Amazing how many e mails I got asking me where the “Year in Review” is… well folks strap in, because it’s here… pretty much all below appeared in a regular blog post along the way…
The news about Zeledyne exiting the commercial glass industry came out. Very sad then and very sad now… plus to make matters worse some of their best people have yet to hook on with anyone yet. The end of an era for sure… Meanwhile, PPG won Product of the Year for their Blue Glass…. California announced a new building code which goes into effect 1/1/11…. “24” returned for its last season (still bummed it’s gone)… Winter was battering Minnesota and Washington DC… and somewhere a moronic analyst was being employed to make incoherent and irrelevant comments in a classic piece of ambush journalism… (not me, I am a moronic blogger, not analyst!)
A great blog started called the “Division8report.com” but it sadly it soon disappeared. Shame because it had serious potential…. We had a hero in our world when Robin DeHaven of Binswanger Glass in Austin, TX rushed into a building that was hit by a plane to save several people... and oh a certain company emerged from Bankruptcy with a ton less fanfare from when they entered it…. And that emergence made every so called “expert” look really stupid as their predictions were blatantly wrong.
“Cash for Caulkers” gets announced…Greg Carney’s new career as a consultant started to take off… and seriously there are not many people in this world in the awesome class that Greg is in… The ABI went up and everyone figured here comes the positive trend… nope…. Vitro made the first of many incredible hires in Cathy Finney (yes look back to the blog post, I made that comment before I was biased!) and Guardian did the same with Jay Phillips…. Friend of the Blog, Deron Patterson of PPG made news getting his LEED AP… good guy Deron is… The Mighty Ohio Bobcats beat Georgetown!...and BEC/Glassweek was held and despite the economy people there were staying positive…
General Glass announced the start of a architecture and design department… brilliant move that was copied by a few… China Southern Glass sponsored a NFRC meeting, matching two of the most annoying items in my life…. The first news of the push for ASHRAE to have a negative approach on our industry popped up… Brad Austin takes the reins as President of Harmon… the NFRC continued to astound and annoy (no surprise there) and a certain blogger found a new home…
Went into the woods at 4th grade camp… and survived… my daughter picked the Triple Crown starting with the Derby… awesome… brilliant move by Solutia with their World of Color award program launch… Les George retires after many great years in the industry… and the biggest story, Leon Silverstein left Arch ushering in the start of a very tumultuous summer and fall…
Alcoa “buys” TRACO…. (still odd to see the new TRACO look within the Kawneer world.) Bill Cully, founder of United Plate Glass passed… a price increase hit the streets and while some people tried very hard to keep it, I would say 6 months later it was not a success…. Hartung Glass and the very shrewd Nick Sciola acquired Holcam Sales… Hartung and Nick had a very active year actually- good publicity all around with smart decisions and promotions…. AIA was a dud in Miami (with the exception of Earnest Thompson and Guardian’s awesome “ePod” educational setup) and now is under new management for this year’s show in New Orleans… GANA had a very successful Solar Symposium… and the ABI went down badly… ugh…
NFRC announced it was waiving fees to get people involved in their programs.. they offered lots of incentives like that all year long… wonder why… LOL! Guardian, PPG and Pilkington all had very big solar related news, showing that segment is alive and well… Cap and Trade died for the first time… and my life changed… on July 9th I got the boot… and soon after scores of people at Arch either left or got terminated as the winds of change blew in. For me 5 months later it’s a major blessing and I should’ve known that… as July 9th was also the date I asked my wife to marry me, so the karma was actually good. As the talent drained at Arch, other companies like Oldcastle, Vitro, UGC, RIG, and GGI swooped in and added great people.
The ABI still was scuffling along… the GANA Fall Conference took place and was headlined by the continued amazing work of Dr. Tom Culp. Our industry is really, really lucky to have him. Arch got a new CEO, a marketing guy of all things… all the while firing people using lines from the movie “Up in the Air” and offering bogus 2 week severance packages… yep class acts there… Dems and the GOP were on pace to spend a BILLION dollars on the November election… sick. Guardian hit a PR home run with their announcement on their BIM program… Vitro makes a slick move in acquiring Desert Glass in Vegas.
GlassBuild America was held in Vegas.. solid show overall and some positive feelings… PPG starts a fashion trend with the zip up vests… Leon resurfaces along with brother Rick and former Archie and the incredibly talented Manny Valladares in the purchase of SMI in Florida. Someday I think Rick will write a book on his journey from the last days of Arch that will be riveting…. The freakin idiot Bobcat mascot tried to attack the Buckeye.. sad… and most importantly I ended up at a tremendous company with fantastic people at Vitro. No doubt prayers answered and each day is awesome. Just blown away at what I have joined into here… still.
The ASHRAE moves go down… major props to Dr. Culp along with people like Helen Sanders of SAGE and Stanley Yee of The Façade Group (among others) who led the fight so beautifully. The UGC closes Mid Ohio Tempering… that one still smarts. Infinite Edge Technologies, a company founded by Glass Hall of Famer Eric Rapp and his sons makes a major splash at glasstec… The USGBC gets sued and that action will have repercussions for years to come…Donald Trump acted like a putz with his Chinese window debacle… and “Death Ray” glass put our industry in the mainstream media…
People started to question if the economy was coming back this year, the next or 2013… SAGE gets a massive boost in the way of an 80 million dollar strategic investment by St. Gobain… a huge move that gives credence to everything the gang at SAGE has worked for… Also justifies that segment of the business and shows we do have more technology here than people give us credit for. Greenbuild had a solid show in Chicago in a tight, smallish room…. The ABI sucked again… the NFRC tried to entice people again… Viracon buys Glassec in Brazil… Kid Rock’s new CD comes out making my wife oh so very happy.
Suresh Kumar, let go as COO of Arch… that was an epic 4 month run.... The theme of bad customer service took hold thanks to a great piece in the NYT. US Aluminum got hammered in a newspaper piece… the roof of the Metrodome collapsed making a great video…
Well it was the classic “Best of times, worst of times” year. But the key was the worst of times were early in the year and now we move forward on a great high. Plus I am so happy for so many folks who found new places to work this year… ultra talented people like Steve Martin, John Dubose, Rob Taliani, Terry Hessom and many many more found new homes that will truly respect and appreciate their abilities. Not to mention my brother who landed with the great folks at GGI- a great match for both sides indeed. In addition I have had the honor of meeting and working with people that I have a ton of respect for and that’s been unreal. Industry wise, we continue to battle… the NGA and GANA are doing their thing in protecting us… the NFRC continues to astound… and more and more people are just getting more aware of how our world is working.
2011 should be a very interesting year… some will win and gain and we’re probably going to lose some folks along the way as well. No matter what I look forward to covering it here….
And on that note.. a sincere thank you to everyone who stops by and reads this blog. When it started in 2005, it was a chance for therapy and still is, but now, for good or bad, my therapy is pretty public! Anyway I am grateful to all of you who read and take time to communicate with me on what happens here.
To everyone out there in the industry, wishing you and your families only the best this holiday season and a happy and healthy (both physically and business wise) 2011!