The National Safety Council this month will honor Dr. Richard Compton, a research psychologist with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, for his scientific contributions to the fight against alcohol- and drug-impaired driving.
Compton will receive the 2015 Robert F. Borkenstein Award from the council’s alcohol, drugs and impairment division during a dinner event on Feb. 15. The award is named after the inventor of the Breathalyzer.
Compton has served as director of NHTSA’s office of behavioral safety research since 2002. During his 37-year career at the federal agency, he has authored and published more than 60 reports and articles on transportation safety. Compton’s impaired-driving research includes evaluating the effectiveness of new technologies, enforcement methods and public education campaigns.
Compton is an international expert on the subject of drugged driving. He has examined the impairing effects of a broad range of legal and illegal drugs – from marijuana to antihistamines.
“Dr. Compton’s career is fueled by his passion that science can help save lies, as evidenced by his research on the prevention of needless traffic crashes,” said Deborah A.P. Hersman, president and CEO of the National Safety Council. “With the significant and persistent problem of alcohol use contributing to crashes and an increase in prescription painkiller misuse across our nation, impaired driving research led by Dr. Compton informs effective policies that make the roads safer for us all.”