Interview – Robert Emery, Vice President for Safety, Health, Environment & Risk Management, University of Texas School of Public Health
Dr. Robert 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.
Interviewer: “What do you feel are the biggest challenges safety leaders are currently faced with?”
Robert: “Successful safety programs function largely in the realm of prevention, so on a good day “nothing happens”. But safety programs need to improve their ability to articulate the amount of resources and commitment needed to “make nothing happen”.”
Interviewer: “What is the best piece of advice you have received within your job over the years?”
Robert: “One of my bosses told me “I don’t get paid to listen to complaints: if you have a problem, come in with three options and put yours at the top, and most likely you’ll get your way”.”
Interviewer: “What do you feel is the hottest topic right now in the industry and what is its effect on the industry?”
Robert: “The issue of total worker health is gaining traction. The notion that workers only have one body and it is either at work or at home – and that employers are going to pay for health-related issues either through workers comp insurance or health insurance – so it is in everyone’s best interest to understand this.”
Interviewer: “What do you feel the most passionate about within your business?”
Robert: “There is no more noble cause than protecting the health and safety of a person’s whose name you may never know”
About The University of Texas School of Public Health
At six campuses across Texas, The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) School of Public Health works to improve the state of public health in Texas every day. Each of their campuses is strategically placed to meet the public health education and research needs of the diverse populations across Texas. UTHealth School of Public Health is the only school of public health in the nation with regional campuses.