Graham Parker says he wants to promote the acceptance of risk through robust control measures during his year in the post. He believes that “clear communication” is the key to successful safety and health management systems within businesses.
The 50-year-old, of Shinfield, near Reading, said: “My year as IOSH President is based on a pragmatic approach with clear, honest communication that manages acceptable risk. Risk is not a bad word; it can be acceptable, as long as it is managed and the control elements are in place.
“When discussing risk, you need to give clear and honest advice, including communicating the reasons for a decision which has been made. As safety and health leaders, if we are honest and give a clear account of our approach, then our audience can clearly see the benefit.”
Graham is Head of Health and Safety at Mapeley Estates, one of the UK’s largest commercial real estate organisations. During his 20-year career in occupational safety and health, he has also specialised in logistics at chemist giant Boots, aviation at Aviation Defence International and facilities management at Yell.
Graham has represented IOSH at many levels, including as executive of the South Coast Branch until 2005, when he moved to the Thames Valley Branch, of which he is currently Chair. He was elected to IOSH’s Council in 2011 and became a Vice-President in 2013 before being made President Elect in November 2015.
He was inaugurated as President at IOSH’s AGM, which was held on Tuesday 1 November at Chesford Grange Hotel in Kenilworth, Warwickshire, as part of its two-day Networks Conference.
He said: “It is a humbling privilege to take on the role of IOSH President. It will allow me to be an ambassador and a voice for the IOSH membership, the Institution itself and the whole safety and health industry.”
Graham succeeds Karen McDonnell, who becomes Immediate Past President. During the AGM, Craig Foyle was confirmed as President Elect and is due to succeed Graham as President in November 2017.
Graham added that he hopes to build on IOSH’s strategic partnerships, including those forged during the Presidency of Karen McDonnell, such as working with the Health and Safety Executive and British Occupational Hygiene Society to raise awareness of the dangers of exposure to silica dust as part of IOSH’s No Time to Lose campaign.
He said: “IOSH cannot achieve its vision in isolation. Working in partnership with other organisations is crucial and I aim to build on those partnerships forged during Karen’s time as President.”
The AGM also saw IOSH Chartered Fellows Michelle Muxworthy and Bridget Gilmour confirmed as Vice-Presidents for the next three years, joining the four existing Vice-Presidents. Meanwhile the appointment of members of IOSH’s Council who have been elected or co-opted since the 2015 AGM were also confirmed.