The Southeast Concrete Masonry Association (SCMA) celebrated its Seventy-Fifth Anniversary at its August 2021 meeting at Hilton Head Island. SCMA began as the North Carolina Concrete Masonry Association in 1946. Among the presenters at the meeting was NCMCA Workforce Development & Training Coordinator Ryan Shaver who spoke about masonry workforce recruitment and development in North Carolina and participated in a session on masonry framed homes. A highlight of the event was the induction of Paul LaVene into the SCMA Hall-of-Fame. Paul retired from the association in 2010 after serving some twenty years as SCMA/CCMA President.  Paul LaVene was recognized with NCMCA's prestigious Eleanor Upton Award in 2011.  He currently resides in Oklahoma. Pictured left to right, SCMA President James Cain; Frank Werner, retired from Adams/Oldcastle, who introduced Paul; Paul LaVene; and SCMA Chairman Sam Finney.

After more than a year’s absence due to pandemic concerns, NCMCA Masonry Contractor Certification Program classes resumed in August. Retired NC State Professor J. Patrick Rand (right) and George Arnold of “Specified Materials” conducted the Module Five “Mastering the Details of Masonry Construction” class in Greensboro with some sixty participants. The August class is Professor Rand’s ninth time teaching the module, having been an instructor in the certification program since the program’s inception in 2006. For a schedule of future classes, check the NCMCA website calendar.

In July, NCMCA Workforce Development & Training Coordinator Ryan Shaver (to the left of “Batman”) visited the regular Thursday evening apprentice training session of member firm “Creative Masonry” in Greenville, Tennessee, assisting company owner Fred Campbell (to the right of “Batman”) with instruction utilizing NCMCA’s new EZ Manufacturing training rack. Photo by Krista Campbell.

Past NCMCA President Doug Burton regularly refers to Patrick Rand as “The Professor of Masonry.” Indeed, NC State’s Professor J. Patrick Rand has proven to be among the Nation’s leading authorities on masonry performance, research, and design. He is a past president of The Masonry Society, has authored several books, received numerous professional awards and recognitions, and has been an instructor for the NCMCA Masonry Contractor Certification Program since the program’s inception in 2006. Some twenty years ago, Professor Rand and Doug Burton created the Sigmon Memorial Design Scholarship at NC State, also now awarded at Appalachian State University. In June, after forty-four years, Rand retired as a Distinguished Professor of Architecture in the College of Design at NC State University. Masonry association officials joined Professor Rand and NC State College of Design faculty and staff in July for a lunch to discuss masonry-supported scholarships as Professor Rand steps away from his teaching role. Left to right, Doug Burton; NCMCA Executive Vice President Lynn Nash and President Danks Burton; Professor Rand; Frank Werner, retired from Adams/Oldcastle; David McQueen, Adams/Oldcastle; and Southeast Concrete Masonry Association President James Cain. Photo by Lauren Hipp.

Tucker-Kirby Company in Charlotte along with iQ Power Tools hosted the NCMCA Metrolina Chapter in early July for a training workshop and barbecue chicken dinner. Pictured left to right, Metrolina Chapter President Brandon Hartsell; Abigael Newton, Industrial Hygiene Consultant, NC Department of Labor; and James Cameron, Regional Sales Manager for iQ Power Tools. Ms. Newton made a presentation on the latest research concerning crystalline silica exposure in masonry, which indicates masonry job sites are generally performing well at staying under permissible exposure limits. Some of the newest technology for dust control in sawing was demonstrated by the iQ Power Tool Team.

Grant Helms of Helms Masonry competed in two Las Vegas competitions at the World of Concrete in June and won them both! He won the SPEC MIX Junior Brick Layer 500 and placed “First” in the Third Year Division of the Mason Contractors Association of America (MCAA) International Masonry Apprentice Skills Contest. (The project pictured.) Grant qualified for the MCAA contest by winning the 2021 NCMCA Samuel A. McGee Memorial Masonry Apprentice Skills Contest at Midland. Pictured left to right, retired South Rowan High School masonry instructor Ronnie Miller, West Rowan High School masonry instructor Rodney Harrington, The Helms Family, father Scott, Grant, sister Holly and mother Jodi. In the MCAA Third Year Division, Mason Lovell of New Mexico won Second Place and Jordan Back of Ohio finished in Third Place. Ryan Clark of Ohio won the Second Year Division and Oscar Montano of Arizona finished in First Place in the First Year Division. Helms was the only entry from North Carolina.  Photo by Makayla Gergeni

Some fifty apprentices from NCMCA member firms participated in the Annual Samuel A. McGee Memorial Masonry Apprentice Skills Contest May 15th at McGee Brothers Company in Midland. Pictured bottom, left to right, Carter McGee, Seventh Place, McGee Brothers Company; Anderson Pruett, Sixth Place, Helms Masonry; Salvador Cruz De Leon, Eighth Place, Creative Masonry; Maria Torres, Ninth Place, Carolina Masonry Unlimited; and Annayeli Dionisio, Tenth Place, Fred Mason’s Masonry. Top row, left to right, NCMCA President Danks Burton; Mason Saunders, Second Place, Huntley Brothers Company; Cyress Lance Brown, Third Place, McGee Brothers Company; Grant Helms, Helms Masonry, First Place and the “David R. Sigmon Award” winner; Christian Kluttz, Fourth Place, Huntley Brothers Company; Bayden Huntley, Fifth Place, Huntley Brothers Company; and Contest Chairman and NCMCA President-Elect Bo Black. CLICK HERE FOR ADDITIONAL PICTURES

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PO Box 3463
Hickory, NC 28603-3463
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