At Innovize, we have outstanding associates that are passionate about our purpose of creating a culture and products that improve people’s lives. This passion drives our associates to do incredible things every day in their work. Each quarter, five associates are selected by their peers for a recent outstanding achievement in areas of Improved Product Quality, Increases Profitability, Revenue Growth, Meaningful Experience, and Living our Values.
ASCENDING ASSOCIATES – Q4 2022
Dan Hedger – Improved Product Quality
Dan’s recognition: “On Tuesday, when we learned that we’d have no night shift CMM coverage, you Wowed me with your initiative to coordinate with our Operations team to ensure all night shift production press start-up approvals were accelerated. Your efforts and coordination were key to ensure all production job starts were approved before we lost CMM coverage for the day. You assured product quality and lived out our values in a single effort! Well done and thank you for stepping up and taking the lead. Awesome!”
Dan enjoys waking up and coming to work at Innovize because of our amazing team of associates, and our friendly atmosphere.
“I have fun making CMM programs for the parts we make,” he said. “I get pride from ensuring that we are sending high-quality parts to our customers.”
One of his favorite projects that he has worked on at Innovize was a complex development part. While collaborating with several engineers and the project manager for this product, Dan and his teammates were able to reduce the Start of Run wait time from 18 hours all the way down to just 1.
Fun fact about Dan – he loves to ride motorcycles!
Way to go Dan! So great to have you on our team!
Scott Rowe – Increases Profitability
Scott’s recognition: “Amazing job with the process improvement on the die cutting of the foam for [customer project]. Getting the slugs out of the parts after the die cutting is time consuming. For each order of 126,000 we have 315 hours of weed and strip estimated. [Your new] process eliminates 90 to 95% of the time. Starting in January we will be at 1 million+ parts per month. This improvement could save [significant costs] in labor per month and [this year]. You killed it!!!!!!!”
Scott is motivated by his fellow associates, new development, and growth. He is energized by helping make sure other associates are set up with what they need to be successful in their work.
When asked what Scott’s favorite project has been so far at Innovize, he said, “Everything and anything – I like being involved on all projects. One that stands out [in particular] would be equipment in 5s which involved moving around and organizing shelving, tools, and equipment after downsizing and purging. “You have the chance of making an area better. That makes a product better.”
Outside of Innovize, Scott loves being a father to his 12-year-old daughter McKenzie.
Nice work Scott! Your work at Innovize is invaluable!
Todd Daddario – Revenue Growth
Todd’s recognition: “I want to thank you and recognize you for your willingness to jump in and help me setup the [customer name] demonstration. … Without your help we would have not had it setup for the customer to see, and it would not have been as productive of a meeting. [They] left with a great understanding of our process. I think both companies, [theirs and ours], have a better understanding of what we need to do to make our relationship a great success after that meeting.”
Thank you, Todd, for all that you do for Innovize and our customers!
Patrick Thielen – Living Our Values
Patrick’s recognition: “Thank you for your leadership of the IT team! No doubt you were more than swamped this year, but you make yourself available with a positive attitude and it truly made a difference. You have always allowed me to “take a stab” at learning something new before deciding it is beyond my scope, and it has really helped me grow in my role.”
Patrick is always excited to work with the team at Innovize and making a positive impact on growing the company while making it a great place to work.
“I feel like I am helping other associates achieve their objectives,” he said. “And they are always very supportive [of] me.”
As our CFO and CIO, Patrick is focused on assuring we are generating cash and profits to support our growth as well as providing industry leading IT systems that are secure. He is excited about our recent integration with Excel Scientific and the opportunity he has to work with our new Co-CEO, Julie Cameron, to achieve our 2023 theme “Better Together.”
Outstanding, Patrick! These words from your team really speak to the amazing leader you are.
Patrick hasn’t always been so straight-laced, though.
“When I was young, my dad owned a gas station and there were several old cars in the back lot,” he said. “My bothers and I would play in the old cars. On two different occasions we were playing with matches and managed to blow up two different cars. Not our finest moment.”
Jeff Noren – Meaningful Experience
Jeff’s recognition: “Thank you, for the incredible support you offered me this week. Not only did you generously donate some of your PTO to me so I could be with my sick kid, you also went out of your way to help me coordinate front desk coverage when I couldn’t be as active in the search this time around. That, and all of your kind words, have helped to get me through this challenging week. THANK YOU, YOU AMAZING HUMAN BEING.”
As the Director of Project Management, Jeff leads all of our Innovize Project Managers, and in turn, gets to hear about all of the projects our customers are working with our associates to develop.
“After 30+ years in the medical market, what I really like is the people I work with, especially our Blue Team,” he said. “Together we make things happen and are creating culture and products that improve people’s lives…what’s more motivating than that?”
Jeff said one of his favorite projects he’s worked on is an electrode component that gets used in a diagnostic test. This project started before he did at Innovize, and is still evolving today!
“It’s very complicated, including conductive printing and multiple layers of tight tolerance die cut adhesive layers. Even though it has been a challenge, seeing how creative and innovative members of our teams [are to come] up with solutions to VERY technical questions is fun for me to see. You see a complicated print and think, “how are we going to make this?”, and then our amazing associates figure out a way – that’s cool to see.
In his personal life, Jeff is very passionate about his work with the American Cancer Society. He has served on the national, regional, and state boards for the organization. In recent years, Jeff has stepped back to fill the role of chairing the White Bear Lake Relay for Life event.
“Each year we raise more than $100,000 for research at the University of Minnesota, patient support, and free nights for cancer patients and their families to stay at the Hope Lodge in Minneapolis during [Chemotherapy treatments].
You are an inspiration to all of us. Jeff! Keep up the amazing work doing good in our world.
Congratulations, again, to all of our Ascending Associates!
Check back in April to meet our Q1 2023 Rockstars!