LANSING, MI, March 25, 2009 – The American Board of Industrial Hygiene (ABIH) has been accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) for its Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH) program.

The accreditation was awarded under the ANSI standard ISO/IEC 17024 - Conformity assessment - General requirements for bodies operating certification of person and was effective on March 13, 2009.

Since its inception in 2003, this relatively new ISO/IEC standard has become increasingly recognized as an accepted benchmark for organizations that manage the certification of individuals, as the CIH program does.

“This new accreditation by ANSI now provides even greater assurance that ABIH is providing a high-quality certification system that meets the nationally and internationally recognized professional standards of examination and maintenance program administration,” said ABIH Executive Director Lynn O’Donnell, CIH. “This improves the transparency of our systems and the portability of the CIH designation.”

The prestigious accreditation came after a thorough review of documents and an extensive on-site assessment of ABIH’s management systems and psychometric procedures by ANSI Assessors. The use of an on-site assessment for accreditation of personnel certification agencies is unique to ANSI.

Scott Merkle, CIH, Chair of the ABIH Board of Directors said, “This is great news for our CIH community. This ANSI accreditation further enhances the integrity and credibility of the CIH designation which is especially relevant in a time when professional competency and public confidence are so important. That is good for the Certified Industrial Hygienists, employers, employees, and the public who look for the mark of professionalism.”

ABIH joins an elite list of approximately 25 companies who have been awarded the 17024 accreditation. The ANSI accreditation is good for a 5-year period and ABIH will be subject to ongoing demonstration of its continuous improvement under the ISO/IEC 17024 standard.

ABIH is also accredited under the Council of Engineering and Scientific Specialty Boards (CESB) standards for certifications. In addition, ABIH is a recognized certification board by the International Occupational Hygiene Association (IOHA).

Since 1960, ABIH, a not-for-profit corporation, has been the world’s largest, premier organization for certifying professionals in the practice of industrial hygiene. ABIH is responsible for ensuring high-quality certification application and examination processes, certification maintenance and ethics governance and enforcement.

Founded in 1918, ANSI is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization with a mission to enhance both the global competitiveness of U.S. business and the U.S. quality of life by promoting and facilitating voluntary consensus standards and conformity assessment systems and safeguarding their integrity. ANSI is the official U.S. representative to the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and, through the U.S. National Committee, the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). ANSI is also a member of the International Accreditation Forum (IAF).