November/December 2022 Building Insight

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Table of contents


As the state’s largest trade association with over 8,000 member companies, responsible for approximately 188,000 jobs, we are the people who build, remodel and maintain homes.

We create economic opportunity and strong communities. BIAW champions the rights of our members and fights for affordable homeownership at all levels of government.


Executive Vice President

Greg Lane

Education and Workforce Development Director

Al Audette

Legislative Director

Josie Cummings Communications Director

Janelle Guthrie

Managing Director of External Affairs

Jan Himebaugh

Managing Director of Operations Stephen Hyer

ROII Director

Jenn Kavanaugh Association Services Director

Brenda Kwieciak

General Counsel Jackson Maynard


Communications Director

Janelle Guthrie

Visual Designer

Lena Anderson

Content Specialist

Hannah Cassara

Digital Communications Manager

Danielle Winski

To submit editorial or advertise, contact

Building Insight is proudly printed by:

On the Cover: BIAW awarded its highest honors, Builder, Associate and Remodeler of the Year, during its annual Installation and Awards Gala Nov. 17 in Vancouver. Left to right: 2022 Associate of the Year Nick Gilliland of Spokane Valley, 2022 Builder of the Year Gary Wray of Coupeville, and 2022 Remodeler of the Year Kimberley

Spike Appreciation Month

Join us in recognizing our hard-working top Spikes and learn their best tips for recruitment

Take a walk through BIAW’s biggest accomplishments of 2022

Members helping


Associate member and SICBA realtor devotes time to serving our nation’s veterans and heroes

Builder, Associate and Remodeler of the year

BIAW awarded its highest honors during the annual Installation and Awards Gala in Vancouver

BIAW Hall of Fame Inductees

Join us in welcoming Rick Hjelm and Jan Rohila into the BIAW Hall of Fame

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A year in review november/december 2022

President’s message

It’s been an honor and an adventure serving as your 2022 BIAW president.

This year I received many invitations from all our local associations to attend some great events. I’m proud to say I’ve been able to visit all 14 of our local associations this year.

I’ve participated in big-city events at my local association, Master Builders Association of King and Snohomish Counties, and others in the Puget Sound region. I’ve also visited the rural areas of our state for events like the Jefferson County board dinner and San Juan County Home Builders’ inaugural golf tournament.

I’ve traveled by plane, train, motorcycle, automobile, ferry and golf cart—and learned so much about issues our members are facing in the communities you all are building.

This year, we focused on five goals: Supporting small businesses, emphasizing equality, promoting our Certified Builder program, building the future workforce and keeping homebuilding affordable. While it’s impossible to celebrate all our successes in just two pages, here are some highlights!

Supporting small business

This year, BIAW continued to fight the good fight at the Legislature and at state agency rulemaking hearings to keep the costs of running your businesses down. We also worked hard to bring common sense to the state building code council’s latest round of code updates.

Finally, BIAW launched a new contract subscription service to help builders and remodelers protect themselves from legal disputes. If you haven’t purchased the BIAW Contract Subscription Service, it’s not too late!

Emphasizing equality

In my work this year, I’ve been so proud to see that across our industry and our association, we have people from all over the state representing all genders, races, ages and political ideologies.

I particularly enjoyed joining the Master Builders Pierce Builder Breakfast, focused on diversity in our industry. It’s also great to see robust Associates, Professional Women in Building and Young Professionals councils across the state.

We’re a welcoming association, and we’re in good hands moving forward, hands of many colors, ages and genders that reflect the communities we serve.

4 building insight

Promoting and growing our Certified Builder program

Next, let’s talk about the Certified Builder program. As you all know, it’s near and dear to my heart—and both Melissa and I have risen to the challenge to become Certified Builders.

We’ve added 13 new Certified Builders in 2022 alone—many in leadership roles at their local associations. In fact, you can find Certified Builders in 11 of our 14 local associations. Will you measure up and join us?

Building our future workforce

We’ve also done a great job demonstrating our commitment to building our future workforce. I want to give a quick shout-out to Spokane, Pierce, King and Snohomish counties, Clark and Kitsap for their innovative approaches to workforce development and supporting young people pursuing the trades. I know there are lots of other projects underway in communities across the state as well.

In the Legislature, we worked to pass a bill promoting construction as a solid pathway to graduation. And while our efforts stalled, I look forward to pursuing that bill again next session. We’ve also revamped our workforce development and careers in construction resources on the BIAW website, including a great new video. Thank you to our workforce development task force for all their work.

Keeping homebuilding affordable

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, we continue our work to keep homebuilding affordable.

At a time when home prices are sliding back from an all-time high, interest rates are rising, supply and labor costs are growing, and government interference continues to increase homebuilding costs, we provide solutions and fight against changes that make housing more expensive.

Our legislative efforts killed quite a few bad bills, but there’s no doubt they’ll be back. But I’m happy to see us continuing to work with both political parties to share our expertise and help them see how their decisions affect families in Washington and their ability to find homes they can afford.

We also won a hard-fought legal battle to preserve our voice on the Washington State Building Code Council—not only regaining our rightful seat on the council but securing $70,000 in legal fees!

And that’s important because while we weren’t able to stop the council from decimating energy choice, including natural gas options in new construction, we were able to reduce some of the pain.

As I prepare to join the legends on the BIAW Past Presidents’ Council, I want to thank you all for inviting me to your locals, for supporting statewide efforts to meet our goals this year and for all you do to support the American dream of homeownership in Washington.

Our future leadership is strong, and I am excited to accomplish even more for our association in 2023.

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2022 BIAW President Joseph Irons escorting his wife Melissa during the 2022 BIAW Installation and Awards Gala.

Executive Vice President’s message

The conclusion of the BIAW Fall Board Meeting means the holidays must be right around the corner, which makes it the perfect time to look back and review the many successes BIAW had this past year.

And there’s much to celebrate in 2022!

Record returns in ROII

Who doesn’t love reaping the rewards of a safe workplace? Not only is safety great for your employees and your business, but it also pays off big time if you’re a member of our ROII program.

BIAW’s retrospective rating program, ROII, helps participants earn refunds on the workers’ compensation premiums they pay to the state, depending on their safety performance record.

This year, ROII program participants earned $33 million in refunds. On average, for the 2018-19 plan year, ROII participants earned an average refund of 53%, and over half of our participants got 56% back on their L&I premiums.

BIAW also paid $3 million to local associations to help them support their operations, thanks to ROII.

If you’re not participating in ROII, you are leaving money on the table! Check out for more information.

Navigating legislative challenges

One of the biggest benefits BIAW brings to its members is powerful representation in Olympia. With threats to our businesses coming from all directions—not to mention efforts to drive up the costs of home building—you need a strong team working year-round to keep you informed and protected.

This year, our government affairs team not only worked to stave off bills that would have added thousands to the bottom-line price of a home, but they also represented you at state agency rulemaking and the State Building Code Council (SBCC). All so you can focus on running your business.

Facing the most anti-housing state Legislature in years, we certainly didn’t win every battle. However, we helped moderate some of the more strident proposals and blocked the very worst ones from passing.

The GA team also worked the entire summer with our SBCC representative and BIAW member Daimon Doyle to fight off efforts by Gov. Jay Inslee to use the SBCC to ban natural gas in new residential construction. The end result significantly limits access to natural gas in new homes. Despite this, we achieved some solid victories to make it easier to comply with these costly new codes.

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Legal victories ensure fairness

We wouldn’t have been able to count on Daimon’s expertise and knowledge on the SBCC if it wasn’t for the stellar work of our legal team. Throughout last fall and into springtime, our legal team pursued multiple legal claims to hold Inslee accountable and ensure transparency in the SBCC appointment process.

After a hard-fought battle, BIAW entered into a settlement with the governor to remove the appointments he illegally made and then appoint someone nominated by our association to ensure our industry was legally represented. We also won $70,000 in our accompanying public records lawsuit.

The legal team also launched our new Contract Subscription Service to help protect builders and remodelers from legal issues. If you haven’t subscribed to this service yet, you could save thousands of dollars in legal fees with these easy-touse contract templates.

“Cut the Costs” campaign educates millennials

Also this year, we harnessed the power of digital marketing to reach targeted audiences through our “Cut the Costs” campaign. Recognizing the growing homeownership gap for millennials and their desire to become homeowners, BIAW launched a digital ad campaign to educate this audience. Through a series of digital ads and videos, we shared how decades of government regulations, roadblocks and red tape have created barriers to homeownership. Then we provided them with a 10-step toolkit to take action.

A healthy association

Finally, I’m proud to report the association remains in great shape financially, including paying off our building this year. Membership recruitment and retention remain high and our new member resource manager has great ideas to continue to support our members into the future.

Thank you for being a member of BIAW and congratulations on a successful year for the association.

On to 2023!

All in all, nearly 10 million people viewed the ads— and 3 million viewed our videos for 30 seconds or more. We’re building an ongoing relationship and will encourage their support to “cut the costs” of new homeownership into the future.

Enter to win a $25 gift card by sharing your opinion on the Building Insight magazine.

Happy reading!

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(l to r) BIAW Executive Vice President Greg Lane proudly displays the public records lawsuit settlement check for $70,000 with BIAW General Counsel Jackson Maynard.

Recognizing the “Builders of Membership”

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) celebrates Spike Appreciation Month every November. It’s a time to recognize and thank members who dedicate their time and support towards member recruitment and retention. Member-to-member recruitment is the largest source of HBA growth across the country, making Spikes the true builders of our association.

What is a Spike?

A Spike is any current member who recruits new members. Spikes earn points for their efforts: one point for each new member, one point on the first anniversary for recruited members, half a point for each following anniversary, and half a point if recruited members join a council. When a Spike earns six points, they’re officially a part of NAHB’s Spike Club–a network of Spikes across the nation focused on the growth of their associations.

Why become a Spike?

Aside from the pride of growing the strength of the home building industry locally, Spikes also receive recognition and awards at the state and national levels. For more than a decade, BIAW has hosted an exclusive summer Spike party, where members come together for themed events, prize drawings, games and music.

BIAW also recognizes top recruiters at each winter board meeting, providing increased visibility and member-to-member networking opportunities. Nationally, Spikes who have recruited at least one new builder and/or associate member receive two complimentary tickets to the Closing Spike Concert at the International Builders’ Show (IBS), which is set to take place in Las Vegas, in February 2023. Unique lapel pins are also provided by NAHB when Spikes achieve new levels of credits.

Who are BIAW top Spikes?

As one of the most actively recruiting states within NAHB, BIAW has an impressive list of active Spikes. Page 9 lists the top ten all-time and 2022 Spikes.

Curious about how many Spike credits you’ve earned? All members can directly track their Spike credits in the “Membership Tab” after logging into their profile.

Advice from Spikes

We asked several of our Spikes to share their success as recruiters/retainers and why they believe it is so important for members to lead recruitment efforts. Here are their top tips:

1. Give prospective members a reason to join Builder association membership offers benefits with something for everyone. Everyone has a different reason for joining.

“What benefits would suit them best is what you need to ask yourself,” says Corey Condron, with Condron Homes in Spokane. “It’s really about finding the match for a business and its needs whether it be advocacy, savings opportunities, education/ expertise, or networking.”

“There are multiple benefits to joining BIAW, but in my opinion the top reason is the political action efforts at both the local and state levels,” said Aaron Helmes with Generation Homes NW, LLC, in Vancouver. “Our industry is constantly under attack. BIAW is at the forefront of pushing back on out-ofcontrol regulations that push up the cost of housing, and to protect and promote our members as they run their businesses.”

2. Stay in touch with recruited members

Where recruitment ends, retention begins. New members need to feel connected to other members as they begin their membership journey.

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Spike Appreciation Month

“I stay in touch with new members by calling and inviting them to attend local events,” said Sue Elkin with the Homeownership Center in Tacoma. “Sometimes they just need that nudge. Plus, when they walk into an event, they immediately see a familiar face.”

A direct way to stay in touch with new members is to do business with them. “Most of the members I ask to join work directly with us as a company. We try to only use subcontractors who are members to give them that value for their membership,” agreed Scott Walker with Rush Residential in Gig Harbor. Spikes get another chance to stay in touch with their recruited members when assisting with local association membership renewal efforts. Kurt Wilson with SoundBuilt Homes in Puyallup follows up with recruited members 60-90 days before their renewal dates to remind members not to let their membership lapse.


Get new members involved

Members have a greater chance of experiencing the full range of benefits when they’re involved. “When members understand the value of their membership through their involvement in programs, renewal is almost automatic,” said Nicole Ahola with Ahola Benefit Consultants, LLC in Cle Elum. Involvement isn’t just a way to retain members, but also a way to increase the influence and impact of our association within the home building industry. “We all have a voice and it is necessary for our industry that we all work together to properly represent who we are and what we do,” said Scott Walker. “The broader the participation level, the stronger our voice becomes and the more we can impact decisions that impact our industry and the customers we serve.”

Our Spikes are one of our most valuable resources. We appreciate all of our recruiters and what they do for membership, the association and the industry.

All-Time Top Spikes

Member Company Local Association

Total Spike Credits

Kevin Kartak AAA Kartak Glass & Closet, Inc. MBA of King & Snohomish Counties 2647

Patrick McCourt Valley Supply Co. MBA of King & Snohomish Counties 2343

Sherry Schwab HCS Construction Services Co. MBA of King & Snohomish Counties 1909

Dennis Poppe Builders Insurance Group BIA of Whatcom County 1897

Zakir Parpia Himalaya Homes MBA of King & Snohomish Counties 1769

Bob Moe Triple R Framing & Drywall, LLC Skagit/Island Counties BA 1648

Steve Cory Commercial Brokers Association MBA of King & Snohomish Counties 1405

Jayson Buechler US Bank Housing Capital MBA of King & Snohomish Counties 1162

Paul Bogel HomeStreet Bank - Bellevue MBA of King & Snohomish Counties 1112

Garth Trimble KAYU FOX 28 TV HBA of Spokane 1108

Current 2022 Top Spikes


Chuck Neibert

Affinity Homes, LLC BIAW of Clark County

Scott Walker Rush Residential MBA of Pierce County 20

Kurt Wilson SoundBuilt Homes, LLC MBA of Pierce County 20

Nicole Ahola Ahola Benefit Consultants, LLC Central Washington HBA 18

Aaron Helms Generation Homes NW, LLC BIA of Clark County 15

Nichole Banegas Gale Rew Construction, Inc. HBA of Tri-Cities 13

Dale Cargile North Ridge Contracting, Inc. HBA of Spokane 12

Bob Disney Disney & Associates Kitsap Building Association 11

Sue Elkin Homeownership Center Tacoma NW MBA of Pierce County 11

As of 10/31/2022

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Gilliland Blasingame Insurance HBA of Spokane 25



n BIAW launches the “Cut the Costs” digital advertising campaign to educate millennials on housing prices and encourage them to take action.

n After two years of being canceled, BIAW’s winter board meeting and legislative


n Government Affairs launches new housing policy center with reports on the real cost of zoning tax and how permit delays drive home prices.

n BIAW and Associated General Contractors of Washington (AGC) win a major legal victory

January 1 1 2 3 5 4 6 2 3 5 6 7a 7b 4 10

n BIAW has the unique opportunity to recognize two builders for the honor of Top Spike, one from each side of the state: 7a Cory Condron of Condron Homes, LLC, member of the Spokane Home Builders Association, and 7b Chuck Neibert of Affinity Homes, LLC, member of the Building Industry


n BIAW Executive Vice President Greg Lane sends a letter to Gov. Jay Inslee on behalf of BIAW members urging him to take serious action to ease the housing supply shortage.

Employee Assistance Program (EAP) included with all medical plans to offer employees support throughout various life challenges.



n BIAW wins Grand Awards

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n BIAW’s workforce development team celebrates Careers in Construction month by 12
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Government Affairs

Democrats grow majorities in midterm elections

The 2022 election results are in, and Democrats exceeded historical expectations in a midterm election for the party in control of the White House. Democrats not only protected their majorities but actually picked up seats in both legislative chambers and gained a member of Congress.

US Congress

Democrats gained a seat in the congressional delegation after Marie Gluesenkamp-Perez narrowly defeated Republican Joe Kent in the 3rd Congressional District by less than 3,000 votes.

Kent defeated Republican incumbent Rep. Jamie Herrera-Beutler in the primary. Kent’s far-right positions drew opposition from Republican donors in the general election. Perez handily won Clark County, which holds nearly two-thirds of the district’s voters, by a 55-44% margin.

Democrats also survived a challenge to incumbent Rep. Kim Schrier in the 8th Congressional District. Republican Matt Larkin unexpectedly won the August primary, then struggled to moderate his positions for the general election. Schrier won with more than 53% of the vote.

Expect both seats to be hotly contested congressional races again in 2024. Democrats now hold eight of the state’s 10 congressional seats.

State Senate

Democrats will gain one seat in the state Senate. After sweeping the three most competitive state Senate races this cycle, they will expand their majority to 29-20.

Democratic Rep. Sharon Shewmake narrowly defeated Republican Sen. Simon Sefzik in the 42nd Legislative District (Bellingham, Lynden, Blaine).

Democratic Sen. Emily Randall successfully defended a tough challenge by Rep. Jesse Young in the 26th Legislative District (Gig Harbor, Port Orchard,

Bremerton). Former Democratic Sen. Claudia Kauffman defeated Republican Bill Boyce in an open-seat race in the 47th Legislative District (Kent, Covington, Auburn).

The practical implication of this gain is Democrats may change the composition of certain committees, making it even more challenging to slow down problematic legislation. Democrats now stand one seat short of a three-fifths majority that would allow them to pass bond bills without Republican support.

State House

On election night, House Democrats were on pace to gain three seats. Republican candidates, however, gained in subsequent counts and were able to claw back two of those races and narrowly missed out on a third. Democrats gained one seat to grow their majority to 58-40.

Republican Stephanie McClintock trailed Democrat John Zingale in the 18th Legislative District (Vancouver) by 549 votes on election night. She ended up winning by more than 3,000 votes.

Republican Spencer Hutchins trailed Democrat Adison Richards by 1,088 votes on election night in the 26th Legislative District (Gig Harbor, Port Orchard, Bremerton). Hutchins ended up winning by more than 700 votes.

Rep. Greg Gilday trailed Democrat Clyde Shavers by 2,312 votes on election night in the 10th Legislative District (Oak Harbor, Stanwood). He pulled ahead at one point with a 15-vote lead but ultimately lost by more than 100 votes.

The election outcome means BIAW will be playing defense once again and we’ll need your help to protect against threats to housing affordability.

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It is with great sorrow we share with you the loss of the following members and association leaders. The dedication and unwavering support these individuals gave to the home building industry will long be remembered. Our hearts are with their families and all who knew them well.

Served as president of MBAKS and BIAW, and board chair of the Washington Policy Center and the Freedom Foundation.

Owner of McAtee Homes and longtime member of Spokane Home Builders Association and BIAW.

Founder of Burnstead Construction, 1984 President of MBAKS, inducted into MBAKS Hall of Fame in 2006.

Certified Green Builder and Remodeler, chair of BIAW Remodelers Council in 2004 and MBAKS Remodelers Council in 2001, served as BIAW director in early 2000s.

Chief Credit Officer for Thurston First Bank, and an active member of Olympia Master Builders, supported numerous large-scale housing projects.

Co-owner of pool and spa company Yakima Watermill Inc. in Union Gap for more than 20 years and member of Central Washington Home Builders Association for 30 years.

Owner of Peninsula Cabinetry & Interiors in Port Hadlock. Jefferson County Home Builders Association president and board member. Passionate supporter of Habitat for Humanity.

Owner of Waldron Construction Inc., in Oak Harbor and a long-time member of Skagit/Island Counties Builders Association.

The first female president of MBAKS, forging a path for Professional Women in Building (PWB). To honor her legacy MBAKS recognizes outstanding PWB council members with the Sandy McAdams Woman of the Year Award.

Marty Sowell, partner of Coastal Kitchen & Bath, LLC, in Mount Vernon and a longtime member of Skagit/Island Counties Builders Association. (Photo unavailable)

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William (Bill) Miles Conner Gordon (Gordy) Gregg Frayne Leigh McAtee, Jr. Kenneth Pekola Scott Hampton Teri Ward Frederick Burnstead Lynn M. VanAuken Sandy McAdams

How to work with today’s challenging labor market

The current labor market is challenging for employers, and the competition for skilled employees is fierce. One of the best ways to attract and retain those employees is by offering them benefits beyond salary.

One such benefit that has become increasingly popular is health insurance. In fact, according to a survey by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), 56% of U.S. adults with employer-sponsored health benefits said that whether or not they like their health coverage is a key factor in deciding to stay at their current job.

Health insurance benefits are essential to any employee’s compensation package because they provide peace of mind and financial security. They protect against significant medical expenses like hospitalization and surgery, which can be financially devastating if uninsured or underinsured. Health insurance also allows workers to focus on their jobs instead of worrying about how they’ll pay for treatment if they get sick or injured at work.

Companies must keep up with trends like these, so they’re always offering competitive compensation packages that meet their workers’ needs while also helping them attract new talent into their organization through innovative offerings like health insurance benefits.

By not offering health insurance or an attractive health insurance option, you’re missing out on a large portion of your potential talent pool—and possibly losing employees to competitors who do provide this benefit.

Employee benefits can be a tricky space to navigate, and we are here to help! As a member of BIAW, you get access to the BIAW Health Insurance Program, which means savings on your monthly premium, a selection of over 30 custom medical, dental and vision plans, and unbeatable service from an exclusive administrative team.

For more information on the BIAW Health Insurance Program or to receive a free, no-obligation quote, visit us at

14 building insight Healthcare Corner

NAHB fall leadership meeting update

As your NAHB State Representative, I wanted to reach out with some highlights from the 2022 Fall Leadership Meeting in Kansas City, Missouri. With the retirement of NAHB CEO Jerry Howard approaching and a general feeling that NAHB has become disconnected from local home building associations, there was a lot of discussion regarding the future of the association.

While I’ve certainly not been shy with my critiques when I felt it was justified, my conversations at this meeting left me feeling more optimistic that the current and future leadership recognize the challenges ahead and seek real solutions moving forward.

Association news Applications for committee appointments closed Nov. 20. You can find specific committee reports at and on the NAHB Meetings app.

Associate Senior Leadership position: A bylaw amendment to create an Associate Senior Leadership position was pulled before the Leadership Meeting. Fall leadership meeting locations through 2025: NAHB announced future fall leadership meetings in Palm Springs (2023), San Antonio (2024) and Denver (2025).

Design/Construction Week: NAHB expects DCW to be the largest show to date, co-located with the Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS) and National Hardware Show. Attendees will have over 1.2 million sq. ft. of show floor to visit.

Government affairs

Material shortages: NAHB’s regulatory and legislative teams continue their work to encourage the administration to take action on issues relating to material shortages. With lumber futures beginning to stabilize, the global transformer shortage has become the latest hot-button issue limiting development.

Webinars on “Inflation Reduction Act:” NAHB has held two webinars on the potential impacts of the recently passed Inflation Reduction Act on our member’s businesses. You can find those recordings at

Independent contractor rules: The team is also closely monitoring the U.S. Department of Labor’s proposed independent contractor rule changes.

Economic update

Dr. Robert Dietz, NAHB’s Chief Economist and Senior Vice President for Economics and Housing Policy, provided his latest economic forecast. He sees interest rate hikes continuing into the next three quarters, likely a 75 basis point hike, followed by 50 then 25 basis point increases. He predicts the ‘soft landing’ the Fed is aiming for is likely optimistic. Dietz is forecasting a slowdown over the next 15 months with housing beginning to rebound in 2024 as interest rates begin to retract.

For the full report, scan the QR code below.

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NAHB Fall Board Meeting Update

SICBA Realtor devoted to serving our nation’s heroes

Associate members are vital components of our association, offering a wealth of talent and services necessary to keep our industry running. Many extend those talents outside the industry, contributing to their communities and beyond. Mount Vernon realtor and Navy veteran Marla Chapa and her team do just that by giving back a portion of their commissions to our country’s heroes through the Homes for Heroes organization.

Dwight D. Eisenhower. She changed course and began a career in real estate to provide the flexibility she needed to best care for her family. Since then, she has added three more female Navy veteran broker associates to her team.

In 2017, a mentor at Keller Williams Realty introduced Chapa to Homes for Heroes and she knew it was the perfect fit. Homes for Heroes is the largest nationwide network of affiliate real estate, mortgage and local business specialists committed to providing easy ways for heroes to save on the purchase of a home. Created shortly after 9/11, Homes for Heroes has helped over 58,000 firefighters, EMS, law enforcement, military, healthcare professionals and teachers save over $108 million on their real estate transactions.

“Partnering with Homes for Heroes felt like the perfect opportunity to bring meaning and value to my business while allowing me to continue to serve in the private sector,” she said. “Hard work and service to our country and community are an important part of our teams’ lives.”

Member of Skagit/Island

Counties Builders

Association (SICBA), Chapa created Marla and Company of Keller Williams Western Realty with the goal of building a team of diverse individuals passionate about serving their community.

“What I love most about my job is helping others find homes because we all deserve a safe haven at the end of the day,” she said.

A single mom of three special needs children, Chapa exited the Navy in 2016 after serving 10 years and three deployments aboard the aircraft carrier USS

Since becoming an affiliate, Chapa and her team have given back over $450,000 of their commissions to Homes for Heroes, over $100,000 in 2022 alone. In 2019, she was honored with the Homes for Heroes Crystal Circle of Giving Award.

Chapa joined SICBA in 2022 in order to better partner with those at the forefront of the industry. “Being a part of SICBA has been a fantastic learning opportunity for our team,” she said.

Learn more about Marla and Company at To learn more about Homes for Heroes and how you can contribute, visit

16 building insight

The 2022 Fall Board Meeting was held Nov. 16-18 at the Hilton Vancouver Washington and brought more than 150 builders, associates and attendees together for the first time since the governor lifted Washington’s COVID state of emergency.

[1] 2022 BIAW President Joseph Irons and 2023 BIAW President Gary Wray share the gavel to adjourn the 2022 Fall Board Meeting as Irons passes the torch to Wray.

[2] Newly installed 2023 First Vice President/Treasurer Jay Roberts (r) and John Piazza Jr. enter the grand march during the Annual Installation and Awards Gala.

[3] Newly installed 2023 BIAW Third Vice President Kent Arola escorts his wife Astrid during the grand march at the Annual Installation and Awards Gala Thursday evening.

[4] Duane and Kyle LaPierre visit with attendees during the Future Leadership Social Thursday evening. Presented by the BIAW Past Presidents’ Council and the Past Second Vice Presidents’ Council, the Future Leadership Social invited members to mingle with current and former BIAW leaders to learn how to take the next step in state leadership.


[6] CTE Workshop with CTE Director at Yelm Community Schools Teri Pablo and Director of Career and College Readiness at Vancouver Public Schools Mark Wreath was held Thursday morning. The workshop highlighted the challenges in promoting skilled trades career options for middle and high school students and offered ideas to help alleviate the problem.

[7] BIAW’s Associate Advisory Council (AAC) honors associate members from each local association with appreciation awards. Each year, the AAC recognizes outstanding associate members representing their local association, community and the building industry.

[8] Host of podcast [un]Divided and former Q13 Fox correspondent, Brandi Kruse, speaks during the Annual Membership Meeting Thursday afternoon.

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2022 Fall Board Meeting Highlights 1
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Newly elected 2023 BIAW Secretary Nicole Ahola enters the ballroom during the grand march of the senior officers at the Annual Installation and Awards Gala.

L&I adopts new fall protection standards to protect workers from falls

Labor and Industries (L&I) new fall protection standards to protect workers from falls went into effect on Nov. 1, 2022.

While training and guidance resources remain under development, L&I has provided an overview of the background and changes.

Aligning Washington’s fall protection standards with federal requirements

L&I updated its standards after receiving a letter from the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). In its letter, OSHA alerted L&I their previous fall protection standards were not as effective as federal standards. Under federal law, Washington’s standards must meet or exceed the standards set forth by OSHA.

Major changes

L&I has provided a quick reference guide with major changes indicated. Among other things, the updated standards:

State’s COVID-19 emergency order ends, but some safety requirements remain Despite the fact Washington’s COVID-19 emergency orders ended on Oct. 31, 2022, L&I says the following general safety requirements and guidance remain:

Every employer must assess their specific workplace for COVID-19 hazards and take steps to prevent employee exposure based on that assessment.

Employers should keep workers who have tested positive for COVID-19 out of the workplace for at least five days per Washington State Department of Health guidance.

Complete Washington State Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) requirements and guidance are available online at www. topics/coronavirus.

n Require fall protection when doing roofing work at six feet or higher on a low-pitch roof, instead of the previous 10-foot threshold

n Change the threshold height from 10 feet to six feet when constructing a leading edge

n Add the option of a standard guardrail system as a form of fall protection on low-pitched roofs

n Provide an option to use a safety watch system if appropriate

n Include a clarifying statement noting when rules require fall protection at four feet or more

Updated safety training expected soon I’m working closely with L&I and will share their updated training materials when they are available.

Want safety topics delivered to your inbox? ROII participants receive weekly safety topic emails as a participant benefit.

To join the list, contact ROII Safety Services Director Bob White at (360) 352-7800 ext. 109 or

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ROII Safety Services

Legal Warranties

State Supreme Court decision could expand builder liability for defect claims

The Washington State Supreme Court late last month invalidated a local builder’s contractual liability limit, claiming the one-year limitation in the builder’s contract for defect claims was “substantially unconscionable and, therefore, void and unenforceable.”

In a 5-4 decision (Tadych v. Noble Ridge Construction, Inc.), released Thursday, Oct. 27, the Court said such clauses “shock the conscience” because they are substantially less than the six-year statute of limitation for such claims.

The case could have significant repercussions, not just for the home construction industry, but for any contracts containing clauses that limit liability to less than allowable under statutes of limitations.

Noble Ridge, a member of the Master Builders Association of King and Snohomish Counties (MBAKS), has filed a motion for reconsideration. BIAW and MBAKS filed an amicus—or friend of the court—brief in support.

A departure from lower court decisions

The case involved a suit by a couple who contracted with Noble Ridge to build a custom home. As noted in the dissent by Chief Justice Steven Gonzalez, the couple had a month to review the 14-page contract before they signed it. Further, they first identified the defects before the one-year period expired, but they did not sue until after that period.

Both the trial court and court of appeals dismissed the couple’s claims and upheld the contract. Then the state Supreme Court reversed. Because there is no federal claim, the only way to remedy this situation is to work with the Legislature or persuade the court to reverse the decision.

Protect yourself

While the case is under reconsideration, members may wish to protect themselves regardless. Any member with a contract that limits liability to less than six years should consider the case and whether that clause should be eliminated or modified.

Don’t have a standard contract?

BIAW’s Contract Subscription Service, offered exclusively for builder members, provides unlimited online access to a suite of more than two dozen contracts and addenda. Covering the most common construction needs, this subscription could save you thousands of dollars in legal fees. BIAW’s legal team regularly reviews and updates these contracts based on court rulings like these so your contracts will always be up to date.

Learn more and sign up at

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2022 Builder, Associate and Remodeler of the Year Awards

BIAW awarded its highest honors, Builder, Associate and Remodeler of the Year, during its annual Installation and Awards Gala Nov. 17. Past winners in their respective categories voted for the nominees based on their significant contributions to BIAW, their local association and the home building industry as a whole.

If you have questions about the builder, associate and remodeler of the year awards, please contact Association Services Director Brenda Kwieciak at (360) 352-7800 ext. 113 or

Gary Wray | Builder of the Year

Laser Construction and Development, Coupeville 2023 BIAW President Gary Wray has been in business for 37 years. A member of the Skagit/Island Counties Builders Association (SICBA) for 12 years, he’s been a BIAW director for the past 10 years. At SICBA, Wray served as a director from 2009 to 2019 and as president in 2014. He has sat on the Advisory Council, Membership Committee and as a trustee for SICBA’s PAC. He was awarded SICBA Builder of the Year in 2014, SICBA Recruiter of the Year in 2016, and the BIAW Associate Advisory Council Builder Appreciation Award in 2014.

Wray has also served on numerous BIAW committees, including the Education and Legal Committees as well as the Workforce Development Task Force. He has been chair of the Local Association Presidents Council, Legislative Policy Committee, Washington Affordable Housing Council and co-chair of the Legal Committee.

In his community, Wray sits on the board of directors for Civility First in Oak Harbor and chairs the board of directors of Habitat for Humanity of Island County, where he’s been a board member since 2008. He is also a member of Hearts and Hammers, a local non-profit organization that helps repair and rehabilitate the homes of those who are physically or financially unable to do the work alone. He also serves on the Island County Affordable Housing Group.

Kimberley Martin | Remodeler of the Year Cyneburg Services, Inc., Mill Creek

An active participant at her local association of Master Builders Association of King and Snohomish Counties (MBAKS), BIAW and the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), Kimberley Martin served as a BIAW director from 2006 to 2009, and again currently since 2016. She has served as a member of the Remodelers Council, Membership Council and the Workforce Development Task Force.

In 2019, Martin was honored with an Excellence in Remodeling award. She has also proudly sponsored the BIAW Spike Party at the silver level in 2021 and 2022. At NAHB, Martin is a member of the Gold Key Club, has served as a delegate since 2021, is a Professional Women in Building (PWB) Trustee, and is an active member of the PWB Council. She has also attended the International Builder Show for the last three years.

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B/A/R Awards 5

Martin is highly involved with MBAKS, serving as chair of several committees, including the PWB Council, PWB Events Committee, and the Membership Committee. She also actively participates in the Remodelers Committee. Martin has been the presenting sponsor of the PWB Annual Conference three times and achieved Life Spike in 2007. In 2019, she was honored with the MBAKS Sandy McAdams PWB Woman of the Year Award.

Nick Gilliland | Associate of the Year

Blasingame Insurance, Spokane Valley

Nick Gilliland serves as director for BIAW and his local association, Spokane Home Builders Association (SHBA). He participates in many BIAW committees, including the Executive Committee, Membership Washington Affordable

Housing Council, and serves as chair of the Past Second Vice President Committee.

A Life Spike, Gilliland was recognized as SHBA’s Associate Member of the Year in 2018 and 2020. He has been a member of SHBA’s Membership Committee since joining, serving as chair in 2018. Gilliland actively promotes ROII growth and retention through his leadership of SHBA’s ROII Task Force. He was SHBA’s top membership recruiter in both 2018 and 2019, and in 2018 Gilliland was honored with the BIAW Associate Appreciation Award.

Gilliland is an NAHB delegate and NAHB Young Professionals Committee member. A supporter of BUILD-PAC, he has regularly attended the NAHB Leadership Meetings and is also a member of the Gold Key Club. Gilliland is also actively working with the SHBA-Next Council and association leadership to support other young professionals and association leaders to attend BIAW and NAHB meetings. Father of a son diagnosed with autism, Gilliland and his wife give back to their community by supporting the Issac Foundation and the Northwest Autism Center in Spokane.

Associate Advisory Council’s 2022 Associate Appreciation Award Recipients

BIAW’s Associate Advisory Council (AAC) recognizes outstanding associate members representing their local association, community and the building industry. The AAC accomplishes this by presenting an appreciation award to one associate member from each local association.

Nicole Ahola

Central Washington Home Builders Association Ahola Benefit Consultants, LLC, Cle Elum

Stephanie Artino

Building Industry Association of Whatcom County Artino Advisory Group, Bellingham

Debbi Boyd

Olympia Master Builders Real Estate of the South Sound, Lacey

Kelly Fox

Skagit/Island Counties Builders Association Frontier Building Supply, Freeland

Kurt Henthorn

Lower Columbia Contractors Association B&M Heating & Air Conditioning, Kelso

Garret Hergert

Building Industry Association of Clark County GRO, Vancouver

Linn Larsen

Master Builders Association of Pierce County Linn Larsen, LLC, Tacoma

George Newman

Master Builders Association of King and Snohomish Counties Barghausen Consulting Engineers, Inc., Kent

Joel Tanasse

Home Builders Association of Tri-Cities Fred’s Appliance, Kennewick

Mike Thomas

North Peninsula Building Association Lakeside Industries, Port Angeles

Jessie Zundel

Spokane Home Builders Association Parr Lumber, Spokane

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Start the year off right with ROII

The holiday season is upon us. With the shopping frenzy at its peak, this is the perfect time to start shopping for a retro group or re-evaluate your current retro program. When evaluating which retro group fits best for your company, here are a few things to consider.

Program performance

This one is pretty simple—how good are retro groups at earning refunds, and do they offer side-by-side comparisons with multiple years of history? ROII provides nine years of group refund history, and if you’re in another retro group, we will provide you with a comparison.

You also want to pay attention to how much of the group refund participants are actually receiving.

ROII Group Refund History

Labor & Industries Adjustments

While we can’t speak for other retro groups, we can speak for ROII, and we make our refund report front and center on our website. Below is a chart that shows the range of refunds ROII participants received and what was paid out at 1st adjustment for plan years that aren’t complete yet: ROII participant refunds are weighted on performance, which means the better a company performs (premium compared to claim costs) for a plan year, the more refund they can earn. The low end of the range represents companies that barely qualified for a refund, and the high end represents top performers.




22 building insight ROII
Year 1st 2nd Final
Range of ROII Refund to Positive Companies
45% Done in 2023 Done in 2024
at 1st Adjustment
39.5% 42% Done in 2023
at 1st Adjustment
34% 37% 41%
43% 43.5%
21% - 56% (Avg. 53%) 2017-2018 43%
17% - 44% (Avg. 41.5%)
2016-2017 38% 41% 40% 15% - 43% (Avg. 40%)
2015-2016 34% 34% 36% 12% - 35% (Avg. 33%)
2014-2015 39% 37% 38% 11% - 34% (Avg. 32%)
2013-2014 39% 40% 43% 13% - 40% (Avg. 38%)
2012-2013 46% 42% 40% 13% - 38% (Avg. 37%)
it’s how you finish

Program services and value

Retro groups should be more than just refunds. It’s important to know what services they provide to help you earn great refunds, protect your employees, lower your upfront costs, and help you run your business more efficiently. Below is a list of services that ROII provides in-house:

n In-house claims assistance

Every ROII participant has a dedicated claim representative that helps them through every single aspect of a claim. We anticipate what L&I or doctors will need, and we make sure they have it so they can make a decision.

n In-house safety and prevention

ROII’s safety field representatives work oneon-one with participants to assist with high frequencies of injuries or alarming injury trends that could impact retro refunds, L&I rates, or employee productivity. Field staff assessments are personalized and specific to the needs of each participant. We don’t judge our success on how many visits we can make but on whether we have made a true impact on reducing the frequency and severity of injuries.

n Education

It’s essential for ROII to empower our participants to have control over their own safety performance, and education is a big piece of that. We offer a variety of classes aimed at helping companies work safer, understand their own risks and run smarter, safer companies.

Program cost

Every retro program provides additional services to participants, and none of them are giving these services away for free. Any retro program that tells you otherwise is lying. The real difference is how groups structure their fees and whether certain services are included or cost extra.

ROII charges 1.5% of a company’s annual L&I premium as an enrollment fee each year. The remainder of our costs are taken out of the overall group refund from L&I.

Some retro groups take nothing up-front and take all of their operating costs out of the refund they get from L&I. If a retro group is contracting with a ThirdParty Administrator (TPA), their total operating cost depends on what their TPA is charging them for their services.

Program management

Is the retro group managed by the group sponsor (inhouse), or is the group outsourcing its management to a TPA? If they are outsourcing, how many other retro groups does the TPA manage?

ROII is operated by ROII/BIAW staff and has been since our program started in 1982. We control how we operate our program, what services we offer and how to best advocate for our participants and members. We know the program and the needs of our members better than any TPA. And ROII knows the construction industry because that is who we are, and that’s all we do.

Who is my participation supporting?

A business association sponsors every retro group, and most sponsors take a piece of the overall refund to benefit their association.

ROII is sponsored by BIAW and supports all 14 local home builders’ associations across the state. In 2022 alone, BIAW and our local associations received over $6 million from ROII to further these efforts. This money is crucial for BIAW and our locals to provide all of the services, advocacy and support they provide to their members and the building industry as a whole at the state and local levels.


Last but certainly not least, how easily can you get answers to all of these questions from a retro group when asked? Or, in other words, how up-front and honest is the retro group about how much things cost, where the money goes and how they really perform? Retro is complicated, but too many groups hide behind this fact and limit the information they are willing to share or try to simplify too much. If you’re going to do a thorough evaluation of programs, you need the facts, whether they’re complicated or not.

Start the new year off right by visiting to fill out our inquiry form at the top of the page to get your comparison or to get started.

If you have any questions or want more information about the program, don’t hesitate to contact us at or call (360) 352-7800.

Happy shopping!

23 november/december 2022 2 4

2022 Hall of Fame Inductees

BIAW welcomes new members to the Hall of Fame

BIAW welcomed three new members to the BIAW Hall of Fame for 2022: Ted Clifton of the Skagit/ Island Counties Builders Association, Rick Hjelm of the Master Builders Association of Pierce County and Jan Rohila, long-time BIAW staffer and ROII marketing manager. Clifton was unable to attend the Fall Board Meeting and will be inducted at the Summer Board Meeting in 2023.

Rick Hjelm has more than 25 years of experience in the building industry, and his advocacy efforts have saved members thousands of dollars, continuing to make a lasting impact for years to come.

Hjelm began his company, Phase II General Contractor Inc., in 1978. In 1997, he became a member of the Master Builders Association of Pierce County. Since joining Master Builders Pierce and BIAW, he has greatly impacted all levels of membership. Hjelm served as president for Master Builders Pierce in 2011 and 2012, and as BIAW president in 2019. At Master Builders Pierce, he is a life director, active board member, national delegate, and chair of the 2022 Remodelers Council. Hjelm also sits on the Master Builders Pierce’s Political Action Committee. At BIAW, he currently participates in the Executive Committee, Bylaws and Nominations Committee, Past Presidents’ Council, and Remodelers Council. He also sits as chair of the BIAW Health Insurance Trust. As a committee and council member, no task is too small or too large, and Hjelm is known to continually raise the bar. He also is a longtime sponsor of BIAW events, particularly the Excellence in Remodeling Awards Reception.

Hjelm has received some of our industry’s most significant accolades and achievements. He consistently wins remodeling excellence awards at both the state and local levels. In 2019, he received the BIAW Builder of the Year Award. In his community, Hjelm actively participates in the Mary Bridge Children’s Festival of Trees in Tacoma. His dedication is unmatched. In 2019 alone, he raised $25,000 for the cause.

Annually, Hjelm testifies to balance regulations and the cost of housing. His dedication to educating the legislature is best shown in his efforts to kill the direct contractor liability bill. For the last four years, Hjelm has passionately spoken about how this bill would be bad for builders statewide, making them liable for the benefits, contributions and payroll of subcontractor employees. Thanks to Hjelm’s help, the bill is dead.

The legacy he has built through his dedication to our industry will live on beyond his career. Thank you, Rick Hjelm, for your hard work and commitment to BIAW and our industry.

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BIAW hired Jan Rohila 24 years ago, in October 1998, as Education Manager. A short six months after that, she was promoted to Administrative Services Director. In her new role, she oversaw the membership department and education program as well as filled the receptionist position.

During this time, BIAW’s membership and retention rate increased and strengthened under Rohila’s influence. Her ability to help BIAW establish itself as a recruiting and retention partner with its 14 local associations was undoubtedly a big reason BIAW’s membership propelled to number two in the nation, with 13,540 in 2008. Since then, BIAW has consistently ranked in the top three for the highest retention rates in our group’s category. BIAW earned several NAHB Association Excellence Awards (AEA) for membership growth, retention rate, and best member benefit to members during this unprecedented growth.

Thanks to Rohila’s hard work overseeing the education program, BIAW boasts one of the most comprehensive education programs in the country and has the most NAHB designations amongst state associations. With over 50 class offerings today and 5,000 attendees over the last 20 years, the program continues to serve BIAW members and nonmembers around the state.

Over the years, Rohila has helped with planning and executing approximately 80 BIAW board meetings and hundreds of committee and council meetings, reaching thousands of attendees. She has participated in numerous local association community events, promotions, fundraisers, and activities across the state. From Habitat for Humanity builds, to Parade of Homes tours, to charity auctions and more, she has attended events of all kinds. One special event Rohila helped organize was the BIAW “lawn sale” at the McCleary Mansion.

The event helped raise funds for Spokane Home Builders Association Executive Officer Joel White while he recovered from brain cancer. The event raised more than $2,000 for Joel and his family to help with his medical expenses.

Rohila’s vision and execution in creating and developing BIAW’s education and membership departments to become the best in the nation will have a lasting influence on BIAW, the NAHB federation, and the building industry. BIAW is a

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Rohila with 2023 BIAW President Gary Wray.

[1] BIAW Secretary Luellen Smith (left) and her husband Doug pictured with Republican candidate for US Senate Tiffany Smiley at Washington Policy Center’s Annual Dinner, Oct. 14 in Bellevue.

[2] Congratulations to Olympia Master Builders 2022 Tour of Homes Award winners, First Finishers, LLC, and Sparrow Design Company in the following categories:

Judges’ Choice Award Best Kitchen

Judges’ Choice Award Best Design & Staging

Judges’ Choice Award Best of Show

People’s Choice Awards Best Floor Plan

People’s Choice Awards Best Remodel

[3] In honor of Careers in Construction Month, Master Builders Association of Pierce County donated 20 copies of The House That She Built across schools and centers in Pierce County. Master Builders Pierce Executive Officer Jessie Gamble reads the book to children from the Multicultural Child & Family Hope Center in Tacoma.

[4] Master Builders Pierce welcomed Kevin, Chan and their four girls into their new Habitat for Humanity-sponsored home on Oct. 15 in Tacoma. Left to right: Linn Larson, Karen Hirschman, Kevin, Chan, Master Builders Pierce Executive Officer Jessie Gamble, Chris Lockhart, Master Builders Pierce Director of Communications Bailee Butcher, and Kevin and Chan’s four daughters.

[5] Skagit/Island Counties Builders Association (SICBA) hosted the 2022 Peer to Pier Cruise member recognition event on Sept. 30, in Anacortes after years of delays. Members enjoy a view of the sunset on Deception Pass from the boat.

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Local Happenings 1 4 5 2 3
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