By Tina Montgomery
Grambling State University recently announced the appointment a Minden resident as their new Director of Safety and Risk Management.
Dr. John F. McMahon joined GSU on August 1, 2022. He brings 29 years of experience in public health, environmental and occupational health sciences, safety training, team building, hazard analysis, compliance and risk reduction to the historical university.
He worked for more than 20 years at two mayoral agencies for the city of New York and spent the last three years as the Director of Risk Management for the nonprofit Federally Qualified Health Center which operates nine primary care clinics in Monroe, LA.
McMahon is entrusted with the responsibility of identifying, evaluating, and analyzing risks inherent to the operations of the university.
“I try to determine what are the best practices for situations: risk analysis, hazard analysis, risk reduction, hazard reduction and abatement,” McMahon said. “That takes coordination and team building with other people, other departments. All departments here have the same goals.”
McMahon said he is focusing on helping the university get grants for safety and security which includes cybersecurity as well as physical security. He said he will be working closely with new Police Chief Rodney Demery to establish procedures for campus safety.
Identifying risks and creating safety practices takes 24/7 accountability McMahon said. He said this university is special because it has a big history. There are generations of people, families, who have shared the common interests of making the university successful.
“When they say ‘GramFam’ here, they really mean everyone is part of a family,” he added.
McMahon said he wants to pull together all departments and utilize resources from students as well as faculty. He plans to work with the students taking the new cybersecurity curriculum and the strong engineering department to help him meet his goals at GSU.
McMahon said he is looking forward to working with GSU President Rick Gallot. “He’s very innovative and knows the concept of team building. That’s very motivating,” he said.
McMahon holds a Doctorate of Education in Organizational Leadership from Louisiana Tech University; a Master’s of Science degree in Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences from Hunter College, City University of New York; a Master’s of Arts Education in Secondary Science from Louisiana Tech; a Graduate Certificate in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from Louisiana Tech and a Bachelor’s of Science in Medical Sociology with a minor in Biology from City College of New York.
“It’s an honor to be part of the GramFam,” McMahon said. “I know I’m in great company to build on the mission and vision of Grambling State University with teamwork, inclusion, and best practices in campus safety.”
Dr. John McMahon resides in Minden with his family.