AWI e-briefs
A semimonthly news publication for Manufacturing & Supplier Members of the
Architectural Woodwork Institute
February 22, 2018
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AWI News

AWI Member Verification Documents Mailed the Week of February 12th

Last week AWI sent Member Verification certificates to all members who paid their dues for 2018.  The document notes their “good standing” status and states that the membership is current through December 31, 2018.  Renewing members should check the mail for the document.  Consider displaying the certificate for all employees and visitors to see.

Thanks for your renewal!  AWI appreciates your continued membership.

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Reminder—We Need You!

On February 12 all AWI members received a link to the 2018 AWI Member survey.  If you haven’t already completed the survey…we need your help.

The future of our industry is rapidly changing. AWI needs your feedback to ensure our membership model is meeting the complex needs of our members. To participate, simply click on the link below:

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/2018AWI

The survey takes less than 10 minutes to complete. Please be assured that your responses are completely confidential and results will be analyzed in the aggregate only. Any personal data will not be used for any purpose other than for the research exercise itself. Thank you in advance for participating in this effort.

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Safety Matters

Resolve to Make Your Workplace Safe + Sound in 2018

The OSHA Safe + Sound Campaign encourages every workplace in the United States to have a safety and health program that includes management leadership, worker participation, and a proactive approach to finding and fixing hazards. The Occupational Safety & Health Administration’s Safe + Sound Campaign supports employers’ efforts by offering free webinars; resources from campaign organizers; and local events to support safety and health program development.

For ways to get started and for other resources, visit the OSHA Safe + Sound Campaign webpage.Get started today:

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Reminder—AWI / Federated Insurance Safety Survey Closes March 2

The AWI/Federated Insurance Safety Awards recognize AWI Manufacturing members for their efforts to create a safe work environment for their employees. The program awards are based on a company’s Incident Rate. The Incident Rate is a nationally recognized measure of safety and equalizes the accident Rate for all sizes of firms.

Submit your information before the March 2 deadline.  

Click here to access the survey.

USER ID: awi

PASSWORD: safety

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Standards

Finishing Carpentry Installation: Draft AWI / ANSI Standard Nears Canvassing

As the first step in the certification of the much-anticipated suite of standards, the team at the AWI National Testing Center (NTC) in Americus, GA is proud to announce that the first standard in the series, AWI 0620 – Finishing Carpentry Installation, will soon begin the American National Standards Institute (ANSI)-approved canvassing process.

For several months, the AWI standards development team has been working alongside the Technical Committee, a group of professionals with prior standards development experience and expertise in their respective fields, to ensure that, once published, the standards will effectively meet the needs of AWI’s member organizations.

AWI Technical Director Ashley Goodin stated, “We are very excited here at the NTC to be preparing to take the next step towards getting ANSI certification for this standard. It’s taken a lot of hard work to get to this point and we’re eager to complete the process.”

In the coming months, even more standards are expected to be ready to begin the canvassing process, including AWI 0641 – Casework and AWI 1236 – Countertops.

Contact Ashley Goodin at agoodin@awinet.org for more information.

 

The Architectural Woodwork Institute has produced and collaborated on the development of Standards in accordance with its mission from its founding in 1953 to the present day.

Founded in 1918, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) is a private non-profit organization that administers and coordinates the U.S. voluntary standardization and conformity assessment system.


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Workforce

’Design it Digital’ Competition Focuses on CAD Skills

The Association of Woodworking & Furnishings Suppliers® (AWFS®) has launched Design it Digital, a new CAD-based design contest that is open to middle school, high school, and post-secondary students in accredited woodworking or related programs in North America.

In addition to highlighting the use of CAD software in the industry, the contest is an avenue for interested wood industry businesses to get involved with students and schools. AWI Education Director Doug Hague encourages AWI members to promote involvement in the competition through their contacts with academic institutions and woodwork apprentices in an effort to emphasize the value of technology skills, including drafting and producing shop drawings among future woodworkers. “Future woodworkers need to know that use of technology is an exciting part of our industry.  By promoting the wood industry as a avenue to use skills in technology, our industry can help change the image of wood industry employment and excite young people about a viable career path in our industry,” Doug said.  Get involved; spread the word!

In Design it Digital, students are presented with three hypothetical scenarios in which a client is asking for a custom piece of furniture. Students can choose their favorite client project and design a solution using CAD and rendering software. “This contest introduces students to challenges that designers face when making a custom piece of furniture. Our focus is to engage young people into thinking about the many career opportunities utilizing advanced technology in the wood industry,” said AWFS® Education Committee Chair Don Bigelow.

This contest is entirely free to enter and entry applications will be accepted until May 31, 2018.  Students can go to the online entry Web site at www.awfs.org/education to create a user login, respond to the entry questions, and upload their visual presentation boards.

The contest will be judged by a panel of industry professionals that includes AWI’s Doug Hague, and the winning entries will be announced by AWFS® in August 2018. Middle and high school entries will be judged separately from post-secondary entries.

Cash prizes for first place, second place, and honorable mention will be awarded for both school levels, along with in-kind prizes donated from the industry sponsors. “This contest is an entirely online process, making it accessible to any CAD student in North America.” said AWFS® Education Director Adria Torrez.

All contest information can be found at https://did2018.artcall.org/.

The Association of Woodworking & Furnishings Suppliers® (AWFS), founded in 1911, is a non-profit organization that wholly owns and produces the biennial AWFS®Fair. http://www.awfs.org.

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The ‘Canadian Connection’ Featured in Winter Pathways

The Woodwork Career Alliance of North America (WCA) recently released the winter edition of Pathways, a quarterly newsletter devoted highlighting woodworking education and workforce development.

Highlights include:

Meet Mick McGowan: The WCA’s Canadian Connection
Read how this veteran cabinetmaker and college woodworking instructor is leading the charge to spark Canadian interest and involvement with the Woodwork Career Alliance of North America (WCA).

Building a Sturdy Woodworking Industry-Technical Education Partnership
Lutz Woodworks of Wylie, TX, has developed a strong bond with the Dale Jackson Career Center’s woodworking program.

NBMDA Sets the Gold Standard for New WCA Sponsorship Program
The North American Building Material Distribution Association (NBMDA) and 14 of its members have signed on as Gold Sponsors of the Woodwork Career Alliance of North America (WCA). Their sponsorships will benefit WCA high school and postsecondary woodworking programs in the United States and Canada.

Read Winter Pathways here.

The Woodwork Career Alliance of North America was founded in 2007 as a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation and is governed by a volunteer board of directors. The WCA’s mission is to develop and administer a unified set of Skill Standards for the wood products industry. Since 2011, WCA has developed observable and measurable performance standards and assessments for more than 240 woodworking machine operations. In addition, WCA has issued more than 1,600 Passports, a portable, personal permanent record documenting each holder’s record of achievements as a woodworking professional. More than 100 high schools and post-secondary schools throughout North America are WCA EDUcation™ members. To learn more about the WCA, how to get involved with its programs or to sign up to receive the quarterly WCA Pathways e-newsletter, visit WoodworkCareer.org.

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Business Management

It’s Your Life: Retirement Contingency Planning

From Federated Insurance

A lot of business owners intend to use their business as their retirement plan—to sell it and use the proceeds for retirement. So they take a smaller salary and reinvest the profits into the business. But what if they do sell and the proceeds are insufficient for retirement? Many things can happen to cause a business to be worth less to someone else than it is to the current owner, including:

  • New competition
  • Obsolescence of industry – new technology
  • Owner’s special skills can’t be duplicated
  • Clients’ loyalty to current owner
  • Climate change (e.g., business located in an area that may be susceptible to future weather and climate extremes)
  • Geography
  • Economic conditions


Business owners may want to consider retirement contingency planning. This usually involves taking a larger salary and putting it into other types of diversified assets, such as:

  • Qualified retirement plans
  • IRAs (SEP, SIMPLE, Roth)
  • Non-qualified annuities
  • Investment real estate (rent as a source of retirement income)
  • Individual stocks and bonds
  • Stock and bond mutual funds


And there’s another option that could prove to be valuable to your retirement planning: cash value life insurance. Cash value life insurance is often overlooked as a source of supplemental retirement income. It is a versatile product that can provide benefits to you and your family on a tax-favored basis. If you die too soon, it can help replace the income that your business provided to your family, tax-free.

If, like most people, you live to retirement and beyond, you can use the policy’s accumulated cash value as a source of retirement income.

Many people live frugally in retirement, not because they don’t have assets, but because they want to make sure to leave an inheritance to their children. The life insurance death benefit can provide an inheritance, even if the rest of your assets are spent for retirement.

This article is for general information and risk prevention recommendations only and should not be considered legal coverage, financial, tax, or medical advice.  The information may be subject to regulations and restrictions in your state.  There is no guarantee following these recommendations will help reduce or eliminate losses.  The information is accurate as of its publication date and is subject to change.  Qualified counsel should be sought regarding questions specific to your circumstances. All rights reserved.

Federated Mutual Insurance Company / Federated Service Insurance Company (not licensed in the states of NH, NJ and VT) / Federated Life Insurance Company – www.federatedinsurance.com.

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Let’s Google ’em

By Robert Stevenson, Best-Selling Author & Speaker

If all things were equal …

  • Would they pick your company to do business with?
  • Would your customers recommend your company to a friend?
  • Would the majority of your new business come from referrals?


Let’s get one thing straight … ALL THINGS AREN’T EQUAL. There are different levels of quality of products and different levels of customer service. Bain & Company (a top tier management consulting firm) did an extensive study of companies in America and found that the percentage of companies who believe their service level sets them apart from their competition was 80%. But, when Bain & Company reversed the tables on their research and went out and asked the clients of those companies what they thought about their service … just 8% of their customers believed the company actually exhibited a higher level of service than their competitor. 80% vs 8% … that difference is both profound and scary.

So, what should your company be working on?  I would recommend you start looking at what causes such a vast gap between the perception of 80% versus the reality of 8%. A great place to look for answers to that question is on Google; that is where I start when I am preparing a program for my clients. I simply type in the Google search bar: “Complaints about XYZ Company” and start reading. A while back, the results for a financial organization I was working with had one Google reference listing 416 complaints. Ouch! Just recently I found these statements about a company I was working with:

  • They are the worst company to deal with.
  • They didn't follow through on their promises.
  • They won’t return my calls or answer my emails.
  • The employee I worked with was rude, arrogant, and continuously misleading.
  • I wouldn't wish this experience on my worst enemy or the devil himself.
  • Don't do business with these idiots.


This company is a large organization with locations all over America … and these complaints stemmed from only a few under-performing offices. (But the consumer doesn’t know that.) These comments could cause a client to not even call and give you a chance to do business with them … even though your other locations are getting nothing but praises from clients. A resent Google study revealed that online reviews impact 67.7% of respondents' purchasing decisions. When checking a company out, 50.4% of the people will just look at the first page on Google, 36% will read up to 3 pages, and 13.6% will read 4 pages or more. If you have four or more negative articles about your company or product appearing in Google search results, you’re likely to lose 70% of potential customers.

The Power of Google … What are your customers saying about you?

Note: This article is the “Consider This” Collection by Robert Stevenson.  Reprinted with permission.

Robert Stevenson is one of the most widely sought after speakers in the world today as well as a best-selling author. Robert has owned five companies and sold internationally in over 20 countries; he is a man who has lived his experiences, not just studied them. More than 2 million people have benefited from over 2,500 powerful and thought provoking programs he has delivered.  www.robertstevenson.org

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Cross Your T’s With Liens, or Risk Everything

“Be warned that most states strictly construe lien laws against the lien claimant. That means even a slight clerical misstep can invalidate a lien and leave you with nothing. There are also a minority of states that have taken a more liberal approach by only requiring reasonable or substantial compliance with statutory lien requirements,” writes William J. Shaughnessy, Esq. in the February 15the edition of Construction Law Newsletter published by ConcensusDocs.

Read about the range of outcomes in the varying standards here.

 

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Risk Management Corner: Drunk Driving Seldom Takes a Holiday

From Federated Insurance

Distracted driving is fast taking over drunk driving as the number one killer on our roads. It’s a problem being addressed by everyone from schools and employers to the federal government. But let’s not ignore drunk driving just because the number of fatalities is going down and distracted drivers grab the headlines. Drunk driving still holds a prominent place on the list of vehicle crash causes, and holidays—all holidays—increase the number of impaired drivers on the road. So whether it’s New Year’s Eve, Labor Day, Independence Day, or even Super Bowl Sunday, festivities and holidays present a higher risk of encountering a drunk driver.

Consider the following:
  • It is illegal in every state to drive with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or higher.*
  • Roughly one-third of all traffic deaths involve drunk drivers.*
  • In 2016, more than 10,000 people were killed in drunk driving crashes—about one person every 50 minutes. Nearly 200 of those were children.*
  • Speeding was a factor in 45 percent of fatal crashes involving a driver with a BAC of .01 or higher.*
  • The cost of these deaths and related damages is $44 billion per year.*

National campaigns against driving drunk, along with tougher laws and enforcement, have cut the number of deaths. But the business sector also has a responsibility to keep impaired drivers off the road.

The employee routinely takes a company vehicle home from work. Not eager to go home to an empty house at the end of the day, and since it’s a holiday weekend, the employee stops at a local pub for a beer and a little revelry. Before long, that one beer led to three more. The news video of the accident scene clearly shows the company’s name on the side of the smashed truck, and the driver undergoing a field sobriety test.

Whoever said “bad publicity is better than no publicity” completely missed the mark for incidents like this. No employer wants that kind of attention!

Despite the progress toward zero deaths caused by drunk drivers, we’re not there yet. Any driver on the road at any time in any capacity plays a role in public safety—your employees included. Enforcing driving and drug and alcohol policies, employee monitoring and training, and employee assistance programs are things you can do right now to help your company stay away from bad publicity.

For more information on drug and alcohol programs, employee training, and driver monitoring services, contact your local Federated Insurance representative.

And when the next holiday or celebration approaches, remind your friends and family that you want them to make it home safely. That may not happen if they drive drunk.

* https://www.nhtsa.gov/risky-driving/drunk-driving


Some of the services referenced are provided by third parties wholly independent of Federated. Federated provides its clients with access to such services with the understanding that neither Federated nor its employees provide legal or other expert advice. Coverage for claims will be determined by the facts of the claim and the terms of your policy. © 2017 Federated Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.

Federated Mutual Insurance Company / Federated Service Insurance Company (not licensed in the states of NH, NJ and VT) / Federated Life Insurance Company – www.federatedinsurance.com

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Growing an Established Company

You have started your business and now you think you are ready to grow. How do you really know if you and your company are ready for the next step?

A course offered by the Small Business Administration (SBA) will help you determine if a growth opportunity is right for you.

  • Self-paced training
  • Evaluate your business and create a plan.
  • Takes about 30 minutes to complete the course.
  • Transcript and keyboard shortcuts are available
  • Course completion confirmation from the SBA.

For more information and to register for the course visit the SBA Learning Center here.

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Construction Industry News

Pace of Construction Activity Projected to Accelerate through 2019

Strength in industrial and institutional sectors is offsetting projected easing in commercial construction activity

Despite labor shortages and rising material costs that continue to impact the construction sector, construction spending for nonresidential buildings is projected to increase 4 percent this year and continue at that pace of growth through 2019. The American Institute of Architects semi-annual Consensus Construction Forecast indicates the commercial construction sectors will generate much of the expected gains this year, and by 2019 the industrial and institutional sectors will dominate the projected construction growth.

“Rebuilding after the record-breaking losses from natural disasters last year, the recently enacted tax reform bill, and the prospects of an infrastructure package are expected to provide opportunities for even more robust levels of activity within the industry,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, PhD, Hon. AIA. “The Architecture Billings Index and other major leading indicators for the industry also point to an upturn in construction activity over the coming year.”

Market Segment Consensus Growth Forecasts

2018

2019

Overall Nonresidential Building

4.0%

3.9%

COMMERCIAL / INDUSTRIAL

4.4%

2.9%

Office Space

4.6%

3.0%

Retail

4.4%

3.5%

Hotels

4.1%

0.8%

Industrial Facilities

3.3%

5.2%

INSTITUTIONAL

3.8%

4.3%

Education

4.0%

4.9%

Healthcare Facilities

4.0%

4.0%

Public Safety

3.6%

3.9%

Amusement / Recreation

3.3%

2.4%

Religious

-1.1%

0.9%


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Architecture Billings End 2017 on Positive Note

AIA says fourth quarter activity was the strongest of 2017.

The Architecture Billings Index concluded the year in positive terrain, with the December reading capping off three straight months of growth in design billings. The American Institute of Architects reported the December ABI score was 52.9, down from a score of 55.0 in the previous month. This score still reflects an increase in design services provided by U.S. architecture firms (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). The new projects inquiry index was 61.9, up from a reading of 61.1 the previous month, while the new design contracts index decreased slightly from 53.2 to 52.7.

“Overall, 2017 turned out to be a strong year for architecture firms.  All but two months saw ABI scores in positive territory,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. “Additionally, the overall strength of the fourth quarter lays a good foundation for healthy growth in construction activity in 2018.”

Key December ABI highlights include the following:

  • Regional averages: South (56.3), West (53.0), Midwest (52.9), Northeast (49.4)
  • Sector index breakdown: multi-family residential (55.4), commercial / industrial (54.8), institutional (51.2), mixed practice (50.4)
  • Project inquiries index: 61.9
  • Design contracts index: 53.2

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Sponsor News

Judges Announced for 2018 Veneer Tech Craftsman‘s Challenge™ Design Competition; First-Time Entrants Eligible for Special Award

The Fourteenth Annual Veneer Tech Craftsman’s Challenge™ is now accepting entries, and Veneer Technologies announces the 2018 panel that will decide this international design competition highlighting achievement in the use of natural wood veneer products. The judges are Michaelle Bradford, editor with the Woodworking Network brand; Scott Grove, artist, designer, woodwork instructor, and author of Advanced Veneering and Alternative Techniques; and Thomas Brooks, global commodity manager at Masonite International.

“Our competition is respected by industry associates because it is open to entries regardless of what company has supplied the material utilized, and we reward not only designers/craftspersons but distributors and sales representatives, too,” explains Veneer Tech’s Alan Hubbard, face veneer sales manager. “Participants receive a lot of publicity, and past winners will tell you the exposure they’ve gained is valuable for their shops and studios.”

Hubbard acknowledges that the winners’ roster over the years includes prominent companies and well-known designers, some of whom are multiple award recipients. “But it is not the size of the project, or the amount of material used, or how well-known the entrant,” he points out. “Judges really do base decisions on the merit of the work, and how well stated goals have been achieved. To encourage participation this year, anyone who has not previously entered our competition will be eligible for a special judges’ New Entrant award of $1000. This may be in addition to any category award a new entrant may receive.”

Veneer Tech Craftsman’s Challenge entries are accepted through June 1, 2018. Competition categories include Architectural Woodworking, Cabinetry, Furniture, Marquetry, Specialty Products, and Student Design. Entry is available online through www.veneertech.com. There is no entry fee. Material does not need to have been sourced through Veneer Tech to be eligible.

A cash award of $3000 will be made to the creator of the grand prize-winning entry. The distributor of the veneer for the grand prize-winning entry will receive $2000, and the corresponding distributor salesperson will receive $1000. Category winning entries receive $1000 each. There is also an additional $1000 award to the grand prize winner for early entry by March 31, 2018. Awards will be announced at IWF Atlanta on August 23, 2018.

Veneer Technologies, an AWI Supplier Member since 1997, is a Level 3 AWI Sponsor.  www.veneertech.com

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Join Biesse at the Int’l Mass Timber Conference March 20-22 in Portland!

From Biesse America

Biesse and Uniteam are pleased to invite you to visit Booth #211 at the International Mass Timber Conference from March 20-22, 2018, at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland, Oregon.

Biesse is a world leading manufacturer of innovative machinery and systems in the woodworking industry. When it comes to innovation, the role of Biesse in the housing and construction sector cannot be ignored.
Pictured above: Biesse Uiteam EBM3

For more than 25 years, Biesse’s Uniteam division has manufactured specialized CNC machinery for the production of laminated beam, CLT panel and GLU-LAM. Coupled with Viet planing and sanding technology, Biesse offers a full range of solutions for machining solid wood beams and panels for all wooden elements used in the construction of wooden-frame houses, wooden panel houses, prefabricated buildings, large-scale public buildings, playgrounds and much more. 

Join us for three highly informative days of learning at the International Mass Timber Conference, where CLT and mass timber experts from across the world gather to focus on mass timber production in global construction.

For more information, e-mail marketing@biesseamerica.com or call 704-357-3131.

Biesse, an AWI Supplier Member since 1995, is a Level 4 AWI Sponsor. www.biesseamerica.com

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Milesi Wood Coatings and HGH Hardware Supply Partner on Italian High-Performance Professional Wood Coatings in the Southeast

From Milesi Wood Coatings

HGH Hardware Supply, Inc., based in Birmingham, AL, is now a distributor of the complete line of Milesi high-performance Italian wood coatings, according to a joint announcement released by the companies on February 1. The new distribution agreement marks the first time these two companies have partnered to provide a complete line of high-performance, Italian technology, wood finishing products to professional woodworkers, cabinetmakers, and millwork producers.    

HGH Hardware Supply services customers with five company locations that cover Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, Mississippi, Louisiana, and sections of Florida and Kentucky. HGH Hardware Supply offers technical support, custom color matching, and a team of technicians to meet their customers’ finishing needs and now will offer the full line of unique Milesi products, as well.  The Milesi line includes two-component (2K) polyurethanes, polyesters, water-based interior and exterior finishes, natural look finishes, high gloss wet look finishes, UV, stains, and more.

The new partnership agreement pairs two companies that each have long traditions of providing high-quality professional, residential, and commercial wood finishing products to the wood working industry. HGH Hardware Supply has been a long-time industry-leading provider of high-quality wood coatings and other wood working products to the woodworking industry in the South. HGH Hardware Supply provides professional woodworkers with one source for all their finishing needs. Milesi has produced wood coatings since 1946 and is the leading wood coatings manufacturer in Europe with proven innovative wood finish systems sold in more than 100 countries worldwide and cutting-edge technology not commonly found in North America.

“We consider this agreement another solid step in our North American wood coatings business and another milestone in rolling out the Milesi North American National Distribution Program with highly respected and quality partners such as HGH Hardware Supply” said Jeff Takac, Milesi – managing director – North America. “It’s not often that a company with the expertise, knowledge, service, and history of HGH Hardware Supply and a company with the unique heritage, products, research, and chemistry of Milesi join forces. This relationship has the potential to help both organizations experience solid growth and to benefit our end users with cutting-edge high-performance European wood finish technologies in one of the largest wood markets in the U.S. Milesi Wood Coatings are well known world-wide and are respected in the North American market, and this partnership allows our end users in the South to have access to Milesi Wood Coatings through a highly respected experienced partner such as HGH Hardware Supply.”

Milesi, an AWI Supplier Members since 2015, is a Level 4 Sponsor.  www.milesi.us

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Member News

Timber Products Names Steve Killgore as Next CEO

Timber Products Company recently announced that its Board of Directors has appointed Steve Killgore as Chief Executive Officer. Killgore assumed leadership at Timber Products on February 20.

“As a family run business for four generations, it is with the utmost confidence that we transition to outside leadership for our day to day work. Killgore is an industry veteran who can help lead us into the future,” said David Gonyea, Timber Products Co-Chair of the Board.

Killgore has over 40 years of experience. Most recently, he worked for Roseburg Forest Products, and was responsible for their solid wood business, which is comprised of lumber, plywood and engineered wood products. Killgore has also operated his own companies, serving as president of both McKenzie Forest Products and Cascade Structural Laminators from 2002 to 2011. Prior to that, Killgore was the general sales manager of Willamette Industries and Bohemia, spanning 22 years.

“I am looking forward to working with the Gonyea family and the Timber Products team to take the business into the next 100 years,” said Killgore. “Over the next few months I will travel to different Timber Products facilities and meet with members of the team.”

Killgore has a degree in Management from Linfield College, as well as executive study at the Darden School of Business in Virginia and The Wharton School of Business in Pennsylvania.

The Gonyeas managed daily operations for Timber Products for more than half a century. They will continue ownership of the company and lead the Board of Directors.

Timber Products Company has been an AWI Supplier Member since 2016. www.timberproducts.com

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Burke Architectural Millwork Becomes Michigan’s First Architectural Millwork Manufacturer Awarded Women’s Business Enterprise

Burke Architectural Millwork LLC, a Livonia-based custom architectural millwork and finish carpentry manufacturer, received national certification as a Women's Business Enterprise by the Women's Business Enterprise  National Council (WBENC). This marks the first architectural millwork manufacturer in the state of Michigan to gain the prestigious WBENC designation.

The WBENC certification for a women-owned business is the most recognizable and sought-after of its kind. The national standard of the certification is a meticulous process, including an in-depth review of the business. This process is designed to confirm the business is at least 51 percent owned, operated, and controlled by a woman or women.

Co-Founder and Majority Owner Kelly Victor-Burke said, “We are extremely pleased to earn this certification, as it will allow us the opportunity to work with the most prestigious general contractors in the country, and partner with other diversity vendors on projects.” Victor-Burke was recently featured in the “Notable Women in Manufacturing 2018” by Crain’s Detroit Business, and has fostered strong relationships with industry groups, such as the Michigan Manufacturers Association.

According to The 2017 State of Women-Owned Businesses Report, commissioned by American Express OPEN, only 1.2% of the women-owned businesses are in the manufacturing industry. By recognizing the WBENC certification and including women-owned businesses among their vendors, more than 1,000 corporations and government agencies confirm their commitment to fostering diversity and the continued development of their supplier and vendor diversity programs.

Founded in 1916, Burke Architectural Millwork has been an AWI Manufacturing Member since 2017.  www.burkearchitecturalmillwork.com

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Other Learning Forums

Foundation of ASA Offers Complimentary Video-on-Demand on Harassment Training

Harassment seems rampant. Whether it’s Hollywood, politics, academia or business, you cannot escape the reports. With the heightened awareness employers must do what they are required by law and in their power to prevent harassment in the workplace.

In the new Foundation of the American Subcontractors Association video-on-demand, “Harassment Training,” presenter Jamie Hasty, SESCO Management Consultants, explains the broad definition of unwelcome sexual conduct and the problems caused by this inappropriate behavior.

Hasty explains why preventing sexual harassment helps everyone; how to respond to quid pro quo harassment; how to confront harassers and tell them to stop unwelcome behaviors; the negative impacts of workplace flirtations; proper procedures for reporting and investigating complaints; and consequences of false accusations.

Harassment Training” (Item #8120) is complimentary for ASA members and nonmembers. This and other on-demand videos are available through FASA’s Contractors’ Knowledge Depot.

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Manual to Help Construction Subcontractors Identify Their Rights in Each State

The Foundation of the American Subcontractors Association has updated its Lien & Bond Claims in the 50 States, a downloadable manual outlining the lien and bond laws in each state and the District Columbia.

Construction subcontractors and suppliers rely on mechanic’s lien and payment bonds to assure that they are paid for work performed or materials furnished on construction projects. This manual can help them understand their lien and bond rights in the states in which their companies do business.

A mechanic’s lien is a claim against property to secure a debt, such as a debt owed to a construction subcontractor for the value of work performed and materials furnished on a construction project. A payment bond, which is required on most public construction, assures the owner that the prime contractor will pay its subcontractors and suppliers.

The FASA manual provides a summary of the basic requirements of each state’s lien and bond laws, including who is covered; critical deadlines for notices, claims and suits; filing procedures; and more. The summary of laws was prepared by Donald W. Gregory, Esq., and Eric B. Travers, Esq., Kegler, Brown, Hill & Ritter, Columbus, Ohio, ASA’s general counsel, with input from attorneys from around the country.

Lien & Bond Claims in the 50 States
(Item #3006) is $55 for ASA members and $80 for nonmembers.

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Green Scene

FSC Releases News about Year Ahead

“In 2018 we will work to demonstrably grow the value FSC brings to certified businesses,” states the Forest Stewardship Council’s (FSC’s) Corey Brinkema. In conjunction with that goal, FSC “will work to deliver value to certificate holders by working regionally to grow demand for FSC-certified wood products.”

To read the full update, click here.

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Federal Scene

Voluntary Consensus Standards Amendment: Formaldehyde Emission Standards for Composite Wood Products

On February 7, 2018, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published a final rule to update several voluntary consensus standards listed at 40 CFR § 770.99 and incorporated by reference in the Formaldehyde Emission Standards for Composite Wood Products rule. Read the voluntary consensus standards final rule in the Federal Register.

These updates apply to emission testing methods and regulated composite wood product construction characteristics. Several of those voluntary consensus standards (i.e., technical specifications for products or processes developed by standard-setting bodies) were updated, withdrawn, and/or superseded through the normal course of business by these bodies to take into account new information, technology, and methodologies.

Additionally, the final rule amends the rule at 40 CFR § 770.20(d) by allowing the formaldehyde emissions mill quality control test methods to correlate to either the ASTM E1333-14 test method or, upon a showing of equivalence, the ASTM D6007-14 test method. The correction aligns the mill quality control testing requirements with the California Air Resources Board standards allowing mill quality control tests to be correlated to the more commonly used ASTM D6007-14 test method. The final rule also clarifies that test data generated beginning December 12, 2016 may be used to establish the required annual equivalence and correlation until new annual equivalence and correlations are required. Beginning on February 7, 2018, new data used to establish annual equivalence and correlations must be generated using the updated test methods and standards referenced in the final rule.

See the Federal Register for NAICS codes of potentially affected entities, including: Lumber, plywood, millwork, and wood panel merchant wholesalers (NAICS code 42321.

The final rule became effective immediately on February 7, 2018.

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Court Vacates Formaldehyde Rule Emission Dates Delay

Meanwhile in another action, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California said that the Environmental Protection Agency exceeded its authority in delaying the rule.  The following language from the court order notes the next steps:

“At oral argument on these motions, the parties agreed that should the Court vacate the Delay Rule, the parties would meet and confer to address the timely implementation of the Court’s order.  Accordingly, the Court STAYS this order vacating the Delay Rule until such time as the parties can address the timely and effective implementation of the compliance guidelines.  The parties shall have until March 9, 2018 at 4:00 p.m. to provide the Court with a joint proposed submission or simultaneous briefing each not to exceed 15 pages to address the timing for lifting the stay and expeditious implementation of the Court’s order.”

See a news report in Woodworking Network on February 20 for more information and access to the court order.

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Depend on e-briefs to bring you news of AWI publications and programs and other pertinent information that impacts your architectural woodwork business.


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