TRADE NEWS RELEASE
November 26, 2001
Contact: Layne Lathram
Phone: (202) 693-1999
OSHA Assistant Secretary John Henshaw Announces
Appointment of Gary Visscher as Deputy Assistant Secretary
Other Personnel Changes Also Announced
Washington, DC -- John Henshaw, Assistant Secretary of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, today announced the appointment of Gary Visscher, former Vice President of Employee Relations for the American Iron and Steel Institute, as a Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
Visscher has had long experience with dealing with Labor and OSHA issues. From July 1999 through November 2000, he served as a Commissioner on the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. He was one of three members of the independent commission which reviewed OSHA citations and penalties that were contested by companies. Visscher served in Congressional staff positions from 1983-1999, including a stint as Workforce Policy Counsel for the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Education and the Workforce from 1989-1999. Visscher graduated from Calvin College, Grand Rapids, Mich. with a B.A. in Political Science, and received his J.D. from the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor.
"I am delighted to welcome Gary as a Deputy Assistant Secretary here at OSHA," said Assistant Secretary Henshaw. "His valuable experience on Capitol Hill, as well as his long history of involvement with safety and health issues, will strengthen and improve the operation of OSHA and help the agency do a better job of protecting American workers and employers."
As Deputy Assistant Secretary, Visscher will oversee the Directorates of Federal State Operations, Technical Support, Information Technology Policy, the Standards Directorates, and the Offices of Public Affairs and Reinvention. R. Davis Layne will continue as Deputy Assistant Secretary overseeing regional operations and the Directorates of Compliance, Construction, Administrative Programs, and the Office of Equal Employment Opportunity Programs.
Other appointments and personnel realignments were also announced today. Rene Wildermuth has been appointed Special Assistant to Assistant Secretary Henshaw for Management Systems and Performance Measures. He comes to OSHA from the Mercatus Center, a non-profit research, education, and outreach organization at the George Mason University. A member of their team since
1994, Rene helped initiate and manage a variety of educational and outreach programs for agency officials and policymakers on Capitol Hill. Most recently, he helped launch their Government Accountability Program, which focuses on opportunities to use management initiatives to improve performance and Accountability in the Public Sector. Before joining GMU, Rene had an eight-year career in hotel operations management. He received his Bachelor's Degree in Economics from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
Personnel realignments were also announced today. Marthe Kent, Director of Standards, has accepted a special assignment on loan to the National Safety Council, to work on plans for the 17th Triennial World Safety Congress to be held in Orlando, Fla. in 2005, the first to be held in the U.S. She will begin her assignment there on November 5.
Steve Witt, currently Director of Technical Support in OSHA, will move to the position of Director of Health Standards and Acting Director of Safety Standards.
Ruth McCully, currently OSHA's Regional Administrator in Region I, Boston, has been asked to return to Washington to take the position of Director of Technical Support.
Paula White, Director of Federal State Operations, has been given the responsibility for overseeing the compliance assistance program as part of her directorate.
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