A Fresh Start
By Mike Sutter
What a great time to be in the Masonry Industry! After going through some tough times a few years ago, it now seems that almost everything is the complete opposite of those times. Many of us are seeing both our revenues and margins improving and hiring as many people as we can get our hands on. We are able to return to training our apprentices and laborers and back to recruiting workers in our high schools. Wages are increasing again and bricklayer hours are much improved. We have a new Administration in office and we are all hoping that will be good for business and continue the growth we are now experiencing. We also have some new young faces in the MCAA that assures us that the excitement of being in our industry will continue. Young energetic people like our South 40 Co-Chairs Brandon Hartsell and Imani Brodie Surratt are exactly what every association hopes for while us old timers move on.
Speaking of exciting times, what do you think of our new magazine? Beside a new look, a new feel and a new name (now just simply Masonry) it is so much more than a print magazine. While we all like to have a physical copy in our office to pick up and read, so much more is now being accomplished electronically. If you haven’t yet, please read the note by our new editor, Dan Kamys that can explain Masonry and what we are going to be doing with it. Please take a moment to read about our vision. We want all the key people in your company to receive Masonry, so just log into our website at www.masonrymagazine.com/subscribe and add them on through the ‘subscribe’ button. In addition to your management team, be sure to include your apprentices as they love to hear what is happening in our association and our industry. If you like what you see in our new magazine please let us know. Likewise if you see areas we could improve on we want to know that as well.
I hope everyone had a blessed Christmas and is looking forward to a great New Year. With all of the hustle and bustle that goes along with the holidays behind us, we can get back to business. The first thing on the list is to join us at the World of Concrete/World of Masonry beginning on January 14th in Las Vegas. I have written about the events at our MCAA convention in the past couple of articles but this is your last chance to register. The highlight of the week is MASONRY MADNESS® on Wednesday when the MCAA Fastest Trowel on the Block and the SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500 are held. Just log onto our website and you can register for all the events right there. Be sure to attend the Closing Dinner, where we will honor a few deserving people that have dedicated their lives to our industry in the Masonry Hall of Fame. I love seeing them and their families at the event to accept their awards and we see how proud they are.
This convention will be the halfway point of my chairmanship, and I can’t believe how fast this first year passed by. I was able to do quite a bit of traveling across the country to go to local chapter events and events of our Industry partners. My wife, Colleen along with MCAA Vice-Chairman Paul Odom and his wife Suzie have traveled together to most events we have been invited to. We love making new friends with members in their local areas and renewing friendships with those we were able to meet previously. Please invite us to attend your events and we will do everything we can to be there to let you know what your MCAA is doing for you and listen to your ideas on what we can do more of to help you and your business. I am looking forward to seeing everyone in Vegas in a couple of weeks!
About the Author
Mike Sutter is the CEO of Sutter Masonry, Inc. He has served as an officer on the Executive Board and the Region G Vice President for the Mason Contractors Association of America.