Lawrence D. Sloan – CAE CEO, American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) – An Essential Organization: AIHA Recalibrates During the COVID-19 Era

Air Date: 5-1-2020|Episode 584

This week we welcome Larry Sloan CEO of the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA). Mr. Sloan stepped into the role of CEO at the AIHA in October 2016. Prior to this, he served as President/CEO for seven years at the Society of Chemical Manufactures and Affiliates (SOCMA), a trade association representing the US specialty chemical industry. Larry entered the non-profit sector in 2001 by serving first as a director with a subsequent promotion to president at the Adhesive and Sealant Council.

Larry began his career as a chemical engineer at Air Products and later worked for Nalco Chemical Company in marketing, manufacturing and sales capacities. Mr. Sloan graduated magna cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania with a BS in Chemical Engineering. Later he returned to Northwestern University where he earned his MBA. In 2006, Larry received his Certified Association Executive (CAE) designation through the American Society of Association Executives.

Larry is a rare combination of CAE with extensive field experience in industry. We look forward to having him help us LEARN MORE on IAQradio+.

Z-Man’s Blog:

The AIHA was formed in 1939 by non-physician members of the American Association of Industrial Physicians and Surgeons (now ACOEM)

Nuggets mined from today’s episode:

Background on Larry Sloan: After college graduation with a chemical engineering degree, Larry Sloan worked as an applications engineer at Air Products for several years. After returning to school to earn his MBA, he ultimately spent 7 years working for his father as a manufacturer’s representative selling wastewater treatment equipment to industry and municipalities. At the end of the 1990s he was tired of being on the road and was concerned about the future viability of the rep business. He had lunch with a college friend who was working in the nonprofit sector. With all his knowledge and technical experience she advised him to apply for a job with a chemical trade association.  And sobegan his nonprofit career with the Adhesive and Sealant Council.

AIHA is considered an essential organization. AIHA provides essential information on workplace safety and environmental health. The Covid19 crisis has provided a once in a lifetime opportunity for AIHA to step-up and show what they can do.

AIHA Response to COVID19: First-things-first, AIHA was proactive creating a web portal for Covid19 with links to CDC, NIOSH, OSHA, etc. with important resources for the industrial hygienist/occupational health scientist as well as other more public-facing audiences.  Over the past week, AIHA was approached by NIOSH to assist in the development of practical “safe return-to-work” guidelines.  Through subsequent conversations with officials within CDC and the Executive Office of the President, a series of documents has and continues to be rolled out (organized by industry sector (aligned with President Trump’s announcement). Each piece is organized in terms of three audiences: (a) employers; (b) employees; and (c) general public.  For more information, visit

AIHA is providing all Covid19 resources at no charge!

AIHA is working hard to  correct Covid19 misinformation through outreach and has been a contributing resource to: the New York Times, NPR and the Wall Street Journal.

AIHA facts:

  • The AIHA has 52 staff on the payroll. All staff are currently working remotely.
  • The organization has pivoted to working remotely. It continues to serve its membership and maintain its mission.
  • AIHA’s operating budget is~$16M-$17M
  • AIHA has 8K individual members
  • AIHA has 65 chapters (local sections)
  • AIHA has 3 LLCs (lab accreditation, professional analytical testing and registry programs),
  • AIHA has 2 foundations (education foundation, which awards student scholarships, and guideline foundation, which houses its emergency response planning guideline program)

Larry considers himself a people person and is adjusting to teleconferencing. The organization maintains the same frequency of staff meetings.

The AIHce EXPO is AIHA’s flagship eventand normally draws ~4500 attendees. It was a tough decision to cancel the event; however, clearly it was the right thing to do in the interests of public health. Around the time of our decision, we learned that the host convention center was to become a makeshift hospital and various hotel venues were closed, thus making the event an impossibility anyway!

  • AIHA decided to shift AIHce to a virtual format and maintain the same meeting dates June 1-3. Meetings will run from 8:00 AM to late afternoon each day. Professional Development Courses will be held June 4-5, as well as the week after.
  • Most sessions will utilize prerecorded presentations with presenters available live to answer questions.
  • Exhibitors have been given the opportunity to participate in a virtual exhibition.
  • Members will have access to 20 CM hours and can earn hours on demand online following the event.
  • Rene’ Rodriguez will make an opening keynote presentation on “harnessing the power of courage” and a closing keynote presentation on “neuroscience of influence” (how to communicate with people unlike ourselves).
  • For more information, visit

As an aside,AIHA has developed soft skills webinars, including one on “emotional intelligence” – designed to help IH professionals better understand and communicate with clients on their level.

Jim Myers, Senior Manager Project Management & Web Initiatives, is AIHA’s longest serving employer. He has been with the association for 30 years and moved from Ohio when AIHA relocated to Virginia. In his role he has adapted well to shifts in IT demanded in today’s workplace!

AIHA’s Government Affairs Department, is a department of one.Mark Ames is AIHA’s Director of Government Relations. It takes a village; some 400 volunteer members serve on AIHA’s government affairs committee and various supporting task forces.

Thanks to AIHA, occupational health and safety professionals are now classified as “essential workers” under DHS/Cyber Security and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) guidance. Visit

Other projects include:

  • AIHA is currently involved in the COVID-19 Every Worker Protection Act of 2020 , which would require OSHA to issue an emergency temporary standard to protect employees from occupational exposure to SARS-CoV-2, followed by a permanent standard.
  • National disaster season is approaching. AIHA is addressing how one can safely shelter in place when there is a raging wildfire or hurricane impacting one’s community.
  • AIHA is working on hearing protection regulations at the state level.
  • AIHA continues to address the issue of protecting law enforcement and first responders from opioid exposure when arriving at crime scenes.

Industrial hygienists neither clean teeth nor mop floors. The general public is confused by the term industrial hygiene. The AIHA Brand Refresh project began under the leadership of  Sue Marchese, Managing Director Marketing & Communicationsback in 2016. AIHA aims to generate greater awareness about the value occupational health and safety professionals contribute to society. In addition, it is striving to increase student interest in pursuing careers in the profession. They created a grassroots outreach to schoolsnationwide through an internal program under the Twitter handle #IAmIH campaign. In the coming weeks, AIHA will unveil a new logo, tagline and positioning statements that aim to better articulate who we are to audiences not like ourselves. In time, audiences that will be targeted include: secondary and college students, business C-suite, guidance/career counselors, human resource professionals/placement agencies, and others.

The revised Green Book continues to be a best seller.It sold $10K in the first month and has now sold over 130 copies. Some 80% of the information is new. Updates include:

  • Information aligned with the epidemiological and medical information on environmental allergens and mold from the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology
  • Updated guidelines on mold and dampness, reflective of new medical and engineering perspectives
  • Content aligned with approaches recommended by MD allergists about “facilitating factors” (i.e., conditions necessary for the survival of allergen-producing contaminants)
  • Protocols for mold and dampness investigations consistent with guidelines developed by ASHRAE members

Other mold projects: New fact sheet on mold geared more towards consumers, an update to the  Assessment, Remediation, and Post-Remediation Verification of Mold in Buildings (Mold Guideline); and updates to the AIHA Legionella Guideline document.

Legionella.A new project team was recently formed that will create a new  Legionella Body of Knowledge, which will include a  Job task Analysis for practitioners

AIHA Bodies of Knowledge: AIHA’s Body of Knowledge on Indoor Air Quality was updated in 2018. –This was a collaborate effort between the IAQA and the AIHA IEQ Committee. The update includes information necessary to fully manage an IEQ program for a building. The idea for this update originated from a proposed LEED pilot credit, developed by USGBC. Click here to access a complete list of AIHA’s Bodies of Knowledge (aka Strategic Framework documents).

And pertaining to COVID19, AIHA member leaders, including David Krause and Jack Springston, recently developed a new guidance document on reopening closed buildings, which includes considerations for how to manage and control legionella.

AIHA is a member of the Allied Industry Partners coalition.Organizations include: AIHA, the National Air Duct Cleaners Association (NADCA), the Indoor Air Quality Association (IAQA), the American Bio Recovery Association (ABRA), Environmental Information Association (EIA), the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH), and the Basement Health Association (BHA). Recently the group hosted a COVID19 webinar, which featured David Krause.

Larry Sloan’s Closing Comment:

It’s an exciting and timely time for the organization and the profession overall. AIHA is proud to be a new sponsoring organization of IAQ Radio!

Z-Man signing off


Questions: Who were the original founds of the AIHA?

Answer: Non physician members of the American Association of Industrial Physicians and Surgeons (now ACOEM).