ASSP elections highlighted by Sullivan’s upcoming move to president

The American Society of Safety Professionals (ASSP), the world’s oldest professional safety organization, has announced its new leaders from the 2022 Society elections. All terms begin July 1. Christine Sullivan, CSP, ARM, will serve as ASSP president for 2022-23.

“Our Society’s strength is rooted in our dedicated volunteers and their desire to take on key leadership positions,” said ASSP President Brad Giles, P.E., CSP, STS, FASSP, GIOSH, whose term ends June 30. “Engaged safety professionals have always defined ASSP, keeping it vibrant and advancing worker safety and health everywhere.”

ASSP’s top elected positions – all part of its Board of Directors – are president, president-elect, senior vice president, vice president of finance and directors-at-large. Each is a one-year term, except for the three-year terms of the vice president of finance and directors-at-large. The succession of leaders from senior vice president to president-elect, and from president-elect to president, is automatic.

Following are snapshots of ASSP’s newly elected leaders, whose influence and contributions will help shape the Society and the profession while sustaining the organization as a global leader for workplace safety and health.

  • President Christine Sullivan, CSP, ARM, is senior vice president and risk control director at Sompo International. She has 30 years of safety experience and holds a bachelor’s degree in human factors engineering from Tufts University. Her Society honors include the Charles V. Culbertson Outstanding Volunteer Service Award and Risk Management and Insurance Practice Specialty Safety Professional of the Year. She is a past vice president of the Council on Professional Development. A member since 1996, she resides in Glastonbury, CT.
  • President-Elect James Thornton, CSP, CIH, FASSP, FAIHA, is former EHS director at Huntington Ingalls Industries, the nation’s largest military shipbuilder. He is an ASSP Fellow with a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering from Auburn University and a master’s degree in industrial hygiene from Texas A&M University. He earned the Society’s President’s Award and twice received the Charles V. Culbertson Outstanding Volunteer Service Award. A member since 1998, Thornton will be president in 2023-24. He resides in Hampton, VA.
  • Senior Vice President Pam Walaski, CSP, is senior program director with Specialty Technical Consultants, Inc., and an adjunct faculty member for the Indiana University of Pennsylvania Safety Sciences Department. She was a director-at-large on ASSP’s Board of Directors from 2018-21. Her Society honors include the Charles V. Culbertson Outstanding Volunteer  Service Award and Region VIII Safety Professional of the Year. An ASSP member since 2003, Walaski will be president in 2024-25. She resides in Templeton, PA.
  • Director-at-Large Steven Gray, CSP, CHST, is senior site workplace health and safety manager at Amazon. He has held numerous leadership positions within ASSP, including vice president, Council on Region Affairs. He holds a bachelor’s degree in fire protection and safety engineering technology from Oklahoma State University. A member since 2001, Gray has earned Safety Professional of the Year at the Society, region and chapter levels and received the Charles V. Culbertson Outstanding Volunteer Service Award. He resides in Virginia Beach, VA.

Joining these four leaders on ASSP’s 2022-23 Board of Directors are Vice President of Finance Linda Tapp; Directors-at-Large Maribeth Anderson, Tim Page-Bottorff and Daniel Snyder; and Public Director Ken Rueter. Jennifer McNelly, CAE, has served as the Society’s CEO since 2018.

Candidates for the board must be professional members who possess specific qualifications. The criteria include involvement in an ASSP committee or task force, a record of positive contributions to the occupational safety and health profession, support and understanding of the Society’s vision, and being an effective motivator who is results-driven. Find a complete list of the Society’s 2022 election results on the ASSP website.


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