A WISE Fellow

Set aside everything you think you know about the word Fellow!

Ms. Fay Feeney, an accomplished risk and safety professional, became the 4th woman to ever receive the ASSE’s Fellow honor. Last year, Kathy A. Seabrook and Nancy J. McWilliams, were bestowed the honor and the first woman Fellow, Margaret Carroll, was honored in 1999. There have been over 100 Fellows honored by ASSE since 1961.

WISE members were abuzz with news of Fay’s honor throughout the Safety 2017 week in Denver. We cheered every time Fay joined us at a WISE event and cheered even louder when she officially received the honor.


Abby Ferri and Fay Feeney at the WISE Networking Event at Safety 2017 in Denver, CO.

When Fay accepted the Fellow honor with a speech, she took center stage instead of the podium. When I talked to Fay in the WISE Lounge after this event, she explained that forgoing the podium was planned. She told me that receiving the Fellow honor was a “once in a lifetime experience to challenge herself,” and that she did not want to “clutch the podium.” Instead, Fay drew upon something she learned at the WISE Retreat a few days prior…


Fay Feeney with her Fellow award and her acceptance speech.

Linda Tapp, a WISE member and dual 2017 SPY Award winner (WISE and Training & Communication), provided a review of her 2016 WISE Retreat session on storytelling from memory. This year, Linda taught one hundred 2017 WISE retreat-goers how to use a memory tool called The Method of Loci to commit a presentation to memory. The same method can be used for virtually anything you want to remember. The technique involves associating your presentation points with areas of a room that you are familiar with.

Fay explained to me how she used The Method of Loci to take center stage to accept her Fellow honor. She showed me her speech, broken up into sections, and explained to me how she committed each point to memory using the drawing of a house from Linda’s presentation at the WISE retreat.

I asked Fay for advice for other ASSE members. She said that while “you may not be ready to apply for the Fellow, apply for SOMETHING!” She encourages all members to apply for an education grant, local chapter leadership positions, as well as national speaking opportunities like Safety 2018 in San Antonio.

We are so proud to have Fay among the WISE ranks! Congratulations Fay Feeney, 2017 ASSE Fellow.


Fay Feeney’s 2017 ASSE Fellow acceptance speech and Method of Loci drawing.

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