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Central Hudson Employees Awarded for Creativity, Innovation

Central Hudson recently recognized 68 employees who implemented  41 improvement projects in 2016.
Central Hudson recently recognized 68 employees who implemented 41 improvement projects in 2016. Photo Credit: Contributed

DUTCHESS COUNTY, N.Y. --  Sixty-eight Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corporation employees were acknowledged last month by the utility’s annual Innovation Awards program for their ideas and for providing tangible benefits for Central Hudson and its customers.

These employees implemented 41 improvement projects in 2016.

Central Hudson employees continuously seek innovative ways to work more efficiently, and are recognized each year for their efforts through the its Innovation Awards program, according to a release from Central Hudson.

“Innovation is a core value at Central Hudson, and one our employees embrace,” said Charles A. Freni, vice president of Customer Services and Transmission & Distribution, who oversees the utility’s Innovation program. “It’s about recognizing a problem and, by using their experience, education and resourcefulness, solving it in a new or different way.”

Freni explained that solutions can be highly technical or simple and straightforward, demonstrating creativity and inspiration on the part of employees. “We’re encouraged by the ideas presented, and the willingness of our employees, working individually or in groups, to identify improvements in the way we serve our customers," he said.

Ideas are submitted by employees during the year, and are reviewed by an internal committee. Awards are granted by an executive committee and an additional award is determined by vote of all employees, the release said. Two award categories were available in 2016.

The Best Leveraging of a Tool, Technology or Software Award was awarded for the use of an existing tool or technology for a new application, provide a new service or customer solu­tion, or achieve a higher level of quality, productivity or savings, according to the release.

Both the executive committee and employees recognized Engineer – Section Leader Brianna Peak, Junior Engineer Brian Sullivan and Associate GIS Analyst Kevin Bur­ton for leveraging a mobile app created by a GIS mapping software developer to enhance the manner in which Central Hudson inspects and documents natural gas pipe fusing.

The second category, the Bright Idea Award, highlighted a project that displays the most creativity or ingenious merit. The executive committee recognized Substation Technician Timothy Baxter for utilizing surplus truck ra­dios with a custom cable of his design to improve the ability to maintain base radio sites.

Employees also recognized Working Foreman James Zmi­yarch in the Bright Idea category for creating a faster and safer way to stow equipment when installing anchors for securing cor­ner utility poles.

“These are but a few of the improvement projects developed and implemented by our employees, and we are proud of all participants,” said Freni. “Innovation is about finding a better way, and we consistently strive for improvements in everything we do.”

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