Professionals Honored for Safety, Health Achievements

Eleven individuals were recognized for workplace safety and health excellence by the VPPPA during its national conference last week in Seattle, Wash.


Doug Thomas of Milliken and Co., Humphrey Plant, in Toccoa, Ga., was recognized by the Voluntary Protection Programs Participants'' Association (VPPPA) for his outstanding health and safety outreach activities.

He was among 11 individuals recognized for workplace safety and health excellence by the VPPPA during the opening session of the annual national conference, Aug. 28 at the Washington State Convention & Trade Center, Seattle, Wash.

The Safety and Health Outreach Achievement Award is an opportunity for hourly, non-safety and health professionals at VPPPA member sites to be recognized for their knowledge of safety and health issues, and for their Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) outreach efforts within their worksites and communities.

The award winners are required to complete program criteria set by the VPPPA.

As the safety coordinator at the Humphrey plant, Thomas is responsible for many aspects of safety and health training, including safety orientation for newly-hired employees and site visitors.

He has served as chairperson of the environmental, ergonomics and quality safety process committees and has made numerous benchmarking trips to share safety and health best practices with sites interested in the VPP.

Other award recipients honored during the conference are:

  • VPP Outreach Award -- Individual Category: Jim Lees, GE Inspection and Repair Services, Dallas, Texas; Ron Mauermann, Fort James Corp., Green Bay, Wis.; Linda Williamson, ExxonMobil Pipeline Co., Hull, Texas; and Leroy Counts, International Paper, Vicksburg, Mo.
  • VPPPA Innovation Award -- Individual Category: Kent Lang, Potlatch Corp., Lewiston, Idaho.
  • VPPPA Safety and Health Achievement Award: Kyra Kimmeth, Newport News Shipbuilding, Newport News, Va.; Daniel Olson, GE Medical Systems, Milwaukee, Wis.; Joseph Osweld, GE Engine Services, Hamilton, Ohio; and Lynn Poland, Newport News Shipbuilding, Newport News, Va.

Nearly 1,800 people attended the four-day VPPPA conference, including hourly employees, safety and health managers, occupational safety and health professionals and government personnel.

by Virginia Sutcliffe

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