LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY, U.S. — The Grain Elevator and Processing Society (GEAPS) recognized leaders during GEAPS Exchange 2013 in Louisville, Kentucky, U.S.
Gary Olmstead received the Industry Leader award and Mark Daniels received the International Member of Distinction award. The Industry Leader award is given to individuals, members and non-members, who have made extraordinary contributions to the advancement of operations safety, health, environmental responsibility, efficiency and stored-grain quality preservation excellence in the grain handling and processing industries.
The International Member of Distinction award is GEAPS' highest leadership service recognition award, presented by the International board to honor members who have made extraordinary contribution to advancing GEAPS core purpose and values.
Olmstead has been a GEAPS member since 1980, and has served the industry by developing and launching initiatives for promoting excellence and innovation in grain operations health and safety.
His many years of volunteer leadership service to the industry through GEAPS, included his role as member and first chair of the GEAPS Grain Industry Safety and Health Center Task Force. That group produced training materials that would come to be cited by OSHA as examples of industry-driven initiative to reduce the incidence of grain dust fires and explosions. The result of that work is still used today as an essential reference for employee health and safety orientation.
Olmstead is frequently consulted for his expertise on global safety and environmental compliance. He was extremely influential in representing the grain handling and processing industry through testimonials before federal and state legislators on behalf of many organizations including GEAPS, the Grocery Manufacturers Association, the National Grain and Feed Association, and the North American Millers Association, said GEAPS International 2013-14 President Slav Waplak, Viterra, Inc., Canadian Prairies Chapter. He shared insights and expertise about effective and operationally practical ways to eliminate or control health and safety hazards without burdensome or misguided governmental intervention.
Olmstead is also an advocate for educating our industry on best work practices to eliminate or control health and safety hazards through industry forums including GEAPS Exchange and GEAPS chapters.
During the course of his 33 years as a GEAPS member, Daniels has held many different leadership positions. Even in his first year of membership with GEAPS in 1980, he immediately became active in leadership service as a member of the Grain Industry Safety and Health Center Task Force and subsequently as a member of our Loss Prevention Committee. Though the name of that committee changed a few times over the years, his commitment never wavered and he later served as chair of the Safety Health and Environmental Quality Committee for 10 years including leading its transition to a committee of the National Grain and Feed Association a committee on which he still serves, Waplak said.
Daniels’ collaborative leadership style was instrumental in building the relationship between GEAPS and the National Grain and Feed Association. He worked proactively for the mutual benefit of these groups while at the same time holding GEAPS International Board director and executive officer positions as well as serving as GEAPS’ representative on the National Grain and Feed Association board of directors.
During his presidency, Daniels’ main priority was to lead advancement of GEAPS’ initiatives to expand and enhance forums for the exchange of ideas and information. His goal was to ensure members had the knowledge needed to perform their jobs in a safe and efficient manner. His time on the International board was one of tremendous advancement toward our pursuit of knowledge sharing. In 2008 while the entire nation was in financial crisis, he held the position of International president and kept the organization focused on developing and expanding the GEAPS’ distance education program to include online and on-demand formats, Waplak said. His efforts included the continued development of the grain operations management credentialing program and approval of an expanded partnership with Kansas State University to launch development of the “International Center for Grain Handling Industry Operations.”
Daniels is the director of health and safety at CHS, Inc. where for more than 30 years he has been involved in various aspects of grain and processing operations safety including safety inspections, compliance audits, manager and employee training, accident investigation, program development, policy development, and rules enforcement.
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