More than 95 participants from 18 city, county and state agencies converged on Linn County for the 26th Annual Oregon Safety Conference and Skills Demonstration. In addition to the Skills Demonstration and Competition, attendees learned the importance of safety and focus in everything they do from motivational speakers Gary and Jeanne Norland. Gary and Jeanne spoke about the effects and life changes that happened after he was electrocuted by 12,500 volts from a 200 amp overhead power line. He and Jeanne detail how a loss of focus and safety can change not only your life but those around you. Gary shared how hard work and dedication to the job should be a focus, but never should it be more important than working safely. Participants went on to compete in six events from Grader to Back Hoe operations. Justin Kivett, Washington County, was crowned the “Top Gun” of the conference as he completed all the events with the cumulative best times and highest scores in each event.

Skills Demo Event Results

Skills Demo and Safety Conference Photos

Skills Demo registration
Gary Norland

Gary Norland greets conference attendees

Gary Norland
Bob Shamburger Albina Asphalt
Electrical Safety PGE

Jeremy Pietersma, Pacific Power

CAT Peterson BBQ

Cat / Peterson BBQ “Loader”

Top Gun Winners

Justin Kivett, Washington County — Top Gun Champion
Cody Whetzel (2nd from Left), Douglas County, 2nd Place
Mike Ward (Middle), Deschutes County, 3rd Place

Motor Grader

Motor Grader Event
Justin Kivett, Washington County (Right), 1st Place
Lynn Wolfer (2nd from Left), Douglas County, 2nd Place
John Reid (Middle), Yamhill County, 3rd Place

Backhoe Operation

Backhoe Operation (L-R)
Cody Whetzel, Douglas County, 1st Place
Justin Kivett, Washington County, 2nd Place
David Bice, City of Salem, 3rd Place

Pre-Trip Inspection

Pre-Trip Inspection
Steve Geiger, Multnomah County 1st Place
Rick Rogowski, Washington County, 2nd Place
Lynn Wolfer (Middle), Douglas County, 3rd Place

Chain On/Off

Chain On/Off

Ethan Cline (2nd from left), ODOT – Davis Slough, 1st Place
Conor O’Dwyer (Middle), ODOT – Hunter Creek, 2nd Place
Justin Kivett (2nd from right), Washington County, 3rd Place

Chain on
Chain On
Truck Plow

Truck Plow

David Bice (2nd from left), City of Salem, 1st Place
Ethan Cline (Right), ODOT – Davis Slough,, 2nd Place
Devin Russel (Left), Douglas County, 3rd Place


Loader Operation

Shane Bujak (3rd from Left), Multnomah County, 1st Place
Justin Kivett (Center), Washington County, 2nd Place
Gary Fuhrer (2nd from Right), Jackson County, 3rd Place