Chairman's Message: Celebrating Another Successful Midyear Meeting

Words: Paul Oldham

Paul Oldham, MCAA Chairman

  As this article comes out, we will be finding out if our current President will serve another four years or if we will have a new President. Whatever the outcome is, our country must come together and move forward. We all must understand that we are going to disagree and somewhere we have lost the idea that is perfectly fine to agree to disagree and move on. That is a major part of what makes “our country” the greatest on this planet.  In September we held our annual Midyear Meeting in French Lick, Indiana. For those of you that couldn’t make it, you missed an amazing event. We had almost perfect weather with plenty of sunshine and no rain. We started the week with an optional golf outing at Pete Dye, which is one of the best golf courses in the nation. Each foursome got the experience of having a fore caddy (someone who explains each shot and how it will play out on the course, or at least their interpretation which wasn’t always correct).  After everyone finished the course the consensus was, “that course kicked my tail,” followed by a short pause, then ended with a smile and “I loved it!” While many of us were getting our tails kicked by the golf course, Lisa was hosting an opening reception at the West Baden Hotel. At the time the hotel was built it was considered the Seventh Wonder of the World. I hope that everyone who made it to the meeting had the opportunity to experience the West Baden Hotel.  In the next couple of days, we dealt with the business at hand. Committees spent time reviewing accomplishments of the past year and setting new goals for the coming year. Even in a challenging year, our committees accomplished many goals with a lot of help from our MCAA staff. Speed Dating had a new and different look to it this year with hands-on demonstrations. This allowed us to interact with our supplier participants, ask them questions, and to learn more about what they offer.  The indoor-outdoor setup at the venue allowed for a great experience. I have said for many years, I believe our contractor members get a lot from Speed Dating, but I believe that our suppliers that demonstrate, get more out of us. The ability to hear how we use or don’t use their products, but also for the contractors to give feedback and input into what they provide is huge.  Even more important than the structured business side, the time spent with fellow contractors and Industry partners is invaluable. The time that we get to spend sharing experiences and talking about our businesses, the ups, and downs, about the manpower, products, equipment, and the workforce, all helps us to improve our businesses. Not to mention, the friendships that are developed and continue to expand are amazing. Over the many years of being involved in the MCAA, I can say I have developed new and will continue to develop long-lasting friendships, every time we get together. I thank all of you for that opportunity and I hope you too, have that same experience. We finished the week with another excellent golf outing at the distinguished and admired Donald Ross Golf Course. I believe the consensus was the same as earlier in the week, “It kicked my tail but I loved it”. For those that don’t know, golf was my passion as a kid. I took up the sport at the age of 10 when my father bought me a set of beginner clubs (it had an actual persimmon head driver).  I played a lot of golf in my teens and was able to compete at a high level with success. I had the opportunity to play in college, but after one semester I had a lot of growing up to do and squandered that opportunity. I love the game and hope to find the time in the coming years to get to work on it again. So for my two years as chairman, don’t be surprised if we have plenty of opportunities to play some golf and great golf at that.  We finished the evening with a great laid back closing dinner overlooking a one of a kind view of southern Indiana and the golf course. I believe there were almost some fist fights at sunset to get pictures.  I would like to thank everyone who could attend, and those that wanted to but could not. I also want to acknowledge Jeff and his team at the MCAA office. It takes a lot of planning and hard work to put on an event like this and our MCAA team made it happen, even in COVID days, so thank you. As you should be aware of the 2021 World of Concrete/ Masonry has been pushed to June. The MCAA team is hard at work at adjusting our 2021 events due to circumstances out of our control. We are nailing down an alternative meeting for the week of February 7, 2021, likely in a nice warm climate. We will have more on that next month.  I wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving and start to the Holiday season!
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