Magazine article Occupational Hazards

Safety Community Mourns the Loss of Larry and Ruth Birkner

Magazine article Occupational Hazards

Safety Community Mourns the Loss of Larry and Ruth Birkner

Article excerpt

The murders of Larry and Ruth Birkner, long-time members of the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) and the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE), as well as contributors to Occupational Hazards magazine, have left a void that will be difficult to fill.

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"Our hearts break, not once but twice for the tragic loss of Larry and Ruth," said John Henshaw, assistant secretary of Labor-OSHA. "They were dear friends and colleagues, and true professionals in every sense of the word. With hearts of gold and intellects to match, they gave their all for family, faith, community and the working men and women of this country. While their presence on this earth was short, their impact was great and everlasting."

The Birkners will be remembered for their commitment to, and involvement in, the industrial hygiene and safety communities. The Birkners ran a consulting firm, McIntyre Birkner & Associates Inc., which specialized in occupational safety and health, environmental management and industrial hygiene. Larry Birkner was a member of Occupational Hazards' Editorial Advisory Board since its inception, and Ruth Birkner was a contributing editor to the magazine.

"The loss of Larry and Ruth was a double loss to the profession and the association, and our staff feel it as a personal loss as well," said AIHA Executive Director Steven Davis. "Larry and Ruth were so involved and generous with their time and their expertise, and they were extremely supportive of staff efforts on behalf of the association. We have received letter after letter and call after call from members who were influenced by the Birkners during their lifetimes, and I know that their example will live on in their many colleagues who have been inspired by them."

In addition to their work with the safety and industrial hygiene communities, the Birkners were active members of the Sedona, Ariz. …

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