Nominated by President Bush to be a Board Member of the
U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board
United States Senate
July 18, 2002
Thank you, Mr. Chairman and distinguished members of the Committee.
My name is John Bresland. I am honored to appear before you to tell you about my background and what I would hope to accomplish if confirmed as a member of the Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board.
But first, if I may, I would like to introduce my wife, Beth. She is an Oncology Social Worker at Morristown Memorial Hospital in Morristown, New Jersey. We have two married daughters and four grandchildren.
Let me also say that I am very grateful for the support of Senator Jon Corzine and Representative Rodney Frelinghuysen from my home state of New Jersey.
My reasons for being honored by this nomination are both personal and professional. I was born in Londonderry, Northern Ireland. My education in chemistry took place in Northern Ireland and in England. I came to the United States 36 years ago. I have spent all of those years working in the chemical industry. I became a United States citizen in a ceremony at Independence Hall in Philadelphia in 1983. Both the United States and the chemical industry have been good to me and they have allowed me to live in freedom and comfort.
After many years of experience in business, I have the desire to get involved in public service and return some of the benefits that I have received over the years. I am fully committed to the public-service mission of the Chemical Safety Board: to prevent accidents, save lives, and protect the environment by conducting investigations and advocating safety recommendations.
In 1966 I joined the Allied Chemical Company (now Honeywell International) in West Virginia. I continued to work for Honeywell until 2000. During that time I worked in chemical plants in West Virginia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and Hopewell, Virginia. My last five years with Honeywell were spent at their corporate headquarters in Morristown, New Jersey.
My experience in the chemical industry has been, I believe, broad-based.
Mr. Chairman, I believe that my experience would blend with the solid professional experience and dedication of the current Board members and that of the nominee for Chair, Carolyn Merritt.
I would hope to contribute toward consensus on the agency’s mission and activities. In my view, the priorities of the Board over the next five years should be as follows:
6. I am looking forward to the challenges that face me with humility and enthusiasm. If you honor me with confirmation, I look forward to working with you and your staffs.
Thank you again for the opportunity to appear before you. I would be pleased to answer any questions.