EZG Manufacturing
Federated Insurance
Fraco USA, Inc.
Hohmann and Barnard, Inc.
Husqvarna Construction Products N.A.
Hydro Mobile, Inc.
iQ Power Tools
Kennison Forest Products, Inc.
Mortar Net Solutions
Non-Stop Scaffolding
Southwest Scaffolding
Tradesmen's Software, Inc.
February 2, 2012 8:30 AM CST

Apprentices show off their skills in Vegas

First, second and third year apprentices compete in the 2012 Masonry Skills Challenge


Winners of the 2012 Masonry Skills Challenge.

Winners of the 2012 Masonry Skills Challenge.
The thirteenth annual Masonry Skills Challenge at the 2012 MCAA Convention in Las Vegas, Nev. during the World of Concrete/World of Masonry on January 24, 2012, showed off the best apprentices our industry has to offer.

The Masonry Skills Challenge is a competition of masonry apprentices in first, second and third year skill levels. The contest is a showcase for skills training in the masonry industry, challenging winning apprentices from regional U.S. and foreign competitions to determine the top masonry apprentice at each level. This exciting competition spotlights our industry's finest young masons and focuses attention on careers in the masonry industry.

Each contestant was presented with a project drawing appropriate to their skill level just moments before the competition began. Contestants only had three hours to construct the project based on the materials provided. The final projects looked great; the apprentices should be very proud of their three hours of hard work. The judges were impressed with the quality of the apprentices' construction, and had the tough decision of choosing the winners.

The top-placing contestants for each skill level were:

Oliver Snyder, 2012 Masonry Skills Challenge First Year winner.
Oliver Snyder, 2012 Masonry Skills Challenge First Year winner.

First Year Apprentices

First Place

Oliver Snyder
Severn, MD

Second Place

Tom Webster
Masonry Arts, Inc.
Bessemer, Ala.

Third Place

Justin Proch
Leidal & Hart/Dixon, Inc.
Livonia, Mich.

Wriston McGee, 2012 Masonry Skills Challenge Second Year winner.
Wriston McGee, 2012 Masonry Skills Challenge Second Year winner.

Second Year Apprentices

First Place

Wriston McGee
McGee Brothers, Inc.
Monroe, N.C.

Second Place

Jeremy Casey
Foti Construction, Inc.
Wickliffe, Ohio

Third Place

Justin Johnson
Knoxville, Tenn.

Wriston McGee, 2012 Masonry Skills Challenge Second Year winner.
Darren Tobolt, 2012 Masonry Skills Challenge Third Year winner.

Third Year Apprentices

First Place

Darren Tobolt
Studer-Obringer, Inc.
New Washington, Ohio

Second Place

Kristopher Boyd
Masonry Specialist Corporation
Chattanooga, Tenn.

Third Place

Filiberto Granados
G&G Enterprises
Glendale, Ariz.

All winners received trophies, cash prizes, Marshalltown Company tool bags and tools, concrete calculators from Calculated Industries, and levels from Johnson Level. First place winners also received engraved trowels from Marshalltown Company. All contestants received Grout Grunt scoops, pencils and shirts; Marshalltown Company trowels, jointers, and hats; Johnson Level tape measurers; blocks, trigs, and hats from Mortar Net, Inc.; EZ Twig mason line twigs from Linovation Corporation; hats from GATORBACK, Inc.; Vatne Concrete Systems hand sanitizer; shirts from Boral Bricks, Inc. and additional prizes.

The Mason Contractors Association of America would like to thank the judges from across the country for donating their time and expertise:
  • Moroni Mejia, Rhino Masonry, Inc.; Mesa, Ariz.
  • Robert Collins, Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers Local #4 CA; Irwindale, Calif.
  • Al Herndon, Florida Masonry Apprentice & Educational Foundation, Inc.; Jacksonville, Fla.
  • Curtis Hoover, Anne Arundle County Public Schools; Stevensville, Md.
  • Eugene Johnson Lake Marion High School; Santee, S.C.
  • Merritt “Bud” Johnson; Wylie, Texas
  • Alonza Lewis; Columbia, S.C.
  • Bryan Light, Brick Industry Association Southeast Region; Conyers, Ga.
  • Paul Odom, P and S Masonry, Inc.; Hamilton, Texas
  • Paul Oldham, Ollier Masonry, Inc.; Batesville, Ind.
  • David Peloke, Foley Masonry and Tile; Tucson, Ariz.
  • Phil Samblanet, The Masonry Society; Boulder, Colo.
  • Victor Santillan, Harlingen High School; Harlingen, Texas
The MCAA would also like to thank Lafarge North America for sponsoring the 2012 Masonry Skills Challenge, and give a special thank you to the sponsors and service/material donors for their contributions including:

Competition Sponsor

  • Lafarge North America


  • Angelus Block Co.
  • Boral Bricks, Inc.
  • SPEC MIX, Inc.

Prize Donations

  • Boral Bricks, Inc.
  • Calculated Industries
  • Grout Grunt
  • Johnson Level
  • Linovation Corporation
  • Marshalltown Company
  • Mortar Net, Inc.
  • Vatne Concrete Systems

Strategic Partners

  • CavClear
  • Dow Building Solutions
  • EZ Scaffold
  • Indian Mill Corporation
  • Non-Stop Scaffolding
  • Oldcastle Building Products
  • SPEC MIX, Inc.
The 2013 Masonry Skills Challenge will be held Tuesday, February 5, 2013 during the MCAA Convention at the World of Concrete/World of Masonry in Las Vegas, Nev.

About the Author

Tim O’Toole is the Director of Marketing for the Mason Contractors Association of America (MCAA). He has a Masters in Business Administration from Webster University and has worked in the masonry industry since 2003.


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