By: G. David Sload, President-CEO, ABC Keystone
It has been just a little over two years since Governor Wolf determined that construction was unessential, and the entire industry was shut down in PA. Shortly after, the ABC National Convention was cancelled. This annual event that focuses on the accomplishments of chapters and members would have to wait. 2021 would see a smaller version of the Convention with limited attendance and no National Craft Competition.
Fast forward to March of 2022. Convention was on, and ABC was “in the house.” San Antonio was home to the 2022 National Convention, and it was big, bold, full of excitement and many accolades. Celebrations were held, friendships were rekindled, and many from around the country would come together to show the strength of ABC as a National Association.
It wasn’t just ABC, but ABC Keystone was also “in the house.” The week of National Convention helped remind us of the accomplishments that we as a Chapter have achieved despite two years of COVID-19, which is a testament to the hard work of the Board and Members.
Let me first start with Chapter recognition. Cindy DeWire was recognized for her 30 years of service to the Keystone Chapter. Over the 30 years, Cindy has risen to the position of Director of Apprenticeship. Under her watchful eye, this program continues to grow and improve. In addition, the Keystone Chapter was recognized for membership achievements in retention, growth, and surpassing our goal.
Next, we move onto the recognition of our members. Every year it is exciting to see how many of our members win local EIC awards and then parlay them into National EIC awards. I am happy to report that we had three of our member firms recognized at the National EIC Awards Gala: Benchmark Construction, Keystruct Construction a Viocity Company, and Pyramid Construction a division of Quandel Enterprises Inc. They showed how ABC Keystone competes with the ‘Best of the Best.’
What would a national convention be without some competitions? ABC Keystone supported Penn Tech College in the Construction Management competition. While they didn’t walk away with any awards, they were one of 14 out of 42 that were selected to continue on in San Antonio. They competed against the likes of all the BIG boys like Clemson, Florida State, Colorado, and others that have so much more support. We congratulate them for making it to San Antonio and making PA proud.
Last, but certainly not least, was the National Craft Competition. ABC Keystone was proud to send our top apprentices to compete against the best from all around the country. This intense competition had each competitor working through a six-hour practical competition while being watched by several hundred noisy onlookers. I can say all three young men that competed for the Keystone Chapter did the Chapter, their member firms, and themselves proud.
When it was all over, ABC Keystone ended the celebration with two Bronze medal winners. Michael Harker, Wohlsen Construction Company, took the Bronze in Carpentry, and Jeremy Landis, Meadow Valley Electric, Inc. took the Bronze in Electrical Residential/Commercial. In addition, although he didn’t place at the National Competition, Drew Speicher, W.C. Eshenaur and Son, Inc., made a strong showing in HVAC. Keystone’s other competitor, Joe Mazzur, Plumbing, Brubaker, Inc. was unable to attend the competition. Congratulations to all for their hard work preparing for this event.
2022 has started off just as good as 2021 ended. I can hardly wait to see how ABC Keystone matches up against its peers during the 2023 convention in Kissimmee, Florida. Thanks goes out to the Members for your work to build great projects, your work to mentor young apprentices, and your support of one of the greatest Chapters in all of ABC. ABC Keystone will always be “in the house.”
Posted April 12, 2022