Lab Safety Instructors
In his career, Tony Gemmellaro has provided safety leadership and direction for construction project teams during expansion of facilities and new buildings, taught students about construction safety standards and general industry standards, and consulted with clients on written standard operating procedures for equipment.
As a skilled teacher, he has a passion for teaching and sharing his knowledge to improve programs that help develop and implement safe practices, promote safety in the classroom, and engage others.
He has deep knoledge of OSHA, CDC, NIH, EPA, and DEP regulations, biological safety practices, including rDNA technology, select agents and bloodborne pathogens, chemical, radiation and facility safety, as well as emergency response planning.
Jim Kaufman Ph.D.
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.
Andrew (Andy) Minister is a registered fire protection engineer with over 42 years of experience, mostly with the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, a Department of Energy national laboratory operated by Battelle. There, he served as the technical group leader for fire protection, and was responsible for supporting other ES & H activities as well. He is a principal member of the Technical Committee of Laboratories Using Chemicals for the National Fire Protection Association since 1995 and chair since 2007. Andy has presented at major universities, DOE national laboratories and NFPA conferences.
Andy is contributing author and editor for the 2014 revision to the Department of Energy Handbook 1081, Primer on Spontaneous Heating and Pyrophoricity and the AICHe Center for Chemical Process Safety book Process Safety in Labs and Pilot Plants (pending publication). You can read “Unsafe Science,” Andy’s article on fire safety in student laboratories in the September/October 2015 issue of the NFPA Journal.
Andy is currently supporting the US Consumer Product Safety Commission effort to get flame mitigation devices installed on portable gas cans and other containers of flammable liquids that are sold to consumers to prevent flame jetting burn injuries and fatalities.
In addition to teaching lab safety for LSI, Ian is a Chemical Health and Laboratory Safety Professional at the University of Connecticut Office of the Vice President for Research . He has extensive experience overseeing biosafety and biosecurity training and compliance for federal, military and civilian organizations. Some of his areas of expertise include: virology and microbiology, biological select agent federal regulatory compliance, high-containment biosafety training and development, and integrated data management design. One of his recent projects was managing biosafety compliance for more than 1,000 employees of 60 different companies at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Plum Island Animal Disease Center in New York. This is the only laboratory in the nation that can work on live foot-and-mouth disease virus. He began his career in the Navy as a special operations hospital corpsman and a flight emergency medical technician in East Asia.
Russell Phifer, Ph.D.
Dr. Phifer has been active in the environmental health & safety field for over 30 years. He has twice served as chair of the American Chemical Society’s Division of Chemical Health and Safety. He has also served the Division as counsellor, secretary, and manager of the Division’s continuing education program. Mr. Phifer has been a member of the ACS Task Force on Laboratory Chemical & Waste Management since 1981, and served as chair from 1987-1993, 2003, and 2010. Other ACS activities include chairing the Committee on Chemical Safety and serving as a member of the Committee on Environmental Improvement. He was elected an ACS Fellow in 2010.
He has been an active member of the Chester County Occupational Education Advisory Board since 1989 and vice-chair of the Chester County Local Emergency Planning Committee since 1987. He wrote the approved Pennsylvania state curriculum for environmental technology.
Through his employment, Mr. Phifer has served as project manager and health and safety officer on two Superfund cleanup sites. He routinely develops and presents safety-oriented workshops, including chemical waste management, on-site emergency management training programs for the federal HAZWOPER standard, and laboratory safety. He has consulted for such clients as Proctor & Gamble, General Motors, Bethlehem Steel, MIT, and Dartmouth College.
Mr. Phifer has received professional certification from the World Safety Organization, the National Environmental Training Association, the Academy of Hazardous Materials Managers and the Environmental Assessment Association. He currently serves as executive director of the National Registry of Certified Chemists.
Mr. Phifer is the author of several publications on hazardous materials management, and has delivered over 75 technical papers at regional and national meetings.
Raj Santhappa M.D.
Raj Santhappa is appying his backround in science, medicine and marketing to teach LSI’s lab safety courses and coordinate LSI’s Enrollment Management Program. His hardworking, positive, and professional attitude has been a great addition to our team.
Sandra West Ph.D.
Dr. Sandra West Moody received her Ph.D. from Texas A&M University in 1990 after teaching various high school science courses for 16 years and middle school science courses for two years in Houston and San Antonio area schools. She was the Science Department Chair at two high schools and one middle school. Her teaching career also includes 8 years of teaching experience in a Montessori elementary school. She first became interested in conducting science laboratory and field safety research in 1988 when as a department chair, a student came running to get her because another teacher’s student had glass in her eye from a shattered thermometer. In 1989, she conducted her first statewide study on accidents in Texas high school chemistry classrooms. Subsequently, she conducted statewide longitudinal studies on the conditions of safety in Texas secondary science classrooms in 1990, 2003, 2005, and 2007.
Dr. West has received several awards for science education leadership, including the prestigious AAAS Fellow’s, the National Science Education Leadership Association’s and Texas Science Education Leadership Association’s award for outstanding leadership in science education.
Her interest in science laboratory design came as a result of observing the linkage between safe science laboratory design and accident rates, concluding that safe laboratory design is the basis for safe laboratory use. Science laboratory design should enable, not impede, safe and effective science education. She collaborates with a number of school architects and is the co-author of the NSTA Guide to School Science Facilities and the NSTA Guide to Planning School Science Facilities.
Dr. West has been active in the Science Teachers of Texas for over 34 years having served as president, secretary, regional director and currently as the chair of the legislative committee. She testifies on a regular basis to the Texas Senate and House educational committees, State Board of Education, State Board of Educator Certification. Her expertise includes laboratory safety, science and math teacher certification, science education standards, teacher quality, and charter schools. She was on the Texas science standards writing team and former chair of the NSTA Safety Committee and is a current member of the ICASE Committee on Safety in Science Education International Council for Associations of Science Education.
She is currently an Associate Professor of Biology and Science Education at Texas State University, San Marcos where she teaches science courses for elementary and middle school preservice teachers, science methods courses for secondary science and math preservice teachers and supervises secondary science and math student teachers. Her current research topics include safety in K-12 science classroom and field settings, integrated science and math, and confusing language in science and math.
Dale Zaborowski M.S., GA-CEM, CHO, CSP, REM
Dale Zaborowski is currently the director of laboratory safety and operations for the College of Science and Mathematics at Kennesaw State University in Georgia (U.S.A). He received his Master’s degree in biology from the University of West Georgia. His interest in safety blossomed after taking his first laboratory safety course.
He holds certifications as an emergency manager from the Georgia Emergency Management Agency, chemical hygiene officer from the National Registry of Certified Chemists, safety professional from the Board of Certified Safety Professionals, and registered environmental manager from the National Registry of Environmental Professionals. He is also an authorized OHSA trainer.
Dale volunteers with Cobb County, Georgia as part of the community emergency response team. He is an avid outdoorsman and serves as the advisor for the Kennesaw State University competitive fishing team.
Andrew Zlotorzynski is the health, safety and risk manager for the Faculty of Science at the University of Ottawa. He has over 35 years experience working in research laboratories in industrial and academic institutions. For the past 15 years, he has developed and managed well-respected health and safety programs in both the research and teaching laboratories at the University of Ottawa, Faculties of Science and Engineering. He has been recognized for his animated and engaging teaching of laboratory safety, hazardous materials handling, compressed gas safety and chemical spill response. In addition to teaching within the University of Ottawa community, he is a frequent and recurring guest speaker at other Canadian universities as well as government and private laboratories. He teaches hazardous materials response to local responders and actively participates in hazardous materials spills cleanups across the Ottawa region. He has taught laboratory safety for high school science teachers and he advised school boards on science laboratory safety.
He holds two Master of Science degrees, in Chemical Engineering and in Analytical Chemistry and he is a registered safety professional in Canada.