INL News Release
October 5, 2009

Ethan Huffman, 526-0660,
Nicole Stricker, 526-5955,

INL employee wins national award for vehicle safety campaign

ORLANDO, Fla. — Idaho National Laboratory employee Julie Irving is being honored today by the American Management Association for developing a safety campaign advising parents and children about the dangers of vehicle blind spots.

Irving, an administrative assistant for the laboratory's National and Homeland Security Division, developed the campaign in 2006 after her daughter struck a vehicle in her blind spot. Following the accident, Irving began researching blind spot safety trends and was alarmed by the growing number of cases and the lack of a significant awareness program.

"I thought, "If my daughter could strike a truck in her blind spot, a child on a bicycle or in the driveway wouldn't have a chance,'" said Irving. "That was my motivation for starting this campaign."

Irving and co-worker Trent Nelson expanded the grassroots style campaign from a short safety presentation to employees into a full-fledged community outreach activity. Today, the presentation involves a live demonstration with cars, trucks and SUVs. The pair has taken the message to schools, expos and regional safety conferences reaching more than 10,000 parents and children in communities across eastern Idaho.

In August, Irving was selected by the AMA to receive the 2009 Annual Innovation Award for Administrative Professionals. She will accept the award today during the association's annual Administrative Professionals Conference in Orlando, Fla.

The AMA is a leading professional development organization that works to advance the skills of individuals, teams, organizations and government agencies.

INL is one of the DOE's 10 multiprogram national laboratories. The laboratory performs work in each of DOE's strategic goal areas: energy, national security, science and environment. INL is the nation's leading center for nuclear energy research and development. Day-to-day management and operation of the laboratory is the responsibility of Battelle Energy Alliance.

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