American Brush Manufacturers Association Annual Convention ReportThe 99th Convention of the American Brush Manufacturers Association took place from 2 to 5 March, 2016 at the prestigious Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort & Spa, Bonita Spring, Florida. Suppliers, manufacturers and associated partners gathered for this not-to-be-missed annual opportunity for networking and information sharing.
Wednesday 2nd March 2016
Business embarked on Wednesday with the Divisional meetings which were once again held using the new format for hosting the different Divisional meetings in the same venue and in the same timeframe.
Representing the Industrial Maintenance Division were Greg Miller (The Mill-Rose Co), Chair and Jim Benjamin (Precision Brush Co.), Vice-Chair. Scott Enchelmaier (Industrial Brush Company) was invited to report on the outcome of the Safety & Standards Committee meeting (of which he is Chairman) and discussed ANSI B165.1 safety requirements covering power-driven brushing tools with compliance notification due shortly.
The Broom & Mop Division was represented by Tina Burnet (FHP), Chair and Gary Townes (Magnolia Brush Manufacturers Ltd), Vice-Chair. Kevin Monahan (Monahan Partners) gave an update on the last National Broom & Mop Association Annual Meeting and announced the date for the 2015 event which will be held in St Louis, MO, 17 to 18 November 2016.
Connie McKinney of The Sherwin William Co and Division Chair, discussed matters for the Paint Applicator Division, including the findings of the ASTM subcommittee which is progressing.
The Suppliers Division was represented by David Kalisz (MFC Ltd), Chair, Chris Monahan (Brush Fibers Inc), 2nd Vice Chair, Kevin Lannon (Lanoco Specialty Wire Products Inc), 3rd Vice Chair, Kirk Beatty (Beatty Machine & Tool Works Inc), At Large and Enrique Mejia (PMM), At Large. Kevin gave details of the Suppliers Display which, this year, comprised 44 exhibitors, only 1 less than in 2015 – a great turnout in an Interbrush year. Kristin Draper was invited to give details of the Suppliers Party with its Pirate Theme.
delegates were treated to three guest speakers as part of the ABMA Educational
Institute program, the first of which was Bill Napolitano whose talk discussed
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Following on from a dedicated reception for new members & first-time attendees, The first evening’s Welcome Reception was hosted on the stunning Waterfall Pool Deck and delegates enjoyed an informal get-together in the warm Florida evening, allowing all the opportunity to catch up with old friends and make new acquaintances.
Thursday 3rd March 2016
The business session of Thursday was opened by Mark Fultz, ABMA President, who welcomed all 224 attendees to the Convention. Mention was made of the Association’s new logo which has been recently updated and the website which is due to be redesigned and relaunched in the near future.
Mark drew delegates’ attention to the ABMA Foundation; the Association’s philanthropic and charitable organization which is a catalyst for uniting people and organizations to make a difference through better education and opportunity, with awards available to industry employees and their families for hardship and training purposes.
In addition, the Kathy K Parr Memorial Fund provides 2 x $2500 annual scholarships to industry employees and their families for the purpose of continuing education. The first scholarship from this fund has been awarded to Rebecca Porter, daughter of Precision Brush employee Mike Porter. The press release relating to this award is available here. Mark reminded attendees to make these awards known to their employees.
Mark then gave an update on the progress of the making of the 100th Anniversary Video which is being compiled to bring the activities of the Association and its members to the attention of the wider public in order to highlight how resilient, vibrant and important the industry is.
In addition to the video, the 100th Anniversary celebrations will include an artistic piece made entirely of brushes. Contributions of brush/mop/roller etc memorabilia are welcomed for inclusion in this display – interested parties should contact Dave Parr, ABMA Executive Directory using the contact links at the bottom of this article.
The entire 100th Anniversary project is dependent upon donations, and sponsors to date were recognised in the meeting. Different levels of sponsorship are available and further contributions are invited. Sponsoring companies will receive recognition on the ABMA website, official media & material and at the Convention itself, depending on the level of sponsorship. For more information, please follow this link.
Additional sponsors of the ABMA Convention App and the Golf hole-in-one tournament were also given recognition.
On behalf of the FEIBP (European Brushware Federation), Philip Coward of Hill Brush Inc shared information regarding the state of play of the European market over the last 12 months characterised by sluggish growth in the Eurozone coupled with high unemployment rates in some of the member countries. He extended an open invitation to all delegates to attend the FEIBP Annual Congress to be held in Edinburgh, UK from 7 to 9 September 2016.
Daniel Strowitzki of FWTM/Messe Freiburg, organiser of Interbrush, updated delegates regarding Interbrush 2016; the latest edition of the 4 yearly show held in in Freiburg, Germany where the industry meets to see the latest product innovations from manufacturers of the components and machinery used in the industry. Visitor registration for the sold out show is now available online.
The official opening event will be held in downtown Freiburg on Tuesday 26th April 2016 at 6pm and an exhibition celebrating 150 years of brushmaking put together by the German and French Associations along with Interbrush will be open to the public.
A networking event will be jointly hosted by ABMA, FEIBP and Interbrush on the evening of Wednesday 27th April 2016 at 6pm. Delegates were invited to attend.
Over the past 15 months, 15 new members have joined the association, 4 of whom were in attendance at this year’s Convention: Les Brosses Lacasses (St Alphonse, Canada), Fiberglass Innovations (Rockford, IL), Tissa Sawmill (Kadawatha, Sri Lanka) and Vikan (Denmark). Along with the 24 first time attendees, these new members were welcomed and given recognition, as were members of the Trade Press, the Board of Directors, Past Presidents & Service Partners. As ever, huge thanks went to Dave Parr and his team without whom the Convention would not be possible.
In traditional fashion, proceedings were interrupted, this time by clown on stilts whose crazy antics bought laughs from the audience.
The second of three sessions of the ABMA Educational Institute saw Steve McClatchey deliver his seminar on "Leading Relationships: Communicate Effectively, Resolve Conflict and Build a Culture of High Trust" which was designed to help companies and individuals improve performance and achieve outstanding results in the areas of Leadership, Performance, Personal Growth, and Work/Life Engagement. Steve McClatchy's slides are available for download here.
The annual golf scramble event took place at the Raptor Bay Golf Club on the Thursday afternoon, with golfers playing in teams in this friendly format. Prizes were distributed as follows:
· Longest Drive (Woman) – Greta Moore, Magnolia Brush Mfrs Ltd
· Longest Drive (Man) – Bruce Massey, Inter-Wire Group
· Closest to Pin (Woman) – Connie McKinney, The Sherwin Williams Co
· Closest to Pin (Man) – Greg Miller, The Mill Rose Co
· 3rd Place Overall – Andrew McIlroy (Hahl-Pedex), Gus Treslo (E Gornell), RJ Lindstrom (Zephyr Mfrs)
· 2nd Place Overall – Tim Diebold (SM Arnold), Michael Naftal (Keystone Plastics), Ken Rakusin (Gordon Brush Mfg) & Mike Frederickson (Jewel Wire Co)
· 1st Place Overall – Joe Arnold (SM Arnold), William Shaul (Draper Knitting), Chris Orenchuk (Parker Brush Co) & Craig Marshall (Atlas Graham Furgale)
Friday 4th March 2016
The morning of the Friday was dedicated to the Suppliers Display: a table-top exhibition space in which supplier members are given the opportunity to showcase their products. In total, 44 exhibitor displays were gathered in the exhibition space; the highest since 2007.
At the same time, attending companions were treated to a tour of the Edison-Ford Winter Estates: The 14-acre riverfront estate that includes the original furnishings and architecture, reminiscent of a bygone era. Attendees were given the opportunity to explore the laboratory where Edison spent many long hours on his creative inventions and take a look at the botanical gardens featuring more than a thousand varieties of rare and exotic vegetation.
An optional backwater fishing expedition was organised for interested parties on Friday afternoon, giving participants the opportunity to enjoy the spectacular views of Tropical Mangrove Islands, a variety of bird species and other exotic plants and creatures as they tried their hand in the Captain’s favourite fishing holes to reel in the catch of the day.
This year’s Suppliers Reception took the form of a Pirate Party, with most guests donning their best pirate garb for the occasion. Along with music and dancing, several sideshows were organised for the guests’ amusement. As usual, great fun was had by delegates and their families.
Saturday 5th March 2016
On the last morning, all delegates met and the Closing Business Session was opened by President Mark Fultz. He warmly thanked the sponsors at all levels of which there were many each one standing in turn to receive applause.
Kristin Draper of Draper Knitting Co announced the winners of the best dressed Pirate award who were Steve Bellochio of Zahoransky USA and Anne Hall of Brushwork Magazine. Both of them confessed to have made their own costumes at home and looked truly authentic!
Mark also thanked those behind the scenes who organised a smooth Convention the without any hitches. Kappie and Marty Swanson, Kathryn Coryell and of course, Dave Parr, ‘who makes everything happen!’ as Mark said.
Mark reminded all that the membership is the lifeblood of the Association and thanked everyone for their support. There were 224 attendees this year, the strongest in an Interbrush year.
The committee reports were read out and it was announced that the ABMA Foundation held $16,693.00.
Carlos Petzold, speaking for the Convention Committee asked the delegates for approval to set in place for the combined divisional meetings as they seem to have been successful for the past 2 years. The next 4years meeting places have been planned; 2017, Hyatt Grand Cypress in Orlando, Florida; 2018, Westin Kierland in Scottsdale, Arizona; 2019, Paradise Island, Bahamas; 2020, Renaissance Vinoy, St. Petersburg, Florida.
Greg Miller reported on the latest for the 100 -Year Anniversary Convention. Organisation well underway and is now finalising things with just a few items outstanding. There will be information on the webpage and email blasts will be circulated as well as information on the Facebook page.
Carlos explained that as there was not the required minimum of 3 innovations this year, the William Cordes Innovation of Excellence Award could not be awarded, so Borghi are still the current holders of this award. He encouraged companies to participate in the next period.
The Chairs of each of the Association’s Committees gave their positive reports for the past year.
Announcements and explanations were made regarding the new bylaw changes for enlisting board members. These outlined the changes to the length of term of office each director should hold, thereby allowing the longer experience gained in the running of the Association more valuable to each Director and the Association as a whole. Changes to the voting laws included; a reduction of Directors from 18 to 17 on the board; changes to the process of divisional meetings and of developing their members to the Board of Directors; changes to electing Board Directors rather than the previous system and creating a 4-year term for board members. Full information can be obtained from Dave Parr via the contact links below.
Following the Close of Business session there was the last Educational Institute speaker, Mr John Kennedy speaking about vision, values and violation. Mr Kennedy, number 11 of 12 children was able to offer first hand insight into the way we work together. It was surprising how many of the audience also came from very large families and agreed it was the secret to the understanding, tact and diplomacy needed to run large business. His background was from the hospitality and tourism industry where he learned teamwork, sales and leadership. Download John Kennedy's slides:
Overall the convention was highly successful and many delegates went back to work with renewed vigour and a sense of friendship and support as I know we did.
Pictures of the congress are shown in our Image Gallery.
We look forward to seeing you all next year to celebrate 100 years of the ABMA.
For more information about the ABMA and its activities, please click the links below: