Brendan Loftus (center), pictured with his family and BTEA President Elizabeth Crowley, took home the inaugural Mental Wellness Advocacy Award.

 

This year’s SafeBUILD, organized by the Building Trades Employers’ Association, was the most successful edition of the annual conference yet. On June 27th, New York’s construction leaders came together in Manhattan to recognize the finest practices and practitioners of workplace safety in the industry. The event featured rousing keynote addresses from New York City Department of Buildings Commissioner Jimmy Oddo, Occupational Safety and Health Administration Regional Administrator Richard Mendelson, and New York State Commissioner of Labor Roberta Reardon, as well as the presentation of the 2024 BTEA Safety Awards.

Cross County Construction’s John DelRiccio, Anthony Reale, Sal Bonello and Benny Bonello, all members of LIUNA’s Cement & Concrete Workers District Council, were honored with the Hard Hat Safety Award for saving countless lives by leaping into action after a partial tower crane collapse at 50 Tenth Avenue last year. DelRiccio ordered an immediate evacuation of the area and flaggers Reale, Bonello and Bonello diverted vehicle and pedestrian traffic away from the site. For more on the winners’ dramatic heroism, watch this video.

Brendan Loftus, the Director of the Member Assistance and Education Program for Local 1 Elevator Constructors of New York and New Jersey, was the recipient of the Inaugural Mental Wellness Advocacy Award. In presenting the award, Pat Di Filippo, Turner Construction’s Executive President and BTEA’s former co-chair, said that Loftus had done so much to raise awareness about the epidemic of suicide and mental health struggles in the construction industry that he deserved to have the award named after him.

The Safety Innovation Award went to Curtis Partition, a MWBE contractor that specializes in drywall and carpentry. The safety innovations Curtis Partition has implemented include advanced techniques such as BIM 3D modeling and scanning, which mitigates risk by identifying potential hazards and conflicts between various building components and trades. The Hilti Total Station Setup that the company employs reduces the risk of falls from heights, and its accurate measurements and the enhanced visibility it affords makes for safer work sites. Curtis also uses innovative workflows tailored toward offsite measurement for prefabrication and panalization, which not only maximize efficiency but prioritize safety.

Walsh Construction was honored with the Best Practices and Safety Culture Award for their pioneering work in fostering a complex and rich culture of safety both on and off the worksite. Through their Health, Safety, and Environment Program, Walsh promotes practical safety practices while engaging in concrete conversations to adopt and adapt innovative approaches. Industry-leading practices such as the “Good Catch Program” and the “Review Employee Actions and Performance Program” highlight Walsh’s commitment to creating a safe and supportive environment for both management and trades, driven by a credo that work safety is everyone’s responsibility.

This year’s Project Safety Award winner was Cauldwell Wingate for the Manhattan-based general contracting company’s construction of Mount Sinai Hospital’s Clark 9 Behavioral Unit. The successful completion of this complicated project, which entailed the demolition and entire renovation of a single-floor full-service multi-purpose medical facility, required close collaboration between Cauldwell Wingate and Mount Sinai. Despite numerous challenges, such as constrained operating spaces and various high-risk activities, this project was completed in little over a year with an impressive zero recordable incidents.

 Watch more about Mental Health Awareness here.

View the event’s photo gallery here.

 

COMPLETE LIST OF WINNERS

SAFETY INNOVATION – Curtis Partition

PROJECT SAFETY – Cauldwell Wingate

BEST PRACTICES & SAFETY CULTURE – Walsh Construction

HARD HAT SAFETYCross County Construction’s John DelRiccio, Anthony Reale, Sal Bonello and Benny Bonello

MENTAL WELLNESS ADVOCACY AWARD – Brendan Loftus