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MCAA - 2005 Masonry Convention

MCAA's Masonry Showcase 2005 Convention Review

The Mason Contractors Association of America (MCAA) held its annual Masonry Showcase tradeshow and convention in conjunction with the CONSTRUCT AMERICATM show in Chicago, April 19-22. The attendees and exhibitors all agreed: The event was a complete success, not only for MCAA and its members, but for the industry as well. The opportunities available for specifiers to learn more about the masonry industry and its tangible and intangible assets proved invaluable to MCAA members and the masonry community.

And the benefits have just begun. Next year, at the 2006 Masonry Showcase in Las Vegas, March 29-31, the masonry industry will be able to continue the education of construction professionals and build upon the triumphs of this year.

The following are just a few of the events that MCAA members enjoyed during the four-day convention...

Opening Session
   
MCAA's Masonry Showcase 2005 Convention Review
The Opening Session Lunch
The Opening Session Lunch kicked off the Masonry Showcase convention in style with a tasteful four-course meal at the Fairmont Hotel.

MCAA President G. Alan Griffin started the afternoon's activities by giving his State of the Association address (see May 2005, pg. 14).


MCAA's Masonry Showcase 2005 Convention Review
Chicago Bears Super Bowl champ, Gary Fencik, spoke about the makings of successful teams.
Then, Gary Fencik, Chicago Bears Super Bowl Champ and all-time leader in interceptions and total tackles for the team, gave a rousing speech on what it takes to make a successful team and a successful business.

"A successful team doesn't just happen," Fencik reminded the audience, "management makes it happen."

Annual Meeting
At the Annual Meeting later that afternoon, MCAA executive staff and officers gave updates on the Association's achievements since the Midyear Meeting held in September in San Antonio. From the OSHA Alliance and marketing masonry to legislative and task force initiatives, MCAA has truly taken the lead in the industry.

The main theme of the Annual Meeting, however, was not to linger on celebrating accomplishments of the past, but to start working on the goals of the future. Members approved the 2006 budget and a 20% dues increase for operations. Lynn Nash, Treasurer of the multi-state coalition, spoke on donating to the worthy cause of MasonrySystems.org. Mark Kemp, Chairman of the Silica Task Force, discussed the process of testing, making recommendations, and creating demonstrations for OSHA. Michael Adelizzi, Executive Director of MCAA, and others presented the MCAA Long-range Strategic Plan, a 10- to 30-year planning horizon envisioned for the Association and the industry, to which Jerry Painter, Chairman of the Safety & Technical committee, added, "Let's be like kudzu and fire ants and take over — volunteer, network, sponsor and educate!"
   
MCAA's Masonry Showcase 2005 Convention Review
MCAA's officers include (from left): Secretary Tom Daniel of GBC Concrete & Masonry; Vice President Frank Campitelli of Baltimore Masonry, Inc.; President G. Alan Griffin of Griffin Contractors, Inc.; and Treasurer Mackie Bounds of Brazos Masonry, Inc.

As in the past, several allies in and outside of the masonry industry took part in the Annual Meeting. MCAA executive staff and officers were pleased to introduce the staff of the Building Stone Institute, including Executive Vice President Jeff Buczkiewicz; John Blair, Executive Director of the Canadian Masonry Contractors Association; and Camille Villanova and Jess McCluer of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) at the meeting.


MCAA's Masonry Showcase 2005 Convention Review
Richard (Dick) Felice addresses the meeting attendees.
Last, but certainly not least, M&M Advisory Group, Inc., presented the newest benefit to MCAA membership: the Compleat Benefits Solution [sic]. A value-added service, this package makes available major medical plans, benefits administration and other benefits programs.

Further information, plus committee and regional reports, can be viewed in the "Members Only" section of the MCAA web site at www.masoncontractors.org.

C. DeWitt Brown Leadman Awards
Also during the Annual Meeting, G. Alan Griffin had the pleasure of presenting not one, but three C. DeWitt Brown Leadman Awards. Recipients of the award included William (Bill) McConnell, Owner of Architectural Paving and Stone in Weymouth, Mass.; Richard (Dick) Felice, President & CEO of Forrest & Associate, Inc., in Des Moines; and William (Bill) Dentinger, Owner of Bill Dentinger, Inc., in Waukesha, Wis. — all of whom are Past Presidents of MCAA. These recipients were recognized for their long-time service to the Association and the masonry industry.

MCAA's Masonry Showcase 2005 Convention Review

President G. Alan Griffin, left, presents the C. DeWitt Brown Leadman Award to William (Bill) McConnell.

MCAA's Masonry Showcase 2005 Convention Review

William (Bill) Dentinger, MCAA Past President and owner of Bill Dentinger, Inc., accepts the Leadman Award with his wife, Shirley.

MCAA's Masonry Showcase 2005 Convention Review

Richard (Dick) Felice, MCAA Past President and President/CEO of Forrest & Associate, Inc., celebrates his accomplishments.

International Excellence Awards
The reception gala for the International Excellence in Masonry Awards was a well-attended event, with MCAA members and executive staff from various industry associations in attendance.
   
MCAA's Masonry Showcase 2005 Convention Review
Mason contractor W.W. Bartlett celebrates with Jackson & Ryan Architects for their first place award in the Government/Institutional category, as well as the People's Choice Award.

Following the drinks, hor'dourves and good conversation, the attendees settled down for the multimedia presentation announcing the winners for 2005 (see May 2005, pg. 34).

Attendees also got the chance to vote on their favorite project. Along with winning the first-place award in the Government/Institutional category, W.W. Bartlett and Jackson & Ryan Architects were proud to receive the People's Choice Award for their work on the St. Martin's Episcopal Church in Houston.

Education Sessions & Seminars
One of the nice things about co-locating with other associations is you get to share educational sessions and seminars at no extra cost. MCAA members could not only attend any of the 15 educational sessions and four seminars provided by MCAA, but they could also sit in on any of the 71 professional classes sponsored by the CSI. As a double bonus, the same was true for CSI members, and many of them took part in MCAA's programs, furthering their education in the field of masonry.

Among the many sessions provided over the three days were David Biggs' "Masonry Aspects of the World Trade Center Disaster," Christopher M. Huckabee's "Role of Masonry in Sustainability," and the very entertaining Charles Vander Kooi's "Seven Things Contractors Always Ask Me" and "Negotiating." Attendees also had the opportunity to take the "Masonry Foreman Development Course," "Masonry Estimating Seminar," the new "Wall Bracing Seminar," and the special "OSHA 10-hour Occupational Safety and Health Seminar."

Masonry Showcase
With over 4,600 CSI and 1,700 MCAA registrants in attendance, it's no wonder the exhibit hall was jam-packed for three days straight. Over 80 vendors exhibited their masonry products, equipment and services, offering something for everyone. Contractors and exhibitors alike were very pleased with the Masonry Showcase experience, and smiles were seen all around.

Some of the new items exhibited during the Masonry Showcase and other Spring construction shows can be found on page 36.

International Skills Challenge
At the 2005 International Masonry Skills Challenge, 22 of the top apprentices across the nation showed their stuff for MCAA and CSI attendees, proving that the masonry industry's skilled workforce is alive and well.

The top-placing contestants for each skill level were:

First Place
Thomas Sautkus, District Council Training Center,
Addison, Ill.


Second Place
Brian Legarth, F&R Masonry, Inc.,
Valley View, Ohio


Third Place
Chad Galloway, Galloway's Masonry,
Conyers, Ga.





Thomas Sautkus

First Place
Troy Holmes, Foti Construction,
Cleveland, Ohio


Second Place
Christopher Kowalczyk,
District Council Training Center,
Addison, Ill.


Third Place
Juan Capetillo, DMG,
Arlington, Texas





Troy Holmes
First Place
John Nero, FB&S Masonry, Inc.,
Stow, Ohio


Second Place
Chris Pruitt, Masonry Specialist,
Chattanooga, Tenn.


Third Place
Jaime Salas, Brodie Contractors,
Raleigh, N.C.



John Nero

All winners received trophies, tool bags and tools, plus first-place winners received $1,000, second-place winners $500, and $250 to third-place winners.

A special thanks to the contest sponsors, who contributed time, materials, labor and/or financial support: Quikrete, ACCI, Brick Industry Association, Buechel Stone, Building Stone Institute, County Materials, EZ Grout, Fraco, Gatorback, Glen-Gery Brick, ICS Blount, Illinois Brick, Lafarge North America, Marshalltown, MK Diamond Products, Multiquip, Non-Stop Scaffolding, Northfield Block and Spec Mix.

Fastest Trowel
The Fastest Trowel showcases the skill of our journeyman masons and how important teamwork is in accomplishing a final product. The competition pitted the journeymen against one another in a show of both speed and craftsmanship. Each contestant's goal is to complete as much of an 18-block-long wall as possible. With the 20-minute time limit that is placed on the contestants, they must make split-second decisions based on the judging criteria. Only those journeymen masons who have the skill, confidence and courage to face off with the industry's best are invited to compete.

The top-placing contestants in this year's competition were:

    First Place
    Benjamin Houghton, Houghton Masonry, Blue Grass, Iowa
    Tenders: Glenn Houghton, Jr., and Jeremy Schubick

    Second Place
    Scott D. Ramm, Heartland Construction, Cedar Rapids, Iowa
    Tenders: Rob and Russ Olson

    Third Place
    Javier Lares, Winco Masonry, Porter, Texas
    Tenders: Gustavo Moctezuma and Ubaldo Salazar

Winners received trophies, plus first place took home $7,000, second place $2,500, and $1,000 to third place.

   
Benjamin Houghton, of Houghton Masonry in Blue Grass, Iowa, and his team took top honors at the MCAA Fastest Trowel event.

Many thanks to the contest sponsor, Quikrete, who also provided the mortar and labor for the contest. Also, thanks to the following companies for contributing materials: EZ Grout, Gatorback, Northfield Block and Sterling Handling Equipment.

All of this and more will be waiting for you at the MCAA Masonry Showcase 2006 tradeshow and convention in Las Vegas March 29-31, 2006. You are urged not to miss this growing event that is changing the face of the masonry industry.



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