AIHA University Virtual Conferences

As leaders dedicated to protecting workers, OEHS professionals are critical to achieving equity in the workplace. Take your seat at the table with the knowledge and tools you need to ask the right questions and advocate for meaningful change.

Join AIHA University this Fall for a highly interactive virtual conference focused on diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace through the lens of occupational and environmental health and safety.

  • Learn from subject matter experts on topics like microaggressions, unconscious bias, code switching, and workplace ally training
  • Analyze data related to job fatalities in minority populations and insights from reports on women in the workplace
  • Explore the latest legislative updates
  • Identify practical tips and tools for effective self-promotion

Instructors will guide you through real-world scenarios, facilitate collaborative discussion, share practical tools, and help you formulate actionable strategies to advocate for more equitable workplace safety.

This event is proudly brought to you by the following AIHA committees and volunteer groups:
Women in IH Committee
PR(IH)DE Special Interest Group
Minority Special Interest Group
Social Concerns Committee


From Monday, October 16 through Friday, October 20, two sessions will be held daily from 1:00 to 3:15 p.m. ET - including a 15-minute break in between sessions.

Can’t attend on these dates? Session recordings will be made available to all participants for 90 days post-event.

Monday, October 16

Introductory Session: Emotional Intelligence and OEHS

1:00-2:00 p.m. ET

As an OEHS professional, it is not enough to focus on what to communicate, but also how we communicate. Emotional intelligence is defined as the capacity to be aware of, manage, and express emotions, as well as handle interpersonal relationships. This presentation will provide tools the OEHS professional can use to become more aware of their feelings and emotions, understand the feelings and emotions of others, and manage relationships. Emotional intelligence can be an advocate in the effective handling of disputes, improve decision-making, and improve emotional and mental well-being.


Reginald J. Richards, DrPH, CIH

Reginald J. Richards, DrPH, CIH | Social Concerns Committee
Reg is the Global EHS Manager, Occupational Health at Meta Platforms, Inc. In this role, he is responsible for the development and implementation of strategies and programs to enhance the health and well-being of Meta’s workforce. Prior to joining Meta, Reg was a safety and wellness leader at Walt Disney World, serving at Disney’s Animal Kingdom and EPCOT. His experience also includes working at both the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Mine Safety and Health Administration with the Department of Labor, and serving in the U.S. Army as an environmental sciences officer. Reg holds a B.S. in physical sciences from Kansas State University, an M.S. in Occupational Health and a graduate certificate in Psychology from Purdue University, and a Doctor of Public Health degree from George Washington University. His research focused on the relationship between safety climate, trust, and perceived risk and their impact on the motivation of first responders to report to work during an influenza pandemic. He is a Certified Industrial Hygienist and a member of AIHA, the Society for Occupational Health Psychology, and the Society for Industrial/Organizational Psychology.

Advancing Workplace Safety: Addressing Job Fatalities in Minority Populations

2:15-3:15 p.m. ET

This session will encourage vital introspection, prompting us to assess our practices and policies for potential biases that may perpetuate unequal safety outcomes. Embracing our influence, we'll utilize available data to analyze job fatality statistics, gaining a profound understanding of challenges faced by minorities in workplace safety. From this foundation, we'll engage in empowering discussions about everyday actions we can take to foster an inclusive and equitable safety culture within our organizations. Together, we'll explore innovative approaches and amplify the voices of minority workers, striving towards a safer and more inclusive work environment for everyone.


Jennifer M.T. Hsu, MPH, CSP

Jennifer M.T. Hsu, MPH, CSP | Women in IH Committee
Jennifer has a solid record of leadership and activism with the Women in Industrial Hygiene (WIH) Committee and as a founder of Chapter Women in Safety Excellence (WISE) Committee for the American Society of Safety Professionals – Central Texas Chapter. Jennifer has been an active member of the WIH Outreach Subcommittee since its founding in 2018. She took on a leadership role as WIH Outreach Subcommittee Chair in 2020, Secretary-Elect while concurrently leading the Outreach Subcommittee in 2021, and Secretary in 2022 and now 2023. Through moderating the open discussion on Job Fatalities and Minority Populations, Jennifer hopes to open the conversation regarding this often-sensitive topic, promote engagement, and provide a platform for members to lend their voice and activism on issues related to this topic.

Tuesday, October 17

Unraveling Microaggressions and Unconscious Bias in the Workplace: A Holistic Approach to Worker Health and Safety

1:00-2:00 p.m. ET

In this session, we delve deep into the critical issue of microaggressions and unconscious bias in the workplace, with a specific focus on their profound impact on worker health and safety. Microaggressions are subtle, often unintentional acts of discrimination that can lead to a toxic work environment, while unconscious bias influences decision-making in ways that perpetuate inequitable treatment. Both phenomena have far-reaching consequences on employee well-being and safety, affecting productivity, job satisfaction, and overall organizational performance. This session aims to raise awareness, foster empathy, and equip participants with practical strategies to foster a more inclusive, respectful, and safe
work environment.


Eva Glosson

Eva Glosson | PR(IH)DE Special Interest Group
Eva is an industrial hygienist and researcher from the Puget Sound area of Washington State. Eva has 15 years of experience assessing a variety of worksites for occupational safety and health concerns and has studied occupational fatalities under a grant from NIOSH, including the prevalence of occupational homicides as the leading cause of occupational death for many women throughout the United States and across industries. Eva has a BS in Geoscience and an MS in Engineering with a concentration in Occupational Safety and Health, both from Middle Tennessee State University. They have also gone back to school specifically to study workplace violence under the academic umbrella of psychology. Eva has a passion for workplace violence, in a professional academic way, and hopes to continue researching this field and helping workplaces understand this hazard so workers aren't harmed from preventable violence.

Ivan Pacheco

Ivan Pacheco | Minority Special Interest Group
Ivan is an accomplished industrial hygienist with significant experience in mining operations and aerospace. He is from Utah and currently resides in Seattle Washington. Ivan has a true passion for industrial hygiene, all things occupational health and safety, and helping people and companies succeed. He has been fortunate enough to learn from other industrial hygienists throughout his career as well as collaborate as a member of the AIHA MSIG. He strives to help implement, drive, and sustain a healthy and safe work culture in all facets and is also an advocate for psychological safety in the workplace.

Embracing Authenticity in the Workplace: Understanding the Impact of Code Switching on Worker Health and Safety

2:15-3:15 p.m. ET

In this session, we delve into the concept of code switching and its profound impact on worker health and safety in the workplace. Code switching refers to the practice of adjusting one's language, behavior, and communication style to conform to different cultural or social contexts, often to fit into the prevailing norms or avoid discrimination. While it can be a coping mechanism, code switching can also lead to feelings of dissonance, stress, and mental exhaustion for employees, ultimately affecting their well-being and safety. This session aims to raise awareness, facilitate open dialogue, and equip participants with strategies to foster a workplace environment that embraces authenticity and ensures the physical and mental well-being of all employees.


April Melinda Clayton, PhD, MPH, CHMM

April Melinda Clayton Ph.D., MPH, CHMM (she/her/hers) | PR(IH)DE Special Interest Group, Minority Special Interest Group, Social Concerns Committee
April is a public health practitioner passionate about occupational, environmental, and animal health. She is an Environmental Science Officer in the Army National Guard and previously the Senior Research Safety Manager at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. She is a certified hazardous materials manager (CHMM) and has a PhD in biological sciences from Johns Hopkins and a MPH in occupational and environmental health from Tulane. She will soon pursue a degree in veterinary medicine at Cornell. She is currently the chair of the Minority Significant Interest Group, the chair of Biological and Environmental Microbiology Committee, the vice chair of the Social Concerns Committee, and the secretary of Pr(IH)de.

Wednesday, October 18

Women in the Workplace Report

1:00-2:00 p.m. ET

In partnership with LeanIn, McKinsey & Company published a 2022 Women in the Workplace report, which focuses on many aspects of women in corporate America. During this session, we will discuss elements of their report that highlight the growing importance of opportunity, flexibility, diversity, equity, and inclusion. Barriers exist for underrepresented groups, and we will discuss how organizational planning and employment pipelining is impacted when foundational elements of diversity, equity, and inclusion are not addressed. We will share insights from the report, and provide a deeper discussion on how to leverage findings from this report when discussing and integrating DEI initiatives into the OEHS profession.


Katie Stryker, CIH

Katie Stryker, CIH | Women in IH Committee
Katie is an assistant vice president of Risk Control at CNA. In this role, she is responsible for advancing technical skills and enhancing consultative services and resources within the workers’ compensation and auto lines of insurance coverage. Prior to this role, she was an industrial hygiene director at CNA, leading technical and consultative skill development in the field of occupational health and safety for the department. Katie is a certified industrial hygienist with over 15 years of professional safety expertise. She currently resides in Bloomington, Indiana and earned her Masters of Safety in Safety Sciences from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and her Bachelors of Science in Occupational Health from Purdue University.

Equitable PPE Needs for a Diverse Workforce

2:15-3:15 p.m. ET

The first element of DEI is diversity. But what happens when an organization is strategic in their hiring efforts to attract and employ a diverse workforce, but does not consider equitable solutions for ensuring the safety of these workers? Join this session for a discussion on how Melanie Adams, founder of Embher, a FR-clothing company for women, stepped up to the challenge of creating a product to ensure women can work safely. We will also discuss how to consider and plan for equitable solutions in your workplace.


Katie Stryker, CIH

Katie Stryker, CIH | Women in IH Committee
Katie is an assistant vice president of Risk Control at CNA. In this role, she is responsible for advancing technical skills and enhancing consultative services and resources within the workers’ compensation and auto lines of insurance coverage. Prior to this role, she was an industrial hygiene director at CNA, leading technical and consultative skill development in the field of occupational health and safety for the department. Katie is a certified industrial hygienist with over 15 years of professional safety expertise. She currently resides in Bloomington, Indiana and earned her Masters of Safety in Safety Sciences from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and her Bachelors of Science in Occupational Health from Purdue University.

Thursday, October 19

Legislative Updates and the Horizon: Discussing the Role of OEHS in DEI

1:00-2:00 p.m. ET

Join this session to foster a meaningful discussion about the present and future of DEI within the OEHS landscape. We will examine the current local, state, and federal status of DEI efforts within the OEHS field and the role AIHA plays in this context. Be part of the conversation that shapes the direction of AIHA's DEI efforts, ensuring that our community remains at the forefront of driving positive change in workplace health and safety.


Justine Parker

Justine Parker, CIH, CSP, CHMM, CPH | AIHA Board of Directors
Justine has over 20 years of experience in industrial hygiene, exposure assessment, occupational health, and global emergency response to occupational hazards. She began her industrial hygiene career at NASA – Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas and in the Gulf Coast region and an OEHS consultant. Her career in occupational health and safety includes conducting and managing assessments, designing health and safety programs, incident response, risk communication, and evaluating federal, state, and local compliance regarding hazard exposures and human health risks in manufacturing facilities, oil & gas, construction, hospitals, federal facilities, and private businesses. In addition, she brings expertise in microbial work involving mold, SARs-CoV-2, Ebola, and Anthrax risks. Justine is a Principal Science Advisor at Stantec ChemRisk in Boulder, Colorado and a current Director at Large for AIHA.


Riley Cagle

Riley Cagle | AIHA
Riley has been working in government and government relations since 2014, when he interned for the Pennsylvania State Senate. He began his career in politics as a Pennsylvania-based administrative employee of the Republican National Committee in 2020. After the election, Riley moved to Washington D.C. in 2021, and he has since worked as a legislative analyst, fundraiser, political director, intern for three U.S. Representatives, and a government affairs assistant for a national trade association. Riley has been serving as the American Industrial Hygiene Association’s Advocacy Associate since April of 2023, where he focuses on state and federal occupational, environmental, health and safety policy. Riley holds a B.S. in Public Policy from Penn State Harrisburg, The Capital College, where he served as student body president and was awarded the Dr. Dwayne A. Hilton Illumination Award for outstanding student leadership in 2020.

A Crucial, Under-Utilized Self-Promotion Tool for Women & Minorities - The Professional Portfolio

2:15-3:15 p.m. ET

Have you heard before that professional women and minorities tend to be less likely to self-promote compared to their white, male counterparts? Join this session to find out the reasons behind this gap and explore some useful tools to support your self-promotion journey. What is a “Professional Portfolio,” you ask? It is a collection of documents or artifacts that support and validate claims one makes about themselves in various settings such as job interviews and promotions. This crucial career tool will give you a practical way to promote yourself, help you stick out as a deserving candidate, and build a strong case when you are ready to pursue any type of career move. Come to discuss the benefits and develop one for yourself.


Isabel Bacarella, MPH, CIH, CSP

Isabel Bacarella (Zuclich), MPH, CIH, CSP | Women in IH Committee
Isabel is the Corporate Manager of Occupational Hygiene at Enbridge where she oversees the Industrial Hygiene portfolios of the liquid and gas pipeline, gas utility, and power/renewable operations since 2019. She also has an additional 8 years of technical and leadership experience in EHS Manager roles at PPG from the Specialty Coatings and Aerospace chemical manufacturing business operations. She earned her MPH from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor with a degree in Environmental Health: Industrial Hygiene and Hazardous Substances Management and a BS degree in Marine Science / Biology from the University of Miami. Isabel has been an active AIHA volunteer since 2010 including involvement in the Career and Employment Services (CES) Committee, Women in IH, and the Gulf Coast Local Section. Her most notable AIHA volunteerism contributions include serving in the 4-year officer rotation on the CES Committee, conducting various AIHce EXP (now AIHA CONNECT) conference presentations (e.g., Soft Skills in IH, Building a Career Portfolio, and Wildfire Smoke Standards, WIH Careers), and a member of AIHA’s Future Leaders Institute (FLI). Isabel is passionate about representation of underserved populations, such as women and minorities, within our profession.

Bill Nichols, CIH, CSP, CHMM

Bill Nichols, CIH, CSP, CHMM | Career and Employment Services Committee
Bill has more than 30 years of experience in the petroleum, healthcare, consulting, semiconductor device and semiconductor equipment manufacturing, and data center industries. Bill has served on the AIHA-sponsored Career and Employment Services Committee for more than 20 years and has supported the IH community by working with members and student members on career development, career enhancement, and job-seeking skills. Bill has also supported multiple local AIHA local sections serving as an officer or speaker, and has been an avid community volunteer serving in many capacities. Most importantly, Bill has been husband to his wife Becky for more than 31 years and together they have four (4) adult children.

Friday, October 20

Empowering Allies for a Safer and Healthier Workplace: The Benefits of Ally Training in the OEHS Profession

1:00-2:00 p.m. ET

Explore the transformative impact of workplace ally training on the OEHS profession. An ally is an individual who actively supports and advocates for marginalized or underrepresented groups to create a more inclusive, equitable, and psychologically safe work environment. In the OEHS field, allyship plays a crucial role in promoting diversity, addressing health and safety disparities, and fostering a culture of respect, collaboration, and creativity. This session will uncover the significance of ally training, demonstrating how it enhances the OEHS profession and contributes to the well-being and safety of all employees.


A. Michael Ierardi, MES, MS, CIH

A. Michael Ierardi, MES, MS, CIH | PR(IH)DE Special Interest Group
Michael is a Senior Supervising Health Scientist with Stantec ChemRisk in the Brooklyn office. He is a board-certified industrial hygienist whose principal areas of expertise, interest, and training include industrial hygiene and safety, exposure science, environmental health, and human health risk assessment. At Stantec ChemRisk, Mr. Ierardi provides on-site industrial hygiene support and sampling; conducts exposure assessments and dose reconstructions for a variety of chemicals in a diverse array of occupational and non-occupational settings; and routinely assists clients with risk management and risk communication strategies. Michael graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Environmental Studies and Hispanic Studies in 2013, as well as with a Master of Environmental Studies degree, with a concentration in Environmental Health, in 2014. He also graduated with a Master of Science degree in Industrial Hygiene from the CUNY Graduate School of Public Health & Health Policy (SPH) in 2020 and is currently pursuing his PhD in Environmental and Planetary Health Sciences at CUNY SPH. He is the current Chair of AIHA’s PR(IH)DE Special Interest Group.

J. Kanani Patricio-Young

J. Kanani Patricio-Young | PR(IH)DE Special Interest Group
Kanani is an Environmental Safety Specialist and an Industrial Hygiene Lead at PBS Engineering & Environmental. She is a highly trained and certified professional with experience in hazardous materials management, industrial hygiene, and environmental consulting. She has over 12 years of experience as an environmental health and safety consultant and accredited training provider in Hawaii, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington. Her participation in strategic planning initiatives began with owning and operating Kanani Environmental LLC and serving multiple Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) committees. In 2017, Kanani and her husband began mentoring rising leaders and young professionals across the Pacific Northwest and in 2020 created the first Inclusive Networking Culture for young professionals and rising leaders in Hawaii-Young Leadership INC-a group designed to foster an abundance of authenticity and leadership opportunities for all.

Closing Session

2:15-3:15 p.m. ET

More info coming soon!

Hilarie Warren, CIH | Social Concerns Committee

Hilarie Warren, CIH | Social Concerns Committee
Hilarie is the Director of the OSHA Training Institute Education Center at Georgia Tech, one of the non-profit organizations authorized by OSHA to deliver occupational safety and health training for all levels of workers and employers, which also administers the OSHA Outreach Training program for 10- and 30-hour classes. With a background in public health, biology, and political science, Ms. Warren served as an industrial hygiene consultant with the OSHA 21(d) Safety and Health Consultation Program at Georgia Tech for 15 years, assisting businesses throughout Georgia to ensure that workplaces were as free from hazards as possible and that workers, their families, and the community at large are protected from potential health threats. She has several areas of technical scientific expertise, including minimizing exposures in the construction industry to excessive heat/hot working conditions, heavy metals and respirable crystalline silica, and has managed several projects involving outreach to temporary workers, young, and those in precarious work environments. As the current chair of the Social Concerns Committee, she is honored to work in conjunction with, and learn from, other AIHA committees and community members to expand equitable access, share best practices, and deepen the understanding and definition of what it means to protect worker health.

Are you ready to showcase your organization’s commitment to DEI? We are currently seeking sponsor-partners to ensure as many people as possible are able to attend.

Check out our sponsorship prospectus to learn how you can get involved and help create more equitable and inclusive workplaces for all! Contact Laura Cilano Garcia, Program Director, Strategic Partnerships.