The Speed of Safety:
ASIRT Promotes Need To Accelerate Efforts To Achieve Safer Roads
ASIRT’s Annual Gala 2021 and this year’s theme The Speed of Safety highlighted both the overwhelming sense of urgency as well as a sense of optimism as we enter the 2nd United Nations proclaimed Decade of Action for Road Safety. The event focused on the promise of future improvements in road safety while honoring some of those who have worked so hard in pursuit of road safety.
ASIRT was especially honored to have Robin Hutcheson, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Safety Policy for the U.S. Department of Transportation (as of 1/19/22 Deputy Administrator of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration), and Representative Richard Hudson (R-NC) and Representative Steve Cohen (D-TN), Co-Chairs of the Congressional Caucus on Global Road Safety, deliver greetings at this year’s Gala.
The Rt Hon Lord Robertson of Port Ellen KTGCMG HonFRSE PC, 10th Secretary General of NATO, delivered the keynote address and also was awarded the ASIRT Global Road Safety Champion Award. In his keynote remarks, Lord Robertson commended ASIRT’S president and founder Rochelle Sobel and the organization for using the human story to bring home to politicians, technicians, and engineers the true cost of the global road traffic epidemic. He highlighted the collaborative work that has moved road safety up the world’s policy agenda and noted the tremendous success that has been achieved to date in moving the international agenda further than originally thought possible. But he also reiterated the daunting scale of the problem and the work to be done. He concluded by expressing that governments need to “stop blaming victims and start fixing systems.” The message, he maintained, is delivered with greatest conviction by victims.
In addition to Lord Robertson, noteworthy honorees from around the country and as far away as Ireland were recognized. Post-Gala Social and Networking Rooms offered the more than 200 virtual guests the opportunity to discuss topics of interest including transportation advances and local community initiatives.
Congratulations to the 2021 ASIRT Honorees:
Edward B. Cohen, Former Vice President of Government & Industry Relations (Retired), American Honda Motor Company
ASIRT Corporate Leadership Award
Joy Sturm, Partner, Hogan Lovells
ASIRT Aron Sobel Community Service Award
Michael Dreznes, Retired Executive Vice President of International Road Federation (IRF)
ASIRT Leadership in Road Safety Technology and Education Award
Donna Price, Founder & Chairperson, International Road Victims’ Partnership and the Irish Road Victims’ Association
ASIRT Global Road Safety Advocacy Award
The Honorable Alcee L. Hastings (D-FL), Former Co-Chair, Congressional Caucus on Global Road Safety
Posthumous Honor: Distinguished Congressional Leadership on Behalf of Road Safety Award (Accepted by Alcee L. Hastings II)
Special thanks to Andrew Koblenz, Executive Vice President/Legal Regulatory Affairs, National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA), who did an outstanding job as the Gala Master of Ceremonies! And bravo to Gala and Silent Auction Chair Isabel Einzig for her time and creative energy!
Special acknowledgement to our corporate sponsors: Platinum Sponsor Honda; Gold Sponsors AISIN, NADA, Toyota and Waymo; and the Alliance for Automotive Innovation, Ford, Mazda, AIADA, the Global Alliance of NGOs for Road Safety, FIA Foundation, Uber, and RMK Productions.
And continued gratitude to our many private sponsors and contributors who demonstrate their commitment to road safety by supporting the important work that ASIRT does to protect travelers and citizens here in the U.S. and in countries around the world.