Upstate New York Chapter Inducts Officers

Words: David Biggs

The Upstate NY Chapter met on May 1, 2024, and inducted three new officers and said thank you to three others. The chapter represents firms working within New York State and was formed in 2015.  Since then, the chapter has grown and expanded its outreach to masonry firms, architects, engineers, suppliers, developers, and government officials in New York.

Special thanks went out to:
Michael Palmer, Remlap Construction Company Inc., of New Woodstock, NY was the Founding President of the chapter. As a masonry contractor since 1977, Mike’s major goal was to educate masons with a code-based working knowledge of structural masonry construction. He didn’t want masons to simply understand what to do, he wanted them to appreciate why architects and engineers were asking them to do it. After years of classroom training, testing, and certifications, the feedback from the design community has been overwhelmingly positive. Architects and engineers have greater confidence in masonry construction, and relations between mason contractors and designers have been greatly enhanced. This has resulted in more masonry structures being designed and built in New York. 

With the support of an active Board of Directors, Mike secured funding from The National Concrete Masonry Association’s Research and Education Foundation and produced four installation videos, five installation bulletins, a tutorial video for structural engineers and teamed up with Board members to run “The Masters of Masonry Class”, a five-week virtual class for structural engineers and architects.  In one of his last big events, Mike led a “Hands On Masonry Day” where over 60 architects and engineers picked up trowels and working with some of the leading masonry foremen in Upstate New York built small masonry walls to get a better understanding of masonry construction.  

Mike authored the phrase “If it’s good for masonry it’s good for us all”.  He led the association using that mantra and has instilled spirit in the hundreds of masons, architects, and engineers who have been trained in the best practices of masonry construction by the chapter.  He set the chapter standards and forged genuine friendships within our industry.

Mike Palmer – Founding President and incoming President Brett Sherman

Mike will remain on the Chapter Board as a Director.

  1. Eric Schneid, formerly of Schneid Construction Co. of Syracuse, NY was Founding Treasurer. Eric managed the chapter’s finances and business and has been a major promoter and supporter of masonry his whole career.
Eric Schneid – Founding Treasurer and incoming President Brett Sherman

2. Brian Casler, Casler Masonry Inc. of Auburn, NY as Founding Director. Brian served the chapter in several capacities including outreach to designers and students and developer of the Chapter’s website.

The incoming Board Members include:
Brett Sherman, Alliance Masonry Corp. (founder-retired), of Chenango Forks, NY is the new President. Brett was the Founding Vice President.

Anthony (TJ) DiPeso, DiPeso Contractors, Inc., of Central Square, NY is the new Vice President and will oversee Membership Development.

Jay Niedzialkowski, Alliance Masonry Corp., of Chenango Forks, NY is the new Treasurer.

Kevin Agostini, Barnes & Cone, Inc., of Syracuse, NY was the Founding Secretary and continues in that position.

Michael Palmer, Remlap Construction Company Inc., of New Woodstock, NY as a Director.

Rick Roach, Barnes & Cone, Inc., of Syracuse, NY as a Director.

Giovanni LaFace, Vanni Construction Co., of Baldwinsville, NY as a Director.

David Kellish, Paragon Supply, of Syracuse, NY as a Director.

Jacob Bock, Bock Brick, Inc., of East Syracuse, NY as a Director.

Nick Carparelli, New York State Concrete Masonry Association, of Frankfort, NY as a Director.

David Biggs, Biggs Consulting Engineering, of Saratoga Springs, NY as a Director.


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