LEAD Action News
LEAD Action News Volume 14 Number 3, June 2014, ISSN 1324-6011
Incorporating Lead Aware Times ( ISSN 1440-4966) and Lead Advisory Service News (ISSN 1440-0561)
The Journal of The LEAD (Lead Education and Abatement Design) Group Inc.
Editor-in-Chief: Elizabeth O’Brien, Editorial Team: Yiru Rocky Huang and David Ratcliffe

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Eulogy for Chris Winder

By Elizabeth O'Brien

The Chris Winder that I knew, through The LEAD Group, the environmental NGO campaigning on lead safety, was a hugely intelligent, witty and compassionate man.

Above all, he understood systems – by which I mean, he understood the way industry, government and media work and interact, and, most of all, what communities need in terms of knowledge and strategy in relation to occupational health and safety.

He extended his expertise in toxicology beyond the limits of occupational health and safety for workers, to their families as well. He shared his extensive knowledge with campaigners, and went in to bat for them. He never stopped learning, and sharing his knowledge, whilst understanding that people in a position to make change happen, sometimes need encouragement, to take into account new information, without their feeling a loss of face. It’s called ‘finessing’, at which he was a respectful expert.

Chris Winder’s legacy becomes apparent if one Googles his name. There are 70 articles by him on The LEAD Group’s web site alone.  His influence extends over many toxics: including heavy metals other than lead, pesticides, and ‘aero-toxics’ (toxics in aircraft cabins).

With his advice, help, strategizing and support, The LEAD Group has been able to extend its reach from that of a local environmental health NGO to a globally recognised collaborator with the United Nations and the World Health Organisation.

He always said, whenever he lent me an important book or video about lead, “If you don’t give this back, you’ll owe me your first born.”

Whenever I was totally frustrated with what seemed to me to be deliberate misinformation from industry, or the glacial rate of change in government policy (I am speaking of glaciers before global warming), Chris would always advise me to ‘never assume conspiracy, when you can assume ignorance instead.’

Chris used his extensive knowledge to make the world a safer place.

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Last Updated 15 July 2014
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