The National Environmental Health Association (NEHA) submits this proposal to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) under the Small Scientific Conference Program (R13), FOA Number: PA-11-310. Grant assistance will be used to develop, administer, and conduct a four-day educational conference, "NEHA's 78th Annual Educational Conference (AEC) &Exhibition," in collaboration with the International Federation of Environmental Health (IFEH). The 2014 AEC will take place July 7-10 (with four additional days of meetings and workshops) at The Cosmopolitan Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. The AEC is designed to meet the needs of both those who specialize in an environmental health (EH) area, such as food safety, as well as the "generalists" that have broad responsibility in providing EH services. The conference brings together 1,000-1,200 state, local, tribal, territorial, and federal EH and public health (PH) professionals from state and local health or environmental protection agencies, as well as private sectors, academia, uniform services, and international jurisdictions. The AEC is unique;there are not any other EH capacity building opportunities available at this scale. The AEC will provide a means to translate field-based research on food safety and a wide variety of EH topics into action to address environmental exposures and health risks of concern to the public. The conference will enhance the knowledge, skills, and abilities of EH professionals to utilize and implement recent food safety research projects, models, and best practices. The educational and networking opportunities will leverage and build the capacity of state, local, tribal, and territorial EH professionals to address both local and multi-jurisdictional EH issues in many subject areas, including water and air quality, land use planning, emergency preparedness and response, recreational water, pathogens and outbreaks, and food safety and protection. The educational program will provide information from experts with over 200 presenters and 150 educational sessions. This year's combined NEHA and IFEH event offers sessions to help the EH and food safety professional adapt and excel in the ever- changing economic and global landscape.
The National Environmental Health Association's (NEHA's) 2014 AEC will address and present new research findings on food safety and protection, as well as provide an opportunity for attendees to gain the skills, knowledge, and expertise needed to build capacity for EH activities and help solve their organization's daily and strategic challenges. Attendees will learn from presenters who are EH subject matter experts, industry leaders, peers that share common challenges, and this year the conference will include a global perspective on EH issues through NEHA's collaboration with the International Federation of Environmental Health. Attendees will take away information on implementation and application of new practices and technology, as well as inspiration to lead their organization and the EH profession into the future.