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J. J. Keller Announces Safety Professional of the Year

J.J. Keller & Associates, Inc.announced that Dana Heimdahl Chernault, partner in Edgewater Safety Consulting LLC, and most recently director of safety and risk management withCeres Environmental Services, Inc. is the 2023 J. J. Keller Safety Professional of the Year (SPOTY) Award winner. Keith Frantz, DOT compliance manager with Archer Daniels Midland Company, placed second, and Brian Daboul, corporate safety manager for Kari-Out, placed third.

The SPOTY Awards highlights those who achieve excellence by building a culture and vision for safety and ensuring employees return home each day to their families. The winning safety professionals were selected by a panel from J. J. Keller’s staff of 70+ safety consultants and editors.

First Place: Dana Heimdahl Chernault, Partner, Edgewater Safety Consulting, LLC

Dana Heimdahl Chernault launched Edgewater Safety Consulting, LLC this month. At the time she applied for the 2023 SPOTY Awards, she was director of safety and risk management with Ceres Environmental Services, Inc. Heimdahl Chernault joined Ceres Environmental Services, Inc. in 2020, when the company was expanding into the field of forestry and utility line clearance, which presents unique hazards. Through a practical, hands-on revamp of Ceres’ safety system, she led the company in building a stronger safety culture, including implementing a nurse case management hotline, a new incident investigation process and a significant reduction in injury rates and workers compensation claims.

Second Place: Keith Frantz, DOT Compliance Manager, Archer Daniels Midland Company

Keith Frantz has been with Archer Daniels Midland Company, a leader in global nutrition products and services, for 13 years. He oversees the compliance and safety of approximately 900 drivers who operate under Department of Transportation (DOT) and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations. The J. J. Keller judging panel credited Frantz with leading the team to build a fleet compliance program, ultimately driving down the DOT accident rate and sending drivers home safely each day.

Third Place: Brian Daboul, Corporate Safety Manager, Kari-Out

Brian Daboul joined Kari-Out, a food and container manufacturer, in 2021. Formalizing the organization’s safety program was his immediate goal in a work environment with powered industrial vehicles, loading docks and machinery. Daboul built a new safety culture from the ground up with the support of Kari-Out leadership and employee participation. As a result, the organization’s recordable injury rate was driven down significantly. Daboul emphasizes continual improvement even within his own base of knowledge.

Free Webcast Scheduled: Hear the Stories of These Outstanding Safety Professionals

Join J. J. Keller and the SPOTY Award winners on Monday, October 30, from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. central time, for a free webcast titled Outstanding Stories of Safety: Meet the J. J. Keller Safety Professional of the Year Winners. Rick Malchow, Industry Business Advisor with J. J. Keller, will interview Heimdahl Chernault, Frantz and Daboul to learn how they have created a safety-first culture with outstanding safety metrics and achievements, and hear about their personal commitment to keeping employees safe. Register here.

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