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Our Mission: Providing comprehensive, cost-effective, state of the art solutions to occupational health problems for businesses and individuals throughout Iowa and the Midwest.


WORKSAFE IOWA offers affordable occupational health services through a team of health and safety specialists that include educators, ergonomists, industrial hygienists, occupational medicine physicians and nurses, and safety specialists. Our home—within the Department of Occupational and Environmental Health at the University of Iowa College of Public Health—uniquely places us in an environment that allows access to ongoing research and the latest technologies in exposure assessment, hazard control, and occupational medicine.

WORKSAFE IOWA was established in 1987 with startup funding provided by the Kellogg Foundation. Since then, we have become a self-supporting nonprofit organization within the College of Public Health serving the state of Iowa and the surrounding Midwest region. Our service areas have grown from industrial hygiene, occupational medicine, and education to include product safety and ergonomics.


Peter Thorne, MS, PhD

Dr. Thorne is the WORKSAFE IOWA Director, as well as the Director of the Environmental Health Sciences Research Center and He has lead complex population-based epidemiologic studies that embrace community engagement in the research. Dr. Thorne has extensive experience in translating science to the lay public which includes providing student laboratory experiences, speaking to community groups, working with diverse and underserved populations, interacting with government officials and delivering educational resources such as public radio shows, videos and podcasts, written materials for widespread distribution, and reports.

Email:    Phone:  (319) 335-4216

Brenda Buikema, MD, MPH

Dr. Buikema is the medical director of WORKSAFE IOWA. She is an assistant clinical professor both in the College of Public Health (Department of Occupational and Environmental Health) and in the Carver College of Medicine (Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Occupational Medicine). She is an associate program director for the occupational medicine residency training program as well as a staff physician at the UI Occupational Health Clinic in North Liberty.

Email:   Phone: 319-356-3335

Nathan Fethke, PhD, CPE

Dr. Fethke is an Associate Professor in the Department of Occupational and Environmental Health at the UI College of Public Health. His expertise and research interests include:

  • Musculoskeletal Disorders
  • Ergonomics
  • Exposure Assessment
  • Product/Intervention Test & Evaluation
  • Electromyography
  • Data Acquisition & Signal Processing    Phone: (319) 467-4563

Tammi Goerdt

Director of Continuing Education & Outreach

Email   Phone: (319) 335-4423

Mike Meginnis

Continuing Education & Outreach Coordinator

Email   Phone: (319) 335-4684


Stephanie Leonard, MS

Ms. Leonard is an industrial hygienist who has been active in WORKSAFE IOWA consultation and education activities since its inception in 1987. She also serves as an industrial hygiene consultant on research and surveillance projects involving Iowa pesticide application exposures and the Iowa Army Ammunition Plant former worker programs. Prior to joining WORKSAFE IOWA, Ms. Leonard coordinated research studies at the UI involving agricultural workers’ occupational exposures. She is originally from Holstein, Iowa.

:    Phone: (319) 335-4432




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