A New Beginning

Words: Bronzella Cleveland  Paul Odom, MCAA Chairman As I sit and write my introductory message for the magazine, I can’t help but think: “Wow! I have some big shoes to fill!” I thank all the former Chairmen. They have done an outstanding job of making this organization what it is today. I thank all members for your trust in me to lead the organization. I will strive to work hard as we go through the next two years. I want you to always feel welcome to contact me with any concerns, thoughts, or suggestions so we can together continue to improve our organization. I feel fortunate to have a great MCAA staff that does a superb job making everything happen! Thanks to Jeff, Tim, Angie, Todd, Lorra, Dan, Bronzella, Brian, Ryan, Jenny and Gail. After returning from the MCAA Annual Convention in Las Vegas last month, I am always rejuvenated and ready to try new things and to improve our business. Walking through the convention floor and visiting with suppliers/vendors always gives me opportunities to try new methods and use new equipment. Wednesday’s MASONRY MADNESS is always exciting as we see the Skills Challenge, Fastest Trowel on the Block, Toughest Tender, and BRICKLAYER 500. These competitors are the heart of our industry. Without great masons and tenders, where would our industry be? If you have missed attending this part of the convention, I encourage you to attend next year. It is amazing to see these guys in action. Attending the Committee Meetings, Training Classes, South of 40 Event at Senor Frogs, Annual Meeting and Round Table Discussions are a great way to keep up with what is happening in our organization. I find it also to be a great way to visit with peers from all over the country. There are so many things to learn from others in our industry. During the closing banquet we honored our past Chairman, Mike Sutter. He and Colleen have devoted countless hours to this organization over the years. On behalf of the members, Susie and I thank you all for your friendship, mentorship and devotion to MCAA. The convention ended with the announcement honoring several people. Receiving the C. Dewitt Brown Leadman Award were: Brian Carney and John Blair. The Hall of Fame Inductees were: Mackie Bounds, Damian Lang, Justin Breithaupt, Sr., Curtis Hoover (Masonry Instructor Honoree) and Mario Catani. Your devoted time to the masonry industry is much appreciated and we are all proud to honor each of you. My final statement about the convention is a word of thanks to all vendors and suppliers who support our organization at the convention and throughout the year. Without your continued support and financial assistance, we would not have the success that we have. I encourage each of you to always take note of these vendors and show your continued support to them. We look forward to the next convention in 2019 and sincerely hope to see each of you there. Attending the convention is well worth your time and is a great way to support our industry. In closing, for those of you who don’t know me, I live in Hamilton, Texas. If you aren’t sure where that is, it is almost at the geological center of Texas. I have been in the masonry industry since 1978 and I am proud to be a Mason. I have been involved with MCAA for most of those years and I am honored to be selected to be in this position for the next two years. My biggest goal for our organization and industry is to recapture the market share we have lost to other types of wall systems. I will elaborate on this next month. In the meantime, remember your sweetheart on Valentine’s Day!! Paul Odom
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