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Southwest Center for Occupational and Environmental Health

Environmental Health & Safety Academy XXIV
Monday, March 29, 2021 - Friday, April 30, 2021
Meet the Instructors:

>Emery Dr. Robert “Bob” Emery is Vice President for Safety, Health, Environment & Risk Management for The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston and Professor of Occupational Health at the University of Texas School of Public Health. Bob has over 30 years of experience in health & safety and possesses master’s degrees in health physics and environmental sciences, and a doctorate in occupational health.

Bob holds the unique distinction of holding national board certification in seven main areas of health & safety; Health physics (Certified Health Physicist, CHP); Occupational safety (Certified Safety Professional, CSP); Biological safety (Certified Biological Safety Professional, CBSP); Industrial hygiene (Certified Industrial Hygienist, CIH); Hazardous materials management (Certified Hazardous Materials Manager, CHMM); Security management (Certified Protection Professional, CPP); and Risk management (Associate in Risk Management, ARM).

While managing a comprehensive safety program, Bob has authored over 70 peer-reviewed scientific journal articles and book chapters on health and safety issues and has provided media interviews to major media outlets such as the Wall Street Journal, LA Times, NY Times, ABC, CNN, FOX, MSNBC, BBC, and NPR. He is a frequent presenter at the local, state, national and international level.
Patlovich Scott Patlovich is the Assistant Vice President of Environmental, Health & Safety at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) and an Instructor at The University of Texas School of Public Health (UT SPH).  He holds a Doctorate of Public Health in Occupational and Environmental Health Sciences (concentration in epidemiology and disease control) from UT SPH and a Master of Public Health in Occupational and Environmental Health Sciences (concentration in industrial hygiene) from the same school.  Scott is a Certified Industrial Hygienist, a Certified Safety Professional, a Certified Biological Safety Professional, a Specialist Microbiologist in Biological Safety Microbiology, a Certified Hazardous Materials Manager, and is Certified in Public Health.  Previously, Scott served as a safety manager at the Texas Biomedical Research Institute, which has the only privately operated BSL-4 laboratory in the country.  He also worked as a Senior Safety and Health Manager in the Office of Safety, Health, and Environment at the National University of Singapore. Scott has served as a co-investigator on several grants through UT SPH, such as the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Biosafety and Infectious Disease Training Initiative, and the American Association of Occupational Health Nurses / National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Development of Respiratory Protection Training.
Evans Bryan Evans has been with UTHealth for 10 years in the Risk Management and Emergency Management role.  He graduated from the University of Houston in 1995 with a bachelor’s degree and earned his MBA from the University of Houston-Downtown in 2017.  Other designations he has acquired are: ARM (Associate in Risk Management), MAC (Mold Assessment Consultant), WRT (Water Restoration technician), and FSRT (Fire and Smoke Restoration technician).  Bryan has held previous jobs in the restoration business with Blackmon Mooring and in the insurance business with Farmer’s insurance before joining UTHealth in 2010.
Rana Snehal Rana is a Safety Manager within UTHealth’s Environmental Health and Safety department with specific responsibility to oversee the Occupational Safety and Fire Prevention Program. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry from the University of Houston. Snehal has previous experience in industrial hygiene, respiratory protection, and ergonomics, and he has a passion for excellence in customer service, responsiveness, and accountability. He currently leads a team of six individuals who address fire and life safety issues in the low and high rise buildings across our UTHealth campus. His team also ensures that occupational safety programs and training are in place across the unique teaching, research, and clinical spaces within our facilities.
Bryan Dr. William Bryan is manager of the Chemical Safety Program at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston.  He holds a doctorate in physical chemistry and has over 15 years of experience serving industry and academic institutions through research and instruction.  He is actively involved with the management of safety programs and academic instruction of chemistry and safety.  He is also actively involved in research focusing on nanotechnology and occupational health issues.
Plant Robert Plant received his BS from the University of Houston, then worked as a research assistant in a genetics laboratory at UTHealth from 2010-2018.  He has been working in Chemical safety since 2018.  As a safety specialist, Robert has had to opportunity to perform many ergonomic assessments for a variety of workstations.
Douphrate Dr. David Douphrate is an Associate Professor in the Division of Epidemiology, Human Genetics and Environmental Sciences at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) School of Public Health, San Antonio Regional Campus. He also serves as director of the Industrial Hygiene program at the Southwest Center for Occupational and Environmental Health, a NIOSH-funded Education and Research Center at UTHealth School of Public Health. Dr. Douphrate earned a PhD in Occupational Ergonomics and Safety from Colorado State University in Ft. Collins, CO.  He also holds a Master of Physical Therapy (MPT) from the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, TX, and Master of Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor in Belton, TX.  Dr. Douphrate earned his BS degree in Kinesiology from Texas A&M University.  Dr. Douphrate is a Certified Professional Ergonomist and Certified Safety Professional.  His research and outreach focus for the past twenty years has focused on the etiology and prevention of work-related musculoskeletal disorders. Dr. Douphrate has partnered with a multitude of employers in many states, working diligently to learn industry needs while simultaneously gaining the trust of industry stakeholders (i.e., owners, managers and workers).  Through these efforts, he is recognized as a trusted partner to address worker health and safety in businesses through research, outreach, and translation/dissemination initiatives.
Haltiwanger Dr. Brett M. Haltiwanger, PhD, CBSP is the Biological Safety Program Manager, within the office of Safety, Health, Environment and Risk Management, at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) and is an Instructor at the University of Texas School of Public Health (UT-SPH).  She holds a Doctorate in Microbiology and Molecular Virology from Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia PA. Her graduate research involved studies of DNA repair pathways in Plasmodium falciparum and resulted in several groundbreaking publications. Dr. Haltiwanger has 15 years of research experience working in BSL-2 and BSL-2 enhanced laboratories, working on projects investigating DNA repair pathways in Plasmodium falciparum, the roles of kinesins in Trypanosoma brucei cell cycle development, studying the role of XPG protein in human DNA repair and trying to identify protein interactions with prion proteins, and has 12 years of experience as a biosafety professional.  As a Biosafety Specialist at Stanford University, she assisted in the development of a training program to mitigate biohazards when working with infected animals, and as a Biosafety Specialist at UTHealth, she significantly contributed to the development and production of the UTHealth Ebola training video demonstrating the proper donning and doffing of PPE, and has been active in providing PPE training and other informational training during the COVID-19 pandemic.  Dr. Haltiwanger is actively involved in academic instruction and training at the graduate level at the UT School of Public Health, and has been a training instructor on the Biosafety and Infectious Disease Training Initiative, which was supported by a grant from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. Dr. Haltiwanger holds a certification as a Certified Biosafety Specialist (CBSP) from the American Biological Safety Association International (ABSA-international).
Lucas Alan Lucas manages the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) Environmental Health & Safety Environmental Protection Program. He holds a bachelor’s degree in environmental science and a master’s degree in industrial hygiene. Alan’s position is unique in that he oversees all of the institutional environmental release pathways (air, water, hazardous waste) for the institution’s chemical, biological, and radiological agents. Alan has over 23 years of experience with UTHealth and maintains the Certified Hazardous Materials Manager (CHMM) professional credential.
Guitierrez Janet M. Gutiérrez, DrPH, CHP is Safety Manager of the Radiation Safety Program within the Environmental Health & Safety department of The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston as well as Radiation Safety Officer for UT Physicians. She supports the broad scope permit for the research and medical use of radioactive materials, medical and research uses of x-rays and lasers. She has over 20 years of experience in radiation safety. She earned her doctorate of public health in occupational health and her master of science in industrial hygiene from The University of Texas at Houston School of Public Health. She earned her B.S. in radiological health engineering from Texas A&M University. She is a Certified Health Physicist.
Perkison William “Brett” Perkison, MD, MPH, is an assistant professor in the Department of Epidemiology, Human Genetics and Environmental Sciences at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) School of Public Health. He also serves as director of the Occupational and Environmental Medicine Residency program at the Southwest Center for Occupational and Environmental Health, a NIOSH-funded Education and Research Center at UTHealth School of Public Health. He obtained his medical degree at UTMB Galveston and completed residencies in Family Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine and Occupational and Environmental Medicine at UTHealth School of Public Health. During his career, Dr. Perkison was a medical director for primary care and occupational medicine in both community health outpatient and hospital-based employee health care settings.  He also been a regional medical manager at Shell Oil, overseeing occupational health departments in manufacturing and corporate settings. Since joining the School of Public Health in 2016, his research interests have been focused on the areas on the development of worksite chronic disease management programs and worker access to e-learning technology. In the area of chronic disease management, he is piloting the addition of a cooking and food incentive program designed to improve participant attendance in the CDC’s diabetes prevention program. His main focus in disaster prevention is developing e-learning technology that can provide workers with interactive learning technology prior to a disaster event and with logistical real time information that will help them work safety and effectively during an actual disaster event. In addition to papers on his research, he has also been a coauthor on two guidance statement from the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM) on health effects related to climate change, and is a board member for regional component, the Texas College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (TxCOEM). 
Rios Janelle Rios, PhD, MPH, is a faculty associate at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) School of Public Health. She serves as principal investigator of the Prevention, Preparedness, and Response (P2R) Consortium, a worker training program funded by the National Institute for Environmental Health Sciences, and the Just-in-time Elastomeric Respirator Training and Fit Testing study, funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Dr. Rios is also deputy director of the Southwest Center for Occupational and Environmental Health, a research and training center at UTHealth School of Public Health.

Dr. Rios’s work focuses primarily on developing and delivering training to mitigate occupational and community exposures to hazardous situations and substances, including infectious diseases. With an interest in resiliency, she leads a team of experts tasked with anticipating and quickly responding to local and global disasters. Her team does this by training communities and workplaces to prepare for and to respond to disasters.

Dr. Rios’s earlier work at the UTHealth School of Public Health encompasses four years as the director of Public Health Practice and nearly six years as director of the Continuing Education and Outreach Programs, and later, as deputy director for the Southwest Center for Occupational and Environmental Health, a NIOSH-funded Education and Research Center. Before joining the UTHealth, she worked for nine years as an environmental investigator specializing in the management of medical waste for the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.
McDaniel Michelle McDaniel, BS, CHES, is the Director of Outreach and Continuing Education for the Southwest Center of Occupational and Environmental Health at UTHealth School of Public Health.  She brings both health science education and research experience to her work in occupational health and safety and is currently pursuing a MS in Health Science with a focus on health education. Prior to joining UTHealth in 2016, she worked in clinical research and research administration at UT MD Anderson Cancer Center and behavioral research at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, where she worked extensively with patient and health education interactions.