September 2014

As chief elected officer of the Society, ASSE's president promotes the advancement of the Society and the safety profession, and represents ASSE before members, other relevant professional societies and various governmental agencies. Professional Safety shares his latest thoughts on the Society, the profession and its practice.

Read past messages in the President's Message Archive.

President's Message - July 2003

You, the member and customer, will be our focus in the coming year. We will be reaching out to gauge your needs in order to identify better ways to serve you.

2003-2004 ASSE President James "Skipper" Kendrick, CSP

A Vision for ASSE's Future

According to Charles Aiken, a professional member of ASSE's Central Indiana Chapter, Margaret Becker-Baumann, a member of the Central Florida Chapter, and Frouzan Afsahi, a professional member and newly elected Vice President of the Fort Worth Chapter, the future is bright. They envision a Society that will give them more practical tools, guidance and information. "Not everyone is an engineer. We need more 'how to' stuff in Professional Safety." "The Society needs to become more an advocate for the profession and provide greater resources for those in the insurance industry." "We need to provide leading-edge information to meet the new challenges and opportunities provided by 5S, Six Sigma, lean manufacturing." "There is a need for better meeting topics and more dynamic speakers at the chapter meeting level." "ASSE needs to provide the resources for us to link with the current management systems."

How do we meet these needs and bring these visions to reality? That's a difficult question to answer. As a Society, we are unique. As members, we are the owners of this Society. At the same time, we are the customers wanting and demanding the highest levels of service, only to turn to look at ourselves as the workforce who must deliver and produce those very same services. So, we must ask ourselves, how are we able to be of service and be a resource to each of our varied members? How do we provide services and products that are of value? How do we leverage the uniqueness of ASSE to bring this about?

To differentiate ourselves-to cut through the clutter so that others will want to join, learn and participate-we must:

  • Ensure constant communication to and from members/owners and stakeholders.

  • Listen and act to meet those needs.

You, the member and customer, will be our focus in the coming year. We will be reaching out to gauge the needs of current and future members. As part of these efforts, we will conduct an expanded member needs assessment. From this, we will look for better ways to serve you. Additionally, as I did with Charles, Margaret and Frouzan, I will be calling members and prospective members to listen and gather feedback. Those of you who may not be reached by survey or personal phone call can share your opinions by writing to me in care of ASSE headquarters, or by sending an e-mail to me at

ASSE continues to move forward with unswerving values of excellence in performance, and of operating in an ethical manner that is worthy of your trust and that puts the needs of our members and our profession first at all times. To ensure our future success, we are committed to making knowledge- and fact-based decisions that have strategic relevance. We will continue to foster trust throughout the organization, provide a nimble infrastructure and remain keenly aware of the ethical implications of our actions. In addition, we will strive to become more businesslike and to satisfy our customers while maintaining our identity as members and as an organization.

Through these collective efforts, we will develop a sound strategy that will allow us to better evaluate our capacity to provide you with the value and services expected from your investment of time and membership dues. To reach our vision and secure our future, we ask and seek your active participation.

James "Skipper" Kendrick, CSP