Department of Management Services (DMS) Hosts Masonry Competition

Words: Dan KamysDepartment of Management Services (DMS) Hosts Masonry Competition



Next week, the Florida Department of Management Services (DMS), the administrative arm of Florida’s state government, will be supporting the Florida Masonry Apprentice & Educational Foundation as it grooms Florida's next generation of masons.

The 8th Annual Northeast Florida Masonry Showcase, which will be held in Starke, Fla., Feb. 24, serves as the regional contest for up-and-coming masons to compete on a state and, then, hopefully, national level. This year, 35 young masons from seven schools will compete for a chance to move on to the statewide Florida Skills State Contest in Pensacola.

“Vocational training in these crafts teaches skills through the age-old apprenticeship method and prepares the next generation for entering the workforce,” says Department of Management Services' secretary, Jack Miles. “It is also incredibly fitting that the Starke warehouse plays host to this event, as both the participants and the surplus facility are some of Florida’s most valuable, but often untapped, resources.”

The DMS Bureau of Federal Property Assistance coordinates the distribution of roughly $5 million in donated federal property each year from the bureau’s warehouse in Starke, Fla. The Starke warehouse is the hub for federal surplus equipment and supplies that are provided to state and local governments, nonprofits, and other eligible organizations. DMS staff members at the warehouse are responsible for acquiring and distributing these goods, which saves taxpayer dollars and offers major cost avoidance in asset procurement, one of the lesser known but important services that DMS offers.

“This contest has become one of the premier masonry contests in America, and ‘recruiters’ from regional companies come to see the talent at work,” says Al Herndon, the northern representative for the Florida Masonry Apprentice and Educational Foundation, a 501(c)3 not-for-profit corporation dedicated to the training of the masonry trade in Florida.

For more information on the showcase, contact the Florida Masonry Apprentice and Educational Foundation at 904-838-6531, or visit For more information on the Florida Department of Management Services surplus property services, call the DMS Communications Office 850-921-5266 or the Bureau of Federal Property Assistance at 904-964-5601.

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