In addition to partnering with construction management schools, the Alliance continued to support educational efforts and offer students scholarships through the Melvin Kruger Endowed Scholarship Program by approving funding to renew nine scholarships totaling $45,000, as well as grant one new $5,000 scholarship.
Named for Melvin Kruger, an NRCA former president and CEO of L.E. Schwartz & Son Inc., Macon, Ga., the Alliance’s first scholarship was awarded in 1986. Since its inception, the fund has distributed $680,000 in scholarships to 117 students. The program is open to NRCA contractor and supplier members, their families and their employees who plan to pursue careers in the roofing industry or building construction.
Recipients are selected on the basis of academic record, potential to succeed, leadership and participation in school and community activities, honors, work experience, a statement of career goals and aspirations, and an outside appraisal. Each award is $5,000 and is renewable for up to three years of undergraduate study or until a bachelor’s degree is earned provided recipients renew annually and maintain a 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale.
WORKFORCE AND TRAINING INITIATIVES
To address the industry’s labor challenges, the Alliance approved $150,000 in funding last year to assist the National Roofing Contractors Association, Rosemont, with the development of a structured, nationally recognized worker training program that will include 30 training topics and a series of “micro-credentials” students may earn. The initiative’s goal is to certify, recruit, train and retain a workforce appropriate for the industry’s needs in the 21st century. Courses will be available in English and Spanish and will address everything from the basics, including terminology, safety and common roof system design to system-specific application techniques. Courses will be offered in a variety of delivery methods.
“The health, success and future of our industry depends on the current leaders’ abilities to attract new talent and future leaders,” says Alliance Vice President Tom Saeli, CEO of Duro-Last Roofing Inc., Saginaw Mich. “This includes graduates with all levels of education—high school, trade school, college and beyond. It also means attracting more women to the industry. The Alliance is well-positioned to fund and lead this initiative through its construction management school partnerships to ensure a brighter future.”
The Alliance also approved start-up funding for National Women in Roofing (NWIR), a volunteer-based organization with a goal to provide networking, recruiting, mentoring and education for women roofing professionals. NWIR strives to provide opportunities for new and established women in the roofing industry to excel and find ongoing success working together in the industry. The Alliance will play a critical role with fulfilling these goals.
In addition, the Alliance distributed the final report of its work with Bilingual America, Atlanta, a leadership training company that conducts cultural and leadership training for companies with Latino workers. Key findings, best practices and a list of challenges the industry must overcome, as well as specific recommendations for workplace improvements unique to the roofing industry, were provided to all members.
“Simply knowing our investment is providing opportunities for construction management students to learn more about the roofing industry has been satisfying, not to mention the valuable funding of requests for programs, such as National Women in Roofing, Bilingual America and NRCA’s national training initiative,” says Marc Cameron, operations manager for Diamond Roofing, Manhattan, Kan.
Each year, the Alliance sponsors the Roofing Industry’s Most Valuable Player (MVP) Awards Program, which identifies and honors exceptional roofing workers from roofing contracting, distributor and supplier firms who demonstrate excellence, dedication, enthusiasm and teamwork. Since its inception in 1999, 554 employees have been nominated, and 209 have been honored as winners and finalists.
During IRE, the Alliance announced eight winners of its 17th annual Most Valuable Player Award, including:
Winner: Community service and volunteerism AND Winner: Other noteworthy contributions and activities
Narciso Alarcon, superintendent, Antis Roofing and Waterproofing, Irvine, Calif.
Winner: Outstanding on the job performance
Justin Cooper, foreman, Flynn, Commerce City, Colo.
Winner: Contributions to a team effort
Manuel Cortez, foreman, Antis Roofing and Waterproofing
Winner: Community service and volunteerism
Robert Detweiler, foreman, superintendent, Centimark Corp., Lakeland, Fla.
Winner: Outstanding on the job performance AND Winner: On-the-job safety performance
Donald Gautier, superintendent, Chamberlin Roofing & Waterproofing, Houston
Winner: Other noteworthy contributions and activities
Roy Jones, superintendent–ware- house supervisor, Rike Roofing Services Inc., Charlotte, N.C.
Winner: On-the-job safety performance
Mearl Kline, foreman, West Roofing Systems Inc., LaGrange, Ohio
Winner: Contributions to a team effort
Clifton Mead, field worker, Tecta America Southeast LLC–Atlanta, Cumming, Ga.
“The MVP Awards Program is one of the Alliance’s most significant programs,” says Alliance President James Patterson, senior vice president—procurement for Centimark Corp., Canonsburg, Pa. “The award recognizes and values our workers and their accomplishments on the job and in the community, which is important and often emotional.”