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GHSA News Release

August 27, 2013

Contact: Jonathan Adkins
                202-669-9746 (cell)

National Highway Safety Awards Presented in San Diego

Hedlund, Texas’ Pence and Five State Programs Honored

SAN DIEGO, Calif.—Today, the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) presented its 2013 highway safety awards to two individuals, who collectively have dedicated nearly seventy years to addressing behavioral safety issues, and five programs focusing on the nation’s most pressing roadway safety problems at its Annual Meeting in San Diego. An awards luncheon was sponsored by The Allstate Foundation (

GHSA presented its most prestigious honor, the James J. Howard Highway Safety Trailblazer Award, to Dr. James “Jim” Hedlund, whose efforts to address impaired driving, occupant protection and many other behavioral safety issues, along with data collection and analysis, have helped save countless lives across the country. Hedlund held key leadership positions with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for 22 years before embarking on a second career as a safety consultant in the late 1990s. In that capacity, he has published more than 80 influential papers and reports on various traffic safety topics. Dr. Hedlund is currently helping the Transportation Research Board to coordinate the nation’s most extensive naturalistic driving study, which is expected to yield significant findings.

The Kathryn J.R. Swanson Public Service Award was presented to Terry Pence, Traffic Safety Section Director for the Texas Department of Transportation’s (TxDOT) Traffic Operations Division. Pence, the first sitting state highway safety office director to receive the award, was recognized for his leadership in helping to drive Texas’ fatality rate to a historic low and for his service to GHSA. Pence has spent his entire career at TxDOT and is lauded for selflessly assisting, mentoring and inspiring others in Texas and across the country.

GHSA also presented five Peter K. O’Rourke Special Achievement Awards for outstanding highway safety accomplishments during the previous calendar year to the following programs:

More information about the award recipients can be found at To request a photo from the awards presentation, contact Jonathan Adkins at, or call 202-669-9746. The GHSA Annual Meeting schedule is available online.

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About GHSA®:
The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) is a nonprofit association representing the highway safety offices of states, territories, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. GHSA provides leadership and representation for the states and territories to improve traffic safety, influence national policy, enhance program management and promote best practices. Its members are appointed by their Governors to administer federal and state highway safety funds and implement state highway safety plans. Contact GHSA at 202-789-0942 or visit Find us on Facebook at or follow us on Twitter at @GHSAHQ.