Meet Our Leaders

The Association Board of Directors consists of practitioners and educators that are leaders in the safe patient handling industry. They have emerged as premier professionals in the field and have provided knowledge and best practices for application in the workplace.

ASPHP Executive Officers


Kielich_headshotRenee Kielich, RN, CSPHP
Program and Services Director

Renee has a variety of experience in Healthcare including direct patient care and Leadership/Management roles in Critical Care, Occupational Health, Workers Compensation and Loss Prevention.  Her accomplishments include implementing a successful SPHM program throughout a four hospital system during a major construction project.   The project incorporated SPHM into the design of the hospital and throughout the planning process. In her current role she assists facilities with program & policy development, program implementation recommendations, education plans and measuring performance.  She has a special interest in integrating a change in practice at the bedside by looking at the cultural components needed at the organizational level for successful SPHM programming.

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Patti WawzynieckiPatti Wawzyniecki,  MS, CSPHP
Safety Programs Manager
HoverTech International

Patti Wawzyniecki has 25 years’ experience in employee health and safety as an Industrial Hygienist and Ergonomist. She has held positions at OSHA, aerospace manufacturers and a university health and research center.  Patti became a certified safe patient handling professional in 2012, and has spoken on safe patient handling at state and national conferences.  Patti has also been an instructor in the principles of lean manufacturing and patient safety. Patti has held the designation of CIH (Certified Industrial Hygienist) in her early years working as an industrial hygienist.

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Charlotte Lynch, MS, RN, CNS, CSPHP
Retired Safe Patient Handling Coordinator
Dayton VA Medical Center

Charlotte Lynch is a Clinical Nurse Specialist and has 34 years experience as a Registered Nurse. She has worked as a clinician and an administrator in acute care settings, nursing home venues and residential treatment facilities. She currently is the SPH Coordinator at the Dayton, Ohio VA Medical Center. She has held that position for 4 years. Charlotte has chaired the VHA Bariatric Workgroup and is revising the Bariatric toolkit for the VHA. She was an active member in developing and presenting the First Annual, 2012, Unit Peer Leader National conference in Orlando. She presented several classes on SPH and the bariatric patient. She is currently participating in the NIOSH study “Best Practices for Bariatric Patient Handling”. She is an active member in an Expert Panel that is evaluating patient safety issues related to SPHM.

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KelseyMcCoskey - ASPHP

Kelsey McCoskey, MS, OTR/L, CPE, CSPHP
Ergonomist, Army Public Health Center Ergonomics Program

Kelsey McCoskey has been an ergonomist with the Army Public Health Center for 15 years. In addition to performing applied research projects, site assessments and handling regulatory issues, she is responsible for conducting training courses and the development and assessment of ergonomic programs. Her primary areas of interest include healthcare ergonomics and safe patient handling and mobility (SPHM), especially the implementation of SPHM programs. Ms. McCoskey earned her Lean Six Sigma green belt certification in 2013. Ms. McCoskey earned a BA from the University of Delaware and a MS in occupational therapy from Shenandoah University. She is adjunct faculty at the Uniformed Service University of Health Sciences. She is a Certified Professional Ergonomist and a Certified Safe Patient Handling Professional.

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ASPHP Board Members

Colin Brigham Photo 01092015Colin Brigham, CIH, CSP, CPE, CPEA, CSPHP, FAIHA
Vice President
1 Source Safety & Health, Inc.

Colin Brigham has over 44 years of experience in the safety and health field and has assisted healthcare systems develop and implement safe patient handling and mobility programs since 1989. In his current position as Vice President, Safety Management and Ergonomics with 1Source Safety and Health, Inc., Colin helps to manage the provision of safety and health services of client companies in the healthcare sector, the construction industry, general industry and the public sector. This has included ergonomics and safe patient handling and mobility program development, implementation and improvement for a great many employers.

Colin is Past President of the ASPHP, serving as Board Governance Chair and as Website Legislative Updates Subcommittee Chair. He taught Ergonomics in the Masters in Environmental Health program at Temple University and serves on the Ergonomics Committee of the AIHA, previously as Chair. He was one of the contributors in the development of the Safe Patient Handling and Mobility Interprofessional National Standards, serving as a sub-group chair and co-presented an ANA webinar on the standard. He has developed and presented at safe patient handling seminars since 1991 and has written numerous articles.

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Scott Cormier 2Scott Cormier
Medxcel Facilities Management

Scott oversees Emergency Management, Environment of Care, and Safety for Medxcel Facilities Management. Scott also co-chairs the Healthcare and Public Health Sector Coordinating Council, a part of the federal critical infrastructure program, and co-chairs a healthcare and public health cyber security workgroup. He has published a number of articles on hospital preparedness and influenza, and lectured at national and international conferences.   Scott was Senior Director of Emergency Preparedness & Management at Hospital Corporation of America (HCA). He also worked with the Defense Intelligence Agency, Office for Counter-Proliferation. He has over 36 years of emergency management, public safety, and military experience.

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Elizabeth FurlongElizabeth Furlong, PhD, JD, RN
Associate Professor Emerita, Center for Health Policy and Ethics
Creighton University

Dr. Beth Furlong has a M.S. in Community Health Nursing, a PhD in Political Science, and a Juris Doctorate. Her study of emphasis in Political Science was Health Policy with her dissertation being on Agenda Setting and the National Institute of Nursing Research. Beth has a passion for addressing concerns of those individuals and populations made vulnerable. This interest was forged early in her nursing journey as a Peace Corps Volunteer in rural village South India. She taught Public Health Nursing (PHN) for four and one half decades. Service has been a consistent theme in her life and has most frequently taken the path of affecting public and private sector policy.   She taught Ethics in three post-Soviet countries (the Republic of Georgia, Azerbaijan and Lithuania) at the request of the Open Society Foundation. She has had the opportunity to have two Fulbright Association Fellowships, one of which was teaching PHN in two Hungarian universities.

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Susan GallagherSusan Gallagher, PhD, MSN, MA, RN, CBN, HCRM, CSPHP
Senior Clinical Advisor

Celebration Institute

Susan Gallagher, is a trained wound ostomy continence nurse, certified bariatric nurse, health care risk manager and certified safe patient handling professional. She has certificates in Six Sigma-Health Care and Six Sigma LEAN. Susan holds a masters degree in nursing, a masters degree in religion and social ethics, and a PhD in policy ethics. She is a recognized expert in safety and outcomes with emphasis on bariatrics, skin/wound care, safe patient handling and mobility, and loss control. She lectures internationally and has authored over 200 articles, books or book chapters. Her professional objective is to assist organizations capture quality and sustainability through customer sensitive initiatives, supported by quantitative performance improvement outcomes.

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Edward HallEdward Hall, MS, CSP, CSPHP 

Ed serves as Chief Executive of Strategic Risk Ventures for The Risk Authority Stanford. With over 20 years of diverse risk and insurance management experience, Ed is an authority in managing risks in healthcare and industrial sectors. He served as the Director for Managing Risk Enterprise-wide for self-insured Workers Compensation and Medical Malpractice trust for many years. He is nationally recognized for his development of innovative loss control risk management programs which have led to dramatic increases in both patient safety and financial savings. His knowledge and leadership helped Stanford Health Care receive the “Best Practice Award” for safe patient handling. Ed received a BS in Fire and Safety Engineering and an MS in Loss Prevention and Safety from Eastern Kentucky University and is also a Certified Safety Professional (CSP).

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Valerie KelleherValerie Kelleher

Valerie Kelleher began her career as the owner of a typesetting company. Later she went to work for Harvard University, Office of the University Publisher, first as the manager of the Desktop Publishing Department, and a short time later also taking over the Art Department. For a short time, she consulted with clients in filling their own desktop needs, including the Health Effects Institute, Harvard University Law School and Harvard University Business School.

In 1998 she began her work with the Department of Veterans Affairs in Boston, and a short time later was recruited to move to Tampa to work with Dr. Audrey Nelson at the VISN 8 Patient Safety Center of Inquiry (PSCI) in Tampa, FL. Her job there includes working with various stakeholder groups to identify their SPHM issues, and helping craft tools to assist in building and sustaining programs. She coordinates the annual Safe Patient Handling and Mobility conferences.

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Director of SPHM Market Development

Dee Kumpar is a Registered Nurse and the Director of SPHM Market Development at Hill-Rom. Previous roles include Corporate Risk Management, Workers Compensation Review, L&D, and Surgery. Dee received her MBA from Marylhurst University, and her BSN and Lean Healthcare Certification from the University of Michigan.  She is a Certified Safe Patient Handling Professional through the ASPHP; an active member of ANA, ASHRM, AORN, Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society. Dee is a national speaker and published author.

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Mary Willa MatzMary Matz, MSPH, CPE, CSPHP
Patient Care Ergonomic Solutions, LLC

Mary Matz is a board certified professional ergonomist and an internationally recognized expert in patient care ergonomics. For over 15 years, Ms. Matz researched, developed, implemented, and sustained the Veterans Health Administration’s (VHA) national Safe Patient Handling and Mobility (SPHM) Program in 153 VA facilities, bringing national recognition to the VA Program while she also provided consultation to the DoD, non-governmental entities, and international organizations.  She is a well-known author on SPHM and was responsible for inclusion of SPH design criteria in the 2010 National Guidelines for Design and Construction of Health Care Facilities.  Ms. Matz co­-leads the International Panel on Patient Handling Ergonomics.  She provided her expertise as chair of the American Nurses Association (ANA) National SPHM Standards Development Task Force and as a member the Association of Safe Patient Handling Professionals Board.

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Vicki MissarVicki  Missar,  MS, CPE, SSBB, CSPHP, CHSP|
Associate Director, Global RiskConsulting

Vicki’s current responsibilities include developing and executing client driven solutions that reduce risk and elevate workplace productivity, wellness and workforce optimization through proven integrated health, wellbeing and safety strategies. Vicki recently joined the faculty at Harvard School of Public Health as a Guest Lecturer in their Workplace Work, Health, and Well-Being: Integrating Wellness and Occupational Health and Safety in the Workplace Seminar.  At Aon, Vicki works with global, multinational and US-based companies using Aon’s Strategic Improvement Platform to drive injury reduction and ultimately cost savings through workforce transformation programs for the 21st century.

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Price CarysCarys Price, PT, MS, CSPHP, CEAS II
Retired Director of Employee Injury and Prevention and SPH
Christiana Care Health System

Carys Price initiated and developed the Safe Patient Handling program at Christiana Care Health System, based on sustained education, and continuous performance improvement. Prior to this, Carys was director of Physical Therapy at the same facility, a position that included oversight of two acute care departments as well as acute rehab, outpatient services and a long term care facility. She started as a Physical Therapist at Bryn Mawr Rehabilitation Hospital in Malvern, PA., where she also served as an adjunct faculty at Arcadia University. Her background is in human movement studies, education and coaching from the UK.

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Robert WilliamsonRobert Williamson, RN, BSN, CSPHP, CWCP
Director, Associate Safety Risk Management
Ascension Health

Bob Williamson is the Director of Associate Safety for Ascension Health, the nation’s largest Catholic and nonprofit health system, and the third-largest system based on revenues in the United States. Bob’s role is to provide oversight to the loss prevention and associate safety initiatives for the 113,000 associates serving in more than 500 locations in 20 states and the District of Columbia. Working closely with Risk Management and Occupational Health at Ascension’s National Office, Bob plays a significant role in demonstrating the business case for employee safety programs.

Bob has a special interest in patient handling risks for bedside care providers. Most recently, he established a pilot program to eliminate patient handling injuries at Ascension Health hospitals titled SmartMOVES. This initiative was recognized at the 2008 VA Safe Patient Handling and Movement Conference with the National Best Practice Award.


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Association Advisors

Arun GargArun Garg, PhD, CPE, CSPHP
Director, Center for Ergonomics
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Arun Garg has over 38 years of experience in the field of ergonomics, conducting research regarding patient handling ergonomic risk and control approaches since 1991. He was one of the principal authors of the NIOSH Work Practices Guide for Manual Lifting and has developed ergonomic risk evaluation tools. In his current position as Director, Center for Ergonomics, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, he continues to conduct research regarding methods to reduce the ergonomic risk associated with patient handling.

Arun has: authored or co-authored 14 articles related to safe patient handling (SPH) that have appeared in journal publications; submitted 5 reports to sponsored agencies for externally funded projects addressing SPH; written chapters regarding SPH that were included in two books; and made over 22 presentations regarding SPH.

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Barbara Silverstein, MSN PhD, MPH, CPE
Research Director, SHARP

Barbara Silverstein, MSN PhD, MPH, CPE has been the research director for the Safety & Health Assessment and Research for Prevention (SHARP) program in the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries since it began in 1990.  Her main interests are in figuring out ways to prevent musculoskeletal disorders related to work, how to develop healthy workplaces, and evaluating the effectiveness of different prevention strategies. Barbara is an affiliate professor in Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences at the University of Washington and has served on NIOSH study sections and the Board of Scientific Counselors. She was a two-term chair of the Scientific Advisory Committee at the Institute of Work and Health in Toronto.   Barbara is a founding member of Washington’s safe patient handling steering committee dedicated to successful implementation of legislation in all Washington acute care hospitals.

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Certification Advisor

Guy Fragala

Guy Fragala, Ph.D., PE, CSP, CSPHP

Dr. Fragala has over 35 years of experience as an Occupational Safety and Health professional and is a national expert in the application of ergonomics to the healthcare setting. Dr. Fragala currently serves as the Senior Advisor for Ergonomics at the Patient Safety Center of Inquiry in Tampa, Florida and is the Champion for the Creating a Safer Environment Program for Joerns Medical. He has participated in many field research studies, investigating the benefits of an ergonomics-based injury prevention program for healthcare workers. Dr. Fragala has also served as an advisor to OSHA regarding the development of ergonomics programs, standards and guidelines. He has been a consultant to a wide range of American industries including many healthcare organizations. Dr. Fragala has been an invited guest speaker at numerous national conferences. His book entitled, Ergonomics: How to Contain On-the-Job Injuries in Healthcare, published by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations, has influenced much of the work today related to healthcare ergonomics and safe patient handling programs.

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The ASPHP Acknowledges