Press Releases


TJ Lyons Honored With Third Construction Risk Management Best Practices Award

Release Date: Oct 30, 2001

Release Date: October 31, 2001
Contact: Contact Us

NEW ORLEANS - October 31, 2001. Mr. TJ Lyons of Rifenburg Construction, Inc. was honored today with the Construction Risk Management Best Practices Award for adapting the OSHA Voluntary Protection Plan (VPP) Accreditation for use in the road construction industry. TJ modified and then implemented the VPP program on a 28 million dollar highway reconstruction and expansion project in western New York State. The project has now passed the three-year mark without a single lost workday accident.

This award was created by International Risk Management Institute, Inc. (IRMI), to recognize individuals and companies who have demonstrated a commitment to improving construction risk management and is presented each year at the IRMI Construction Risk Conference. This is the third award to be given. Gayle Jones of Snyder Langston and George Bragg of Bragg Crane Services shared the first award and the second went to Paul Day of Cianbro Corporation.

A panel of industry experts, selected by IRMI, judged the award submissions. Judges' comments about the winning submission included:

"Reached for the stars-did not settle on standard. Good message."

"The program cost was cited as $14,000 with a return cited of at least $225,000. This is quite cost effective."

"It is hard to beat the results of no lost workdays in three years of a $28 million heavy construction project."

"While the concept of working with OSHA is not unique, the inclusion of various officials, clients and vendors on the safety committee is innovative."

"This type of safety attitude should be adopted throughout the industry - the desire to pursue excellence."

"There is a need for industry participants to collaborate; owner, contractors, subs, OSHA, vendors, and field employees. This approach fosters partnering rather than confrontation. Involvement of all stakeholders to improve project costs and efficiency is the key to this program."

The other two finalists for the 2001 award were Sue Caldwell of Southern Constructors, Inc, who was nominated for her development of a safety program that revitalized the safety initiative in her organization and Daniel Karpelenia of KHS&S Contractors who was nominated for developing a comprehensive, results-oriented safety program that combined an analysis of accident data with feedback and communication from the field crews.

The judging panel was comprised of Frank Giordano, Manager of Project Insurance Services, Merck & Co.; Gayle Jones, Risk Manager, Snyder Langston; Steven P. Kahn, Managing Director, ARM Tech; Barbara J. Matthews, Assistant Vice President, National Wrap-Up Programs, ACE USA; Patrick D. Monea, CPA, Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Granger Construction Company; and Tom Suckow, ARM, Corporate Risk Manager for Taylor Ball, Inc.

The next CRMBP award will be presented at the 22nd Construction Risk Conference in San Diego.

International Risk Management Institute, Inc., is a Dallas-based research and publishing firm specializing in insurance, surety, and risk management. The company has done extensive research on the subject of construction insurance, surety, and risk management. IRMI's reference services provide practical information to help insurance buyers, risk managers, agents, brokers, and underwriters arrange comprehensive and cost-effective insurance, bonding, and risk management programs. Visit or call 800-827-4242 for more information about IRMI products or the annual IRMI Construction Risk Conference.