NEHA November 2022 Journal of Environmental Health

62 Volume 85 • Number 4 YOUR ASSOCIATION You rarely have a second chance to make a first impression. This chance may be ours. Over the last couple years, we have endeavored to recast our brand and usher in a new era for our association, our profession, and to secure our place in the U.S. public health enterprise. An essential element of this rebirth was a deep and profound reflection on our mission, vision, and values. The existing ones have been with us for the better part of 40 years or longer, and a burnishing of our core operational assumptions was overdue. The first step in our journey was to retain Amy Murphy, MPH, to assist us in conducting an association environmental scan and situational analysis. Sta‚ and board members, over the course of many months, struggled to identify and agree on our past accomplishments and setbacks, our current strengths and weaknesses, and our future opportunities and threats. We took months to digest our assumptions and asked ourselves what were the implications of our findings and conclusions? The amalgamation of our thinking led to the creation of new vision, mission, and values statements, replacing those that have served us well over recent history. While the conversations were not always easy, the crucible of our common commitment gave rise to what I feel are solid outcomes. Drum roll, please. I am delighted to share: Vision: Healthy environments. Protected communities. Empowered professionals. Mission: To build, sustain, and empower an e‚ective environmental health workforce. Philosophy: The values that we hold in fulfilling our vision and carrying out our mission are: • Compassionate Leadership: Establish NEHA as the leading authority in the field of environmental health. Serve as a beacon and voice for the field and champion the professionals who serve and protect our communities. • Integrity and Accountability: Create an environment infused with trust, honesty, transparency, and ethical behavior in all endeavors. Hold ourselves accountable to each other, those that we serve, and all of our stakeholders, partners, and funders, as well as produce meaningful outcomes. • Technical Expertise: Employ a sciencebased approach and leading-edge knowledge to guide our decisions and programs. Provide environmental health professionals access to science-based information, resources, education, and support. • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: Proactively foster and sustain a just, equitable, diverse, and inclusive environment that advances the field of environmental health, our professionals, and all community members. As we agreed on these statements, we recognized and accepted that we were only at the beginning of our contemporary journey. We needed a logic model and a strategic plan to blow life into these aspirational statements. This point is where the works gets tedious. How would we know if we were succeeding or failing to meet our aims? The next step was the development of a strategic plan. We embrace the notion that corporate culture is far more important than plans, which often lack relevancy by the time they are printed and posted. Nonetheless, planning is important, more important the plans themselves. Furthermore, we are accountable to you and desire to demonstrate that accountability through appropriate performance metrics made possible by planning. I draw your attention to our supporting organizational logic model (Figure 1, page 61). We felt that our implementation plan needed to be simple to understand, reasonably simple to implement, and simple as a foundation to report progress. Our members would be at the center of everything we do, and given the evidence base that grounds our profession, we felt data should provide the muscle to demonstrate the value we deliver to our constituency. Our three major lanes of work were identified. First, we should be experts on your professional needs—that translates to constituent insight. As you know, we conducted a member needs assessment in 2022 and have been using David Dyjack, DrPH, CIH Organization of Consequence  D i r ecTa l k continued on page 61 The crucible of our common commitment gave rise to what I feel are solid outcomes.