June 24, 2020

New leadership takes the helm at GWO North America

GWO today announces leaders for its North America committee

Global Wind Organisation (GWO), the industry group responsible for safety training standards for more than 90,000 of the world’s wind energy workers, today announces leaders for its North America committee.

Wesley Witt (pictured) Head of Quality Management and HSE Americas at Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy (SGRE) has been elected Chair of the GWO North America committee and Simon Hayes, Head of Health, Safety and Environment for Ørsted and the offshore business in North America, has been elected Vice Chair.

The GWO North America Committee is establishing standards for safety and technical training across the continent, and is encouraging training centers, community colleges, trade unions and others to deliver GWO standards for the wind energy workforce. Seventeen GWO training sites have now opened across North America, and the committee will focus its efforts on supporting the standards’ adoption to help create a safer and more productive workforce.

“We have a solid foundation to build on going forward,” says Witt. “Simon and I will work to ensure GWO’s system of collaborating between large wind employers helps to lead the adoption of global standards for safety and technical training.”

With more than 15 years focused on safety, Witt has been in his current role for nearly five years at SGRE. Before that, he was director of quality and HSE for Wind Services at SGRE. Witt also held several positions with Siemens Energy in quality and EHS management.  

He has conducted in-depth studies of human error management, human performance and resilience engineering to design improved procedures for risk management and to build a culture of safety that is embedded in the business.

Witt earned his bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in safety, security and emergency management from Eastern Kentucky University.

Hayes is head of HSE for Ørsted. He was previously lead project HSE manager for the company.

Hayes also gained experience at DONG Energy, the predecessor company to Ørsted, where he was team lead – site HSE, site HSE manager for the construction phase of the 582MW GODE 01 & 02 offshore wind farms, and site HSE manager and project HSE manager for the construction phase of the 312MW Borkum Riffgrund 01 offshore wind farm. Prior to this he was HSE manager with London Array Limited where he also was involved in construction of offshore facilities.