Sharon Kohler Joins Brookhaven Lab as Associate Lab Director for Environment, Safety & Health

Sharon Kohler enlarge

Sharon Kohler

UPTON, NY—Sharon Kohler—a leader with more than 30 years of experience managing environment, safety, health, and operations at U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) facilities with complex operational environments—took on the role of associate laboratory director (ALD) for environment, safety, and health (ES&H) at DOE’s Brookhaven National Laboratory on Sept. 25.

Overseeing 135 employees and an annual budget of over $30 million, Kohler will be responsible for environmental protection and occupational safety and health at Brookhaven Lab's 5,300-acre site, ensuring compliance with federal, state, and local regulations that protect the Laboratory's 2,800 employees, the public, and the environment. Kohler will be responsible for work in the Environmental Protection, Radiological Control, and Safety & Health Services divisions, along with the Lab’s environmental cleanup and stewardship program.

"World-class science requires firm commitments to working safely and protecting the environment," said Brookhaven Lab Director JoAnne Hewett. "As we welcome Sharon Kohler, we look to her as a leader and an advocate for the health and safety of our staff, the community, and the environment we share."

"Sharon Kohler has deep expertise in safety programs and practices, operations, and environmental management from years of experience at fellow DOE facilities. We are grateful she is bringing that expertise to Brookhaven to continue the safe conduct of research today and in the future," said Jack Anderson, who led the hiring effort for this position and served as the Lab's deputy director of operations before retiring Sept. 30.

Kohler comes to Brookhaven Lab from DOE’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), where she held a variety of operational leadership roles over 17 years.

"I am grateful for the tremendous opportunity to continue serving the DOE community and sharing my passion for safety in the next chapter of my career at Brookhaven National Laboratory," said Kohler. "I am excited to join the team of talented ES&H professionals supporting the Lab’s diverse science missions and world-class facilities."

Most recently, Kohler served as director of ORNL's Safety and Operations Services Division in the Environment, Safety, Health, and Quality Directorate (ESH&Q) and was responsible for the worker safety and health and research work control management systems. She previously supported ORNL as operations manager of ESH&Q, ESH&Q group leader at the Spallation Neutron Source, operations manager of the Neutron Sciences Directorate, and health and safety programs group leader in ESH&Q. Kohler also led ORNL's independent oversight organization.  

Before joining ORNL in 2006, Kohler spent 16 years at DOE’s Environmental Management Program, Fernald Closure Project near Cincinnati, Ohio. While at Fernald, she directed programs related to work control, occupational safety, industrial hygiene, occupational medicine, nuclear criticality, safety analysis, integrated safety management, training, health and wellness, radiation protection, and emergency management.

Kohler earned a bachelor’s degree in business management from Virginia Tech and a master’s in industrial engineering, occupational, and system safety from the University of Cincinnati. She is a certified safety professional. 

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