ABOUT US

Sr Chaplain Ken Schlenker

Chaplain Ken is the Founder and Executive Director of RKM Crisis Team, dba CAREForce, a nonprofit 501(c)3 providing Crisis Training, Response, Organizational Development and coaching for community & first-responder organizations. CAREForce's focus is within first responder, veteran, education, healthcare, fait-based, community at large and business communities.

Chaplain Schlenker serves as an Assistant Professor, Director and creator of the Chaplain Degree Programs at Grace School of Theology, a fully accredited (ATS and TRACS) seminary located in The Woodlands, TX.  The degree programs at Grace range from undergraduate through doctorate and serve 38 countries in 8 different languages.

Ken graduated from Talbot School of Theology, BIOLA University with a M.Div. degree and from Southern Illinois University with a BA in Health Care Management. Ken served as a Corpsman (HM2) in the US Navy and has spent over 30 years in ministry--as a Care and Missions Pastor and Public Safety Chaplain providing crisis intervention services and training nationally.

Chaplain Schlenker is the author of the California Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) Law Enforcement Chaplain Curriculum in 2011 which was created as part of the POST Master Instructor Instructional Development Institute (MICC3) Training Program.  He is a recognized national public speaker.

Chaplain Schlenker is an instructor with the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation, International Conference of Police Chaplains, California Specialized Training Institute, Center for Domestic Preparedness, Homeland Security Indirect Trainer, California Peace Officer Standards and Training, Resiliency Science Institute, Inc., LivingWorks, QPR, National Council of Behavioral Health,radKIDS, Salvation Army National Disaster Training, and has presented at various other national and international standards such as the International Law Enforcement Education and Training Association (ILEETA).

Ken has been a guest speaker featured on radio and podcast such as KKLA on the Frank Pastore Show, KSDW and KWVE in Southern California and Grace Cafe Podcast in Texas.  He has also been featured on HeroTalkPodcast with his friend and mentor RodgerRuge. 

Chaplain Schlenker has also been a recipient of the Presidential Volunteer Service Award by President George Bush.

Ken currently serves as a trainer and Law Enforcement Chaplain with the Montgomery County Texas Sheriff’s Department and District Attorney Offices. 

He is a Diplomate for the National Center for Crisis Management and the American Academy of Experts in Traumatic Stress and is Board Certified in Crisis Chaplaincy, Emergency Response and Stress Management and is listed in the International Speakers and Trainers Bureau and the Directory of Expert Witness.

Connect with Ken at [email protected]


Scott D. Speight

Scott D. Speight is the Founder of the Peak Performance Leadership Training Center and a Chaplain in the U.S. Army Reserves currently on active duty in South Carolina. Scott earned his Bachelor of Science in Management from Troy University, a Master of Divinity degree in Chaplaincy from Liberty University and a MA in Marriage and Family Therapy from Texas A&M. Scott is a Diplomate Supervisor in Pastoral Supervision and an adjunct professor with the Grace School of Theology teaching Clinical Pastoral Education.  He is a certified coach, speaker and trainer with the John Maxwell Institute.  Scott is the author of Living Your Life in Peak Performance: Stop Playing Small. Scott has presented to a variety of audiences, ranging from large corporations, non-profits, small businesses and the U.S. Army.  Connect with Scott at www.scottspeight.com.


Sr. Chaplain Steve Ballinger

Steve was employed with the Riverside City Fire Department for 19½ years. In 1993 he resigned from the department, at the rank of Captain, to go on staff as an associate pastor at Harvest Christian Fellowship in Riverside , CA.  In 2001 Pastor Steve led a team of lay counselors from the church, in the aftermath of September 11, 2001, to New York City and spent 16 days at ground zero.  It was there that God began changing Steve’s heart from the pastoral-ship to chaplaincy. 

In 2002, Steve became a chaplain with the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department and was with them for 3 years.  In 2005 Steve began a chaplain program with the Riverside Police Department and the Riverside Fire Department at the same time.  He has been the lead chaplain for the past 12 years. 

In 2008, Steve stepped away from the pastoral-ship and began his own 501(C)3 chaplain organization.  Chaplain Steve is the Founder, President, and Senior Chaplain of Living Shield Ministries, which allows him to be a fulltime volunteer chaplain.  He is also lead chaplain for the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office, Southern Chapter of the California Concerns for Police Survivors (COPS), as well as a chaplain with the Billy Graham Rapid Response Team. 

Chaplain Steve has personally been involved with 15 line-of-duty deaths involving our law enforcement and fire service personnel.  He has responded to local, national and international disasters over the years. 

He is a member of the Cal-Fire Chaplain Corps, OES Chaplaincy, International Conference of Police Chaplains, International Critical Incident Stress Foundation (ICISF), National Center of Chaplain Development (NCCD), and The Counseling Team International (TCTI).

Chaplain Steve is an Approved Instructor with the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation (ICISF), and teaches seven different classes in Critical Incident Stress Management (Assisting Individuals in Crisis, Group Crisis Intervention, Grief Following Trauma, Pastoral Crisis Intervention I & II, Law Enforcement Perspective to CISM, and Strategic Response to Crisis). He also teaches a 40-hour School of Chaplaincy and assist in teaching POST Law Enforcement Chaplaincy across the state of California. 

His desire is to train up an army of chaplains across our nation so they can help others whose life is in a state of chaos. 


Chaplain (LTC) Ken Koon, US Army

"Chaplain Ken Koon is on a mission; a personal campaign to restore hope for all people.
Follow the leader!" Brigadier General Peter Madsen

In July of 2010 at the age of 47, Chaplain Kenneth Koon returned to military service. He alone, knew his true motivation – get deployed and die by enemy fire. A series of tragic events had put him in a tailspin of darkness and despair, the culminating event being the life flight of his third son after he was burned over 90% of his arms and half his face. Ken was broken from the crushing thoughts that Chad had been hurt on his watch; he felt responsible. 

It was his oldest son, MaCrae, a 19-year-old US Airman that saved his life when he boldly asked, “Dad are you thinking of suicide?” The moment MaCrae asked the question, Ken was filled with an overwhelming sense of hope. He was not alone; someone knew. A strong desire to overcome replaced the thoughts of darkness. It was a turning point for Ken that renewed the Chaplain and set him on a journey to save others just as he had been saved.

Since 2012 Chaplain Ken has conducted more than 800 successful suicide interventions. For five years as the Officer in Charge of Suicide Intervention he led the team that sustained a ZERO suicide rate in a Brigade covering Soldiers in ten states. Because of the success, he was called to a Command serving Soldiers in 40 states. 

Chaplain Koon is the founder of Armed Forces Mission and the Intervene Challenge. More than 13,000 individuals nationwide have participated in the Challenge gaining the skills to save lives.

Ken serves as the CIT (Crisis Intervention Team) Chaplain for Peachtree City Police Department and is a Chaplain in the US ARMY Reserves. He was inducted into the University of North Georgia Alumni Hall of Fame in 2018 and honored as the 2016 Trinity Awards Emergency Responder of the Year for his work in suicide intervention.

Ken is a Master Trainer of Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST), Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) and serves as an instructor for the CIT program for law enforcement personnel in Georgia. He holds a Master of Divinity in Education, and Doctorate in Counseling and was trained in Clinical Pastoral Education at Atlanta Medical and Piedmont Hospital.

He is the author of Listen Learn Lead (Courage to Ask Power to Save). In October 2018 Chaplain Koon joined the staff of Behavioral Health Link (BHL) as the Liaison for Community Initiatives. BHL manages the Georgia Crisis and Access Line (GACAL) on behalf of the state of Georgia. 


Rodger Ruge

Rodger Ruge graduated in 1985 from Sacramento State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminal Justice. Rodger began working as a Police Officer in 1986 for the City of San Rafael holding assignments as a patrol officer and member of the Special Weapons and Response Team (S.W.A.T.). In 1990, Rodger left San Rafael to become a Police Officer for the City of Santa Rosa where he held a primary assignment as a detective. Rodger also worked on the Neighborhood Enforcement Team focusing on street level narcotics, prostitution and gang enforcement in Santa Rosa’s most troubled neighborhoods. Rodger also became a member of the traffic division working as a motor officer and accident investigator. Ultimately Rodger was assigned to the training division completing duties as a training manager supervising thirty instructors and conducting instruction in all California POST perishable skills modalities.

During Rodger’s tenure as a training manager he was certified as an instructor in defensive tactics, firearms, emergency vehicle operations, Taser, tactical communications and dealing with emotionally disturbed persons. Rodger also participated in the prestigious California POST Master Instructor Certification Course (MICC). MICC is a yearlong program based in learner centered instructional system design. One of the many demanding requirements of MICC involves developing and conducting a 24-hour law enforcement related training program. Rodger chose to do his program on wellness, focusing on components of nutrition and fitness as well as a specific program for stress management and reduction of post-traumatic stress injury symptomologies and ideations for first responders and communications personnel.

Rodger is retired from Santa Rosa PD and is now the founder/owner of HeroTalk LLC. Currently he is using his skills as a master instructor to conduct mindfulness and resiliency programs for First Responders. Rodger is also a podcast host at HeroTalk.org focusing on building resiliency within the hero community of first responders and veterans. Rodger is also a certified Human Potential Institute life coach (CHPC) under the strict coaching guidelines of the International Coaching Federation (ICF) working with clients to teach, coach and empower them to their ultimate human potential.


John Avery

John Avery retired as a Sergeant from the Salinas Police Department after 24 years in service. The majority of his time was in the Patrol Division and held positions as a canine handler, crime scene investigator, latent print analyst, school resource officer, field training officer and street supervisor. He was also a member of the Crisis Intervention Team until his retirement in September 2009.

He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Management from St. Mary’s College, Moraga, CA, earned his Master’s Degree in Emergency Services Administration from California State University, Long Beach and holds a part-time teaching credential for the State of California. 

He is a graduate of the California POST Instructor Development Institute having attained Master Instructor status. He has been an Instructor for the South Bay Regional Public Safety Training Consortium teaching classes in the Field Training Program.  He is the author and lead facilitator for the California POST certified course “Preventing Law Enforcement Suicide - PLES”.

He is member of the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation (ICISF) and has received training in Peer Support, Group Crisis Intervention, Advanced Crisis Intervention, Line of Duty Death, Critical Incident Stress Management (CISM), Suicide Prevention, Intervention and Postvention, Resilient Leadership and is an Approved Instructor for Individual Crisis Intervention and Peer Support.  John has been an active member of the Georgia Critical Incident Stress Foundation GCISF and responds as part of a CISM response team.

He has completed additional training in suicide prevention and intervention having attended training at the “In Harm’s Way” Suicide Prevention Conference, the Georgia Suicide Prevention Coalition of Stakeholders Conferences, attended the National Police S.U.I.C.I.D.E. Foundation’s course on Police Suicide Awareness PLES, attended Traumas in Law Enforcement training, and is a Certified Instructor for QPR Gatekeeper training through the QPR Institute.  He is a member of American Association of Suicidology, participated on the First Responder Task force and actively promotes and teaches the “Breaking the Silence: Preventing Law Enforcement Suicide” suicide prevention program developed by the task force.

John has obtained his Georgia POST Instructor certification and is an Instructor/ Facilitator / Coordinator in the NAMI Georgia CIT program and a NAMI volunteer.  John is also a NAMI GA State Trainer for the NAMI Homefront program as well as a co-facilitator in the NAMI Homefront Program. 

He has affiliated himself with the Armed Forces Mission as a co-facilitator teaching Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST) and L3 (Listen, Learn, Lead) Suicide Prevention Training, has worked with the Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities (DBHDD) teaching the Question Persuade Refer (QPR) Suicide Prevention Program and works with Mental Health America of Georgia co-facilitating Mental Health First Aid (MHFA), Youth Mental Health First Aid, Mental Health First Aid for Public Safety, Mental Health First Aid for Service Members -Veterans and Their Families courses.


Dianne Krylo

Dianne Krylo lives in Buena Park, California with her husband Kevin.  They have been married 32 years and have four adult children and two grandchildren.  Currently she serves as a chaplain with the Buena Park Police Department serving the members of the department, as well as the community, by providing crisis intervention and spiritual and emotional support in a ministry of presence. She also serves as a chaplain with the Billy Graham Rapid Response Team deploying to natural and man-made disasters.  Dianne and her husband are involved in marriage, pre-marriage and family discipleship ministry at their home church.  They have served as volunteer coordinators with Family Life and the Weekend To Remember, and more recently they have begun to serve with The Remembrance Project.


Erin Runnion

Erin Runnion is the mother of Samantha Runnion and Founding Director of The Joyful Child Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, dedicated to preventing child sexual abuse and abduction through programs that unite and uplift our nation's communities in the protection and wonderment of all children. Launched in 2004, Samantha's PRIDE Neighborhood Child Protection program is the first initiative of The Joyful Child Foundation.

Samantha Runnion was a beautiful, bright, joyful little girl with a passion for art. Samantha's life was cut short as the youngest victim of the "summer of abductions" on July 15, 2002. Samantha was kidnapped from outside of her home in Orange County, California; she was found the next day, over seventy miles away, by a hang-glider in the San Bernardino mountains. The Orange County Sheriff Michael Carona led an impressive collaborative investigation with the FBI, nearby law enforcement agencies, the California Highway Patrol and the media to find Samantha and the man who took her.

Samantha's killer was apprehended just over a week later and has since been convicted and sentenced to death.

Erin is dedicated to ensuring Samantha's tragic death continue to be a catalyst for positive change; motivating concerned citizens to be pro-active in our collective responsibility to protect our nation's children from sexual abuse and abduction.

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