(Ed. note: CLAPCA member and W&C feature contributor Clint Burton reports on this year’s show)

The Carolina’s Lathing and Plastering Contractors Association held its 10th annual convention Oct. 26 through 28, at the Kingston Plantation Resort, in N. Myrtle Beach, S.C. The event was well attended, with exhibitors on hand to show their freshest wares. AWCI’s “EIFS-Doing It Right” training was again held during the show, with 16 tradesmen enrolled.

Frank Guidera, the association’s outgoing president, kicked off the event with his welcoming intro, slating the event as “Renewing CLAPCA.” Committee reports followed noting a strong balance sheet to support the goal of educating and promoting with regards to the walls and ceilings industry.

With “renewal” in mind, the audience was presented with a review of CLAPCA’s refreshed Web site (www.clapca.org). The new look is designed to further enhance the association’s image and allow for improved information and promotion of our industry. One item of note is that members and guests can now view the updated Hawk & Trowel e-newsletter.

Guidera introduced President/CEO of BASF Wall Systems Inc. Bill Kasik, who provided an upbeat EIMA update, resounding its mission, “Dedicated to the promotion of EIFS to the construction industry.” He explained some of EIMA’s marketing campaign, focusing on their promotion “Engineered for Performance, Designed to Inspire.” In addition, Kasik gave the audience an update on the EIMA/DOE (Department of Energy) project that has been ongoing in Charleston, S.C. As expected, findings suggest EIFS is a superior wall cladding. The technical paper (“white paper”) should be available on www.eima.com this month. Kasik wrapped it up by noting EIMA’s key objective to get EIFS written into the IBC.

To close the first day, John Hislop, of Sihle Insurance Group, gave a presentation on insurance alternatives. Aside from a lot of insurance jargon, Hislop is in the process of putting together a new program involving a large deductible. This program would be A rated and very competitive with standard companies. If interested, please contact him (727) 531-6800.

Second day meetings began with a unanimous agreement on the election of new officers. Outgoing-president Guidera was named Chairman of the Board of Directors. Danny Bonnell, of Commercial Wall Systems was named president. Leo Shehan was named vice president; Peter Stewart is secretary and; Jeff Traver is treasurer. We all look forward to continued growth and successful endeavors under their leadership.

While votes were tabulated for the election, the membership honored a few of its finest members. Outgoing COB Floyd Gordon was recognized for his many years serving at every official level. Bill Roberson was recognized for his career-long commitment and dedication to our industry. Crystal Bonnell was shown the organization’s appreciation for her constant dedication and hard work of heading the convention committee.

The meeting ended with a presentation by Greg Brown, a lawyer with the firm Venable LLP. Brown’s topic was risk management. He discussed ways contractors can protect themselves in case of litigation. He stressed that subcontractors should maintain consistent project and progress records. It was noted that digital cameras are worth their weight in gold. Digital cameras also offer the applicators excellent means to send photos of their work in to association to be used on the Web site and for the Hawk & Trowel.

Meeting adjourned.