Chris Jerman CFIOSH will be known and admired by many in the profession. He sadly lost his fight with cancer and passed away on 2 June 2022.
Chris began his safety career in the foundries of South Yorkshire having spent his formative years in production management.
In his career Chris saw the move from the rule-driven regime of the Factories Act to the more modern risk-led approach offered by the Management Regulations. While many may have seen risk assessment as a burden, Chris took the new requirement as an opportunity, realising at every stage that being risk-centric was the most simple, focused way forward.
Moving from heavy industry, Chris spent several years in consultancy working with national and international companies in sectors such as retail, logistics, manufacturing, and public uniformed services.
As a safety trainer his work took him right across Europe and Asia, providing opportunity to see how different models of safety worked in many different industries, cultures and countries. He was able to identify keys to their success and common pitfalls too.
Joining the John Lewis Partnership in 2005, Chris had the perfect opening to put into practice all that he had learned, benefiting from working in a renowned and forward-looking business. The award-winning system he built was widely praised.
With many articles to his name, his simple approach to safety was recorded in a co-authored book with his colleague Duncan Spencer called Risk-led Safety: Evidence-Driven Management.
Chris was chair of the Sheffield Occupational Safety and Health Association for many years. He was a popular speaker at national conferences and coach to many aspiring safety professionals.
In the last two years Chris took the role of thought leadership manager at IOSH, where he led development of thought-provoking podcasts, webinars and other content. He was passionate about occupational safety and health, the profession, and it's aims. This shone through in all of his work. Chris built a forthright reputation, often moving in where others feared to tread.
Chris strove to be pragmatic and bravely did things differently to achieve it. He was gifted with a unique way of thinking, expressing and articulating viewpoints, discussions, considerations, concepts in ways that included and engaged whatever audience he was addressing. He will be missed by his family, colleagues, friends and the many people he influenced.