AEC Featured Speakers

We look forward to hosting these highly esteemed speakers to share their expertise with AEC attendees.

Dr. Lucy Houghton | Keynote

Environmental Self: The Power of Connection

In the demanding realm of environmental health, the value of connection is not only vital, it is life-saving. This keynote explores the profound impact of authentic connections on personal satisfaction, professional engagement, productivity, and overall well-being. In a world where isolation and loneliness are all too common, this session is more than a presentation - it's a call to action. It aims to equip you with the tools to cultivate and sustain meaningful connections inside and outside the environmental health community. Together, we will tap into the incredible potential that lies in the power of our shared experiences. This is an invitation to create a future rich in collaboration, mutual support, and shared victories. Join us on this journey to unlock a world of endless possibilities powered by the unshakeable strength of our connections.

Dr. Aaron Bernstein | Grand Educational Session Kickoff

Featured Speaker

Aaron Bernstein, MD, MPH, serves as Director for the National Center for Environmental Health and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (NCEH/ATSDR). Dr. Bernstein is an internationally known leader in children’s environmental health, having spent his career working to ensure that all children can grow up in environments that enable them to live up to their full potential. His scholarship has explored a broad range of subjects, from toxic exposures to mercury and air pollution, to global environmental changes such as climate change and the loss of biodiversity, and their effects on health and health equity. He is a recipient of Stanford University’s Firestone Medal for Research and a Harvard University Zuckerman Fellowship.

Erik P. Mettler, MPA, MPH | Keynote

Retail Food Safety at FDA: Future Directions and Priorities

Join the open discussion between NEHA President Tom Butts and FDA Assistant Commissioner Erik P. Mettler on FDA’s future direction on retail food safety in this country. FDA is revising and implementing their Human Foods Program which will impact retail foods across the country. This informal talk will highlight how the FDA intends to handle retail foods under their new Human Foods regime.

Mr. Mettler is Assistant Commissioner for Partnerships and Policy in the FDA’s Office of Regulatory Affairs (ORA). He leads several of ORA’s activities, including partnerships, implementing new regulations, and overall strategic planning and priorities. Mr. Mettler is also responsible for providing long-range strategic direction for ORA policies and programs including the implementation of the Food Safety Modernization Act.

Pedro Sancha | Sound Check

Lessons in Leadership

Pedro Sancha serves as President and CEO of NSF, a global testing, inspection, and certification company with 3,000 employees serving 40,000 customers in 180 countries. Since joining NSF in 2022, he has refreshed its board and management team, reorganized its operating structure, and chartered a strategic roadmap to transform the 80-year-old services organization into an ESG-focused leader in human and planet health. He holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and holds master’s degrees in engineering from the Polytechnic University of Madrid and the Ecole des Ponts Paristech in France.

Dr. Amy Kirby | Closing Session

Featured Speaker

Dr. Kirby of CDC-EZID is a leading authority on wastewater surveillance, and promises to provide a forward leaning and thought provoking presentation about the future of environmental sampling and analysis.