Our Staff

Louis J. Vargo: Director

Lou Vargo (MS, CRNA) is the Director of the Wheeling–Ohio County Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency, where he has also served as Deputy Director. He has more than 30 years of experience in emergency management in West Virginia and Ohio.  Lou started assisting the Jefferson County Ohio EMA in the 1980s as a co-coordinator of Hazardous Materials Response. He joined the Ohio County Emergency Management as Director on Sept 1, 1990. He then appointed John Tagg as Director and he served as Deputy Director due to administrative duties at Wheeling Hospital. He returned as Director in 2008. Lou is the Director of the Ohio County Emergency Medical Service where he serves as a Paramedic.

Lou received a Master of Science degree in community health management from the School of Medicine at West Virginia University in Morgantown and a Bachelor of Science degree in anesthesia from the former Wheeling College. He has served as Director of Nurse Anesthesia for both Wheeling Hospital and the former OVMC.

Vargo is a certified hazardous materials technician and incident commander. Lou is certified in Basic Disaster Life Support and Operations Disaster Life Support through the American Medical Association. He is an American Heart Association Advanced Cardiac Life Support instructor. He has served as Fire Chief for the Mt. Pleasant (Ohio) VFD and was instrumental in establishing the Wheeling Fire Department’s Advanced Life Support program serving as its first Pre-Hospital Care Advisor. He has been an EMS, fire, and rescue instructor since 1978 and teaches disaster management courses, EMS, and hazardous materials response courses. He has co-authored chapters of the Ohio Victim Rescue manual in Heavy Equipment Rescue and Technical Rescue. Lou is also a member of the Executive Committee of the US Coast Guard Maritime Safety Committee in Pittsburgh, Pa. and a member of the West Virginia Health Care Coalition Region 10/11. Lou is a proud graduate of the first West Virginia course of the FEMA National Emergency Management Basic Academy.

Vargo was named as the West Virginia Firefighter of the Year in 1988, the West Virginia Rescueman of the Year in 1983, and received the West Virginia Department of Homeland Security Freedom Medal in 2020.

Deputy Director

A new Deputy Director shall be appointed in July.

Dave Weaver

Dave Weaver joined the Wheeling Ohio County Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency in 2010 as a Planning Officer and GIS Coordinator. He most recently served as the Mapper for the Ohio County Assessor's Office. Dave graduated from John Marshall High School in 1992 and from Wheeling Jesuit University in 1997 with a Bachelor's in Criminal Justice where he served as one of the first Student Security Officers.