Veteran’s Emergency Technical Services (VETS), Owner
Jim Kniss was raised in West Covina, CA (Second Generation So. Cal resident), then moved to Santa Barbara after the military in 1975. He settled in Ventura in 1980 and months later, Jim started with the Ventura County Public Works agency as a surveyor-in-training. Shortly after being hired he transferred to the Mapping Department due to severe reductions in the survey needs of the county. While working there, Jim helped develop the GIS (Geographical Information System) basemap that is used by all county departments for spatial awareness and decision making. In 1995, Jim moved to the Ventura County Fire Department as the GIS analyst whom is primarily responsible for the integrity of the 911 centerline used for emergency response. While with the fire department, Jim responded to over 50 large scale fires, floods, landslides, and Hurricane Katrina as a GIS specialist. Jim retired from the county in 2008 and started Veteran’s Emergency Technical Services, Inc. (VETS) which provides mapping and infrared analysis during emergency operations throughout California. Jim has witnessed firsthand the tragedies of wildfires across the west and is passionate about making our communities as safe and as prepared as possible for these devastating events. He believes the Central Ventura County Fire Safe Council is a forward looking group of volunteers focused on making our community as fire resistant as we can.