Golden West Humanitarian Foundation

About us

The Golden West Humanitarian Foundation is a United States based non-profit charity dedicated to the development of innovative technologies, training, and techniques that are used to enhance the global effectiveness of the humanitarian mine action community.

Our team has a wealth of Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD), physical security stockpile management, training, and technical experience. Golden West personnel are community-minded, highly qualified, and well versed in the challenges faced in countries worldwide.

By working collaboratively with governments, the UN, National Mine Action Centers, and our peer NGOs, we address the needs of the mine action community and strive to ensure the widest dissemination and the application of innovation to save lives.

Our founder

Joe Trocino
President and Chairman

Jospeh L. Trocino, President and Founder of Golden West Humanitarian Foundation, is engaged in the design and production of specialty products and services dedicated to the neutralization and disposal of landmines and unexploded ordnance worldwide. After military service in the U.S. Army, Manhattan Project, he was employed by the University of California’s Los Alamos Laboratory as a Research Chemist; Maytag Company as a Methods Engineer; and the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission as a Research Administrator. He attended the University of Iowa, and graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Chemical Engineering.
In a joint program with the West German Land Forces, he developed and implemented an anti- Armor Ditching System for NATO. Variations of this system were adopted by other countries for road cratering, bunker breaching and bridge demolition. He also produced new high-energy fuels and safety standards for the auto racing industry. For the oil and gas industry he pioneered and developed new techniques and systems for underwater pipeline ditching, wellhead severing, harbor deepening and oil/gas well production enhancement.
Under his direction, the Foundation sponsored a new approach to mine awareness education and training in which people are taught to recognize various “indicators” in realistic settings so as to avoid dangerous areas that contain mines or Unexploded Ordnance (UXO). Included in the “Indicator” Program is a simple system for identifying and reporting hazardous items to local authorities for disposal by local response teams. He also development safe and effective binary demolition systems for the disposal of landmines, UXO and live munitions.

Our leadership

Allan Vosburgh
Chief Executive Officer

Al is a Master EOD technician with over 50 years of experience in Munitions Management, Ordnance Disposal, Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD), Humanitarian Demining, Safety, and Technology Assessments and is a retired US Army Colonel.

Mike Trocino
Chief Financial Officer

Mike has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration CSUN and an MBA from Pepperdine University. He also has over 20 years of experience in non-profit leadership, finance, and administration.

Chris McMurray
Chief Operations Officer

Chris holds a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Administration, and has served in law enforcement for the past 27 years. During his 21 years with the FBI, Chris held a variety of posts in the United States, including administration of the FBI Special Agent Bomb Technician Program. Additionally, Chris served as the FBI Attaché at United States diplomatic missions in Canada, Ukraine, and Cambodia.

Len Austin
Chief of EOD Operations

Len is a Master Level, Explosive Ordnance Disposal technician with extensive operational experience involving EOD, Humanitarian Demining, and the render safe of Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs). His background includes training civilian and military personnel in demining and EOD operations. He is also a retired Master Sergeant from the U.S. Marine Corps.

Lee moroney
director of pssm

Lee is a Senior British Army Ammunition Technician with global operational experience in CIED, EOD & Ammunition Management. He has managed Humanitarian Mine Action Programmes in South Sudan, Lao PDR, Vietnam, Thailand, and currently runs the Golden West PSSM program in Moldova & Macedonia. Additionally, Lee holds a Masters of Arts in International Policy & Diplomacy and is an active member of the Institute of Explosives Engineers.

Mark Lasley
Chief of Training

Mark is a Master Level, Explosive Ordnance Disposal technician who has operational experience supervising operations in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Central America, and South Pacific. He has led successful operations in EOD, Humanitarian Demining, and the render safe of Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs). He is an experienced technical advisor on the safe demilitarization of ordnance for use as training aids and a Master Gunnery Sergeant (retired, 27 years) US Marine Corps, as well as the project lead for Solomon Islands Project.

John Kelsch
Thailand Country director

John came to Golden West following a thirty-year career as a Combat Engineer in the United States Marine Corps.  His experience with Program and Project Management of the US Marine Forces Pacific Humanitarian Mine Action (HMA) program and the Exercise Related Construction Program adds depth to the Golden West team.  His efforts ensure logistics and technical advisory support to the USINDOPACOM and MARFORPAC HMA program in Thailand and Cambodia.

Dr. Cj Cowlin
Director of academics and technology

Cj is a tactical academic with more than 30 years of Navy EOD experience. He holds eight graduate degrees, including multiple doctorates, and is a multilingual global expert in crisis innovation.  He has served in critical technological roles supporting the location and recovery of ROKS Cheonan ship in Korea, post-tsunami disaster response in Japan, and scores of large scale ordnance disasters. CJ is doctoral faculty at four major universities, helping develop next-generation EOD tools and inform strategic studies research involving Explosive Remnants of War (ERW).  At Golden West, he acts as the primary link between academia and field operations to develop, validate, and bring new ideas to the mass market.

Jim Shelstad
Thailand EOD TEchnical Advisor

Jim joined the Golden West Humanitarian Foundation in February of 2020, following his retirement from the United States Marine Corps (USMC).  Jim is a Master Level Explosive Ordnance Disposal & Counter-Improvised Explosive Device Executive Leader with 32 years of USMC service, 27 of those as an EOD Technician. Jim uses his knowledge and experience to build and grow Golden West Humanitarian Foundation’s Thailand Operations as IMAS EOD Mentor and EOD Instructor to Thailand Mine Action Center and the Royal Thai Armed Forces.  Additionally, he frequently provides Technical Advisor support to US MARFORPAC HMA training missions in Thailand and Cambodia.

Simon Morton
PSSM Technical Advisor

Simon joined Golden West in 2018 and currently serves as a Physical Security and Stockpile Management (PSSM) Technical Advisor. Before joining Golden West, Simon gained over 20 years of experience in ammunition management and EOD. Simon’s technical qualifications were gained from serving as an Ammunition Technician in the British Army in countries like the UK, Balkans, Iraq, and Afghanistan.  Simon conducts long-term technical support and training to national authorities to help adapt and implement International. Simon brings detailed knowledge and experience to the team.

Training Team

Adan Morones
EOD Technical Advisor

Adan joined the Golden West Humanitarian Foundation in March of 2020 following his retirement from the United States Marine Corps. He serves as Project Lead in Quang Tri, Vietnam. Since joining the team, Adan has used his EOD experience and organizational management skills to mentor and train the Provincial Military EOD team in Quang Tri.

John Healey
EOD Technical Advisor

John comes to Golden West with a combined 30 years of experience as both a US Army Combat Engineer and EOD Technician, including civilian law enforcement and EOD contracting time. With deployments to Somalia, Bosnia, and Iraq, John brings a well-rounded and experienced perspective to the Golden West team.

Bui Van Diep
Senior Training
Coordinator

 Diep joined Golden West in 2015, serving as an interpreter/translator.  Diep is certified to IMAS levels 2 and 3 and holds a Bachelor’s of English. Diep brings more than 15 years of experience to Golden West’s Demining Program.

Le Manh Cuong
Training Coordinator

Cuong joined Golden West as a translator in May of 2017.  Cuong brings many years or experience in the private, non-governmental and government service to Golden West.

Quick Reaction Force

Charlie Holloway
QRF Task Manager

Charlie retired from the US Army in 2006 after serving as an Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) technician conducting combat deployments to Afghanistan and Iraq. Following his time in the military, Charlie undertook several commercial EOD roles before joining Golden West in 2013. As the QRF Task Manager, Charlie plans and deploys teams within 48hrs to undertake short-term conventional weapons destruction and mitigation activities designed to reduce or eliminate threats posed by explosive hazards to civilian populations. Charlie has deployed on over 26 emergency response missions in 22 countries in support of the QRF program providing technical assistance to host nation officials ranging from emergency munitions clearance following unplanned detonations, disposal of excess/obsolete munitions, Physical Security and Stockpile Management, and recovery/disposal of unexploded ordnance threatening civilian communities.  

Mark "Toby" Tobias
QRF EOD Technicial Specialist

Mark retired from the US Marine Corps in 2005 after 20 years as an Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) technician with US Navy SCUBA qualifications and combat deployments to Iraq and the Horn of Africa. Following his service, Mark stayed within the EOD sphere and undertook various roles primarily in Iraq and Afghanistan before joining Golden West. As the QRF’s Senior EOD Technical Specialist/Team Leader, Mark is responsible for the on-site management of deployed teams of technical specialists who mobilize within 48hrs. Mark has significant experience as part of the QRF, having deployed to 26 emergency response missions in 21 countries.   

Explosive harvesting program

Khean Thong
Cambodian
EOD Manager

Khean has 18 years in the Demining, UXO, and EOD community, and is a Master Level EOD Technician. He holds a Bachelor’s in Business Administration and is the Senior EOD Training Officer at the Cambodian Mine Action Center.

Heang sambo
Cambodian HDRD
Operations Manager

Heang has a master’s degree in Business Administration from Build Bright University in Cambodia, 13 years in Landmine and UXO Detection Research and 2 years in Explosive Harvesting Program. He is an experienced manager, leader, and an asset to the Golden West team.

Design Lab

John Wright
Chief Design Engineer

John served as an apprentice mechanical engineering production technician and holds an honors degree in design engineering. John’s work experiences range from teaching maintenance of outboard engines to mechanics in the fishing villages in Sierra Leone to under-ice operations on nuclear submarines.  John has more than 40 years of experience in various aspects of mechanical and electrical engineering.

Tongly Mork
Mechanical Engineer

Tongly holds a Bachelor’s degree of Mechanical Engineering and has been working at the Design Lab for two years on the OrdHUB project. Tongly specializes in ordnance classification and information systems.

california office

Asia Johnson
Grants Compliance Officer

Asia Johnson is a UCLA graduate who began working with Golden West in 2013 as the Head Accounting Manager. Asia leverages almost a decade of experience in small business accounting and administration to maintain the highest level of fiscal responsibility.

Maggie Zavallos
Head Bookeeper

Maggie holds a BA in Humanities and over 20 years of experience working as a staff accountant. She joined the Golden West team in 2018 as Bookkeeper for the headquarters office in California. Her experience and enthusiasm is a great contribution to Golden West, particularly her efforts to ensure the finance department operates efficiently and accurately.

cambodia office

Reaksmey Chan
Accounting & Office Manager

Reaksmey Chan has both a bachelor’s degree in accounting and a Master of Business Administration degree. She possesses seven years of experience in accounting, finance, administration, logistics, and planning.

Gekhorng Sreng
Bookeeper

Gekhorng Sreng has a bachelor’s degree in finance and banking and a Master of Finance degree. These educational merits have equipped her well in her 7+ years working as an accountant with Golden West.

Manurith Sann
Admin & Logistics Officer

Manurith Sann has a bachelor’s degree in marketing and is currently studying for a master’s degree in public administration. He has multiple certifications, including a Bronze Medallion certificate from the Royal Life Saving Society of Australia. These certifications, combined with his experience as a swim coach, lifeguard, and administrator, have equipped him well for his work at Golden West.

Movichi Chan
RCAF Liason Officer

Movichi has numerous years of experience working with non-governmental organizations in humanitarian mine action across Cambodia.

Vietnam office

Mai Thi Tuyet
Administration Officer

Mai Thi Tuyet is an administrative officer with Golden West, and she is a great example of the leading ladies who work behind the scenes to keep the organization’s operations running down range. Her 25 years of administrative experience in various environments has made her one of the most important members of the Golden West team.

Lieu VU
Accountant

Lieu holds a B.A. in Accounting and an M.A. in International Trade in finance. She also has over 10 years working with NGOs on international developement.

Tran Thao Linh
Accounting Assistant

After graduating with a major in Accounting, Linh joined Golden West as an Intern looking to gain experience in the NGO sector. Subsequently, after proving her ability, Linh became a full-time employee in 2017 and serves as an Accounting Assistant.  Supporting both the HMA and Swim For Life programs from the office in Hanoi and on the ground in Quang Binh and Quang Tri, Linh values the range of experience Golden West offers, helping to ensure our work is carried out on time and under budget.

Our Mission

We’re committed to restoring and protecting communities that have been affected by unexploded ordnance. By leveraging our network of passionate, skilled individuals, we safeguard the lives and livelihoods of men, women, and children residing in areas threatened by poorly store munitions, or contaminated with landmines and other remnants of war. Our innovative training, technologies, and tools empower us to change the world for the better by helping people reconnect with their environment and stay safe from these post-conflict hazards.

Our Vision

We envision a world in which peace and prosperity dominates, and people can enjoy their land and natural resources without fear. By blending innovation with impact, we aim to build a collective of passionate partners who can help post-conflict areas become thriving communities. Our approach emphasizes affordability and sustainability as we work towards a world where humanity can embrace our environment and each other, free of the explosive remnants of war.

Contact us