DeWys Welcomes Two New Team Members to their Human Resource Team

This summer, DeWys Manufacturing welcomed two members to the HR team: Elena VanDrie and Nick Grinwis, aka DeWys’ latest dynamic duo. The team will further growth and development with a perfect balance of experience and skill to ensure the continuation of progress within the company and its team.

Elena, DeWys’ new HR Manager, has experienced 24 years in Human Resources. Most recently, she served as an Employee Relations Manager at a Grand Rapids food manufacturer before transitioning to DeWys this past July. She explains the difference between previous corporate environments and the DeWys family dynamic being vast, as well as a large part of why she enjoys her experience here. Elena finds communication easier, more efficient, and helpful to the overall functioning of the company. Even more so, she never thought she would be having friendly conversations with the President or CEO of the company, which is typical for team members at DeWys.

Elena is from Grand Rapids, but was adopted from Sao Paulo, Brazil into a family of 13 children of various cultural backgrounds. She credits her upbringing for forming her passion for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) in both her personal and professional life. While the role is not always easy, Elena expresses excitement for the continuous improvement in DeWys’ efforts toward inclusivity.

“One of my biggest passions is having a space where team members feel like they belong here, because they do, right? If they thrive, our business is going to thrive. The rest takes care of itself.” – Elena VanDrie

Nick, DeWys’ new HR Generalist, feels that everything has started to fall into place since his first day on the job back in May. Growing up in West Michigan, Nick has an abundance of social work experience and recently worked for a local non-profit managing case workers and overseeing essential services. His degree in Sociology from Grand Valley State University is a major component in his passion for people. Nick, much like Elena, is fond of the family environment the DeWys company culture brings, which is something that DeWys’ team members notice as soon as they begin. Since transferring to a Human Resources position, Nick has enjoyed the change of pace and the relationships he has begun to build with others in the company. He hopes to become more versed in the intricacies of HR as he dives deeper into his new role.

Nick and Elena’s partnership is off to an amazing start. The duo works in sync as both team members come from complementary skill sets: Nick having a passion for helping others, and Elena having broad experience with recruitment and DEI. Elena appreciates Nick’s ability to help people and solve problems with the entire team in mind. She describes him as someone who works to remove barriers and fight for inclusion, which is something Elena is clearly passionate about herself.

One thing the pair shares is their optimism for the future of DeWys. Nick claims that the duo’s talent is efficient for meeting team member needs and that he is excited to see what they can accomplish together. He cites the DeWys Manufacturing Strategic Plan as something that constantly inspires him to ask himself “How can I make the team and company more successful?”.

Along with Nick’s mission for progression, Elena’s dedication to DEI is a welcome asset to the future of the DeWys team.

“I am excited about what Nick and Elena bring to the team.  The backgrounds and experience that they both have are a benefit to our growing company and to each other.  Together, they will make a huge impact on our continued efforts to be a leader in manufacturing and towards being the best company to work for.” – Laura Preuss, Director of Workforce Development.

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