Tomago Aluminium rewards employees for innovation and excellence

Tomago Aluminium rewards employees for innovation and excellence

Tomago Aluminium’s seventh annual Innovation and Excellence Awards night has seen Occupational Health and Hygiene Team leader, Dean Crossthwaite recognised as the overall winner of the Innovation and Excellence Award.

The annual awards night recognises the efforts of individuals and teams employed by the company to improve the smelter’s operations.

Dean was recognised for his work in leading Tomago Aluminium through the pandemic and dealing with its constant challenges.

He was also involved with finding a replacement for some 400 specialist safety helmets used by the smelter’s potline operators, a program that involved 150 different trials on a variety of helmets before settling on a replacement.

For his efforts, Dean took home a $25,000 international and domestic travel prize, a unique trophy made from a slice of Tomago’s Aluminium billet and an ingot.

Tomago Aluminium Chief Executive Officer, Andy Robbins said Dean had demonstrated amazing dedication to his work and that he was very deserving of the award.

“Dean went above and beyond to lead the business through what was an incredibly difficult time. He is well-respected by employees and leaders alike and we appreciate his efforts,” Andy said.

For Dean Crossthwaite the award was a true bolt from the blue.

“To be honest, it was a bit of a rabbit in the headlight’s moment for me when my name was called out and even a few days later it is still sinking in. I feel very honoured by the award,” Dean said.

“You don’t expect that sort of thing, you just do your job. During the COVID crisis we had a lot of problems to solve, things like cleaning, personal protection equipment, developing a vaccination program, making our own hand sanitiser, those sorts of things.

“And there were the COVID waves we had to deal with, going from low numbers to a peak of 2000 positive cases a day in Newcastle just before last Christmas.”

While it is still early days Dean is making tentative plans for a trip to Europe.

Andy said Tomago Aluminium encourages its employees to continually strive for improvement and to look for new, different, and better ways of doing things.

“That’s what these awards, which are presented to individuals and teams, are all about,” Andy said.

“We see our people as the experts in their fields and we know they are the best at identifying ways in which we can advance our workplace and we want to reward them for their efforts.”

Other category winners included Ken Felton, who was able to save a substantial amount of money by using a locally supplied Alpur Box refractory lining, and Adam Priestly who designed and managed Tomago’s Paste Plant transfer car weighing system upgrades.


IMAGE | CEO, Andy Robbins; Overall Winner and Health & Hygiene Leader, Dean Crossthwaite; and CFO, Stacey Sleeman (L-R).

Tomago Aluminium

Tomago Aluminium is the leading manufacturer of aluminium. Since pouring the first metal in 1983 Tomago Aluminium has grown be the most significant Aluminium smelter in Australia and New Zealand.

Tomago has achieved 35 years of success due to the ability of employees to embrace change and keep in front of industry innovations.

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