When Bianca Heilman was just starting out, first as a dairy farmer and then as an hourly manufacturing employee, she witnessed a number of horrific accidents that left a lasting impression on her.
“I witnessed horrific accidents, forklift tip-overs, picked up severed fingers, and watched a man fall to his death and be impaled by a spindle on a machine,” Heilman said. “All those life-changing or life-ending accidents were due to employees not being properly trained, or people not following operation guidelines or company procedures.”
After volunteering on several safety committees and observing many such accidents, Heilman set a goal for herself. “Someday I wanted to be that person who could make a difference in the workplace by improving workplace safety, training and educating employees, and working with management to create a safer more productive workplace.”
Heilman was recently named Draper’s director of safety and wellness. She has more than 20 years of experience in human resources, health and safety, training and development, and more. Most recently, she worked as safety and health manager, site security coordinator, and environmental alternate for Koch/Georgia Pacific in Wheatfield, Indiana.
“Safety is my passion and my sole interest is keeping employees safe, informed, and educated, while protecting the assets of the company,” Heilman said. “Company policies, procedures, programs, and OSHA regulations are in place to keep employees safe, help initiate employee ownership with safety programs, and protect equipment and machinery.”
Heilman was attracted to Draper by the company’s longevity and continued growth, the fact that it is a family-owned business, and Draper’s commitment to the employees and community.
Heilman has spent her first few weeks at Draper meeting with employees and managers, and observing manufacturing processes in order to better understand and be able to prioritize what needs to be done in safety and wellness programs. Already, she has seen some areas she’d like to begin addressing.
“I’ve observed a lot of heavy manual lifting, so one of my goals will be to work with production and engineering and/or vendors for equipment that would give the employees a mechanical advantage versus manual lifting,” Heilman explained. “This would reduce the number of shoulder and back injuries and reduce our Total Recordable Injury Rate (TRIR) and workers’ compensation premiums.”
As for life outside Draper, Heilman originally hails from southern Indiana and attended West Washington School. When not spending time with her six kids, 16 grandkids, and 2.5 great-grandkids, Heilman and her husband enjoy riding their Harley Davidson Road King.
We hope you’ll join us in welcoming Bianca to the Draper family.
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