Top 10 Under 40: Unveiling the next generation of safety heroes
2021 winners showcased leadership, work ethic and dedication to OH&S excellence across Canada, in a wide variety of sectors
Young and skilled professionals are driving the Canadian occupational health and safety profession forward, and we want to acknowledge the best and brightest.
OHS Canada’s annual Top 10 Under 40 program recognizes the achievements of the newest generation of Canadian OH&S workers.
Now in its second year, this program receives write-in applications over several months, and nominees are judged by the OHS Canada leadership team.
This group of winners showcased leadership, work ethic and dedication to health and safety excellence across Canada, in a wide variety of sectors.
Join us as we celebrate the best of our OH&S professionals in Canada.
In 2019 while off duty, Darcie Babysh used CPR to bring her unconscious roommate back to life. The woman had suffered a heart attack.
For Babysh, who received a Lifesaving Award from St. John Ambulance for her heroic efforts, it was her greatest accomplishment and marked the pinnacle of her time dedicated to health and safety training, which she undertook following the death of her father and grandfather.
For Stewart Day, safety is about people, the journey, affecting change, and continuous learning.
“I believe that safety is the continuous positive actions by many,” said the health and safety director for Mobilinx in Mississauga, Ont. “So, designing a strategy for change, working with others to achieve that strategy, and — most of the time — enjoying the results, that is what makes for a great day in health and safety.”
Health, safety and environment manager at Liquids in Motion in Millet, Alta., age 29
Alyssa Hartfelder took the challenge of COVID-19 head on, making sure her colleagues at Liquids in Motion were able to perform their work safely, while abiding by new regulations.
“COVID-19 certainly changed my day-to-day workload, as well as the day-to-day hazards associated in the workplace,” she said. “Not knowing or physically being able to see if someone was in danger was, and still is, something that will haunt me.”
Connor Heinrichs is an integral part of Best Buy’s health and safety team in Burnaby, B.C.
He is responsible for supporting the program at the Western distribution centre, Canadian corporate headquarters, and the retail stores across the province.
Daniel Laliberté demonstrates high energy, enthusiasm and a great thirst for knowledge while conducting occupational hygiene assessments in the workplace on behalf of clients.
He has quickly moved through the ranks at Gestion Environnementale T. Harris from junior technician, to senior technician, project co-ordinator and most recently to project manager within the company.
Since the start of his health and safety career, Steven Mah has demonstrated a strong commitment to the profession, evidenced by his educational, professional and volunteer activities supporting the practitioner community.
While maintaining his work responsibilities at WorkSafeBC and continuing his academic pursuits, he also volunteered with the BCRSP, assisting with CRSP candidate interviews in the Vancouver area.
Currently the COR manager at the Alberta Construction Safety Association (ACSA) in Edmonton, Matthew Nasby has been a dedicated workplace health and safety professional for 19 years.
Nasby led the way during COVID-19 for the ACSA, ensuring the company’s plans and protocols were up to speed with recommended guidelines.
Jordan Taylor’s quick rise through the workplace health and safety ranks is more than following in his father’s footsteps — he truly has a passion for the profession.
“I can’t get enough of training and educating workers,” he said. “Putting my own personal touch on a training topic and spinning it into a fun and professional format that engages the group with a well-received message is extremely satisfying. Then I get to watch it be implemented in the workplace, ensuring safety for all — it’s fantastic.”
Occupational health and safety specialist at the City of Surrey in Surrey, B.C., age 38
Judith Trottier has been working for the City of Surrey since 2016, acting as the prime safety specialist serving the city’s 4,000-plus employees.
She primarily works with engineering operations staff and dedicates her time to understanding their business needs, while blending all stakeholder requirements together.
Jill Vrolson is a people-based safety professional. For the last three years, she has headed up a team of worksite-based health and safety advisers for Keyera’s major projects group in Alberta’s oil and gas sector.
With many projects happening remotely, Vrolson was influential in standardizing the actions of safety professionals on the various worksites, which helped balance productivity, accountability and morale within her team.