For my entire life, I have lived and worked in the Northeast part of the United States. Although this part of the country has a lot to offer in terms of work opportunities and cultural attractions, the pain and agony that come along with winter weather can make it challenging. The months of January and February can feel like an eternity. Shorter days, colder temperatures, snow and sleet, treacherous travel conditions and numerous traffic delays all add to the winter misery we endure in this part of the country.
Fear not for spring is right around the corner. That means gradually warming temperatures, thawing snow banks, and a little more daylight each passing day. If you’re a baseball fan, it means the beginning of spring training and the optimism that comes with the start of a new season. And if you work in the interior systems industry, spring means AWCI’s Convention & Intex Expo will soon be here. This year’s convention and expo are scheduled April 26–30, 2015, in beautiful, sunny Long Beach, Calif., just south of Los Angeles., and it’s sure to be one of the best attended in recent years. An improving economy, a robust list of exhibitors, coupled with a fabulous location will bring together some of the top individuals in our industry for what is sure to be an inspiring week of meetings and education sessions. The education sessions scheduled for the 2015 AWCI convention include professional development seminars on the following topics:
• Holding It Together: Stucco and Continuous Insulation
• Immigration: Where Have All the Workers Gone? How Do We Change the Image of Our Industry?
• The Hitchhiker’s Guide to LEED v4.
• Recruiting: Seek and Find in Unusual Places
• The Anderson Collection Ceiling: A Case Study in Teamwork to Build the "Whale Belly”
• Framing the Future of Integrated Project Delivery for Our Industry.
With such a diverse group of topics presented by some of the best and brightest in our industry, I’m sure you’ll find a seminar that is both worthwhile and informative.
To top it all off (and keeping with the spring training theme), the keynote speaker at this year’s AWCI Opening Session and Awards Presentation Brunch is J.B. Bernstein, a legendary sports agent and pioneer in the area of sports marketing. The story of Mr. Bernstein’s life as a sports agent who recruited the first Indian-born Major League Baseball players is depicted in the Disney motion picture Million Dollar Arm.
So with April fast approaching, I encourage you to make plans to attend this year’s convention and expo by going to the AWCI Website, www.awci.org/cd.shtml, to register. I look forward to seeing longtime industry colleagues and making new friends and work relations in Long Beach.
In addition to being 2014–2015 president of the Association of the Wall and Ceiling Industry, Casabona is president of Sloan & Company, Inc. in West Caldwell, N.J.