking Search and Rescue; Incident Command; Tactical Command; Public Relations and Government Administration; Air Rescue East – Rescue Technician; Westmoreland County Disaster Response Team; Municipal Risk Management; Solicitor: 150+ fire, ambulance, and EMS groups.

INSTRUCTOR: FEMA Safety Officer Instructor; U.S. Fire Academy Instructor; FEMA Incident Command Instructor; Structural Collapse; Arson Investigation; NFA Advanced Interrogation and Interviewing Techniques; Also Instructor for – PA Fire Academy, Bucks County Community College, Butler County Community College, Westmoreland County Community College.


  • National Fire Academy Arson Investigation, Advanced Interrogation, and Interviewing Techniques, Incident Command, Safety Officer, Incident Command at Building Collapse, Executive Fire Officer – Legal
  • Pa. Certified and National Registered Firefighter I, II & III; State Certified Instructor I & II, Fire Officer I, II, III, IV; Pa. E.M.T. – B


  • Pennsylvania Urban Search and Rescue, Pennsylvania Task Force #1 [Major Field Deployments]
  • Westmoreland Disaster Response Team [Major Field Deployments]


  • Deployment Exercise (96 Hours), August 1995;
  • October, 1992 (24 Hours); May, 1992 (24 hours); October, 1990 (1 week); March, 2002 (3 days)
  • Aircraft Loading USAF (6 hours) November, 1995;
  • Structural Collapse (2 days) August, 1996;
  • Structural Collapse [Oklahoma Simulation] (2 days), October, 1996;
  • Disaster Deployment Team Response, Hurricane Fran – September of 1996;
  • Demonstration – High Angle Rope Operations, Columbus Fire Expo, October 1996;
  • Structure Collapse [PennDOT Bldg.] (3 days) 1998;
  • FEMA Deployment: Dunham NCL Water & Structural Collapse Rescue, Sept ’99;
  • Disaster Deployment Team Response: W.T.C. New York, NY, Sept 11, 2001;
  • Disaster Deployment Team Response: Flight 93, Somerset, PA September 2001;
  • West Mifflin Wind-Shear Disaster, Allegheny County, June 2002
  • Pa. Strike Team Training (120 hours – Allegheny Fire Academy, 2003);
  • Katrina – Mississippi (9 days – 2005).
  • PA (HART) Helicopter Team Training (2012 - 7 days) PA Air National Guard.


  • Disaster management, heavy rigging, logistics, collapse stabilization, urban search, collapse medical problems, concrete breaching and confined space operations, technical & international communication systems, dogs and technical devices, and deployment exercises. (20 hrs.) Florida, 1991.
  • New York Fire Operations Tactics and Strategies Symposium, September, 1996.
  • International Disaster Management (25 hours), 1992; Tactical Search and Rescue Response, 1992: Trauma care in field, short helicopter rescue, infrared search techniques utilizing urban search and rescue marketing systems, confined space rescue tactical developing local/multi-district urban search and rescue operations.
  • Critical Incidents Stress Seminar, September, 1992
  • Bombs and Terrorists Techniques, November, 1992 – October, 1997.
  • Advanced Workers’ Compensation Litigation, 1994.
  • International Disaster Management Conference, 1994, 1995, 1996.
  • Legal Aspects of Managing Fires Service, April, 1994.
  • Litigation and Defending Federal Section 1982 cases, Municipal and Emergency Services Civil Rights’ Violations cases, October, 1996.
  • Incident Management Systems – Phoenix Fire, 1994 & 1998
  • Biological Disaster Response – Greensburg, July 1999.
  • Advanced Issues for Tax Exempt Organizations, 2001.
  • Multi-Discipline Approaches to Workplace Safety Incidents – 2008.
  • Arson and Fraud Insurance Claims – 2008.


  • Trial Lawyer experience in Special Fire Investigations, Insurance Issues, & Litigation, 1998 – present;
  • Trial Lawyer defending, representing, consulting for EMS (fire/ambulance organizations, including operational, employment practice, and malpractice issues;
  • Testified before the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Joint Committee on Volunteer Firefighter Retention in the Emergency Services, February, 1990;
  • Testified to the U. S. Fire Administration U. S. Regional Workshop on Volunteer Retention and Recruitment, October, 1993;
  • Developed curricula for the Pennsylvania Fire Academy “Legal Aspects of Fire Service” (1994);
  • Retained as Expert on Special Fire Services issues.


Speaker: State Fire Commissioners’ Conference, March, 1994: “Legal Issues of Emergency”; Trauma and Emergency Medicine Multi-Disciplinary Emergency Care – University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, presentation Quality Documentation Review; The Medical Record Use at Trial; April, 1996& May, 2001: HAZMAT Team Management Seminar: The Law’s Effect on HAZMAT Operations; Florida Disaster Conference February, 1996; The Technical Problems of Emergency Service Billing, March, 1996; Bar Association: Improving Fire Service Relations, April, 1996; - Township Supervisors’ Association: Improving Relationships with Emergency Services, May, 1996; - Department of Community Affairs: Municipal and Fire Service Relations (3) Fall, 1996 – 2000; Mutual Aid Ambulance Seminar: Q&A Risk Management Issues, April 2001; WBA: Avoiding Federal Civil Rights and Harassment Litigation (WCCC 2002); EMSI: Your Q & A on Trial (March 2003); WBA Avoiding Municipal/Labor Employment Litigation (Univ. of Pittsburgh 2003). WCDPS-EPCRA/SARA Title III- Facility Emergency Coordinator Summit September 23, 2008 “NIMS/ICS Performance Improvement Guaranteed.” 2010 IAAI Conference - use of "NFPA 921" offensively and defensively.

Contributing Writer: “Command Malpractice” Chief Magazine, August, 2007; “Firefighters Must Respect Constitutional Limits: Chief Magazine, May, 2008; U.S. Fire Administration, “Specialized Rescue Organizations: Operational and Legal Issues”; Pennsylvania Fireman and I.F.S.T.A.’s The Voice-article: “Use of Radios to Control on the Fire Ground: Command Made Simple” July, 1996; The Voice article: “Command SOPs: Myth v. Reality”, Spring, 1995; Pennsylvania Fireman “Municipalities at Risk”,  Nov. 2000; Pa. Fireman, May 2002: “Volunteer Fire Service Under Assault”; “Corporate Practices for the Fire Services,” November 2003.

Author: Manual “Legal Aspects of Pennsylvania Emergency Services – 1994” Copyrighted 1994

Panel Member Seminar: 2008 - Westmoreland SARA Summit “Why ICS Makes You Efficient & Safer in a Response on Site”
  2008 - Florida, Fire Department Safety Officer National Forum “Are You Ready to be a Safety Officer,” Panel Member
  2008 - Pittsburgh Expo Regional Fire Chiefs’ Panel “Challenges of the Fire Service 2008”
  2002 - Present “Fire Arson Investigation” and “Litigation Improvements” NFA
  2003 -WBA “Local Public Officials – Avoiding Litigation Risks & Costs”
  2003 - WBA “Employment Practices”
  1996 & 2002: WBA “Current Issues: Employment Law of Pennsylvania”
  1996 to 2001: Municipal Association “Improving Municipal and Emergency Services Relations”
  1996 - WCCC “Emergency Services Billing Issues”
  1995 - ESTA “Changes in the Fire Service”


Protocol Development of FEMA – Pa. Task Force #1:
            “Safety Officer Job Description”
            “Planning Officer Job Description”

Protocol Development of Greensburg Volunteer Fire Department:
“Command Officer Leadership Series”       8 hours
“Fire Command & Control – Skills & Techniques”  8 hours
“Incident Officer Training” 8 hours
“Fire Command on Trial” 8 hours
“NFPA – Maskman Skill Certification  (for Greensburg VFD) 40 hours
“Summary of Legal Aspects of Command” 8 hours
“Human Relations – Diversity, Harassment, EEOC Training Compliance” 4 hours
“How to Write and Use SOPs/SOGs/SOOs” 8 hours
“EEOC Compliance – Human Relations”  4 hours


CULTURAL: Tanzania, Philippines, Thailand, Japan, France