Outgoing ASSE President Sends Final, Thankful Message

ASSE President Christopher Patton posted his last message to the society this month, noting that in July, following Safety 2010, a new slate of officers will step in to lead the organization. In looking back at his term and taking stock of his accomplishments, Patton's main message was this: Thanks.

"At Safety 2009 last June in San Antonio, TX, I shared with you my vision for this year," Patton wrote. “I told you that our first priority would be efficient execution of ASSE's strategic plan. The Board of Directors spent much time the past 2 years reengaging in the strategic planning process and ensuring that the Society’s strategic plan is focused and provides clear direction for advancing our vision and mission.

"I also noted that I would focus on four key areas:

  1. Utilize technology to add value for ASSE membership.
  2. Raise awareness about the value of SH&E professionals.
  3. Leverage our influence by partnering with other organizations to achieve outcomes of mutual interest.
  4. Execute and refine the new strategic planning process in which the Board of Directors has engaged.

"I am happy to report that the staff and volunteer leaders have far exceeded my expectations in each of these areas. We are more active in social media than ever before and are using it in new ways. It has even provided a tool for us to turn webinars into virtual symposia, which provide tremendous opportunities for networking while learning. We are reaching more of our members in ways that are more cost-effective for them and for the Society.

"We continue to communicate the findings from the value of the profession study. Our goal is to help our member SH&E professionals better understand what they need to know in order to effectively demonstrate the value they bring to their organizations.

"We have developed closer ties with other SH&E organizations as well. This year, ASSE assumed an international leadership role by becoming the secretariat for the International Network of Safety and Health Practitioner Organizations. We have also improved communication among the informal network of SH&E organizations in the U.S.

“And, as noted, the Board of Directors has spent considerable time engaged in strategic planning. We remodeled ASSE's strategic planning process last year and continue to refine that process. Society leaders will engage the House of Delegates to help us ensure we have a strong strategic plan that supports ASSE’s vision and mission."

In closing, Patton noted that his term officially ends on June 30. "Serving as ASSE president is the greatest professional honor I could imagine," he wrote. "I have benefited professionally and personally from the opportunity to serve all of you. On a personal note, I have recently started a wonderful new job. I can honestly say that were it not for the leadership experiences I gained through my participation in ASSE, I would not be where I am today.

"The success of this great organization is due to the hard work and commitment of many people, from ASSE's dedicated staff who operate the Society on a day-to-day basis to the hundreds of volunteers who administer our chapters, practice specialties, committees and task forces, groups that are the heart of all the great things we see coming out of ASSE, to the volunteer leaders on the Board of Directors, who are all so passionate about ASSE's success. To all of you, and to the entire ASSE membership, I say thanks."

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