Creating a Safety-First Culture: A Q&A with Malco’s Safety and Environmental Manager Chris Strand

20th January 2023 • Categories: Malco Company

Chris Strand, Malco Products Team MemberAt Malco, safety isn’t just one of our values; it’s part of everything we do, whether it’s the safety of our associates on the floor of our plant, or the safety of the trade pros using Malco tools on the job.

Over the years, Malco has received several recognitions and awards for our safety-first culture, and last month, we announced that Safety and Environmental Manager Chris Strand would be bringing his 30+ years of safety experience to the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry’s Occupational Safety and Health Review Board (OSHRB).

Not only is Chris a strong advocate for workplace safety, but he does so while embodying Malco’s core values. Chris was also the winner of our internal “Ready Respecter” award in December, which recognizes an associate who goes out of their way to respect and include others, listens well and values safety.

We decided to pick Chris’ brain about his approach to safety here at Malco!

How long have you been with Malco, and how long have you worked in safety management?

I’ve worked for Malco just shy of 4.5 years and have been in the safety management field since 1988.

What do you like best about your job?

The thing I most enjoy about my safety and environmental work is the variety. During a typical workday, I might deal with an ergonomic concern, work on a situation involving combustible dust, solve an environmental compliance-related issue, develop a procedure to address a machine hazard, fix a problem with the security system, and conduct a training session with associates – every day is different.

What is your approach to safety at Malco?

I’m proud to say it’s our #1 priority to keep associates safe, and you can see that in our track record. Malco has continuously maintained its OSHA Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP) recognition since 2004, and we have earned the Minnesota Safety Council’s Governor’s Safety Award 13 times since 2004.

What is the Minnesota OSHA Review Board (OSHRB), and what will your role be?

OSHRB is a three-member board that acts as the final arbiter in contested occupational safety and health administration (OSHA) citations that have gone through the full appeal process without resolution. I was appointed by Governor Tim Walz to serve a three-year term as the management representative.

I am excited and honored to serve on the Occupational Safety and Health Review Board for the state of Minnesota. It’s a new and challenging experience in my career, and I look forward to working with my fellow board members to ensure Minnesota’s work environments are equitable, healthy and safe.

Thanks so much, Chris! We are proud to have you as a member of the team, keeping all our associates safe on the job.