Driving Forces: Sports Celebrities Part of NSC Draw

As the largest safety gathering in the United States, NSC's annual Congress & Expo can always be counted on to draw the top names in safety and health, and this year's show in Orlando, Fla., is no different.

Already, after just a day and a half of presentations and activities, attendees have had the chance to hear from acting OSHA chief Jordan Barab, former OSHA head John Henshaw, NIOSH Director Dr. John Howard, U.S. Marine Corps Safety Director Col. James Grace, Walt Disney Park & Resorts Chief Safety Officer Greg Hale, and other luminaries. But as is also not unusual, standouts from different fields also are on hand here at the Orange County Convention Center, adding their star power to the event and, to fans at least, giving it even more appeal.

There may well be others, but so far we've noted two stars from the world of sports here to do their part to drive safety as only they can. And they are two very different types of drivers.

Annika Sorenstam, the most dominant player in women's golf, paid a visit to the Safety Products Inc. booth (#1619) for an autograph session on Monday afternoon. As Lakeland, Fla.-based SPI notes, Sorenstam has, throughout her storied career, rewritten the LPGA and Ladies European Tour record books, won countless awards and events, and brought unprecedented attention to women's golf. She was on hand not only to attract attention to SPI's offerings but also to let people know about the golf school she now heads in nearby Reunion, Fla., called The Annika Academy. (She even has a Web site: www.theannikaacademy.com.) In addition to having the owner of the title "Lowest Score by any Female in a Single Round" (with a score of 59) at the booth, SPI has been making the most of its space on the Expo floor, offering attendees a chance at drawings for a 42" TV, a FibreMetal by Honeywell Spirit of America hard hat, and a new FMX welding helmet, which the company will give away Wednesday.

Meanwhile, race car driver Frank Kimmel is slated to be at Ansell's booth (#1826) today at 3 p.m. The nine-time ARCA racing champion will be signing autographs and attracting attention to the Red Bank, N.J.-based manufacturer's wide offerings of surgical, examination, industrial, and household gloves, protective clothing, and condoms.

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