Joseph (Joe) Korpi, CSP

Joseph (Joe) Korpi, CSP

About Joe

As a Safety and Health manager for Renewable Energy Group Inc., I spend a significant amount of my time training employees, creating training programs, providing support for the employees in our production facilities, enhancing the documentation in our safety management system, and overseeing our incident management software.

How would you describe your PDC experience or why do you continue to attend?

I love going to the ASSP Professional Development Conference with a pre-determined list of specific challenges that I’m looking to solve. Last year, I was focused on ladder safety systems, cut resistant gloves, and flame-resistant garment technology.

I enjoy networking and gather a great deal of information from knowledgeable subject matter experts, vendors, and like-minded attendees. The expo is a must see, where I can learn about new safety innovations being brought to market.

I also like to expand my experience further with courses that are offered before or after the conference. This is where subject matter experts dive “deep into the weeds” for one, two or three days.

The ASSP professional development conference gave me everything I was looking for. I left the conference with actual solutions and great ideas to implement at our facilities.

How did you select safety as a career?

I became interested in safety after working as a supervisor at a meat-processing facility in Central Iowa. I was placed in charge of a significant amount of people who had sharp tools and spoke various languages. After leading my first safety workshop, the plant safety manager said, “You should think about becoming a safety person.” Two years later, I landed my first safety position and began my career as a safety professional. I applied myself, earned a bachelor’s degree in occupational safety and health, learned as much as I could about this industry, and became very active in my network of safety professionals at the ASSP Hawkeye Chapter.

Now, I love making safety come alive for our team members. I firmly believe safety should NEVER be dry or boring. Safety is crucial to keeping our employees happy and healthy, and it is also vital to keeping our company productive and sustainable.

Why did you join ASSP?

I was at a local professional development conference and met Chris Murphy, former secretary for the Hawkeye Chapter, at the ASSP booth. He invited me to a meeting, that I really enjoyed, and I was looking forward to the next one. By the second meeting, Chris encouraged me to sit on some board meetings and run for the chapter’s Executive Board. During the next election, I ran for secretary and ever since, I’ve been on the board in some capacity. I spent many terms as the secretary before becoming the vice president, president, and (currently) the past-president.

Why do you to turn to ASSP for your OSH education?

I really appreciate how educational information from ASSP is very practical and easy to understand. So many training options in industry are either very vague or so technical they are quite difficult to understand. ASSP material strikes the perfect balance. The information is usually peer reviewed, and it offers practical information which I can implement at my company. There is also a tremendous Body of Knowledge (BOK) that ASSP has compiled from my fellow safety professionals. I can rely on this information when I want to see how other safety professionals have solved some of the same challenges I am facing. ASSP information is also widely recognized by employers as reliable and trustworthy. Unlike the numerous blogs and clickbait articles that may offer answers online, ASSP information is seen as authoritative and worthy to be adopted as a best practice.

ASSP education and information is widely recognized by employers as reliable and trustworthy. I really appreciate how educational information from ASSP is very practical and easy to understand. So many training options in industry are either very vague or so technical they are quite difficult to understand. ASSP material strikes the perfect balance. The information is usually peer reviewed, and it offers practical information which I can implement at my company. There is also a tremendous body of knowledge that ASSP members have access to compiled from my fellow safety professionals. I can rely on this information when I want to see how other safety professionals have solved some of the same challenges I am facing. ASSP information is seen as authoritative and worthy to be adopted as a best practice.

Connect with Joe

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For more than 50 years, the ASSP’s Professional Development Conference has been and will continue to be the direct reflection of what is taking place in the occupational, safety and health industry.

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