State, National Highway Safety Experts Meet in Cincinnati

Sep 22, 2011, 11:33 ET from Governors Highway Safety Association

Highway Safety Culture Change is Focus

WASHINGTON and CINCINNATI, Sept. 22, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) and the Ohio Office of Criminal Justice Services are hosting the 2011 GHSA Annual Meeting at the Hyatt Regency Cincinnati, September 25-28. Approximately 450 highway safety, law enforcement and public health officials from across the country are registered to attend.


The 2011 meeting theme is Shifting Gears: Driving Culture Change in Highway Safety. General sessions and breakout workshops will focus on how to raise the visibility of highway safety and convince the public and decision makers that traffic deaths are not an acceptable cost of mobility.

Annual Meeting Planning Committee Chairman Chuck DeWeese, Assistant Commissioner with the New York Department of Motor Vehicles, notes, "While we have made much progress in seat belt use and drunk driving, we still have not convinced the public to drive at safe speeds and to safely manage driver distractions. This conference will provide the latest research and best practices on how we can address these issues and shift the culture toward safety."

Monday's keynote session features:

  • David L. Strickland, Administrator, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), who will update attendees on the Obama Administration's highway safety plans and priorities and outline what steps the Administration sees as critical to achieve cultural change.
  • Janet Froetscher, President and CEO of the National Safety Council (NSC), who will discuss her organization's activities and positions. The NSC has been particularly active on distracted driving and employer-based programs.

Tuesday's general session offer three speakers who will share their views on culture. These speakers are:

  • Jayne O'Donnell, Author and Reporter with USA TODAY
  • Chris Mullen, Director, Technology Research Division with State Farm®
  • Andrew Pearce, Chief Executive with the Global Road Safety Partnership in Switzerland

Wednesday's closing luncheon session features noted pollster Peter Hart. Mr. Hart is one of the nation's preeminent experts in understanding the public's views and how to effectively shape those views. He has represented more than 40 senators and 30 governors as well as a host of Fortune 500 companies. Mr. Hart will share his perspectives on effectively achieving cultural change and offer some insight into the 2012 election.  

In addition, the meeting will offer a host of breakout workshops, including:

  • Distracted Driving: What Do the Research and Current Experience Tell Us?
  • Reforming Driver Education
  • Ignition Interlocks: the Key to Eliminating Drunk Driving?
  • Are Traffic Crashes Another Unintended Consequence of War?
  • Traffic Law Enforcement in Challenging Times
  • Speeding and Aggressive Driving: Is a Culture Change Possible?

A detailed meeting agenda is available at News media representatives may call GHSA Communications Director Jonathan Adkins on site in Cincinnati at 202-669-9746 for a media pass. General session and workshop speakers will be available to the media following their sessions.

The meeting is supported by a variety of companies and organizations, including The Allstate Foundation, Ford Motor Company Fund, National Coalition for Safer Roads, State Farm®, and Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. A complete list of meeting sponsors is available online at

The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) is a nonprofit association representing the highway safety offices of states, territories, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. GHSA provides leadership and representation for the states and territories to improve traffic safety, influence national policy and enhance program management. Its members are appointed by their Governors to administer federal and state highway safety funds and implement state highway safety plans. Contact GHSA at 202-789-0942 or visit

SOURCE Governors Highway Safety Association