Russell Duren currently serves as the President of the Southern Nevada Chapter. Prior to election as President, he served on the chapter’s Program Committee chair and as Vice President. Russell works for PGM Safety Services, the occupational safety and health division of Pro Group Management, which is Nevada’s largest administrator of worker’s compensation self-insured groups. Russell’s role at PGMSS is Lead Safety Specialist – Quality Assurance, in which he drives improvement of internal and external procedures and resources for the company’s Safety Specialists statewide. After starting his OSH professional journey in casino and hospitality safety, Russell moved to PGMSS largely in part for the exposure to a variety of industries. He now assists employers from construction, medical, automotive, administrative, manufacturing, mining, and assorted other industries. Russell’s favorite hazard to work with is gravity, and he is a member of the International Society for Fall Protection. In 2020, he partnered with the organization’s leadership to moderate their internationally attended online symposium. Russell lives in Las Vegas with his wife and three children, enjoying the millions of acres of public land, campsites, and hiking trails within just a short drive. Las Vegas is also an ideal home base for his family’s goal to visit all fifty states before the children’s high school graduation. Russell earned his Bachelor of Science in Education from Baylor University in 2005, and is actively preparing to take and pass his ASP certification exam.
Having participated in Region II activities for the past couple years, I see parallels between its chapters, leaders, and members, and the ruggedness of the American West. Some of our chapters aren’t huge, or don’t have jam-packed program calendars, but we are resilient. I love these folks!
The vast geographic territory that we represent contains some of the most creative, hard-working, and passionate safety professionals I’ve had the honor to meet. Stepping into the Area A Director role presents large steel-toed boots to fill, but the existing momentum of our Area’s chapters provides a slip-resistant surface along which to keep moving forward. I envision my term of service centered around building on our chapters’ successes and collaborating to improve in unison. Among our chapters’ boards and members, the varying levels of engagement do mean that one-size-fits-all solutions might not work, and I greet this challenge for creative problem-solving. Region II’s adoption of more shared programming is already boosting our cohesion and sense of shared identity. By connecting Area A leaders on a more regular and intentional basis, we’ll develop similar bonds that lead to more consistent support in each other’s chapter initiatives.