SBCA Looks Back, Recognizing Key Industry Players; Looks Forward, Welcoming New Board Members

SBCA Looks Back, Recognizing Key Industry Players; Looks Forward, Welcoming New Board Members

At the 2016 Building Component Manufacturers Conference and tradeshow in Knoxville, Tennessee, SBCA recognized the dedication of three individuals whose career accomplishments and day-to-day efforts contribute so much to the success and professionalism of their industry.BCMC 2016 Award Winners: Jess Lohse, Mike Martz, Scott Ward

Former SBCA President Scott Ward is the most recent addition to the association’s Hall of Fame. To be a trusted voice, he says, means rising above gossip and embracing the vision of the association and the industry. “Own it and understand it,” he advises. “There’s a reason we have this association – it’s to keep our industry healthy, and that’s what’s most important.” He’s looking forward to seeing the industry gain back lost momentum over the next few years, but he also sees big changes on the horizon. He’s not sure how the industry will face the challenges of new equipment, new technology and evolving building codes. “What does our industry look like 10-12 years from now? I don’t think anyone has a crystal ball to see that.”

Mike Martz of Alpine might not have a crystal ball, but he does see good things in the industry’s future. This year’s winner of the Dick Bowman Industry Enthusiast Award, an honor named for a man who embodied the energy, positive attitude and altruism of the truss manufacturing supply chain, says he couldn’t image doing anything else. “I’ve often looked back in my career,” he says, “and I’ve thought, ‘would I have taken another path, given another choice?’ And the answer is no. With the people that I’ve met and the opportunities I’ve had, no.” He acknowledges there are ups and downs in the industry and plenty of hardship to get through, but the lifelong friendships and the commitment of the community can’t be found anywhere else. “The technology is changing so fast that we’re going to see new innovations,” he predicted. People need houses, and components are the best way to make that happen. “This is the future,” he said. “It’s a very, very cool industry to be in.”

Fortunately, the industry’s leadership circle is not just a cool place to be, it’s also an easy group to enter. “The first and probably the hardest step is showing up,” says Jess Lohse, outgoing SBCA President and this year’s Industry Leadership Award winner. Be present, he says, and you’ll get involved, form relationships and take on projects before you know it. When you talk with and learn from peers, he says – when a component manufacturer takes advantage of the both formal and informal forums SBCA provides – you come away with real insight into how the market is growing.

As SBCA honored the achievements of these three outstanding individuals, leadership of the association passed from Lohse to Jack Dermer of American Truss Systems, based in Houston, Texas. SBCA also welcomed four new members to its board of directors: Dave Green, president of the Structural Building Components Association of the Carolinas and general manager of Carolina Structural Systems in Ether, North Carolina; Steve Strom, representative of the Western Component Manufacturers Association and vice president of operations at The Truss Company & Building Supply in Eugene, Oregon; Jeff Smith, president and CEO of Trussway in Houston, Texas; and associate member representative Steve Shrader of Hundegger U.S.A.

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