In the beginning
The Saskatchewan Safety Hall of Fame was developed to honour individuals of noteworthy achievement in the field of Health and Safety that have made lasting impacts to the province of Saskatchewan. In this way the Saskatchewan Safety Hall of Fame records their accomplishments for future generations. The Hall was concieved as a way to give recognition to the people that have permantly shaped and impacted safety in our province. These individuals have positively changed our attitudes, processes and culture of our society and the large majority continue to go unrecognized.
Will Putz was the first inductee into the Saskatchewan Safety Hall of Fame in February 2009. He worked tirelessly as a safety champion throughout his career. He began working with the Saskatchewan Safety Council in 1994 as a contract instructor and became a full-time member of the Council staff in 1996. During his time at the Saskatchewan Safety Council, he served in several positions including Occupational Safety Coordinator, Occupational Safety Manager and Manager of Special Projects.
One of his primary duties during his time at the Safety Council was Coordinating the annual Industrial Safety Seminar from 1996 to 2011. Through this time the annual Industrial Safety Seminar grew in scope and size to become one of the premier safety events in western Canada.
Throughout his safety career spanning over 22 years, Putz significantly contributed to many areas of safety beyond the Seminars, including the Fire Control School, First Aid, CPR, Defensive Driving, Forklift Training, the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System, Transportation of Dangerous Goods, Collision Avoidance, Incident Investigation and Basic Occupational Health and Safety, responsible for training over ten thousand participants.
His volunteer activities have included managing the Central Registration and Inquiry Bureau and delivering a variety of Emergency Services training courses for the Canadian Red Cross Society. He served as Charter President for Regina Food for Learning Inc. and was a Board member of Regina Education and action on Child Hunger (REACH). He was a member of the Board of Directors for the South Saskatchewan Chapter of the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering for 11 years and a member of the North American Occupational Safety and Health Week Provincial Planning Committee and the Saskatchewan Joint Industry Committee.
Dr. Ron Ailsby
Dr. Ron Ailsby is no stranger to the safety community in Saskatchewan. Inducted to the Hall of Fame in the Volunteer category, Dr. Ron Ailsby has consistently volunteered for over 40 years in Saskatchewan and around the world. Through his steadfast commitment he has contributed to saving thousands of lives. Dr. Ailsby is an Orthopedic Surgeon in Regina. He finished high school at the age of 16 and graduated as Doctor of Medicine from the University of Saskatchewan at the age of 24. When he was 29 he had earned a Fellowship with the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada on Orthopedics. As a doctor, he completed research projects such as the “Community Health Research Project” and “The Methodology for, and the Evaluation of Trauma and Its Management in a Rural and Urban Area”. He also served as Medical Consultant for the “Multidisciplinary Accident Investigations Team” of Transport Canada. For his work he has received accolades such as the Seymour Prize in Social and Preventive Medicine.
He served as a Clinical Associate Professor in the College of Medicine for the University of Saskatchewan, was President of the Saskatchewan Academy of Sports Medicine, was the Commanding Officer of 16 Medical Company, Primary Reserve of the Canadian Armed Forces where he was an honorary Lt. Col.
He has served on the Saskatchewan Safety Council Board of Directors since 1977 representing Saskatchewan Medical Association. Also, active in the community as a volunteer, his service has significantly contributed to the development and implementation of several safety related initiatives. Dr. Ailsby serviced as a Team Doctor for the Regina Pats Hockey Team and the Saskatchewan Roughriders Football Club for 30 years. A medical consultant for the Regina Master Games and Western Canada Summer Games.
He has also volunteered with Orthopedics Overseas and over the last ten years has taught surgical techniques in Peru, Costa Rica and St. Lucia as part of their volunteer programs. In past years, Ailsby was also involved with the Saskatchewan Academy of Sports Medicine in the implementation of physician guidelines used in the assessment of contact sport concussions and promoted a province wide ligament injury prevention program for High School sports. He has also had a key role with the Saskatchewan Medical Association in the development of the Provincial Emergency Medical Technician Program. As a volunteer at the Saskatchewan Safety Council, he helped lead the organization in activities such as Operation Life Saver and the Seniors Falls Prevention Program, among many others. He has served on all positions on the Board of Directors, including as President for 1982 and 1983.
Les Donnelly has had a significant impact on safety in the province of Saskatchewan through many decades. He served as Executive Director for the Saskatchewan Safety Council from 1970 to 1983 where he initiated, founded and developed funding for many essential programs and events that aimed to raise awareness about the importance of safety in the workplace as well as in the home and on roadways.
Under Donnelly’s guidance and persistence, Saskatchewan became the first province in Canada to achieve meaningful results in seat-belt awareness. Through wide spread advocacy campaigns from the grassroots, seat-belt usage soared from 6% to 65% during Donnelly’s time at the Saskatchewan Safety Council.
His vision, dedication and belief of a safer Saskatchewan inspired generations of safety advocates. Among his many achievements he started Occupational Health and Safety training programs, Forklift training, Fire Control School, Confined Space Entry and H2S training, Motorcycle training, School Bus Safety, Snowmobile Safety, Professional Driver Improvement training and the Industrial Safety Seminar.
Donnelly’s accomplishments spanned outside of the Saskatchewan Safety Council as well. He was a founding member of the South Saskatchewan Chapter of the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering and was involved in many community organizations including the United Way, Government House Historical Society, Martha House and the Canadian Club.
Naidene Thompson was a ground breaker in safety and injury prevention in the field of nursing. She became one of the first Occupational Health nurses in Saskatchewan, and through this, was involved in workplace health, safety and injury prevention.
As a role model for female safety professionals throughout the province, Thompson was influential as a trailblazer, the first woman in a male dominated industry.
She was one of the first women to become an active member of the South Saskatchewan Chapter of the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering, the first female Industrial Safety Seminar Chair, the first female President of the Saskatchewan Safety Council, the first female Safety Professional of the Year recipient, the first female to be inducted into the Saskatchewan Safety Hall of Fame. Thompson helped to launch the Saskatchewan Occupational Health Nurses group, which led to the formation of the Saskatchewan Occupational Health Nurses Special Interest Group, of which she is a life member.
As well as being a nurse, she trained as an Industrial Emergency Medical Technician, taught WHMIS, CPR and First Aid and has a Certificate in Alcohol and Chemical Dependency Studies from the University of Regina. She was also a certified audiometric technician and was a member of the committee for the revision of the Occupational Health and Safety regulation for noise control and hearing conservation.
Thompson was instrumental in the development of the Employee Assistance Program for both the City of Regina and IPSCO (now EVRAZ), and served as the manager of the IPSCO Program. In addition to being the longest serving President of the Saskatchewan Safety Council, she served on it’s Board of Directors for nine years and volunteered on the Council’s Industrial Safety Seminar steering committee for 19 years. She was honored by the Council with a life membership in 2000.
The contributions that Muir has made to safety and injury prevention, particularly motorcycle safety, are immense, as was his dedication and commitment. The impact Muir had on the motorcycling community in Saskatchewan over more than 37 years, is perhaps only somewhat measurable by counting the smiles on all the faces of those who ride safely. His contributions as a program developer and instructor were eclipsed only by his enthusiasm as a mentor for an entire generation of enthusiasts.
Muir’s stated goal was to make motorcycling a safe and enjoyable experience for everyone. Volunteering and instructing motorcycle safety for over 37 years, Muir also served as a subject matter expert during regulation and policy reviews. Muir’s constant interaction with the public, riders, and the families and friends of those who ride, reassured him that what he was doing was having a positive effect. There was always another story about “the skill they learned that saved them” or, “what could have happened had someone not taken that motorcycle course”.
Muir retired from a career as a high school teacher having taught for 35 years with Regina Public School Division. He volunteered to coach fastball, implemented the first girls’ soccer team at Thom Collegiate, and the first girls wrestling team at Campbell Collegiate. Muir volunteered his time to teach downhill skiing, and as a volunteer ski patroller and first aid provider. He worked as a volunteer first aider during the 1988 Calgary Olympics on the Bobsleigh and Luge tracks as well as the opening ceremonies. For these efforts, he was awarded the Winter Olympics volunteer medal. Muir also worked with the Canadian Recreational Canoe Association in the development of canoe training and safety standards for Canada.
He was honored by the Canada Safety Council for 20 years of voluntary service with the Motorcycle Safety Program and he received the Saskatchewan Safety Council’s Volunteer of the Year award.
Summach has been actively involved in occupational Health and Safety for over 30 years in many areas of the profession in the mining and municipal industries. He is a recognized subject matter expert on emergency preparedness. Summach has provided health and safety advice and support to international operations while working for Cameco, as well as overseeing the emergency response programs and the transportation spill response program.
Summach is a Certified Health and Safety Consultant, a Certified Human Resource Professional and a first aid instructor. Prior to joining Cameco, he worked for PCS Mining as a Safety and Training Coordinator, as well as their Safety and Loss Control Coordinator. He previously worked for the City of Saskatoon as an Occupational Safety Officer and as the Manager of Occupational Health and Safety.
In addition to working full time in injury prevention, Summach has been actively involved as a volunteer. He was President of the Saskatchewan Safety Council and served on the Board of Directors for over 20 years. Summach has served as the Regional Vice President for the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering representing Saskatchewan and Manitoba. He has been a member of the Northern Light Chapter of the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering for over 30 years and has been the past Chair of the Industrial Safety Seminar and active planning member since 1988. For decades, Summach has participated and judged the Saskatchewan Mining Association and the Provincial Emergency Response/Mine Rescue Skills Competition.
In 2000, he was honored as the Safety Professional of the Year and in 2007, he was awarded the outstanding service award for dedication and commitment in the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering community and the occupational health and safety profession. In 2010, he was awarded the Saskatchewan Safety Council Volunteer of the Year.
Nelson was instrumental in the field of Industrial Firefighting. He played a key role in the development of the first Fire Control School in Saskatchewan and continued as a volunteer instructor for many years.
Working for Mosaic Canada, known then as Kalium Chemicals, Nelson became the first Industrial firefighter in Saskatchewan to receive the exemplary Fire Service Medal from the Governor General of Canada.
Among many other honours bestowed upon him, he has also received the Saskatchewan Safety Professional of the Year Award, the Saskatchewan Mining Association’s Distinguished Service Award and England’s Penner International Emergency Response Award. Nelson was actively involved in Mine Rescue Competitions for over 40 years, training rescue teams and acting as a Judge in both the Annual Event and in the Emergency Response In-House Competitions. He can be credited with assisting in the development of the Mine Rescue Firefighting Competition, and helped to establish the annual Industrial Firefighter’s Competition. He also initiated the first volunteer Firefighter’s Challenge in Saskatchewan and assisted and judged many First Nation’s Firefighting Competitions. He was a member of the International Association of Arson Investigators, and has been an instructor with the Saskatchewan Firefighter’s Association and St. John Ambulance.
He has also been a dedicated volunteer to many provincial volunteer Fire Departments across the province who have relied on his advice and assistance in obtaining essential, cost-effective firefighting equipment. Early in his retirement, Nelson traveled to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, where he recognized the need for quality equipment to help the Firefighters who were struggling with little or no equipment. In the eleven years that followed, he personally collected and delivered thousands of tools and equipment donated by fire departments across Canada and the United States and trained them in the proper use. In gratitude, he was named the First Honorary Bombero (Firefighter) for the Department of Puerto Vallarta Firefighters.
Victor Kowalsky’s attitude towards safety and injury prevention was influential to many safety professionals across Saskatchewan. Kowalsky was actively involved in Occupational Health and Safety until his untimely passing in 2003.
At that time, he was Executive Director of the Saskatchewan Forest Industries Safety Association. Acting as their first director, he established and developed the organization out of Prince Albert from the ground up. During his safety career, he was instrumental in the establishment and growth of the Northern Light Chapter of the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering, laying the foundation and developing the governance model for the present-day chapter.
Through dedication and the mentoring of others, Kowalsky took the small chapter and developed it into an active and vibrant professional organization that continues to contribute to the safety community locally, regionally and nationally. He was also instrumental in the founding and establishment of the Provincial North American Occupational Safety and Health (NAOSH) committee which continues to plan and hold NAOSH events each year in communities throughout North America. In the 1990’s, Kowalsky was the driving force behind the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering Professional Development Conference being held in Saskatchewan. Through his commitment and dedicated fundraising effort, Kowalsky helped to set a new attendance record for the conference up to that point it became the most financially successful conference the CSSE had ever put on.
Kowalsky was an active member of the Saskatchewan Safety Council’s Industrial Safety Seminar for many years and served as national Vice President of the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering, representing Saskatchewan and Manitoba. He volunteered significantly with the Northern Light Chapter serving in every possible executive position over the many years.
Wallace has made considerable contributions to injury prevention in the province of Saskatchewan. He was the Safety Director of the Heavy Construction Safety Association of Saskatchewan for two decades leading the heavy construction industry in safety matters. He began his safety career in the mining industry, which lead him to becoming the Occupational Safety Coordinator for the Saskatchewan Safety Council. Prior to that, he was a Firefighter with the City of Regina Fire Department.
He received his Canadian Registered Safety Professional designation in 1989, at that time he was the youngest person in the province to attain this designation. He also received his Construction Safety Officer and his Certified Safety Professional. During his career, he has taught and developed countless courses. Many of these have been at the advanced or Instructor level. Throughout his career, Wallace has contributed several safety articles to publications such as OHS Canada. He regularly speaks at safety conferences across Canada and has taught Safety Auditing at the University of Regina. Wallace is busy as a volunteer in the community as a First Responder with the North Shore First Responders and as a volunteer Fire Chief with the Silton Fire Department.
He has served on the Saskatchewan Safety Council’s Board of Directors as President and was a volunteer Motorcycle Instructor for over 20 years. He has been actively involved with the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering for over 20 years and is the current Chair of the Regina Regional Screening Committee for the CRSP designation. Wallace has received numerous awards throughout his 30-year safety career including the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering President’s Award, the Canadian Registered Safety Professional’s Volunteer of the Year Award, the Saskatchewan Safety Professional of the Year Award and the Saskatchewan Safety Council’s Volunteer of the Year Award to name a few.
Shiels was actively involved in traffic safety during the 1970’s and 1980’s and played a significant role in reducing the number of traffic fatalities from almost 1 a day, 250 per year on average, to the present 5-year average of around 130. In 1972, Carl was the lead in a University of Saskatchewan study of Fatal Motor Vehicle Collisions. He attended the scene of these crashes to determine what caused the crash, how it could have been prevented and how the consequences of the crash could have been reduced.
Shiels was seconded to the government to help with the Safety 77 campaign, where he helped to draft our seat-belt legislation, one of the first in Canada, and managed the public awareness campaign for its July 1, 1977. In 1978, he developed Saskatchewan’s Child restraint legislation, the first in the country, which would serve as a model for all the other provinces. From there he moved to the Highway Traffic Board and was responsible for the administration of its Driver Education and Safety Programs, including the truck safety inspection system. While there he helped to develop the Traffic Accident Information System. This system turned out to be the best in the country, able to generate data the following year, whereas most systems take 2 to 5 years. He also volunteered with the Saskatchewan Safety Council, serving on its Board and as President, doing everything from procuring funds to developing new programs and he was actively involved in the Safe Grad movement of the late 70’s and early 80’s and the development of the School Bus Driver Training program, again the first of its kind in Canada. During this time Carl was a person with tremendous vision and was willing to work behind the scenes to make a real difference in the lives of every man, woman and child in the province.
Harrison has dedicated his career to being an active safety professional and he has set a great example for others to follow. He started his career in injury prevention with SaskTel, working as the Manager of Safety & Environment retiring from that position in 2005. After his initial retirement, he continued to work and joined SAHO as their Director of Workplace Health, Safety & Education Services for five years before joining PCL Construction Management Inc. as a Safety Coordinator where he worked until his last retirement.
While at SaskTel he assisted in the development and introduction of a corporate wide hands-on driver training program and an internal licensing program. In addition to this he was actively involved in coordinating a SaskTel motor vehicle “roadeo” and introduced a safety management program at both SaskTel and the Health Regions.
During his career, he has developed many safety training courses and has instructed over 60 types of safety training programs. In addition to providing numerous safety articles for internal publications he was published in the Canadian OH&S Publications Magazine. Harrison was actively involved with the Saskatchewan Safety Council, serving on their board for 20 years. During his term as President he raised the bar for the Council, and helped it grow from a small non-profit into a professional safety organization. He has also served on its seminar steering committee for many years and was actively involved in its traffic division. Harrison also actively volunteered with the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering, the Canadian Telephone Safety Association, the Joint Industry Committee, the Contractor Safety Awareness Association, the Saskatchewan Environmental Industry Managers Association, and the Environmental Services of Alberta. He has received the RCMP Commanding Officer’s Certificate, the Safety Council’s Volunteer of the year and was Saskatchewan’s Safety Professional of the year in 1993.
Linton has been involved with the Saskatchewan Safety Council, the Saskatchewan Mining Association, the Saskatchewan Volunteer Firefighters, the Saskatchewan Association of Fire Chiefs and the Industrial firefighting competition. In the field of Industrial firefighting, he was in on the ground floor. He played a key role in the development of the Saskatchewan Safety Council’s Fire Control School and has been an instructor at the school for over 30 years. This Fire School was the first of its kind in Saskatchewan.
Linton has also assisted the Council by sitting on the steering committee of its Safety Seminar for over 25 years and was one of the key people who helped to steer the committee during its growth years. He has been actively involved in Mine Rescue Competitions for over 30 years, training rescue teams, and acting as a Judge and Marshal at the Annual Event and in Emergency Response In-House Competitions.
He has been involved with the Industrial Fire and Rescue Competition since its inception. Linton participated in its development and has judged competitions, developed event criteria, sat on the steering committee and acted as a marshal. He has participated on the committee for the Annual Fire Chief’s convention and has been a level 1 firefighter and an Instructor/Evaluator for the Saskatchewan Volunteer Firefighters Association. Linton has assisted the Saskatchewan Mining Association in the development of both its firefighting competition and its Fire Extinguisher Trainer program as well as the standardization of fire training program in Saskatchewan through the University of Regina’s extension program.
Linton has always been gracious with his time and knowledge and always encouraging to new safety people. He was involved in designing and implementing many of the “fire training/fire competition” events we now consider to be standard through Saskatchewan.
Jacobson is a career safety professional having worked in many injury prevention positions through multiple decades in Saskatchewan. He was a founding member of the Early Safety Training Committee which was a first of its kind program integrating industry safety outcomes with the High School curriculum and played an instrumental role in its formation. He is also a founding member of the Weyburn & Area Safety Council and a founding partner in the South-East Safety and Environmental Seminar.
Jacobson participated in many other safety organizations including the Saskatchewan Road Ambulance Association, the Heavy Construction Safety Association Board of Directors and the OHS Advisory Committee for Regulation changes and was highly involved in the South-East Area Oil Spill Cooperative for many years. Jacobson is a Canadian Registered Safety Professional and Construction Safety Officer. He is an experienced Emergency Medical Technician, and former EMT Instructor, as well as a graduate of the Auxiliary Police Training Program. He served on the Executive of the South Chapter of the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering for many years. The courses he has instructed are too numerous to mention; training many thousands of students. He has written numerous articles and publications throughout his career, including the first Saskatchewan based Ground Disturbance course, of which he was the primary developer. In his safety career, he has achieved astounding successes. One example took place while working for Carson Welding and Maintenance Ltd. Jacobson and his employer worked with Saskatchewan WCB to organize a pilot project which established a new provincial program critical to current Safety Management Systems in Saskatchewan, known as the Return to Work system. Jacobson proved the capability and economic viability of Return to Work when they astounded their WCB rate code by working over one million man hours with no time lost, an achievement never accomplished in the industry previously.
McAuley became involved in all areas of injury prevention within days of starting his career as a safety professional. He has developed numerous safety training courses for the construction industry and trained thousands of students. He has developed and lectured programs on Auditing Health and Safety Programs for the University of Alberta and lectured at SIAST. McAuley has also presented at numerous industry conferences and events.
McAuley participated on the committee that developed the Canadian Construction Association’s Gold Seal (GSC designation) for Construction Safety Coordinators and participated with the Canadian Federation of Construction Safety Associations on the development of the “National Standard” for the Construction Safety Officer (NCSO) designation accepted across Canada. He was a member of the National Technical Committee which developed the National Certificate of Recognition Audit for the Construction Industry in Canada. McAuley participated on the 2010 Workers Compensation Act Committee of Review and participated on the Provincial OHS Advisory Committee for Building Capacity in Occupational Health and Safety. He led the development of the Framework of Standards for the Safety Programs, Audits and Certification in Saskatchewan and was Chairperson of the Saskatchewan Joint Industry Committee. McAuley actively participated on the Provincial Advisory Group Task Team which developed the curriculum framework for the SIAST OHS Practitioner Applied Certificate program and continued as an Advisory Group member for the program after it was launched.
He developed the Provincial and National Workplace Safety Competition for Skills Canada and Co-developed the Competition Safety Standards Program for all Skills Canada competitions; which was also used during the World Skills Competitions when it was hosted by Canada. For his entire career Craig has not only been involved with injury prevention, he has been a true leader in the province of Saskatchewan and has made a significate and lasting impact.
Pozniak is one of the most recognizable safety professionals today. Not only in Saskatchewan… not only in Canada… but throughout the world. She has provided safety consulting throughout Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Northern Ireland, UAW, Bahrain and the United States. Pozniak has taught for the University of Regina and the University of Saskatchewan and lectured for SIAST. She has worked with dozens of local organizations bringing her world expertise to Saskatchewan.
Internationally Pozniak has worked with government agencies in the GCC region Al Alin Municipality of the United Arab Emirates to write and develop their occupational health and safety regulations and to setup their overseeing regulatory body. Pozniak has also worked on projects such as the implementation of Safety Management System and Risk Management on the Dubai World Project Palm Island. She is a speaker for such events as the International Organization for Safety and Health, the American Society of Safety Engineering, the World Congress on Safety and Health at work and IIR Management Middle Eastern Conferences. She has spoken within Canada at the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering Conferences along with many Saskatchewan Industrial Safety Seminars. Pozniak has been actively involved in the CSSE Northern Lights Chapter. She has served as President of the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering and President of the International Network of Safety and Health Practitioner Organizations which represents health and safety practitioners from 11 different countries.
Pozniak has been recognized as the Saskatchewan Safety Professional of the Year, the Canadian Safety Professional of the Year, the American Society of Safety Engineers 100 Women Making a Difference in Safety, Health and Environment, and the YWCA Women of Distinction award. Pozniak can often be heard saying that she takes “Saskatchewan to the World and the World to Saskatchewan”.