All employees of Facilities Management are able to participate in the Safety Culture Awards program. Employees may nominate each other to recognize behaviors that exemplify the culture of safety Facilities Management aspires to. Personnel may nominate by sending an email with nominee and description of their act, activity, or behavior to FMSafety@colorado.edu.
Safety Culture Award Recipients
Matthew Markle (Pipe Shop) - nominated by Rich Trujillo
Matthew recently recommended a cart (like a dolly) to help the Pipe Shop when replacing a toilet. The cart is used to lift and position the new toilet rather than a tradesperson manually picking up the toilet. Using the cart will help prevent and back or other potential safety issues. Matthew also gave a presentation on how the cart works to the FM safety committee. Nice job, Matthew!
Stan Evangelista and Tony Miller (Structural Trades) - nominated by Jon Klarich
A very concerned employee reported an unsafe area for pedestrians. The employee recommended pedestrian signs to be installed south from Regent onto Kittredge Loop because of speeding vehicles. The day the request was submitted to the Struc shop, Stan and Tony created and installed the signs the same day. Tony then followed up with the team involved with the pedestrian safety issue.
Michael Donofrio (Distribution Center) - nominated by Casey Sanders
Michael Donofrio handles most of the deliveries for FM Stores. Michael was at the stadium last month, on a cold and snowy day, and noticed icicles. A few actually fell while he was there, coming pretty close to where he was working. He took the initiative to make folks in the aware aware of the hazard. After the area was secure, he informed Don Fitzpatrick. Michael’s action is a result of thorough training. He saw a problem and notified someone, possibly preventing damage or an injury. Communication, awareness, and self-motivation played a part and these are traits that make the campus safer!
Trent Wilson (Outdoor Services) - nominated by David Laliberte
Trent noticed a potential hazard above the west entrance of RL-1 and submitted the concern via the safety reporting app so it could be handled by the appropriate shop.
Eric Jaskuta (Outdoor Services) - nominated by Vince Aquino and Jim Beveridge
While cleaning storm damage out of a large oak tree, Eric noticed that the lift’s hydraulic pistons and arms appeared to be out of alignment. We stopped the work, getting the bucket operator down. This turned out to be a false alarm. The equipment is made to have movement on one end of the ram arm in order to absorb shock or wind play on the boom itself. In real time, it certainly looked like it was damaged or failing to all of us, and we were very grateful to Eric for being so observant and willing to communicate and stop work at any sign of danger. Once the operator was down, we communicated with our lift truck service provider and determined that the gear was operating properly and we were fine to use it. It was great that Eric took the actions he did when he noticed something that looked out of place.
Andrew Wheeler (Planning/Scheduling) - nominated by Vince Aquino
Christian Parker let me know about a hazardous condition involving a tree limb over the bike path. When I arrived, I found a damaged and fairly significantly sized limb suspended over the Broadway bike path. I had a pole saw tool with me but it was rather busy on the multi-use path and people were coming into the work zone keeping me from completing the task. Andrew was cruising by on his cart and quickly assessed what I was trying to accomplish. Before I could even think to ask, he had pulled over and offered to be my spotter and ground safety person. He kept any more people from entering the area I was working in, and we got the damaged limb down. I very much appreciate Andrew stopping to assist me on this process and keeping the public and myself safe.
Zackary Russell (Fire Alarms Shop) - nominated by Craig Perez
While Zackary was working near the IBS load dock, he observed a piece of rebar sticking out of the loading zone area. The parking block was moved resulting in the rebar becoming exposed. This is a safety hazard which may lead to a trip and fall or possibly a damaged vehicle. This is a great example of “being aware of your surroundings” and reporting a safety issue. Nice work Zackary!
Ethan Paxton (IPM Technician) - nominated by Troy Muller
Ethan has used the safety hazard app to report 3 hazards so far. One was a missing step in a staircase, the other two were tripping hazards near building entrances. Ethan’s observant when out on campus, and tries to be proactive by reporting hazards regardless of whether or not there might already be a plan to address them. Even if a hazard seems insignificant, Ethan knows that students can sometimes be distracted and a small tripping hazard could cause injury. He’s taken a couple pictures, fills out the forms on the hazard reporting app, and it is usually addressed within a few days. Thank you Ethan!
Christian Parker (Outdoor Services) - nominated by Vince Aquino
Christian has brought numerous safety issues to light in recent months, including the open space under the Hale building, various window well access and ladder safety issues, damaged trees and downed branches and limbs, security camera needs in the GROC building due to non-authorized people entering the facility, and other issues. Christian was thorough and helpful in identifying, communicating, and solving these situations. Her observant nature and her willingness to engage in the improvement process is valuable to our work group. Additionally, Christian is also currently a member of our OS Safety Committee and she is always prepared for the meetings, and is engaged in ideas and discussions to improve safety for the Grounds teams. She deserves an acknowledgement for these efforts. Myself and others in FM certainly appreciate her work.
Daren Brown (Pipe Shop), John Humphrey (Fire Alarms Shop) and Erik Jesinski (Structural Trades Shop) - nominated by Adrian Garcia
The evening of Feb 1st a vent stopped working and caused a flood in the stairwell of engineering. Luckily the flood was in the basement and caused very minimal building damage. However, a large portion of water leaked outside into the courtyard setting up a potential disaster for this high traffic pedestrian walkway. The crew who responded to the flood quickly put up danger tape around columns to divert pedestrian traffic away from the quickly forming ice rink. Daren located ice melt and we were able to throw ice melt all over the slick sidewalk. The next morning, I went down to check on the sidewalk and was able to take down the danger tape once it was determined to be back to safe conditions.
Brenda Chavez - 2022 Annual Safety Award Winner (nominated by Jessica Bradley)
Brenda volunteered to be on the safety committee as co-chair and has really flourished in this role. She has always been a safety-oriented supervisor, watching out for staff to make sure they have the tools they need to do their jobs safely. Brenda also makes sure that her staff are involved with safety discussions during her staff meetings and invites Leadership regularly to those meetings. Thank you Brenda for working with your team and other FM staff to create a safety culture!
Robert Allen (Recycling) – nominated by Jason Tavares
Robert has been helping with the football games and noticed a pretty serious safety hazard in the stadium. While working during the games Robert noticed that raising and lowering the field goal nets creates a tripping hazard for the university marching band. Robert also noticed some large metal conduit brackets protruding from the stadium wall. A plan is now in place to prevent further incidents.
Michael Najera, Darren Brown, and Craig Perez (Pipe Shop, Fire Systems Shop) – nominated by Rich Trujillo
During the campus closure the Pipe Shop received a call from the service desk reporting a steam leak at the Event Center. Michael Najera, Daren Brown and Craig Perez responded. When they arrived on site, it was about 300 degrees Fahrenheit in the mechanical room. Michael contacted Johnny with Fire Systems isolating the smoke alarms preventing the fire department from being called in. They installed some fans in the mechanical room, providing some fresh air and prevented the sprinklers from discharging. These team members' quick thinking and immediate action helped to minimize the damage to the building.
Chris Dobis (Fire Systems Shop) – nominated by Jay Marler
An employee on Team 3 fell yesterday and injured her ankle. Chris Dobis sprang to action and made sure that she was taken care of until the ambulance arrived. He contacted police and fire. He was the primary witness. He made sure that our employee had something to sit on since the ground was cold. He also made sure that she had something covering her to keep her warm while she waited.
Sushila and Kalsang (Team 6) – nominated by Rubi Andazoloa
Sushila and Kalsang were working the night shift in the ATLAS building on campus when they noticed an individual that they had never seen before in the building. They called their supervisor and their supervisor called CUPD. These team members did the correct thing by calling CUPD and not approaching the individual.
Charles Holstein and Adriana Charbonnet (Outdoor Services) – nominated by Trent Wilson
Mice found our native seed stockpile in one of our sheds and decided to move in and make an absolute mess! Charles and Adriana took on the nasty job of getting everything cleaned up, and with safety in mind by wearing the appropriate PPE. We are now going to store any seed we have in mouse-proof containers.
"Electronics Specialist John Kline is currently attending STOP (Safety Training Observation Program) classes. Following his first class, John inspected the ladders his team uses and noticed the ladders were worn and needed to be replaced. Since John was concerned a worn ladder may lead to a potential safety hazard for one of his team members, he took the initiative to order new ladders. Proper equipment is critical for our safety, and John has set the example to make sure his team has safe and updated equipment. He learned from his STOP classes and previous work experience, the importance of observation each day for his team’s safety."
In recognition of John’s efforts, he was awarded a Safety Award in the month of October and received a $25 gift card from the Facilities Management Safety Committee. Congratulations to John for taking the initiative to keep his team safe!
Michael Najera (nominated by John Gleason)
During the early morning of September 12, 2022, tradesmen Michael Najera observed 2 students “wrestling” on campus. When he heard one of the students scream for help, Michael ran across the street and began to pull the other student off of him. The student Michael pulled away was intoxicated and became very aggressive. Michael noticed a bystander and Michael told him to call 911. CUPD arrived on site and a police report was filed.
Because of Michael’s swift response, he prevented a hostile situation from becoming even more violent. He is responsible for coming to the aid of the student who was assaulted and preventing any further injuries. Michael is a member of FACMAN’s safety committee and he is being recognized for coming to the aid of a student who was in desperate help. Congratulations Michael and thank you for all your efforts!
Brian Richardson (nominated by Carolina Pire)
Recently one of our delivery drivers became entrapped in an elevator on campus. The driver attempted to call the OCC on three separate occasions using the elevator phone. Unfortunately, the phone connection between the elevator and the OCC was poor and the driver and OCC dispatcher were unable to speak with one another. OCC Service Dispatcher, Brian Richardson, took action by reaching out to CUPD and requested a welfare check. Brian made this decision following the third phone call from the delivery driver resulting in a “dropped call.” Brian remained on the line with the police officer because the officer was with Boulder PD and was unfamiliar with our Campus. Brian’s extensive knowledge of our Campus and operations enabled him to direct the police officer to the building and perform the welfare check. By the time the police officer arrived on the scene, the driver was safe and able to step out of the elevator.
Congratulations to Brian for taking swift action and reaching out to CUPD. This is a GREAT example how the OCC supports our operations and Campus on a daily basis. Thank you Brian!
Doug Graniero (nominated by Scott Redder)
On the afternoon of July 26th, 2022, Doug Graniero returned to the West Main campus satellite shed location near the Armory. When he arrived and parked his utility vehicle he discovered a car in the small parking lot that is reserved for grounds vehicles. The car was blocking the area where other utility vehicles park.
Doug parked behind the car and called CUPD. CUPD asked a parking staff member to respond. Doug had to walk away from the site briefly but when he returned the parking staff member had arrived. There were also two individuals that had gotten into the car and were trying to back out of the parking area.
While trying to do this they repeatedly bumped into two utility vehicles. Doug instructed the parking employee to contact CUPD to get an officer on site. CUPD responded but the two individuals got out of the car and left the site before they arrived. CUPD thought the car may have been involved in a hit and run earlier I the day. Doug stayed on site to assist CUPD and the parking employee and the tow truck company with the removal of the car.
This is a great example of “see something, say something.” Doug contacted CUPD for a welfare check because he thought the individuals may need assistance. Congrats to Doug for being proactive and reaching out to CUPD!
Jessica Skinner (nominated by Brenda Chavez)
Jessica reported a leak a Duane in an area where kids were having summer classes. When the leak was not repaired during her shift, Jessica texted her supervisor to make sure the issue was taken care of later that evening. A couple days later Jessica followed up with her concern of someone getting hurt and especially the kids.Thank you Jessica for keeping an eye on safety and for taking care of our customers. Well done!
Frank Galindo (nominated by Nick Stevens)
I would like to nominate Frank Galindo at the Distribution Center for his excellent job of forklift training for all new hires here. He also does refresher training for out of date employee forklift training. He does a very thorough job of it and we have not had any forklift related accidents since Frank has been doing the training.
Khamnouane Insy (nominated by Tony McKnabb)
While outside sweeping Khamnouane noticed a hazard on one of the old chimney stacks on the roof of the Continuing Education building. There was something that was hanging over the edge of the stack. He was concerned that it may fall and it was right above one of the entrances and near where there were parked cars. He took the initiative to put a trash cart in front of the door with a sign telling people not to use that exit. He also walked the building to let everyone he could find know about the hazard. He even recommended to a person whose car could have been damaged if the item fell that they may want to move their car which they did.
Ausencio Sanchez (nominated by Rickie Pettaway Jr.)
When walking areas and performing building inspections, Ausencio has eyes and mind on task. He has great work ethic and great time management skills. He is often a front runner in safety. Making sure to wear as much PPE as possible. I know I can count on him for attendance and reliability.
Alex and Esther (nominated by Brenda Chavez)
I will like to nominate Alex and Esther for a safety award on 02/03/2022 after the big winter storm the day before as they walked by Muenzinger 1st basement they noticed it was water all over the floor that someone brought an equipment full of snow and the snow melt and become water.Muenzinger 1st basement is a foot traffic we got some construction people working there for a while so Alex and Esther took action and mopped the whole area around added couple wet floor signs for safety. Thank you Alex and Esther for stay on safety and no one slip or fall
Guadalupe Castaneda (nominated by Brenda Chavez)
Guadalupe has been working for the University of Boulder for 12 years or more as far I know but, her dedication to her job is impressive, always keep herself productive, pay attention to details, go the extra mile to help others in her team and she does with the best of her effort, with pride, she asked for a volunteer day on 02/02/2022 but, she knew that there was a winter storm coming, and Lupe change her volunteer to come and help the team with the snow, shoveling just to support her team members on a critical time.
Izabella Soliday (nominated by Rubi Andazola)
I would like to nominate Izabella Soliday from team 6 for her fast acting and thinking on safety on a water leak in the stairwell in Ekeley she right away mopped, put trashcan under the leak set her wet floor sign out and called me to let me know the issue.
Sam Parks (nominated by James Seidl)
Sam, having a keen eye for mechanical deficiencies, bought to my attention that 3 bolts had sheared off of the 855 plow attachment during an equipment maintenance check conducted after operating the plow during a snow storm last week. Sam's strong attention to detail undoubtedly prevented a major "Safety" issue from occurring.
After noticing this issue, Sam used his mechanical knowledge to remedy the situation and fix the plow and getting it back into proper working order.
Nick Stevens (nominated by Denise Flack)
Nick is a member of the distribution Center’s safety committee and has been on it for a long time. Nick often has great input during safety committee meetings showing that he is always on the lookout for any safety issues in the Distribution Center and at CU. If you need to know if something needs replacing or where the safety issue is you would usually just need to ask Nick and he knows. In addition, Nick often volunteers to do much needed safety tasks around the building whether it be flushing out the eye wash stations, or replacing hazard tape on the floors. He is always ready to go above and beyond to make sure our workplace is safe.
Darren Brown (nominated by Tom Roller)
During the chaos of the windstorm and subsequent fire on 12/30/21, in the evening, I received a call from the service center regarding a light pole that had blown over on Buff Plaza, one of the more heavily traveled pedestrian areas of campus, due to 100+ mph winds. I was unable to respond as all roads leading to campus were closed or part of the evac routes for the subsequent fire. I was able to contact Darren Brown who lives near campus and he responded to the incident. He very professionally acted as my hands and eyes by phone under difficult circumstances to assess the situation and barricaded the area around the fallen pole. His actions mitigated a potentially hazardous situation until our shop could properly respond. I would like to point out that Darren isn’t an electrician and could have rightfully refused to do this but didn’t hesitate to assist me and the University that night.
Hannah Baker (West Main Grounds) and Noah Begman (student employee) (nominated by Zac Cameron)
I’d like to nominate Hannah Baker who is on Scott Redder’s West Main Grounds team. She was very attentive and noticed a lot of smoke in the cab of one of our parked Kubotas. She grabbed a fire extinguisher and put out an electrical fire that was under the seat. There was significant damage to some wiring off of the battery, but this could have been exponentially worse. This could have been a major fire and a total loss of the Kubota. Noah Bregman, that also assisted Hannah in quick action to get the fire out. Their quick action and knowing what to do certainly helped minimized the damage.
Muenzinger Custodial Team (nominated by Brenda Chavez)
Thann Nhan Nguye, Ma. Garcia Aguilar and Ascencion Serrano from the Muenzinger team reported a leak in a restroom several different times. Each time, when trades showed up to take care of the issue they couldn't find the leak because the team had already cleaned up the water. Finally, in December, the team decided not to clean up the water but instead closed the restroom until our trades staff could make it over. This way, trades could determine where the leak was coming form and fix it. Thank you to the team for continuing to monitor and following through to make sure the issue was resolved appropriately!
Douglas Trettin (nominated by Christian Parker)
From the very beginning of Doug’s hire here at CU he has been using safe practices in his vehicle. I always see him driving slowly around campus with his flashers on. He is always parked to the side of the road during class change, waiting for the bustle of kids to die down. I’ve even seen him slow down to a crawl when going around blind corners, making sure it is safe to proceed. He is an excellent example of safe campus driving!
Shawna Stushnoff (nominated by Denise Flack)
Since Shawn has started at the Distribution Center Shawna has taken excellent care of the safety committee at the distribution center. She goes above and beyond in those meetings to make sure everyone is informed about new safety happenings on campus and promptly takes care of every safety concern that is brought up at the distribution center. She is committed to making sure everyone can find safety information and that everyone has completed required safety trainings. She regularly puts together engaging safety trainings for the entire distribution center. Recently when an employee was promoted to a supervisor position and the I&S Safety Coordinator was leaving CU, Shawna took on the responsibility of leading the needed STOP training not only for the Distribution center employee but for several other employees throughout I&S. Shawna does not just participate in safety, but she lives it and wants everyone else to as well. She makes it clear to everyone that she is committed to creating a safety culture at the distribution center, and throughout CU.
Jason Mager (nominated by Carl PIerce)
Jason Mager is a new employee and solid waste driver for the Solid Waste and Recycling Department. On Wednesday, March 17th Jason encountered a red Toyota pickup truck veering into his lane, hitting the trash truck tire. As the light turned green and the scene unfolded, Jason jumped into action by stopping the truck once he noticed the pickup truck hitting the trash truck, ensuring not to cause damage to either vehicle. Jason acted fast without panic, and his actions prevented a severe accident. Please consider him for a Safety Award for his excellent driving.
Trent Wilson (nominated by Charles Holstein)
Trent is responsible for snow removal around the SEEC & SEEL buildings. The parking lots here are maintained by PTS, but they usually don't call in their snow removal contractors unless there is quite a bit of snow. Trent always clears the ADA parking spaces, even though it isn't his job, out of concern for the safety of the users of these spaces. We appreciate his eye for detail on this and willingness to go above and beyond to keep some of the more vulnerable members of our community safe.
Custodial Team 5, led by Tony McNabb (nominated by Jessica Bradley)
The flood at IBS was pretty bad - the water just kept pouring out of the ceiling. Tony McNabb made sure his team was safe while they were trying to clean up the water - they had to empty trash cans full of water – buckets wouldn’t do with how much water there was. To top it off it temps were below zero, it was at night, and there was snow and ice. Tony and his team tirelessly had to empty the water outside for over an hour, clothes wet/damp with the cold to boot. He managed to keep himself and his team safe during all of this, no injuries or hypothermia. Well done Tony and Team!
Eric Jaskuta (nominated by Aaron Watenmaker)
Eric is the east campus grounds safety liaison, and has done an excellent job disseminating safety information that he obtained from the safety meetings. He definitely helps everyone on our crew stay safe!
Matt Quist (nominated by Landan Schaller)
Matt has been uniquely consistent and thorough with safety protocols, and regularly encourages his team to be mindful and take the time to observe safer ways of working. This often includes foreseeing hazards that few would think about. His leadership in this way is exemplary, and he deserves to be appreciated and rewarded for such dedication.
Carl Pierce (nominated by Rob Lenahan)
During trash collections, something we picked up from a dumpster caught fire. The fire was in the hopper of the trash truck, which contained over 5 tons of material. The driver noticed the smoke coming from the truck when he was returning to the GROC. Once in the parking lot, any effort to try and get water inside the hopper area of the truck wasn’t working. Carl was made aware of the fire and he ran to the truck to assess what was going on. He immediately had the driver empty the material from the truck onto the ground. His quick and decisive action made it easier to put water on the fire and also made sure the $250k trash truck was spared any damage.
Chip Horner (nominated by Vince Aquino)
On Nov 17, 2020 I was working with Chip at a job site to remove broken branches over a sidewalk. We were using our Versalift truck lift platform to reach the damaged limbs. While I was operating the boom from the bucket, getting into position to conduct the work, Chip notified me that one of the stabilizing outriggers was sliding on the rigger pads and beginning to lose contact with the ground. It is part of his job to watch that process as the operator gets into position, and this situation will happen from time to time. But, it can be easy to miss with all the other duties that the ground safety worker is engaged it, watching for pedestrians, making sure that the boom will not contact anything, etc. Being notified of this issue allowed me to immediately bring the boom back to a safe position and get the outriggers reset to a more solid state. If Chip had not caught the early instability on the rigger pad, as I continued to maneuver the boom and bucket it would have potentially created a hazard before it could be identified. Again, this was well within the standard described duties of the ground safety worker, and not a rare event. But, as the bucket operator working aloft, I certainly appreciated it getting handled and going well.
Patrick Giblin (nominated by Christian Parker)
Patrick was out a couple weeks ago with students raking up a large bed of thick pine needles in order to help prevent the possibility of a fire. This is not something we normally do or think about. Patrick went above and beyond that day, and got me thinking about fire safety.
Paul Longfellow (nominated by Jason Ketcherside, Derek Borrego and Christian Brooks)
This year Paul came up with a new method of cleaning the Biotech cooling towers that has proven to be safer, more efficient, and more effective than in previous years. In the past all the cooling tower work was done outside in the sub-freezing temperatures. This was inefficient as you are washing things outside while temps are below freezing, causing everything to not be cleaned well and to just ice over instead. However most importantly, his plan to bring the materials inside and set up temporary wash bays inside the mech room felt safer and more effective for the whole crew. In the past, all the water that would collect from spraying outdoors would cause a big muddy mess that would freeze over and create slip hazards on the ground where we were dragging and lifting pressure washers, shop vacs, hoses, and other material. This is a dangerous combo when combined with the cold fatigue from spraying water in close-quarters for hours while in sub-freezing temperatures. Paul's method helped reduce risks of slip/trips/falls, and cold weather work. My peers and myself have all expressed our appreciation for Paul's out of the box thinking to create a safer work culture.