The NHCA Narrative: Tim Chismar, BME, MBA, COHC, PMP

Product Marketer, North America
3M PELTOR Protection & Communication Solutions

My passion for acoustics and audiology started over 10 years ago as an Application Engineer for the 3M Littmann Stethoscope business. When design- ing stethoscopes, we were focused on helping clinicians listen to very quiet, low frequency sounds i.e. the lub dubs. The challenge of stethoscopes is to reduce environmental noises while also maintaining fidelity of frequencies as low as 50 Hz. As innovators, we took the traditional stethoscope and made it electronic, included wireless technology, and developed corresponding software to provide the ability to record sounds as well as transmit them to remote locations in real-time for telemedicine purposes. In fact, the Japanese Space  Agency, JAXA, used the 3M Littmann System to enable a doctor on the earth to listen to an astronaut in space, in near real-time.

After about seven years with the Littmann stethoscope business, I transitioned to an Application Engineering role for the 3M PELTOR business. With PELTOR, instead of helping people hear quiet sounds, I now help people stay safe from really loud noise while also helping them communicate in noise and hear their surroundings safely.

I was also the Project Manager for development of what is now the 3M Hearing Conservation Program Manager, a software tool that helps safety managers organize and manage their overall hearing conservation program. And finally, I am now on the marketing side helping to raise awareness of noise-induced hearing loss and 3M’s innovative hearing protection and communication solutions.

It’s been a wonderful journey with acoustics, audiology, noise-induced hearing loss, psychoacoustics, etc., whether I was helping clinicians listen to quiet sounds or now helping people reduce their exposure to hazardous noise. The NHCA community has been a wonderful partner and educator, and I look forward to collaborating in the future as we work together to eliminate noise-induced hearing loss.