Announces Annual Holden-Proefrock and Grand Slam Awards


Washington, D.C. — October 20, 2017 — The Association of American Railroads (AAR) announced the 2017 recipients of the Holden-Proefrock Award and the 2016 Non-Accident Release (NAR) Grand Slam Awards. The awards are given annually to individuals and railroads operating in hazardous material fields.

Paul Williams, Regional Manager, Hazardous Materials for Norfolk Southern, is the 2017 Holden-Proefrock Award recipient. For 34 years, Williams has worked to ensure the safe transport of hazardous materials by rail. In his current role, he oversees emergency response, regulatory support, and managing derailments and product releases across Norfolk Southern’s operations in the Southeast region. Williams was a former chairman on the AAR’s Tank Car Committee and continues to represent his railroad on the committee. Additionally, he plays a key role in Norfolk Southern’s community outreach programs. Prior to joining Norfolk Southern in 2003, Williams held positions at the Association of American Railroads, Bureau of Explosives, and the Transportation Technology Center’s Security and Emergency Response Training Center in Pueblo, CO.

The Holden-Proefrock Award is named in honor of Roy Holden, a former AAR employee and an innovator in tank car design and safety, and Art Proefrock, a former Hulcher Emergency Services employee who pioneered hazardous materials transportation emergency response.

The 2016 NAR Grand Slam Award was bestowed on 21 companies. They are: Agrium, BP Products North America, CF Industries Sales LLC, Chemtrade Logistics Inc., Citgo Petrolem Corporation, Covestro LLC, ERCO Worldwide, Green Plains Inc., Husky Energy Inc., Kemira, Marathon Petroleum Company, MarkWest Energy Partners L.P., Methanex Corporation, Nova Chemicals Corporation, Occidental Chemical Corporation, Olin Chlor Alkali, Pembina Resources Services, Chemours Company, Dow Chemical Company, Valero Energy Corporation and Westlake Chemical.

The AAR presents the NAR Grand Slam Award annually to companies that are exemplary shippers of hazardous materials.  An award winner must have been recognized by at least four Class I railroads and have had zero non-accident releases (NARs) involving their shipments the previous calendar year. A hazardous materials non-accident release is an unintentional release of a hazardous material while in transportation, but not involving an accident.

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For more information contact: AAR Media Relations at [email protected] or 202-639-2345.

About AAR: The AAR is the world’s leading railroad policy, research and technology organization focusing on the safety and productivity of rail carriers. AAR members include the major freight railroads of the U.S., Canada and Mexico, as well as Amtrak.

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