NSSGA names its Safety Professional of the Year

February 29, 2016

Matthew Bunner, safety manager for Mulzer Crushed Stone, has been named the National Stone, Sand and Gravel Association’s (NSSGA) 2015 James M Christie Health and Safety Professional of the Year.

The award recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions and shown commitment to safe and healthy operating practices within his or her company and the industry.

Bunner has developed an aggressive safety audit program that has enabled Mulzer Crushed Stone to significantly reduce hazards. He developed training materials that increased the support for safety training among workers and management, Aggregates Research.com reported.

Bunner has taken a lead in presenting operator perspectives on compliance to MSHA senior leaders during the agency’s stakeholder outreach tours and has continuously sought to make the company’s operations safer and healthier. These efforts have also helped to substantially reduce Mulzer’s workman’s compensation rates.

Bunner is an active member of the NSSGA’s Safety and Health committee, as a Certified Mine Safety Professional. He is also a two-term chair of the Indiana Mineral Aggregate Association’s (IMAA’s) Safety Committee, and previously received the IMAA’s President’s Award for distinguished service.

The James M. Christie Safety and Health Professional of the Year award was created in 1987 by the National Stone Association (NSA) in recognition of Jim Christie, the corporate safety director for Vulcan Materials Company, after his death.

Christie was an industry leader who, in the early 1980s, challenged a young MSHA agency to focus regulations on the safety practices of manager and worker behavior, and not strictly on a facility’s conditions. The National Stone, Sand and Gravel Association continued this tradition when NSA later merged with the National Aggregates Association.

“Matt has made a substantial impact on safety and health throughout the entire United States,” said NSSGA President and CEO Michael W. Johnson. “Advocacy is Job No. 1 for NSSGA [The National Stone, Sand and Gravel Association] but truly safety is job No 1 for aggregates operations around the country. Matt’s diligent work and achievements clearly illustrate our industry’s commitment to working to reduce injuries in support of NSSGA’s guiding principles of optimal workplace safety and health.”


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