Invest in 'whatever it takes' to keep workers safe, says Amazon VP

Mentorship also key topic during Women in Safety Summit

Invest in 'whatever it takes' to keep workers safe, says Amazon VP

The inaugural edition of our North American Women in Safety Summit took place last Thursday. Viewers from all over the U.S. and Canada tuned into the virtual event.

“I want to thank you, for your dedication and commitment,” said Heather MacDougall. “It’s been a challenging 21 months, but safety has achieved a lot. And you each, I’m sure, have something to be proud of for the work that you are doing.”

MacDougall, who is Vice President, Worldwide Workplace Health & Safety, Amazon opened the Summit with a keynote speech on the importance of women and leadership in the EHS industry.

Concluding her speech, MacDougall said:

“I’d like to challenge you to lead every day as if your company is striving to be the best place on Earth to work. That means engaging your employees, empowering them to think outside of the box and investing in whatever it takes to keep them safe and protected.”

Aside from the opening and closing keynotes, panel discussions throughout the day provided viewers with actionable insights which they can hopefully bring back to the office or the work site.


One of the biggest topics on the table at the Summit was building a career in safety and the importance of mentorship for those wishing to crack the field.

Indeed, one of the most anticipated panels of the day was led by Tamara Paris, BGIS; Paula Campkin, Energy Safety Canada; and Kelly Bishop, BGIS.

Moderated by Crystal D. Turner-Moffatt, CEO of CDT EHS Consulting LLC, the three women shared their thoughts on the difference between a mentor and a champion, leveraging the right allies (and what makes a good ally) and the role of a mentor in driving change within leadership roles.

Speaking about how to engage champions to be an advocate:

“If you really want someone to sponsor you, consider sponsoring other people. And when people that you’re supportive […] they’ll be really inclined to support your advancement,” said Turner-Moffatt.

“Throughout my career, I’ve tried to look outside of my job description […] It can give you that skillset or that option for promotion. So, really leverage those external opportunities,” said Bishop.

Other panels and speeches covered equally important topics such as mental health, and how to better push for diversity, equity and inclusion within an organization.

Though we’d love to be with you face-to-face, our virtual events are a great way to see leading safety professionals share their expertise. They’re also a wonderful place to network with fellow OHS pros.

We hope to see you soon, whether it be virtually or in person. For those who attended the Summit, all panels are currently available On Demand on the platform.

We would also like to extend a special thank you to our event partner, Avetta.