About Us

The Industrial Athlete brings the unique, Sports Medicine Model approach to promoting the health and safety of your employees.  Partnering with us will help keep your employees off the sidelines and on the fronts lines of your industry.

Who We Are
TIA Logo
Our Logo

The Staff of Asclepius within our logo represents our sports medicine approach to workplace injury prevention and medical approach to corporate wellness.

Using licensed, board-certified athletic trainers, physician oversight, and degreed exercise science specialist, The Industrial Athlete improves your employee's occupational well-being and ergonomic readiness.

The safety cross within the logo represents our mission to augment your employee workplace safety initiatives.

Our Approach

Our services maximize the health, safety, and effectiveness of a workforce.

The system we use drives down costs by preventing and containing workers compensation claims, providing a direct return on your investment.

We also keep your employees on the job, helping increase productivity and decreasing lost time.

TIA Logo
Mission Statement

Our purpose is to improve the lives of The Industrial Athlete. Through integrity, service, and respect, we strive to provide excellence to all those we encounter. We will reduce the financial burdens to the organizations and enhance their culture of employee safety and care.

Vision

Promoting health and safety for the industrial athlete to live the fullest life, at home, at work, and at play.

Core Values

These Core Values are the lamplight to our guiding principles of The Industrial Athlete, Inc.:
     
Integrity:  We are moral and ethical in the delivery of our services to our clients and their employees.
     
Service: We give 100% effort for we believe we exist to serve our customers

Excellence:   We provide outstanding quality of service to all who we serve.  
   
Respect:   We treat our employees, and those we serve with dignity, respect and without prejudice.

Innovate:   We are committed to continuous improvement of the services we provide.

History

The Industrial Athlete, Inc is a pioneering company whose use Sports Medicine Model in the workplace is still revolutionizing how companies are preventing and reducing injuries, while also seeing a major return on investment.

1985

Dr. Warren Schildberg, a sports-medicine physician, and Thomas Miller, a sports-medicine consultant and former executive director of the American College of Sports Medicine, found The Industrial Athlete, focusing on the similarities between the repetitive-motion injuries common in industry and the overuse injuries common in sports.

1987

A pilot program with an in-plant fitness facility is developed at a major Detroit auto plant.

1988

A physical-rehabilitation center opens adjacent to the auto plant. The savings realized in the first year greatly exceed all start-up and operational costs for both facilities.

1989

The industrial-athlete concept is incorporated in the automaker's 1989 UAW contract nationwide.

Today

With several like minded companies now trying to compete, we still maintain true to our roots of flat rate pricing, providing high quality health care providers for on-site injury management, and leading the way for incorporating a Total Worker Health approach.

Board of Directors
Board of Directors
Rick Noelte, B.S., ATC
Co-President and Chief Executive Officer

Rick received his Bachelor’s Degree in Kinesiology from Illinois State University. Rick is a state licensed and board certified Athletic Trainer. Rick is a board certified safety professional through the ASSP and holds Associate Safety Professional credentials. Additionally he is a certified ergonomics assessment specialist. He is a Master’s degree candidate at California Coast University in Organizational Leadership, a Master’s degree candidate at Columbia Southern University in Occupational Safety and Health. Prior to his role with The Industrial Athlete, Inc. Mr. Noelte was a fitness and wellness entrepreneur owning multiple fitness centers. He has extensive knowledge in business management, safety, and athletic training. Rick has worked with individuals from the entertainment, space, distribution, and manufacturing industries. Mr. Noelte has served as a Representative on the Illinois Athletic Trainers Association and as a Chair for the local community Village Parks and Recreation Board. Over the years Rick has supported several charities including Relay for Life, Feed My Starving Children, and the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Ricks hobbies include ice hockey and cycling.

Phillip C. Zinni, III, DO, FAOASM, MS, ATC
Board Treasurer and Chief Medical Officer

Dr. Phillip C. Zinni received his medical degree from the Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine at Midwestern University, Master’s Degree in Exercise Physiology from George Williams College, and Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Illinois Urbana in Applied Physiology and Athletic Training. He is board certified in Family Medicine and has been awarded Fellow in Sports Medicine. He is also a Certified Athletic Trainer and Past-President of the American Osteopathic Academy of Sports Medicine. He has authored and edited many articles on Sports and Occupational Medicine literature.
Prior to joining The Industrial Athlete, Dr. Zinni was the Corporate Medical Director for E&J Gallo Winery and Contract Medical Director for Caesars Entertainment. He has supervised numerous athletic trainers, physicians, physical therapists and nurses. At E&J Gallo, Dr. Zinni provided leadership for an interdisciplinary team with the mission of enhancing wellness and medical outcomes while reducing injury rates and health care costs through the use of The Industrial Athlete concept. He managed a multi-million dollar budget, launched an electronic health record system and was the health subject matter expert for E&J Gallo.
At Caesars, Dr. Zinni supervised research activities to improve patient interaction with the clinic and improve the medical outcomes. He directed patient care at Las Vegas and at four other Caesars’ properties with a population base of 75,000.
Now with The Industrial Athlete, Dr. Zinni continues to emulate the corporate vision of enhancing the “customer experience” while achieving cost avoidance, health care cost savings and enhancing each TEAM Members quality of life. As The Industrial Athlete Chief Medical Officer, his focus is on: emergency medical services, absence management, on-site therapy, wellness programs, disease and condition management, medical surveillance, case utilization review and corporate advisement on medical benefits.
Dr. Zinni resides in Reno with his wife, Gaye and feline baby Theo. In his spare time, he enjoys Christian medical service, hiking/biking, and searching for the perfect bottle of Zinfandel.

Jessica Van Wie, B.S., ATC
Board Secretary and Chief Operations Officer

Jessica has been with TIA over 10 years. She started working as an on-site ATC at a client site with a four month pilot, that program is one of the longest running on-site programs and now has 2 ATCs working with her at that site. Jessica graduated from Florida Gulf Coast University with a Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training, she then went on to work and study for her Master’s in Business Administration with a concentration in Sports Management at Webber International University. While studying at Webber, Jessica worked with Men’s and Women’s Soccer, Women’s Basketball and Softball. After completing her MBA, Jessica worked with entertainment and performing artists at Disney World. Jessica joined up with TIA in 2011 and moved to upstate New York. She currently resides with her husband Rob and her three stepsons, Preston, Cooper and Mason. She enjoys spending time with “her boys” (husband and stepsons), playing with their 6 dogs and relaxing at any beach! Jessica is passionate about helping people be the best versions of themselves, developing ATC skills beyond those gained in the traditional setting and setting a gold standard for on-site prevention care.

Dwight D. Gaal, B.S., M.A.
Co-President and Chief Financial Officer

In 2021 Dwight announced his phased retirement plan stepping down as the CEO at The Industrial Athlete, Inc. which he held since 1989. Mr. Gaal remains with the company as the principal partner, CFO and Co-President.