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ORISE Awarded "Star of Excellence" Safety Award by DOE

Sept. 10, 2007

OAK RIDGE, Tenn.—For the second consecutive year, the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) has been given the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) "Star of Excellence" award for safety.

The award recognizes ORISE for meeting the requirements for outstanding safety and health programs and signifies that ORISE continues to adhere to DOE’s Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) criteria on a day-to-day basis. This includes maintaining a rate significantly below the national average on recordable work-related injuries, meeting annual DOE-VPP goals, demonstrating strong involvement in the VPP Participants’ Association and performing VPP mentoring and outreach services.

“ORISE is in the business of performing work safely,” ORISE Environment, Safety and Health Director Robert Kapolka said. “We are dedicated to ensuring the highest level of safety and health to our workers, as well as to the community and environment, so we are thrilled to have received the “Star of Excellence” award again in 2007.”

Kapolka and Occupational Health Nurse Sally Gadola received the award on behalf of ORISE at the recent annual VPP Participants’ Association meeting in Washington, D.C.

VPP promotes excellence in safety and health through cooperative efforts among labor, management and government at DOE contractor sites.

In February 2004, ORISE was initially awarded VPP STAR status—the nation's highest achievement level for safety performance. Today, ORISE is one of only 26 total DOE-VPP STAR sites in the country.

“Safety and security means everyone working together,” Gadola said, “and I’m so proud my fellow employees do it so well. This award is a testament to their hard work and dedication.”

The Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) is a U.S. Department of Energy institute focusing on scientific initiatives to research health risks from occupational hazards, assess environmental cleanup, respond to radiation medical emergencies, support national security and emergency preparedness, and educate the next generation of scientists. ORISE is managed by Oak Ridge Associated Universities.

ORAU provides innovative scientific and technical solutions to advance national priorities in science, education, security and health. Through specialized teams of experts, unique laboratory capabilities and access to a consortium of more than 100 major Ph.D.-granting institutions, ORAU works with federal, state, local and commercial customers to advance national priorities and serve the public interest. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation and federal contractor, ORAU manages the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).

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