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HK Today

Summer of Changes at HK

Amy Rose

The summer of 2013 has brought a few changes for the staff at Human Kinetics. Here’s what’s been happening:


Big Move

After 12 years of a split campus, between the main building and a smaller office building known as HK West, all Human Kinetics USA office employees are back under one roof. Thirty-two people were still being housed in the HK West building, but the overall project involved the moving of over 200 employees and took three months to complete.


Facilities manager Jill Wikgren started the project by completing a feasibility study to make sure everyone could fit into the main building. She then worked with company vice presidents and division managers to determine the best placement of each department in terms of working with other departments.


A timeline was then put into place for an efficient move, and instructions were given to the maintenance and technology crews for the details of the move. “Kudos to Bob, Don, Dustin and Rick for working hard to facilitate the move plan,” Wikgren said. The crew moved an average of 2 offices a day starting on March 26 and ending on June 26.


Wikgren said the staff was very positive about the move and looked at it as a good opportunity to purge what wasn’t needed in their offices.


New Human Resources Director at HK

Ann Maloney, human resources director for almost 16 years, left her position at Human Kinetics. Ann’s husband found new employment as the human resources director for the City of Wichita, Kansas. “Ann was instrumental in recruiting great people at HK and instilling a positive corporate culture,” said CEO Brian Holding. Ann’s last day was Friday, August 2.


Tara Swearingen has replaced Ann as our new HR director. Ann was able to train Tara for a week or so before her departure. We welcome Tara to the company.


Final Farewell to Al Martens

It is with great sadness that I share with you the passing of AlRoy Martens, Human Kinetics shipping department worker and younger brother of Rainer Martens. AlRoy lost his battle with cancer August 17. “He will be remembered as a kind, friendly co-worker who overcame many obstacles in life. He loved to play guitar, and after joining HK he discovered Ping Pong and played the game with great passion,” wrote Brian Holding upon Al’s passing.


Al was born on August 26, 1949, in Hutichinson, Kansas, to Vern and Ann Martens. He is survived by two children, Abel Martens of Lawrence, Kansas, and Bonny Greenlee of Manhattan, Kansas; his father Vern; companion Juli Risley; two brothers, Rainer Martens and Jay Martens, both living in Florida; a sister, Lori McBride of Hutchison; a grandson, Colin Greenlee; and nephew, Blazik McBride.


AlRoy was a Vietnam veteran of the U.S. Navy from 1967 to 1971, having served on the USS Coral Sea as a communications specialist and radio operator.


A memorial service for AlRoy is being planned for a later time.


HK Turns 40

Human Kinetics will be celebrating our 40th anniversary in 2014. A committee is already hard at work at planning commemoration events for next year. We’d like you to join in the celebration by sharing some of your most memorable HK moments. Tell us about the first book you published with us, or the time one of our employees offered exemplary customer service, or an avoided disaster that became a success, or just a good story about Rainer!


We’d love to hear from you. Hopefully, we can share some of your memories in upcoming issues of HK Today during our anniversary celebration.

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