Companies honored for exceptional wellness programs

Caliendo-Savio Enterprises (CSE), Chr. Hansen Inc. and Serigraph Inc. are this year’s winners of the BizTimes Milwaukee Corporate Wellness Awards.

The three companies were honored at the Fittest Execs Forum and Awards event Thursday for their leadership in corporate wellness.

BizTimes Media LLC, in partnership with the Wisconsin Athletic Club, Midland Health, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield and the Wellness Council of Wisconsin, presented the awards as part of the fourth annual Fittest Execs challenge.

New Berlin-based CSE launched its wellness program in the spring. In less than six months of operating the wellness campaign, the company has garnered 73 percent employee participation. Starting the program with small steps, CSE initiated a walking program in June.

“We are changing the way everyone here thinks about wellness,” said Amber Lee, marketing coordinator at CSE.

CSE uses monthly e-newsletters to communicate information about program offerings and focused health tips.

According to Lee, the company is looking to expand a community garden for employees in addition to going smoke free as of Jan. 1.

Milwaukee-based Chr. Hansen Inc. recently incorporated “Improving Food & Health” into its mission to demonstrate the firm’s commitment to wellness. The company initiated worksite wellness in 2008 and began implementing biometric testing in January 2009.

“My philosophy is that if you have a more healthy workforce, they will be a more productive and satisfied workforce to be able to do more and build that family feeling of caring,” said David Carpenter, president of Chr. Hansen Inc.

The mission of the company’s wellness program is “Improving the Health and Well-being of You.” Chr. Hansen offers a point-based incentive system for both employees and spouses. The company has 70 percent participation from employees this year under a new incentive program, compared with only 43 percent participation in the prior year.

“Our goal is to become a well workplace,” said Jennifer Michalski, compensation and benefits manager at Chr. Hansen Inc.

The company offers preventative screening, onsite lunches, exercise classes, walking programs and even a fresh fruit bar for employees. Chr. Hansen recently went smoke free.

According to Michalski, Chr. Hansen is facing a double-digit increase in health insurance costs for 2011 due to claim fluctuation and is working to find a solution for employees.

“We will continue on the road for wellness, but we need employees’ help to get there,” she said.

West Bend-based Serigraph Inc. offers employees access to onsite weight rooms, a walk path, a chiropractor, a nurse practitioner, a dietician and a health coach in addition to a primary care doctor that is onsite once a week that offers direct care for employees.

“We have been doing this for 20 years when we took over the company booze culture to change it to a wellness and fitness culture,” said John Torinus Jr., chairman of Serigraph Inc.

Serigraph offers a point-based incentive system for both employees and spouses in which employees can earn up to two wellness days off for achieving their goals. According to Torinus, over a 10-year period the participants’ average cholesterol has dropped from 209 to 197 and blood pressure is down an average of three points. Employees have also dropped over 1,000 pounds combined.

“We have been able to keep people healthy, keep costs down and we have kept costs under 3 percent for the last seven years,” Torinus said. “We have managed (our program) aggressively. Not only is it rewarding to be fit and well but also a lot of fun.”

Fittest of the fit

BizTimes Media LLC announces the 2010 Fittest Execs winners.

BizTimes Media, in partnership with the Wisconsin Athletic Club, Midland Health, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield and the Wellness Council of Wisconsin, presented the annual Fittest Execs challenge.

Over the last six months, more than 100 executives and staff members from southeastern Wisconsin accepted the Fittest Execs challenge and participated in both individual and team competitions. All participants took park in a five-part fitness assessment and received complimentary health risk appraisals and blood work.

The winners, by category, are:

  • Age 25-39: Tina Semotan, executive director of client services at HNI Risk Services Inc.
  • Age 40-49: Kathy Flater, owner of Central Office Systems.
  • Age 50+: Nancy Morgan, senior vice president of operations of Corporate Central Credit Union.
  • Age 25-39: Jeff Hoffman, executive vice president of Judson & Associates S.C.
  • Age 40-49: Steve Hipp, president of Athea Packaging.
  • Age 50+: Paul Muzzey, president of Capital Investment Services of America Inc.
Team Competition

Serigraph Inc.

Most Improved

Robert Gross, president of Gross Automation.

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