A bi-monthly news publication for AWI Manufacturing & Supplier Members November 19, 2009
AWI News

Your AWI Listing Promotes Your Business: Deadline for Updates Is November 30

The AWI annual member update began on November 2. Make sure your business listing in the 2010 AWI Membership Resource Directory, the online AWI Member Directory, and Design Solutions Magazine, accurately presents your key business information to its best advantage. Outdated information could jeopardize consideration of your business by potential customers.

On November 2, all primary contacts of AWI Manufacturing and Supplier Members were notified via e-mail to update their company profile. (Primary Contacts are the only AWI contacts who have authorization to update the information.) Updates must be completed by November 30, 2009. Invoices for your 2010 membership will reflect the information in your profile.

Follow the directions provided:

1. Go to http://www.awinet.org

2. Login using your personal username and password on the right hand side.

Your user name may be your email address, if you do not recall your username, contact AWI at 571-323-3636.
If you know your username, but cannot remember your password, please click "password reminder."

3. Once logged in:

* Verify that your dues category is correct. If incorrect, click the blue change button next to the field and update as necessary.
* Verify that the information is correct under each tab and update as necessary. Tabs: General info, Contact Info, Membership Info, Organizational Members. Click the blue "save" button under the tabs.

You do not have to click "save" if there are no changes to your profile.
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Reminder: AWI Remittance Address Changes

AWI 2010 membership dues invoices are coming in December. Don’t let your 2010 membership dues remittances or other payments to AWI become delayed. A new remittance address became effective in October.

Mail payments to:

Architectural Woodwork Institute
Attn: Accounts Receivable
46179 Westlake Drive, Suite 120
Potomac Falls, VA 20165

The old remittance address in NC is no longer open. See attached for more details. Questions should be directed AWI Office Manager Angie Fuller at afuller@awinet.org.
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AWI’s Growing Online Forum Sets Goal of 500

It’s growing again. The AWI LinkedIn support and discussion forum has hit the 400 member mark. The Woodworking Solutions forum on LinkedIn managed by AWI offers opportunities for savvy members to ask and answer questions.

Check out the forum, join (for FREE) today, and share with your woodworking colleagues. Go here to see more.

AWI Flexible Learning Officer Greg Heuer has challenged AWI members who are LinkedIn to be part of the "101 Club." Recruit just one colleague in the woodworking industry to join the AWI LinkedIn Forum. The goal is 500 by the end of the year.
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Business Tools

Submission Period Closes December 1st for Winter AWI “Award of Excellence” Program

Gain honors and get noticed in the quarterly AWI "Award of Excellence" program. Use an AOE award to market your excellence and gain a competitive advantage during these challenging times when others are seeking entry into your markets. All Manufacturing Members are eligible to participate.

Gain exposure among the outstanding projects of AWI Manufacturing Members who are featured in Design Solutions Magazine, AWI’s official quarterly journal. Visit awinet.org for submission forms. The deadline for submissions for the next quarterly (winter) AOE honors program is December 1, 2009. Benefits to AOE honorees include exposure in the online issue of the journal which is open for business 24/7.

Pictured is one of the award-winning AWI Manufacturing Member projects featured in the quarterly AWI "Award of Excellence" competition. Custom woodwork elements fabricated by Island Architectural Woodwork, Inc. of Ronkonkoma, NY, for the 5,000 square-foot expansion of ING Investment Management’s existing executive floor included: credenza, raised panels, wood convector enclosures, office front doors and slide lights, window frames, staircase, open bookcases, custom furniture and mouldings. Other views of this project can be seen in the summer issue of Design Solutions.

Photo Credit: Peter Paige, Allendale, NJ


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Standards

Understanding & Marketing AWS: Upcoming Presentations

With the release of the Architectural Woodwork Standards (AWS), members of the AWI Speakers Bureau, AWI chapters, staff and others are/will be making presentations to architectural woodworkers, architects, designers and the contractors about the differences between the AWI Quality Standards Illustrated and AWS. Watch for news of special presentations in your area.

AWI Great Lakes Chapter
When: December 2, 2009
Presenter: Greg Bednar, AWI Chapter Development Director
Where: Dave & Busters, Utica, MI
Registration: $30 per person by November 20
Information: Click here.

The AWS is jointly produced by AWI, the Architectural Woodwork Manufacturers Association of Canada (AWMAC) and the Woodwork Institute.
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Standards Presentations Are Well Received

AWI chapters in Texas and Minnesota attracted audiences eager to learn about the Architectural Woodwork Standards. Learn more.

The AWI Texas Chapter attracted over 55 to its networking dinner on October 29, and on October 30 over 45 attendees, mostly manufacturers, heard Greg Lutz of Lutz Woodworks, LLC conduct an informative two-hour presentation about the Architectural Woodwork Standards. The session included an AWI Quality Certification Program test for attendees to complete in small groups. Using the new AWS as a reference, attendees engaged in spirited discussion about the quiz and the presentation.

The AWI Minnesota Chapter reports that the AWS presentation on November 4 by Mike Bell of Kentucky Millwork was very well received by the approximately 40 attendees. He presented a four-hour program on the AWS at St. Paul Technical College. The chapter’s program included the AWS presentation, tour of the college’s woodshop program, and a visit to Siewert Cabinet & Fixture Manufacturing, Inc., where Rick Siewert introduced attendees to his shop and his "Wood on the Hood" program (more news to come in a future AWI publication). Siewert is Vice President of the Minnesota Chapter.



Mike Bell conducted a four-hour program for the AWI Minnesota Chapter.



The presentation included a tour of St. Paul Technical College’s high tech woodshop program which includes CNC equipment.
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Steelcase Designers & Product Managers Trained on Woodwork Standards

Far and wide distribution of AWI Quality Standards Illustrated (QSI) (now superceded by the new Architectural Woodwork Standards) is shown here as designers and product managers from Steelcase display the QSI.

Stiles Machinery Vice President Steve Waltman reports that "as part of their introduction (most are transplants from other divisions or the automotive industry) to woodworking they received a copy of the standards."

 
Photo courtesy of Stiles Machinery. 
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Everyone Wants Popcorn

You know this, or a variation of it: "Everyone wants popcorn, but no one wants to plow, plant, weed, and harvest."

We have seen a surge of demand for presentations on the new Architectural Woodwork Standards. To fill demand, Greg Heuer, your Flexible Learning Officer at AWI, has formed the New Mod Squad, people who will help create these learning programs.

Creative writers and presenters - Join the New Mod Squad! 

What’s it all about?
Its mission is to leverage the wisdom and talent of the AWI community. How? By brainstorming ideas, writing content, and sharing compelling images; by creating visually interesting and mentally stimulating modules about the new AWS; and by helping speakers take the AWI message out to the construction industry.

Want to help? Visit the Wiki, sign-in, give 20 minutes a week back to your association and your profession. Click here to learn more or e-mail Greg Heuer at gheuer@awinet.org
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Green Scene

Next Step in LEED® Certified Wood Credit Amendment Process?

The proposed restructuring of the LEED certified credit that is reportedly intended to promote environmentally responsible forest management, elicited more than 1,200 comments in September and October during the second comment period. Discussions about the status of the process and next steps recently took place during Greenbuild 2009, November 11-13, sponsored by the U.S. Green Building Council.

LEED’s Materials and Resources Technical Advisory Group (MR TAG) will decide whether the wood credit is ready for balloting or seek a third round of revisions and public comment. According to a blog report from the conference, USGBC’s Vice President of LEED Technical Development Brendan Owens advised that the MR TAG group will likely decide what to do in the next few weeks before the end of the year.

If USGBC members approve a revamp, LEED would recognize other certification systems that meet certain criteria. Currently, only wood certified by the Forest Stewardship Council is recognized.

For more information, see the blog posted on November 12 by Joann Gonchar in GreenSource Magazine.
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New Standard Document Facilitates Green Building Projects

Anyone involved with the design and construction of green buildings can now use the first comprehensive standard contract document that addresses the many challenges associated with these complex projects, according to news from the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC), one of 23 leading construction associations that developed the new document, known as the ConsensusDOCSTM 310 Green Building Addendum.

Consensus DOCSTM 310, was developed by members of the ConsensusDOCS group to help advise the owner, set proper expectations, and avoid delays and other legal hassles in the construction of buildings seeking green certification or other sustainable goals.

"A standard of practice simply does not exist today. Publication of the ConsensusDOCS Green Addendum may help the industry avoid an avalanche of wasteful litigation by filling this void," states Steve M. Charney, Managing Partner of the New York Office of Peckar & Abramson and co-chair of the national working committee that drafted the document.

"ConsensusDOCS has led the way in identifying emerging advances in the building process and bringing order where standards or norms have not yet evolved. ConsensusDOCS took this lead in connection with Building Information Modeling (BIM) and is doing so again in the area of green building," AGC reported. "The Green Building Addendum mitigates risk and increases project success by clearly identifying roles and responsibilities for contractors, designers, owners and others involved in the construction project. One of the Green Building Addendum’s most significant features is the introduction of the Green Building Facilitator, who can be one of the project participants or an outside green consultant," according to AGC.

For more information about the new Green Building Addendum, visit www.ConsensusDOCS.org.
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How “Green” Are You?

As a service to members, AWI will publish information about members’ environmental sensitivity and energy saving practices as well as their various "green" certification credentials.

Ivan C. Dutterer, Inc. of Hanover, PA received its Chain of Custody Certificate from the Forest Stewardship Council on January 8, 2009.

Send your information to AWI Director of Marketing Katie Allen at kallen@awinet.org.

NOTE: The information presented in the "Green Scene" section of AWI e-briefs should not be construed as legal or other professional advice or to represent the opinion of AWI and is presented for informational purposes only to represent balanced reporting of differing views as a service to members and subscribers.  AWI does not accept any responsibility for the accuracy or completeness of this material from industry and other sources. 
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Member News

Mark Your Calendar for Next Executive Briefing Conference

Stiles Machinery Inc. has announced that the Executive Briefing Conference (EBC) is now scheduled for February 28 through March 2, 2010 in Dallas, TX.

Stiles Education, in cooperation with industry partners and network supporters that include AWI, designs the EBC as a learning opportunity that also offers a dynamic group experience. The EBC is a not-for-profit educational event. Any profits will be donated to advance the efforts of WoodLINKS USA, an industry education partnership that certifies entry-level skilled workers so they can become the future leaders of the industry.

Check the December issue of AWI NewsBriefs for program details. Visit Stiles at www.stilesmachinery.com. Stiles has been an AWI Supplier Member since 1996.

                             
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Hafele Hosts Program for AIA Chicago Chapter

On November 11, Hafele America Company attracted approximately 80 design professionals and AWI members to its Chicago showroom for a presentation for the AIA Chicago Chapter on "Wood is the Solution; Exploring Panel Products."

Presenters Greg Bednar of AWI and Kevin Forrestal of Great Lakes Wood Products teamed up for the presentation.


Greg Bednar addressing the audience of design professionals.

 
Kevin Forrestal of Great Lakes Wood Products

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Industry News

Unemployment Rate Rises to 10.2%

The unemployment rate rose from 9.8 to 10.2 percent in October, and nonfarm payroll employment continued to decline (-190,000), according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The largest job losses over the month were in construction, manufacturing, and retail trade.

Construction employment decreased by 62,000 in October, BLS reported. Monthly job losses have averaged 67,000 during the most recent six months, compared with an average decline of 117,000 during the prior six months. October job losses were concentrated in nonresidential specialty trade contractors (-30,000) and in heavy construction (-14,000). Since December 2007, employment in construction has fallen by 1.6 million.
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Builder and Consumer Confidence Slipped in October

According to two indices, builder confidence slipped one point in October while consumer confidence dipped further since its decline in September.

Builder confidence in the market for newly built single-family homes dipped one point to 18 in October, according to the latest National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index.

The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index®, which had declined in September, deteriorated further in October. The Index now stands at 47.7, down from 53.4 in September.

For more details reported in November 5th edition of Building Online (free subscription), click here for news about builder confidence, and here for the latest on consumer confidence.
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EVP Bill Miller to Retire from WMIA

Bill Miller, CAE, executive vice president of the Woodworking Machinery Industry Association (WMIA) announced his retirement effective December 31. Miller will retire after a distinguished career in association management, culminating with his nearly 10-year tenure with WMIA.

Miller began working with WMIA as executive director in 2000. Miller helped WMIA open its own office in 2005 and has since led staff efforts on all association projects ranging from marketing, to conferences, to membership and financial management. He will be succeeded as Executive Vice President by Rainey Smick, currently associate executive vice president for the organization.

WMIA is a Maryland-based association of companies whose primary business is providing the North American market with the latest woodworking technology, equipment, computer software and distribution service channels available globally. Visit the association at www.wmia.org.
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Workforce

Test Drive New Skill Standards

The Skill Standards industry Pilot Program for November 2009 offers select Manufacturing Members the opportunity to try out the new Skill Standards. The evaluation takes about 20 minutes per tool.

Members are being asked to evaluate four tools or more, if they wish. The Woodwork Career Alliance (WCA) has written Skill Standards for OVER 30 different tools and machines. Those interested in trying out the new Skill Standards, should contact WCA Secretary and AWI Flexible Learning Officer Greg Heuer at 571.323.3623 or at gheuer@umich.edu.
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WCA Seeks More Volunteers for Skill Standards Project: That Means You!

Think about the ramifications of the cost of an unskilled employee to your business. Then, think about the value of Skill Standards and a Credential. Then, consider how you can help the Woodwork Career Alliance (WCA) speed up its already-impressive delivery on this project that will give you a way to measure and recognize the competency of woodworking professionals. Do you have 10 minutes a day?

The WCA Board of Directors has selected the next set of tools and machines, and they are inviting volunteers with experience on these tools to be interviewed for their preferred "standards" for the industry, according to Greg Heuer, Secretary of the WCA. Check out the list of the working tools at http://skillstandards.wikispaces.com/Tool_Groups

There are a number of ways you can help advance the Skill Standards project. Contact Greg Heuer at gheuer@umich.edu.

  • Tell him you will fund a small part of this BIG project.
  • Or, tell him you are willing to TEST the Standards in your plant.
  • Or, tell him you have some experience with tools and machines, and will help WRITE or EDIT the Standards.

 


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Fox Valley Technical College Foundation Contributes to WCA

Another donation of $500 from the Fox Valley Technical College Foundation in Oshkosh, WI, continues their tradition of providing tax-deductible matching funds for the Skill Standards and Credentialing initiative spearheaded by the Woodwork Career Alliance of North America (WCA)

Fox Valley has a long tradition of woodworker training and support for both the Architectural Woodwork Institute and the Woodwork Career Alliance. The former head of the woodworking program there, Jerry Finch, is a founder and member of the Board of Directors of the WCA.

The benefits of partnership are many, including Brand Awareness. To learn more about becoming a WCA-Skill Standards partner, visit this page of the WCA Web site.
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Federal Scene

Tax Credits Extended for Home Buyers

A reprieve to boost the economy....instead of expiring on November 30, first time home buyers will still be able to get a tax credit of up to $8,000 if they sign a contract by April 30, 2010. Certain move up/repeat home buyers will now be eligible for tax credit of up to $6,500 if certain conditions are met. The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), said the "housing market received what should prove to be a real boost. If that happens, other market sectors should see economic relief as well.

While the NAHB views the tax credit extension as position, they express concern about the continued loss of jobs. Even though residential construction unemployment saw a drop in unemployment, the statistics may be skewed because of the shift of resident construction workers to the commercial sector, which is struggling now, according to U.S. Census Bureau figures.

For more details, see NAHB’s Eye on the Economy on November 13, 2009. (Free subscription required)
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Status of Federal Bid-Listing Legislation

Legislation that would prohibit bid shopping and bid peddling on federal projects could protect subcontractors on federal agency construction jobs.

Currently, the Construction Quality Assurance Act of 2009 (H.R. 3492), which was introduced by Rep. Paul Kanjorski (D-PA), in July, has only one sponsor.

According to the American Subcontractors Association (ASA), "the bill would require contractors bidding on federal agencies’ construction projects valued at over $1 million to list each subcontractor they plan to use for $100,000 or more of the work. A prime contractor that replaced listed subcontractors without good cause would be subject to fines, and in extreme cases, de-listing as a government contractor, "ASA reported.

Contact ASA if you wish to contact your Members of Congress. Visit www.house.gov to locate them and to check the status of the bill.
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AMERICA WORKS Act Introduced

Workforce training legislation introduced by Rep. Walt Minnick (D-ID) would "require that certain Federal job training and career education programs give priority to programs that provide a national industry-recognized and portable credential." The bill’s official title is the American Manufacturing Efficiency and Retraining Investment Collaboration Act, or AMERICA WORKS Act (H.R. 4072).

It encourages community colleges and professional-technical programs across the country to design and offer training programs and industrial certifications that are transferable anywhere.

According to a report on November 17 in the Boise Weekly, the bill is supported by manufacturers, labor and community colleges. The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) has praised the legislation.

According to a report in the Idaho Statesman (11/17), "An industry-recognized credential, according to Minnick’s office, ‘would be something that is recognized by a national group, for example the NAM. They can point to a certain set of credentials that fit their members best, thereby creating an almost automatic fit between the employer and employee.’"

The measure was introduced in the House of Representatives on November 17. It was referred to the Committee on Education and Labor, as well as to the Committee on Ways and Means. The bill has three co-sponsors. To view the legislation and for status reports, visit http://thomas.loc.gov.  Search for H.R. 4072.
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Section 45 Tax Credits

There are currently two pieces of legislation in the House (H.R. 622) and Senate (S. 870) that aim to provide Section 45 tax credits for businesses that produce on-site energy to meet their production needs. The credits would further help energy-efficient businesses.

HR. 622 and S. 870 would expand the credits by taking out the "must sell to a third party" clause. "Passage of these bills is also a necessary step towards future strategy to include a thermal energy credit that would recognize the hardwood industry’s excellent practices of using biomass to operate their facilities, and a history of helping to protect the environment and reduce greenhouse gas emissions," according to the AHMI, which supports these bills. For the status of the bills and action within Congress on the measures, visit http://thomas.loc.gov and search on the bill numbers.
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Chapter News

Upcoming Chapter Events

What’s happening in your local AWI chapters and architectural woodwork communities?

Check out the informative AWI chapter programs sponsored in your area. Tap into your local AWI chapter for vital information that can help your business grow and put you in touch with fellow AWI architectural woodworkers and suppliers.

AWI Carolinas Chapter
When: November 15, 2009
The chapter regrets that due to unforeseen circumstances, it was necessary to cancel the tour of Cambria FabShop scheduled for November 13, 2009. Stay tuned for upcoming program announcements.

AWI Ohio Valley Chapter
When: December 4, 2009 (7:00 am – 3:00 pm)
What: Business Meeting, Tour of Cummins Diesel Plant & Discussion of their Code of Business Conduct, Program about BIM, IPD, LEED, and USGBC.
Presenter: Stewart Whitcomb, architect
Where: Holiday Inn, Columbus, IN
Information: Program/Registration; Directions to Hotel

AWI New Jersey & Central Pennsylvania Chapters
When: February 25, 2010 (12:00 noon – 3:30 pm)
What "Strategies for Success in Our Changing Economy"
Presenter: Stephan W. Waltman, VP of Strategic Sales & Marketing, Stiles Machinery
Where: Radisson Hotel Valley Forge, King of Prussia, PA
Information: See attached
Questions: Garry Astles, President, Central PA Chapter; gastles@northwayind.com; John Gehman, President, New Jersey Chapter, jgehman1@verizon.net

All chapters are encouraged to plan their events early to allow for ample promotion of your activities in this section of AWI e-briefs as well as through other avenues. Also, if your chapter is involved in local and regional SkillsUSA competitions, advise AWI. Contact Greg Bednar, AWI Chapter Development Services at gbednar@awinet.org.
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Next Issue of AWI e-briefs

The next issue of AWI e-briefs will be published December 3, 2009.


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Founded in 1953, AWI is a nonprofit organization representing over 3,500 manufacturers, suppliers, and design professionals in the architectural woodwork industry.

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