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Happy Birthday to Us!

Working on this issue was indeed a pleasure, and I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed being a part of its creation. (There was also a little bit of blood, sweat and tears involved, but I’ll spare you the details. It’s all part of the job—a job that I love.)


This month we are going all-out in celebrating 100 years of AWCI’s existence; March 11 is the association’s birthday. That’s why this issue is so special. How many businesses survive 100 years, let alone thrive?


While we packed lots of nostalgia and a little bit of fun into this issue, it’s not without new information. For example, you’ll notice that this month’s “New Products” department (page 38) does indeed contain new products, but we’ve interspersed them with vintage “old new products” that were published in this magazine over the last 50 or so years. I guarantee some of the old products will bring a smile to your face.


Along those same lines, this magazine and its predecessor titles also published great covers that are worth looking at again, so turn to page 64 and have a look. Craig Wood, this magazine’s layout king and design guru, was responsible for choosing the most appealing covers, so I know you won’t be disappointed—he’s got an eye for this stuff. For fun, we also threw in some old advertisements. Let’s just say that some things have really changed!


To learn more about how things changed, both for AWCI and the industry, check out the article that begins on page 54. Here we provide a quick recap of the highlights of each decade over the last 100 years. AWCI has a proud history, and it’s kind of amazing how much an organized group of people can accomplish.


Then we look to the future with the article that starts on page 90. For the centennial book we are publishing in honor of our big birthday celebration, we asked various AWCI members to tell us what they expect for their business and the industry in the next 10 years and in the next 100 years. The contractors who replied have some interesting and thoughtful predictions that you’re going to want to read.


Want it all in one compartmentalized quick read? Then turn to the timeline on the bonus pages between pages 48 and 49.


Finally, in almost every issue since last July, we have brought you snippets of findings from the AWCI centennial book, and this month we grouped them all into one section that starts on page 70. That way you don’t need to keep all the past issues, just this important one, which, I might add, should find a home either in your office reception area or on the coffee table in your house.


There is more, of course, but those are the highlights. If you want to learn even more about AWCI’s centennial but are unable to attend the convention at the end of this month, fear not. AWCI’s website ( is being populated with more and more details, and the book will also eventually be placed online for the world to enjoy. (We can’t keep it all to ourselves!)


The centennial celebrations culminate during AWCI’s Convention in Florida, and I really hope it doesn’t ruin me for other conventions in the future—simply because this one is going to be so special. As I approach my 25th anniversary with AWCI this spring, if find this means a lot to me. Knowing that many of you have been AWCI members at least that long or longer makes it that much more special. Thank you.

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