We are dedicated to providing the best personalized service and resources to those individuals experiencing a crisis. Your call will be answered by a live person who understands the issues you are confronting. All call-takers are current or former first responders or work in the public safety/EMS field in Washington State. Confidentiality is protected by RCW 43.101.425.
Jay Hagen has been the Fire Chief for the city of Bellevue, Washington since May of 2018. Jay's 37 – year firefighting career began in 1986 with the Missoula Fire Department. Following his time in Missoula, he spent 30 years at the Seattle Fire Department where he served in a variety positions, from Operations and Fire Prevention to Training and Administration.
Jay received a Bachelor’s degree in Organizational Communications and Business Management from the University of Montana and a Master of Arts degree in Homeland Security and Defense from the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California. In 2007, he had the opportunity to represent the Center for Homeland Defense and Security as a Senior Research Fellow in Washington, D.C., advocating for the needs of state and local first responders. Jay’s dedication to excellence is reflected in his Chief Fire Officer (CFO) designation from the Center for Public Safety Excellence.
Beyond his professional roles, Jay supports causes that resonate with him, including the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Firefighter Stair Climb, the Muscular Dystrophy Association, and the Medic 1 Foundation. Jay spearheaded the creation of the Bellevue Fire Foundation which supports the department’s critical mission through the provision of equipment and education. Jay brings a passion for first responder health and welfare along with a depth of experience and leadership skills to his role as Chair of Code4Northwest.
Jay and his wife Theresa reside in the Bellevue community where they raised their two daughters, and enjoy daily walks with Ollie, their Bernedoodle.
Brenda Nelson is an Experienced Flight Nurse with a demonstrated history of working in the hospital & health care industry. Skilled in Ambulance, Life Support, Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS), NRP, ATCN, Neonatal ICU, Emergency Medicine, and Emergency Medical Services (EMS), Brenda started her nursing career in Montana after graduating with her BSN from Montana State University, in December 1986. She then worked at the Community Hospital in Missoula in their Level III NICU and later moved to the ED, where she had previously been the ER Secretary through nursing school.
Her first flight experience was in 1988 with a fixed wing program out of Community Hospital in Missoula. She moved to the Seattle area with a position in UW Medicine Neonatal Intensive care unit in 1990. She worked briefly in Stamford, CT in the ED of St. Joseph’s in 1993/1994 before returning to the Pacific Northwest and back to UW Medicine ED/NICU, and Group Health ED. She landed her dream job with Airlift Northwest in February 1986 and has been firmly planted here since then.
Brenda moved to the Assistant Chief position after 10 years and then Chief Flight Nurse position in 2011. She has happily been at Airlift Northwest for over 25 years.
Brett Burns is a highly accomplished Loan Officer and Regional Vice President of Directors Mortgage. With over a decade of experience, he has become a trusted expert known for his dedication, expertise, and commitment to helping clients achieve their homeownership dreams.
One of Brett's top attributes is his ability to navigate the complexities of credit analysis and unique loan solutions. He possesses an innate talent for evaluating financial data and determining creditworthiness, making him an invaluable asset to his clients. His knack for uncovering opportunities and crafting tailored mortgage solutions has earned him a reputation as a go-to resource for those seeking home financing.
Exceptional customer service is at the core of Brett's approach. He understands that obtaining a mortgage can be a daunting process, and he strives to make it as seamless as possible. His clients often commend him for his attentiveness, clear communication, and unwavering support throughout the lending journey.
Brett's financial acumen extends beyond his professional life; he is passionate about educating his clients on financial literacy and responsible borrowing. He believes that a well-informed client is an empowered one, and he goes the extra mile to ensure his clients have a comprehensive understanding of their mortgage options.
In addition to his impressive skill set, Brett upholds the highest standards of professionalism and compliance in his work. He is well-versed in the ever-evolving mortgage regulations and ensures that his clients' transactions meet all necessary requirements.
Outside of his role as a Loan Officer, Brett enjoys giving back to his community. He actively volunteers with the Code 4 NW group and serves as a member of the board.
Brett Burns's career as a Loan Officer has been marked by success, dedication, and a genuine passion for helping others. His reputation as a top performer, combined with his unwavering commitment to his clients and community, sets him apart in the mortgage industry. Brett looks forward to continuing his journey of making homeownership dreams come true, one mortgage at a time.
Sally has been an IT Executive primarily in the Financial Services and Technology sectors for over 30 years. Her experience with both large and mid-size companies has left her with deep and adaptive expertise with organizational operating models, internal controls, and risk management. Sally has previously served on the Board for the Association of Washington Business. Her passion for first responder wellness is rooted in the observations and experiences that have come as the wife of a police officer. She has served on the Code4NW board in various roles since 2016
Hillary McClure, Board Member: Ms. McClure graduated from Whitworth College with honors where she received her Bachelor’s Degree in Political Studies with a minor in Art. She then received her Doctor of Jurisprudence Degree from Seattle University School of Law graduating summa cum laude. Prior to joining Vick, Julius, McClure, (formerly Aitchison & Vick, Inc.) Ms. McClure practiced in municipal and employment law. Hillary joined the Firm in the Washington office in July 2002, and, in 2008 became a partner in the Firm.
Ms. McClure serves as general counsel to several police guilds/associations across Washington and has extensive experience in police law matters including the representation of officers during the investigation of officer involved shootings. Ms. McClure has negotiated and administered multiple contracts for many law enforcement agencies, both large and small, and has represented those agencies in numerous arbitrations and proceedings before the Public Employment Relations Commission.
Tami Czysz brings over three decades of invaluable experience to our board, making her an indispensable asset in shaping our organizations’ future. With a dedicated career spanning 32 years in the healthcare industry, Tami has been a beacon of excellence in multiple high-acuity emergency departments across California and Washington.
Tami's impact extends beyond the emergency room, as she has served as a flight nurse for an impressive 26 years in the ever-changing healthcare landscape of the Seattle area. Her commitment to air medical transport has not only saved lives but has also exemplified her unwavering dedication to providing top-notch patient care in critical situations.
A true leader in her field, Tami is actively involved in educating fellow flight nurses, sharing her wealth of knowledge, and fostering a culture of continuous learning. Her passion for advancing the skills and expertise of her colleagues reflects a commitment to elevating the standards of care in emergency medical services.
Beyond her professional achievements, Tami brings a unique perspective to the board, drawing from personal and professional experiences with the challenges of addiction. Her compassion and understanding of these complex issues make her a compassionate advocate for addressing the holistic well-being of healthcare professionals.
Tami Czysz, RN, not only embodies the highest standards of professionalism and expertise but also brings a genuine and compassionate approach to her role as a board member. WE are privileged to have her an as integral part of our leadership team.
Nick Is a recently retired sergeant with the Seattle Police Department, with over 30 years of tenure. Including tours in patrol, precinct detectives, Major Crime Task Force, Federal Task Force assignments, undercover operations including a one-year long term undercover assignment, Homicide detective in the Force Investigations Team that investigated all officer involved shootings for the department, Robbery, and Narcotics. Nick has been involved in lethal shootings and has been involved in countless critical incidents throughout the years. He is the recipient of the Medal of Valor, Excellence award (2 citations), Inspiration award, and Impact award. Nick has personally surmounted acute critical incident stress related issues and has now devoted his collateral time to helping other first responders through his work as a founding member and current Operations Director for Code 4 Northwest, founding the Lethal Incident response team for the department’s peer support team, over 15 years as a peer support team leader, and other outreach opportunities such as training, CISM debriefs, interventions, and general resource referrals for counseling and treatment. Nick has appeared in several news segments and has recorded numerous podcasts on subjects related to peer support, wellness, and treatment options for first responders and their family members.
Nick has created and provided training on topics related to peer support, police use of force investigation, wellness, and critical incident stress management.