United Kingdom-based clay and concrete building product specialist Ibstock Plc recently appointed Doug Rende as president of Glen-Gery, a leading brick producer in the U.S. Northeast, Mid-Atlantic and Midwest regions. He succeeds Steve Matsick.
With 25-plus years of senior leadership experience, Rende has driven business launches, developed and executed product innovation processes, and created sustainable branding strategies in consumer durables, manufacturing, building materials and consulting services. Over the course of his career, Ibstock officials note, he has successfully led mature businesses, along with profitable turnaround and start-up ventures. Highlighting the latter is the North American sales, marketing, brand development and category launch of Pergo Laminate Flooring, one of the most successful endeavors of its kind in the floor covering industry.
Texas-based Heldenfels Enterprises, Inc. has appointed Paul Elrod as general manager, overseeing manufacturing and project delivery operations for the San Marcos (headquarters) and Corpus Christi precast/prestressed operations. He has extensive experience with lean management practices, long-term planning and business process improvement in both manufacturing and construction efficiency and quality. He attended Colorado School of Mines for Mechanical Engineering, earned a CPSCM from University of Houston, and formally trained in lean methods through the Toyota Production Plan in Bartlett, Ill. Elrod previously held positions as director of Operations for Senior Flexonics Pathway and director of Facilities for Lutheran Social Services, Inc.
Separately, Heldenfels Enterprises has announced the departure of Building Systems Division Vice President and General Manager Gil Heldenfels, who is pursuing a new venture. He joined the company in 1998 when his brother, Fred Heldenfels IV, president and chief executive officer, recruited him to improve production operations. To ensure a smooth transition and continuity of service to existing customers and projects, Gil Heldenfels will remain through the end of the year in a part-time consultant capacity, while continuing to hold a minority company stake and serve as secretary/treasurer.
The producer remains firmly committed to commercial building construction. “[We have] developed the management strength necessary to continue serving the market while maintaining our strong presence in the highway/bridge and marine/industrial markets,” affirms Fred Heldenfels IV. To that end, he adds, the company has reorganized under San Marcos, Corpus Christi and El Paso divisions, each encompassing Building Systems projects.
Florida precast/prestressed producer, software developer and design-build contractor Finfrock has become the fifth Innovation Partner of Bethlehem, Pa.-based AltusGroup, joining BASF, High Concrete, JVI Inc. and Meadow Burke. Finfrock and its management team will introduce AltusGroup to its DualDeck Composite Truss building system technology; StuctureWorks 3D design and modeling software; PieceTracker product management software; and, XceleRAYtor, which automates production drawing generation for display on tablet computers.
“We are happy to partner with another high-quality design, manufacturing and construction team to help share our vision for innovation in precast/prestressed concrete,” says AltusGroup Executive Director John Carson. “Finfrock’s technology will complement our existing technical resources and help us drive the industry forward. We have had numerous conversations over the years and have now found a business and technology fit that works well for both companies. Finfrock brings another solid dimension to help execute our future technology goals.”
Separately, Terrebonne, Quebec-based Saramac has become the third Canadian precast producer to join AltusGroup, bringing the North American licensee network to 21. Combined with sister company Schokbeton, Saramac has more than 85 years in construction, logging 3,000-plus projects. It specializes in the fabrication of architectural and structural precast concrete elements for commercial, industrial, institutional and residential buildings in Canada and northern U.S. regions, and will now add CarbonCast Enclosure System products.
“Building codes and requirements for greater energy efficient wall systems and building enclosures are tightening in Canada, making this a great time to look for new solutions,” says Schokbeton/Sarama President Robert Bibeau.
|ANTHONY LEE GENTRY|
Tindall Corp. has promoted Anthony Lee Gentry to director of Safety. He joined the Spartanburg, S.C.-based precast/prestressed producer in 2000 as corporate safety and environmental engineer, advancing best practices and compliance at five plants and numerous construction sites. Gentry recently completed the Board of Certified Safety Professionals (BCSP) program and is now recognized as a Certified Safety Professional (CSP).
BCSP awards certifications to professionals who demonstrate a high level of competence in the safety, health and environmental discipline. Certification candidates must meet strict academic and experience requirements and pass a comprehensive safety exam. CSP certificate holders must recertify every five years. Gentry is a graduate of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga with a B.S. in Environmental Engineering.
Gate Precast Co. has announced key promotions and appointments at its 60,000-sq.-ft. Kissimmee, Fla., facility—one of the producer’s eight operations engaged in the design, engineering, fabrication, transportation and erection of architectural and structural precast concrete systems.
Bruce Bartscher has been promoted to plant manager. Most recently senior project manager, he is now responsible for all operational, production and quality control functions. He joined the Gate team in 2007 as superintendent of Field Operations for Gate Erection Co., a role he held for two years. Combs has 15 years of precast industry project management experience managing multiple and multi-phased projects. He is also a Florida Certified General Contractor and holds OSHA certification.
Noble Levesque has joined the Kissimmee staff as project manager, bringing 25 years of experience in precast operations, engineering and sales—experience equal to managing the entire project lifecycle from production to final erection. He is certified as a PCI Quality Inspector Level II and ACI Level I technician, and is a Massachusetts General Contractor.
Gate Precast has also named Todd Friend as project manager at Kissimmee. He began his career with the company in 2010 as a Gate Erection Co. superintendent. He is responsible for communication and coordination between the plant, subcontractors and customers in the field. Friend began his precast career in 1986 working in production, proceeding to architectural.
Newly appointed estimator Alvey Carrillo has 16 years of experience in the construction industry, including precast design and estimation, project management, drafting and architectural design.
U.S. Concrete Inc. has acquired Strickland Bridge Inc. of Haskell, Texas, adding a concrete batch plant and six-mixer fleet. “This acquisition fits with our north Texas growth strategy and expands our operations near Abilene,” says U.S. Concrete CEO William Sandbrook. “We look forward to further participating in the continued growth of the extended Abilene market with our enhanced ability to offer superior service and high quality materials.”
The National One Coat Stucco Association recently named Quikrete Cos. Stucco Sales Manager–West Dale Nehls to its board of directors. A 20-year industry veteran, he joins nine other members with responsibilities for steering the association’s efforts to elevate the quality of one-coat stucco manufacturing and installation through education and awareness programs.
Smith-Midland Corp. logged 2015 revenue of $29.2 million, a $6.7 million or 30 percent increase over the prior year. The precast producer and building system and technology licensor reported 2015 pre-tax and net income of $1.6 million and $1.1 million, respectively, compared to 2014 pre-tax and net losses of $1.3 million and $805,000.
“I am pleased to report that the company had another positive quarter for the three months ended December 31, 2015, as well as a very profitable year for 2015,” says Smith-Midland Chairman Rodney Smith. “It is personally gratifying to me that we were able to deliver on our projected increased profitability and that the Great Recession is largely over for Smith-Midland. As always, we continue to look ahead to the future of the company and what to expect for 2016 and beyond.”
The $305 billion, five-year highway bill Congress passed in late 2015, he adds, gives some added stability to highway work—benefitting Smith-Midland and its Easi-Set soundwall product licensees. “We currently have seven soundwall projects in production or waiting to start production,” Smith notes.
Eagle Roofing ProductsDirector of Technical Services and Systems Tyler Allwood recently participated in a Scottsdale, Ariz., Green Building Lecture Series. Leading “Beyond Reflectivity: The Future of Energy Efficient Roofing,” he discussed the history of energy-efficient roofing products and the eventual move toward using reflectivity as a measure of their energy performance. After establishing an understanding of the existing world of energy-efficient roofing products, he introduced the concept of thermal insulative assemblies. “For years our industry has striven to increase the energy efficiency of concrete roof tiles through reflectivity,” Allwood observes. “Our innovations change the conversation about energy efficiency forever.”
NEW PLANT TIES ROCLA TO SE RAIL NETWORKS
Denver-based Rocla Concrete Tie, Inc. has commenced production at a Ft. Pierce, Fla., operation equipped for up to 1,000 prestressed railroad ties per day. Opened on schedule along the Florida East Coast Railway (FECR) rail network, the facility “is considered to be the most technologically advanced in the country,” notes Rocla Vice President–Business Development Brett Urquhart.
The producer deploys its newest fabrication and handling technology at the facility, allowing a smaller building and site layout, according to Vice President–Engineering Rusty Croley.
The plant will primarily serve the FECR and Brightline passenger rail project under construction, and affords Rocla capacity for other major Southeast rail networks. The new facility was fast-tracked from a September 2015 ground breaking to cover Brightline tie deliveries.
“The location was chosen in order to provide a centralized facility to support ongoing projects, but we are also excited to reach other key rail networks, including CSX and Norfolk Southern, through FECR’s Jacksonville interchange. This will allow us to utilize our new facility for projects beyond the Florida market,” Urquhart affirms.