Director of Research Safety, University of Tennessee
Mr. Barton is the current chair of the Board of Directors. He received a Bachelor of Science in
Environmental Sciences from the University of Massachusetts, at Amherst, and Master of Science
degrees in both Secondary Education and Environmental and Occupational Health Science. He is a
Certified Industrial Hygienist and Certified Safety Professional.
Mr. Barton is the Chief Safety Officer and Director of Research Safety Affairs at the University of
Tennessee Health Science Center. Prior to that he was at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and the
New York University Langone Medical Center. His experience also includes environmental consulting,
work as an environmental laboratory technician, and a experience as a high school science teacher
covering classes in chemistry, biology and forensic science. He is a member of the Campus Safety Health
and Environmental Management Association (CSHEMA) and American Industrial Hygiene Association
(AIHA) and is past President of the Midsouth Local Section of the AIHA.
Program Co-Director, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
Director, Environment, Health and Safety (EHS) MIT Office
Mr. DiBerardinis received his Bachelor of Science Degree in Chemical Engineering from Northeastern University and a Master of Science Degree in Industrial Hygiene from Harvard University. He is a Certified Industrial Hygienist and Certified Safety Professional .
Mr. DiBerardinis is the Director, Environment, Health and Safety at MIT. Prior to that he was at Polaroid Corporation and Harvard University .
Mr. DiBerardinis is a visiting lecturer at Harvard University School of Public Health where he currently teaches in several graduate courses and continuing education programs. He is Adjunct Professor at the University of Massachusetts Lowell Campus in the Department of the Work Environment. He is the author of numerous technical publications and co-authored the text “Guidelines for Laboratory Design: Health and Safety Considerations” and is editor of the “Handbook of Occupational Safety and Health”, both published by John Wiley and Sons. He served as chair of the ANSI Z9.5 subcommittee on Laboratory Ventilation from 1984 to 2006.
Director of Risk Management, McDaniel College
Director of Laboratory Safety - Ferris State University, Big Rapids, MI
Chemical Hygiene Manager / Officer at UNC Chapel Hill
Jim Kaufman Ph.D.
VP Education, Laboratory Safety Institute
Dr. Kaufman has retired from his position as Professor of Chemistry at Curry College near Boston, Massachusetts. Prior to Curry, he was a research chemist at Dow Chemical. While there, he became increasingly involved in lab safety activities and authored Laboratory Safety Guidelines, which has become the world’s most widely distributed lab safety publication. Dr. Kaufman is regarded as the nation’s foremost authority on safety instruction in academia. He is the author-narrator of the ACS Audio Course on Laboratory Safety and Editor of Waste Disposal in Academic Institutions, Lewis Publishers, as well as the “One-Day Lab Safety Audio Seminar” and “Two-Day Lab Video Short Course.”
Additionally, Dr. Kaufman is a past chair of the International Council for Associations of Science Education (ICASE), Committee on Safety in Science Education.
Jessica Martin Ph.D.
University of Connecticut
Jessica earned a bachelor’s degree in political science at UC San Diego in 2005, after which she served in health education with the Peace Corps in the country of Turkmenistan from 2005 to 2007. After working in community development for several years, she returned to school at Heritage University where she earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry while simultaneously conducting research in insect genetics at the USDA Yakima Agricultural Research Laboratory (YARL) under Dr. Steve Garczynski (RIP). She went on to earn her Ph.D. in biological chemistry and chemical education at the University of Connecticut in 2021. During this time, she also became heavily involved with the American Chemical Society Division of Chemical Health and Safety (ACS CHAS), developing and growing a workshop focused on Laboratory Safety Teams (LSTs). She also founded an LST in her home department and became a Certified Chemical Hygiene Officer. Upon graduating, she joined the New Product Innovation team with ACS Publications as a Product Manager with a focus on laboratory safety.
Lead Safety Manager, Bayer Healthcare, Berkeley, CA
Ms. Powell is a board certified safety professional with a diverse background ranging from Chemical Process Safety to Research and Laboratory Safety. Ms. Powell earned her Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology from UNC Wilmington and Master of Science degree in Occupational Safety and Health from East Carolina University. In addition to her certifications and education, Ms. Powell is a published award-winning author.
Biosafety Officer, University of Arkansas
Vice President, Graham-Pelton
Mr. Senchak earned his bachelor’s degree from Lehigh University, where he majored in Theatre and minored in Business. He is the Vice President at Graham-Pelton providing counsel to clients in multiple sectors. Some of his clients include New York Academy of Sciences, Home Health Foundation, New England Center for Homeless Veterans, Regis College, and Roger Williams University.
He has consulted for organizations throughout the United States including the Lincoln Park Community Shelter in Chicago, the New Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco, and the Trinity Church in Boston. Mr. Senchak served as a Theatre Consultant with Shalleck Collaborative Inc., and as Production Coordinator for the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts.
Catherine Situma, Ph.D.
Manager, Safety & Health, Auburn University
President & CEO, BioRAFT
Nathan Watson spent twelve years as a research scientist and nine years as a research lab manager overseeing large staffs of research scientists and managing research projects and collaborations. His research focused on the molecular genetics and metabolism of brain tumors. He managed research laboratories at the University of California San Francisco Medical School and Dartmouth Medical School, and conducted clinical cancer research at the Georgetown University’s Lombardi Cancer Center. He holds a degree in neuroscience from East Carolina University and has published articles in a number of scientific journals including the Journal of Biological Chemistry, Current Biology, and Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. He is a member of the Dartmouth Entrepreneurial Network and was recently selected to join the MindShare Class of 2011. He lives in Loudoun County Virginia with his wife and their two children.
Mr. Watson founded BioRAFT in 2003 as a software development company that delivered individual management solutions to academic research institutions and laboratories. In 2006, he refocused BioRAFT’s efforts on developing a unified web‐based software platform to serve as the core structure on which to continually build and centrally deliver its solutions. Today, BioRAFT offers ten applications delivered as integrated modules on top of its platform. These modules increase lab safety and regulatory compliance, laboratory productivity, and management oversight for pharmaceutical and biotech companies, government labs, and academic research institutions. BioRAFT’s goal is to increase research performance thereby enabling more cost effective and rapid discovery of cures.
Mr. Watson currently serves as Treasurer of the Board of Directors for the Laboratory Safety Institute.
Chemical Hygiene Officer, Eli Lilly, Indianapolis, IN
Leonard Weir has worked for Eli Lilly more than 30 years. He started as an organic chemist, and he has served as the company’s chemical hygiene officer in Indianapolis since 2010. He has a master’s degree in chemistry from the University of South Carolina.
W. H. (Jack) Breazeale Ph.D.
Emeritus Professor of Chemistry, Francis Marion University, Florence, SC
Dr. W. H. (Jack) Breazeale was the chair of the chemistry and physics department at Francis Marion University for almost 30 years. At Francis Marion, he made health and safety an integral and important part of science education. On retiring and moving to Charleston, he taught chemistry part-time at the College of Charleston.
Dr. Breazeale is a past chair of the American Chemical Society (ACS) Division of Chemical Health and Safety, and the Board – Council Committee on Chemical Safety. He is a past chair of the ACS National Chemistry Week Committee, a member of the ACS Committee on Committees, and a member of the ACS Insurance Board.
He is also a member of the Laboratory Safety Institute’s (LSI) Board of Directors. He is an excellent presenter/teacher and has been a senior instructor on the institute’s faculty for 16 years.