General & Plenary Sessions

Get energized by daily General Sessions delivered by inspiring though leaders and ask panelists live questions during our thought-provoking Plenary Sessions. All times listed are CDT

Tuesday, June 23 | 8:00AM – 9:30AM | Opening General Session

The Science of Positive Growth Mind-Set

Neil Pasricha | NY Times Bestselling Author and TED Speaker
Neil Pasricha

Does great work lead to happiness? Or does happiness lead to great work? Neil Pasricha will share counterintuitive research-based answers in a fun, fast-paced, research-grounded tour of the emerging neuroscience and positive psychology landscape. He will show you how to get to the question, “Would you press a button and have 31% higher productivity, 37% higher sales and 300% greater creativity on Monday morning?”

Wednesday, June 24 | 8:00AM – 9:00AM | General Session

Applying Systems Thinking Through Your Pandemic Planning

Danyle Hepler, CSP, CESCO, CPEA | Technical Specialist and Corporate H&S Manager, Haley & Aldrich
Victor Toy, CIH, CSP, FAIHA | President & Principal, Insyst OHS, LLC
Systems Thinking Pandemic

We’ve all felt the personal impact of COVID-19 and know the effects it’s had on our global society. Plans for recovery are underway, but still questions and uncertainty persist. How much more will the virus impact our health and safety? Will there be a second wave? When will life get back to normal? These are all great questions and they prompt a much larger question: How much control are we able to exert? The answer lies in the concept of systems thinking, a fundamental principle of occupational health and safety management standards that can help you solve complex problems.

Wednesday, June 24 | 1:00PM – 2:00PM | Plenary Session

Tech Trends: The Rapidly Changing World of Safety

Each day we hear about emerging technologies and approaches like wearables, robotics, and predictive analytics. These developments can help you protect workers and improve safety in your organization. But they also can introduce new risks and may carry high costs that diminish organizational support. Our panelists will discuss some proven ways to incorporate technology into your safety program, review associated risks and share their tips for integrating safety as your company embraces these technology solutions.


Jason C. Gillete, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Director of Graduate Education Department of Kinesiology at Iowa State University

Colin Cagney
Director, Major Projects Advisory at KPMG LLP

John Howard, MD, MPH, JD, LLM, MBA
Director of NIOSH


John Johnson, CSP
VP, Corporate ESH&S at Black & Veatch

Thursday, June 25 | 9:15AM – 10:30AM | Plenary Session

Diversity and Inclusion: Designing a Safer Future

Diversity and inclusion are critical talent and growth issues for organizations around the world. These factors impact productivity, profitability and safety. As a safety professional, how can you help ensure that all workers feel welcome, appreciated and accepted? How can your efforts to engage all employees improve your organization’s performance? What can we do to better protect worker populations that currently suffer a disproportionate number of injuries and fatalities? Our panel will tackle these challenges, share lessons learned and explore how we can all be part of the solution.


Dr. Cori Wong
Assistant Vice President for Gender Equity, Colorado State University

Senior Manager, Environmental Health and Safety, Wonderful Company

Lindsay K. Bell, MPH, CSP
Regional Health and Safety Manager, Solvay


Jennifer McNelly
Chief Executive Officer, ASSP

Thursday, June 25 | 2:15PM – 3:15PM | Closing General Session

Because I Said I Would

Alex Sheen | TEDxTalk Speaker, Author and Humanitarian
Alex Sheen

The importance of a promise gets lost all too often in our fast-paced world. It’s too easy to say, “I’ll get to it” or “Tomorrow.” We have become numb to the disappointment from broken commitments, and this numbness can affect all aspects of our lives. Alex Sheen believes that every individual can be a person of their word, as reflected in his own journey launching and building the “because I said I would” viral social movement. Cap off Safety 2020 by making a renewed commitment to those you work with as well as those you love.

ASSP Thanks Its Sponsors


  • Amazon


  • Clicksafety
  • Grainger

Conference Sponsor

  • Avetta
  • Glen Guard

Conference Supporter

  • Chubb
  • Cintas
  • Fritolay
  • SafeStart

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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For general information about the event/expo/conference, including registration, please contact us at:
  +1 847 699.2929
  +1 847 768.3434
  520 N Northwest Hwy, Park Ridge, IL