HUD Deputy Secretary Opens NEHA 2018 AEC & HUD Healthy Homes Conference

Pamela Patenaude Focuses on Lead Abatement, Radon & Disaster Response Pam Patenaude

ANAHEIM, CA: The National Environmental Health Association opened its annual educational conference hearing from Pamela Patenaude, deputy secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, who focused on housing safety in a “fireside chat” with NEHA CEO Dr. Dave Dyjack.

“Identifying and addressing housing hazards that have an impact on the health of children and families is a top priority for Secretary Carson and the Department,” said HUD Deputy Secretary Patenaude. “With the help of our grantees and partners, HUD’s lead hazard control and healthy homes programs are meeting critical needs in communities where no other resources exist to address substandard housing that threatens the health of vulnerable residents. Equally important is restoring safe housing in communities hard-hit by natural disasters.”

Patenaude joined Dyjack on stage to speak before an estimated 1,500 environmental health professionals on the first day of NEHA’s Annual Education Conference and Exhibition. NEHA co-hosts its conference with HUD every two years; in 2016, HUD Secretary Julian Castro delivered remarks.

“We’re honored to have a long and lasting relationship with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. There’s so much in housing today that needs to be addressed in order to mitigate health risks, whether it’s the lead abatement efforts in older housing, or as we heard from Deputy Secretary Patenaude today, responding to natural disasters that destroy or damage housing,” Dyjack said. “We have a close partnership with HUD on all those initiatives.”

There are an estimated 90,000 people employed in the U.S. in environmental health fields, with work that ranges from inspecting restaurant kitchens, public pools and tattoo parlors, to controlling mosquitos, testing for radon and monitoring the quality of municipal drinking water.

For more than 80 years, NEHA has served the American public by upholding a credentialing standard that is recognized around the world, achieved only through NEHA-proctored exams. NEHA-credentialed environmental health workers must be able to demonstrate a professional mastery of the environmental health field.

Patenaude brings more than 30 years of experience in housing, economic development and public policy to HUD. Prior, served as President of the J. Ronald Terwilliger Foundation for Housing America’s Families, a nonprofit working to raise awareness of America’s affordable housing crisis. She has also served the Bipartisan Policy Center, the Urban Land Institute (ULI) and the ULI Terwilliger Center for Workforce Housing.

Media Contacts:
Shantae Goodloe, HUD: (202) 708-0685

Joanne Zurcher, NEHA: (202) 270-6193


Release Date: 
Tuesday, June 26, 2018