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Baltimore Meeting to Bring Together Public Health and Highway Safety Communities
GHSA's Annual Meeting, August 26-29 in Baltimore, will explore highway safety from the public health perspective, focusing on how to apply successes in public health to highway safety. Other topics include how highway safety professionals can work more closely with the public health community and how highway safety can become a top priority in that community.
Monday’s keynote session features U.S. Deputy Transportation Secretary John Porcari. As Deputy Secretary, Porcari is the Department of Transportation’s chief operating officer, with responsibility for day-to-day operations of the 10 modal administrations and the work of more than 55,000 DOT employees nationwide and overseas. Porcari is no stranger to Baltimore, as he previously served two stints as Maryland’s Secretary of Transportation, overseeing a host of areas including the state’s highway safety program. Porcari will be joined by Dr. Linda Degutis, Director of the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Dr. Degutis’ research covers issues related to alcohol and injury, with a particular focus on interventions and policy issues.
Tuesday’s general session brings together three leaders in the public health community who will share their expertise. These speakers are: Dr. Carolyn Cumpsty Fowler, Assistant Professor and Evaluation Coordinator, Johns Hopkins Center for Injury Research and Policy; Dr. Georges Benjamin, Executive Director for the American Public Health Association; and Dr. Flaura Winston, Scientific Director, Center for Injury Research and Prevention at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.
Tuesday will also feature the presentation of GHSA’s Annual Highway Safety Awards. Awards are presented for lifetime achievement, public service and for specific achievements during 2011. The Awards Luncheon is sponsored by The Allstate Foundation.
Wednesday’s closing luncheon features author and commentator Tom Vanderbilt. While he is perhaps best known as the author of the New York Times bestseller Traffic: Why We Drive the Way We Do (and What It Says About Us), he will be speaking about his recent work advocating for enhancing pedestrian safety and access as a way to combat obesity.
Between general sessions, 16 workshops will be held on a variety of highway safety issues, including:
- “Emerging Trends in Impaired Driving”
- “It Won’t Happen to Me: How Enforcement and Public Health Can Address Teen Driving”
- “Highway Safety and Academia: A Winning Partnership”
- “Tweet, Tweet: Communicating in the Digital Age”
- “Grantee Workshop: Working with Your State Highway Safety Office”
While the days of the Annual Meeting will be full with business, the evenings offer opportunities for networking. Sunday Night’s Opening Reception, sponsored by State Farm™, is being held at the Maryland Historical Society. This is the state’s oldest continually operating cultural intuition. Its special exhibit commemorating the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812 and Maryland’s role in the war was recently highlighted in The Washington Post.
The last day to register online for the GHSA Annual Meeting is August 17. Conference materials are located at www.ghsa.org.