Society Develops New Military Branch

As the American Society of Safety Engineers continues to grow on a global scale, new opportunities for member networking are constantly emerging. In response to increasing demand from membership, ASSE has created a Military Branch under its International Practice Specialty (IPS).

The new military branch of the IPS provides networking opportunities for active duty, reserve, and National Guard members, as well as civil service counterparts, who work in the occupational safety, health, and environmental (SH&E) field. Military personnel are exposed to safety risks and issues that are not generally encountered outside military service, specifically risks and loss exposures, which demonstrates a distinct need for this practice specialty, ASSE said. Members of the new branch will be able to network with other military safety professionals, identify opportunities for operational activities, and provide a forum for open discussion about the unique safety issues present in military service.

Chief Master Sergeant Christopher M. Gates, United States Air Force (Retired), is the interim coordinator for the branch. With more than 25 years of active duty with USAF, 18 of which were spent in the ground-safety arena, Gates has had extensive experience working in safety offices, as well as the Air Force Inspection and Safety Center, before retiring in 1990. Jack Fearing, a certified professional environmental, health and safety auditor (CPEA), is serving as the IPS administrator and will assist Gates. Fearing is a retired U.S. Army LTC, a senior Army Aviator, and an Aviation Safety Officer. His last active duty assignment was at the U.S. Army Safety Office at the Pentagon during Operation Desert Storm.

ASSE notes its IPS covers thousands of topics pertaining to the occupational safety and health field with a global focus. The IPS publishes a tri-annual newsletter that includes articles on issues affecting international SH&E professionals, as well as editorial commentary from the administrator. For more information about the IPS, visit

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