ASSP Hires New Executive Director

Jennifer McNelly brings 30 years of association, government, regulatory, and business experience to her new role. Beginning Aug. 16, she will work with the society's board of directors to execute ASSP's strategic plan for growth, leading 75 staff members.

The American Society of Safety Professionals (ASSP) has hired Jennifer McNelly as its new executive director, and she'll be on board starting Aug. 16. She was introduced to staffers this week at ASSP headquarters in Park Ridge, Ill., and will become the society's eighth executive director since ASSP was founded in 1911. McNelly brings 30 years of association, government, regulatory, and business experience to the role.

ASSP has hired Jennifer McNelly as its new executive director, effective Aug. 16. 2018.  

She will work with the society's board of directors to execute ASSP's strategic plan for growth, leading 75 staff members; the society's members include more than 37,000 safety and health professionals worldwide.

"Jennifer is a strong fit for ASSP and will help continue our growth and champion our new brand," said ASSP President Rixio Medina, CSP, ASP, CPP. "Her breadth of experience and proven success will be a key asset to our global members as we highlight the value of our profession, strengthen the society's position as a leading voice, and foster a collaborative culture of member engagement, performance, accountability, innovation, and service."

McNelly most recently was president of Indianapolis-based 180 Skills LLC, an online career and technical education company. Prior to that, she was president of The Manufacturing Institute, the nonprofit affiliate of the National Association of Manufacturers. She launched the national STEP Ahead™ initiative to increase the engagement of women in manufacturing and co-founded National Manufacturing Day™ to engage the next-generation workforce, according to ASSP's announcement.

It said McNelly served at the U.S. Department of Labor as director of the Business Relations Group and administrator of its Office of Regional Innovation and Transformation, is a University of Maryland College Park graduate, earned the Secretary of Labor's Exceptional Achievement Award, and was named among the 100 Women Leaders in STEM.

"ASSP is one of the most respected professional associations in the world, and I am honored and excited to guide the organization in executing its mission as a global occupational safety and health leader," McNelly said. "Sound safety practices are socially responsible and good business, leading to increased productivity, a better reputation and higher employee satisfaction. I look forward to working with ASSP's volunteer membership, exceptional staff, and dedicated board of directors to make a real difference for the profession and our members around the globe."

She replaces Dennis Hudson, who is retiring after two years as ASSP executive director and 11 years at the society overall. "I can't say enough about Dennis and his valuable contributions to ASSP and the occupational safety and health profession," Medina said. "His intelligent insights have helped position our organization as a thought leader and respected advocate for safer workplaces around the world. He will be missed. We anticipate a positive transition and are very optimistic about the society's future with Jennifer at the helm."

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