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ASSE’s WISE Group Honors U.S. Navy’s Joy Erdman as One of 100 Women Making a Difference in Safety

Posted in on Thu, Jan 5, 2012

DES PLAINES, IL (January 5, 2012)The American Society of
Safety Engineers’ (ASSE) Women in Safety Engineering (WISE) Common Interest
Group has honored Joy Erdman, CSP, CIH of Falls Church, VA,  for making a difference in the safety, health
and environmental (SH&E) field as part of the WISE ‘100 Women, Making a
Difference in Safety’ project.  Women
from around the world and throughout history have been honored for their
dedication to protecting people, property and the environment and for going
above and beyond to make a difference.

Erdman began her career as a high
school teacher in Australia.  After
leaving her first teaching position, she returned to the U.S. and studied
occupational safety and health to earn a Master of Science degree from
California State University Northridge. Her SH&E position was to support
the newly formed Environmental Support Office for the U.S. Navy in California
in the 1970’s.  Since then, Erdman has
made significant contributions to improving safety and health for more than
500,000 full-time U.S. Navy military, civilians, part-time reserve officers and
enlisted personnel during her tenure with the U.S. Navy.

Erdman worked in London for four
years and is currently in the pentagon as the U.S. Navy’s senior civilian
safety and occupational health professional.
Erdman interfaces with leaders and managers throughout the Defense
Department to oversee safety and occupational health policy documents and
generates annual U.S. Navy reports for submission to the Occupational Safety
and Health Administration (OSHA). These policies address safety program
management as well as specific hazards such as indoor air quality, electrical
safety including arc flash, hazardous materials, fall protection, ergonomics
and forklift safety.

During her tenure with the Navy,
she oversaw development and implementation of a safety and occupational health
strategic plan and established two websites, one on safety in design called
acquisition safety and on safety success stories, both hosted on the Navy
Safety Center website and

“I really like being able to
improve people’s work lives,” said Erdman. “We need to do more to make time
spent at work safety, healthier and more valuable.”

Erdman has been a professional
member of ASSE for more than 20 years and is a member of the ASSE National
Capital Chapter in Washington, D.C.  She
is also a member of the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) and a
member of the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH),
and serves on the adjunct faculty at George Washington University Graduate
School of Public Health as a small group instructor.

The ‘WISE 100 Women, Making a Difference in Safety’
project honors women who, throughout history, have dedicated their careers to
promoting innovation in safety, health and environmental issues. The valuable
contributions of women to the SH&E profession have been recognized through
this project and later this year WISE will consolidate the profiles of all 100
honorees into a single publication, titled 100 Women, Making a Difference in the Safety, Health and Environmental
as part of ASSE’s (1911-2011) 100th

WISE was established to foster the advancement of
women in the SH&E profession. The group provides professional development
opportunities, evaluates the ongoing state of women in SH&E, mentors women
in the profession, provides opportunities for women to obtain professional
certifications and promotes the development and peer review of written material
related to issues specific to women in the SH&E workplace. For more
information about WISE and upcoming events, please visit

Founded in 1911, the 100-year-old Des Plaines,
IL-based ASSE is the oldest professional safety society and is committed to
protecting people, property and the environment. Its more than 34,000
occupational safety, health and environmental professional members lead,
manage, supervise, research and consult on safety, health, transportation and
environmental issues in all industries, government, labor, health care and
education. For more information please go to


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