BPD November 2021

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Brand Builder



16 Treated Wood Tags

10 Feature Story

8 Across the Board 26 Olsen on Sales 28 Lumber 411 30 Transforming Teams 38 Movers & Shakers 42 New Products 50 DateBook 52 Classified Marketplace 52 TalkBack 52 In Memoriam 53 Advertisers Index 54 FlashBack

Lumber tags can make a huge difference in fulfilling your brand’s promise.

Selling Decking for Privacy Walls

12 Industry Trends

PVC Architectural Trim Evolves to Meet Heightened Demands

17 Management Tips

The Importance of Industry Involvement


Building Products Digest




21 Competitive Intelligence

Washington Dealer Sticks to His Niche

36 Thinking Ahead

How to Parlay a Pandemic

40 Event Recap

Energy High at Do it Best Fall Market

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47 Event Recap

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President/Publisher Patrick Adams padams@526mediagroup.com Vice President Shelly Smith Adams sadams@526mediagroup.com Publishers Emeritus David Cutler, Alan Oakes Managing Editor David Koenig dkoenig@526mediagroup.com Associate Editor Stephanie Ornelas sornelas@526mediagroup.com Columnists Carla Waldemar, James Olsen, Emily Schmitt, Claudia St. John, Dave Kahle Contributors Sean Collinsgru, Kim Drew, Rick Kapres, Paige McAllister, Belinda Remley, Michael Vejar

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BUILDING PRODUCTS DIGEST is published monthly at 151 Kalmus Dr., Ste. E200, Costa Mesa, CA 92626, (714) 486-2735, www.building-products.com, by 526 Media Group, Inc. (a California Corporation). It is an independently owned publication for building products retailers and wholesale distributors in 37 states East of the Rockies. Copyright®2021 by 526 Media Group, Inc. Cover and entire contents are fully protected and must not be reproduced in any manner without written permission. All Rights Reserved. BPD reserves the right to accept or reject any editorial or advertising matter, and assumes no liability for materials furnished to it. Opinions expressed are those of the authors or persons quoted and not necessarily those of 526 Media Group, Inc. Articles in this magazine are intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal, financial, or business management advice.


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ACROSS the Board

By Patrick Adams

Asking favors t’s kind of funny how life leads certain types of people to other people. I’ve always been a “service” kind of person. It feels good to help others and be the type of person who others can count on. I realize to some this sounds odd, but it’s a compliment when someone asks me for help. To me, it means they trust me to deliver what’s needed and being capable of delivering it. Perhaps adding to the list of odd traits I seem to possess (yes, at one point in my life I thought I was “normal”), I am VERY uncomfortable asking for favors. I’m not sure where that comes from, but with almost everything in life I only ask for help as a truly last resort. As I’ve grown older, I’ve realized this along with realizing that this trait is actually a weakness in my personality. It makes my life harder than it needs to be and I suppose, there might actually be those around me who for some reason, would appreciate being able to help me. That brings me to the point of this. It’s “that” time of year again. Hunting season has fallen upon us and like every year, it comes at the worst, most inconvenient time. With our business, we are in the “home stretch” of what is a good year—certainly our busiest time on the calendar—and also slammed with planning for 2022, which celebrates our 100 years of service to this great industry! Combine that with two kids’ birthdays, a couple of holidays, and all the other silliness that goes along with the fourth quarter and taking a week away seems like more than a “favor.” While the state I live in is beautiful in parts, I can’t say it’s the most friendly hunting landscape, which means I have to travel. Like anyone who has hunted will tell you, hunting in its easiest form is not easy and the larger the game, the harder the hunt. It’s that time of year where I have to ask my entire team, my family and my friends for favors to allow me to take on this selfish challenge. I pack up the rig and RV and head about a thousand miles east to the mountains of Colorado in search of elk… and myself. My wife is left home alone to manage our “energetic” little kids. My team is left alone to handle the countless balls that our business seems to throw in the air on a daily basis. My friends chip in to support both parties while in most cases, I’m away a week or more with no cell service or internet and my wife simply waits for


one daily ping from my SatCom. But, over the course of a roughly 12-hour drive, my stress and guilt of leaving fades away and the landscape and solitude reminds me of all that I’m so grateful for. Over the course of the week whether I see an animal or not, it restores my faith in all that is good in life and while it’s just a week, I again feel the excitement of using the next 51 weeks to repay everyone who gives me the favor of this week. Needless to say to you because I share it often, I am a lucky guy. I have a family and team and a few friends around me who everyday help to bring out the best in me. I’m lucky to be in service to them, and I’m lucky to be able to ask them for a favor once in a while. As I’ve hinted about in the past couple months, I need a favor from each of you. In this issue, you will notice a postcard that is something new that asks you for a simple favor—to send us your email address. I PROMISE… you will not begin receiving messages from Saudi princes offering their fortune! January begins a special event for our company—one of our publications turns 100 years old! It’s a long time to be in service to anything and even longer in the publishing business. We have a ton of exciting events and special treats planned for the industry and as you know, it’s getting harder (and more expensive) to count on USPS for that! So please, check out the postcard, do us a favor and I promise, you won’t regret it! I’m grateful to serve this industry and all of you with these publications. I hope your summer was amazing, both personally and professionally and that we all can look forward to closing out a good year.

Patrick S. Adams Publisher/President padams@526mediagroup.com


n Building Products Digest n November 2021



By Sean Collinsgru

HOMEOWNERS CAN combine privacy and purpose with a deck board privacy wall.

Selling decking for privacy walls s contractors, we always keep up with the latest tools and techniques, and as creative designers it is equally as important to keep up with trends in designs. We have recently seen an uptick in the number of requests we receive for privacy walls in the outdoor living spaces we create. Whether it be a large-scale trend or a customer simply seeing the special touches we add to our designs through our photos, privacy walls are high on customers’ wish lists. While privacy walls are functional as well as aesthetically pleasing, we strive to maintain the balance between a focal point that is not cumbersome and a shield from the elements that does not



feel overpowering. As we began incorporating privacy walls into designs, we made the decision to use the same product for building vertically that we were already using to build with horizontally. This provides consistency that helps tie the outdoor living space together by using the same material on the deck and the privacy wall, rather than attempting to color match different products together. We intentionally chose a product for our deck designs that is not only incredibly durable, but also has many options for colors and width, so it was an easy choice to also go with Deckorators composite decking for our privacy walls. Deckorators offers

n Building Products Digest n November 2021

a wide range of options including varied-plank widths and picture frame board which allows us to get very detailed with our designs and inlays. A variety of color options and woodgrain finishes make it easy to create customized style, but the products also look great all on their own. With Deckorators composite decking, we also do not have to worry about things like expansion and contraction or how it will hold up in the weather, which makes it a great product to work with.

Keep an open space

The most intricate part of building a privacy wall will be the design if you choose to incorporate one. This Building-Products.com

INLAYS and picture frame boards add a modern feel to an outdoor living space.

CREATE a custom design stamp with unique features and decor.

vertical element is a great way to draw the eye up, while maintaining an airiness in the space. Make sure to be mindful of how open you want the space to feel. It’s important to strike a balance between a space that feels private but not closed off or closed in. Of course, different homeowners have different goals, but the ideal privacy wall should feel open and airy while still separating the space from neighbors and noise.

or patios, and with some planning and intentional design a privacy wall can be the perfect hiding spot or solution to unwieldy electrical cords. Using privacy walls correctly can be a great way to keep some of that indoor intimate feel, while still being able to enjoy outdoor spaces. They can also be a great way to showcase your craftsmanship and give your customers the “wow factor” that will set their outdoor living space apart.

Level up your deck design

How to...

Use outdoor living designs as an opportunity to leave a personal stamp on a project. Each one of my designs is custom made for each customer to flow with their home and project and will not be reused again. This is a great way to level up a project and an opportunity to get your creative juices flowing. Using decking boards is a great way to upgrade from the traditional lattice look to a more up to date tailor-made option that both contractors and homeowners can appreciate.

Building a custom privacy wall with deck boards is very simple.

1. Start by anchoring 4x4 posts into your deck framing and install just as you would on the deck floor. 2. Install additional blocking for a custom design or inlay. Keep in mind this will be more susceptible to the wind when fastening to the framing. 3. Complete the look with colormatched fastener plugs. – Sean Collinsgru founded Premier Outdoor Living, LLC, Palmyra, N.J., in 2015 as a design-build firm that specializes in creating unique outdoor living spaces throughout Southern New Jersey.

Privacy and purpose

Not only are custom privacy walls beautiful to look at and effective as physical barriers from wind or neighbors, but they can also have another very practical use. They are great for hiding any pesky wires for things like lighting, outdoor TVs, or outdoor refrigerators. Many homeowners dislike having to run extension cords all over their brand-new beautiful decks Building-Products.com

November 2021 n Building Products Digest n



By Rick Kapres

A WEALTH of traditional design elements, carried out in workable, dimensionally stable PVC, is calculated to stay crisp and unmarred with no more maintenance than an occasional power-washing. This home faces the water in Suffolk County, Long Island, N.Y. Contractor/fabricator: Seifert Construction; architect: Bruce Nagel + Partners

PVC architectural trim evolves to meet heightened demands ithstanding what used to be once-a-century storms. Endowing luxury homes with bold, distinctive personalities. Empowering owners to spend more time enjoying—and fewer resources maintaining—their coastal retreats. All of these prospects, and more, stem from the continuing reinvention of PVC architectural trim products, an outlier category just a couple of decades ago. Then things changed. Many architects, builders and homeowners had clung to the notion that natural wood was the only appropriate trim material for high-end residences. But, by the early 2000s, it was clear that both aesthetics and materials had reached their tipping points.



Younger homeowners (and quite a few of their elders) were elevating “zero maintenance” to a mantra for gracious living. And builders were mourning the bygone strength and durability of available solid-wood products. Old-growth stocks had vanished, and they were eager to get their hands on materials that would work as easily as wood but last more than a couple of seasons. In stepped a few visionary manufacturers convinced that a new, “green,” manmade material could make life easier for owners and contractors alike. The innovation they had in mind was high-quality cellular PVC, which derives largely from plentiful natural gas and can be engineered to resist anything weather and climate can throw at it. Yet

n Building Products Digest n November 2021

it yields finished results that replicate or even improve on the traditional painted or stained wood forms dear to architects and homeowners. These manufacturers didn’t invent PVC; they reinvented it, dramatically enhancing its physical properties, creative potential and curb appeal. They’ve even introduced realistic, long-lasting wood-tone laminates for contrast with customary all-white trim designs. This summer, I asked a few professionals who design or build high-end homes in demanding coastal environments about their experiences with the continually evolving possibilities of PVC trim products. “Building homes on the Jersey Shore is uniquely challenging,” says Building-Products.com

Cathy Van Duyne, of Van Duyne Buildhigher-quality results the with each sucexpansion centered across the western United States. ers, Inc., in Ventnor City, N.J. “PVC has ceeding project. One reason Overhe’s the dedipast 18 months, Lowe’s opened more than a dozen become almost indispensable for us, cated to a certain brandfacilities, is that itincluding keeps in Riverside, Ca. especially because it’s waterproof and introducing an expandingOver rangethe of coming pro- year and a half, the chain is expected to resists the extreme changes in climate files, sizes and featuresopen that 50 extend morehis cross-dock terminals, seven bulk distribution and local conditions. range of options. centers, and four e-commerce fulfillment centers. It recently “If you look at some of the houses “We tried them all,” he says, “and inked deals for new distribution space in California, Arizona we’ve built recently, you can see why landed on one company its quality,among other states. andfor Washington, the owners are so happy with it,” Cathy which was clearly superior. Then weLowe’s opened a West Coast e-commerce In October, says. “If the millwork had been done in saw we were gaining fulfillment more flexibility, center in Mira Loma, Ca., said to improve two-day wood, they’d have to repaint it every too. One example: Wedeliveries. had to build an CONSTRUCTION IS UNDERWAY on a new TFL plant in Klamath Falls, three or four years. That means a lot arch that normally would have has taken Lowe’s leased 116,934-sq. ft. in a new industrial park Or., to meet growing demand in the West. of money and disruption when there’s two pieces of traditional, 8-foot-long in Gilbert, Az., to open a distribution and fulfillment center in only a narrow window of time to use material. We realized we could early 2021. Wilsonart TFLis in sheet West the house. The Expands best time to paint use one sheet of PVC inIt reportedly a new, 10-also agreed to lease 1.2 million sq. ft. at the Wilsonart Engineered Surfaces has broken ground on finish the job with no during nice weather in summer and fall, foot length—and Benaroya Pacific Northwest Regional Logistics Center in a new thermally fused laminate (TFL) facility in Klamath just when you don’t want scaffolds full seams! Small innovations comeWa. along Winlock, Falls, Or. around your home. of painters on every single job, thanks to the big Expectedbeen to beanfully operational July 2021,that’s the wrapped up in this “There’s explosion of ad- by innovation Second-Hand Lumberyard Reopens new facility inwill feature a quick-cycle which will vancements homebuilding technol- press, material.” significantly increase its production capabilities on the West in Flagstaff ogy, from smart homes to sophisticatHe says his team finds ways to inCoast. After being closed for nearly nine years, E.R.I.C. Building ed adhesives and fastening systems, novate in the fabrication shop, as well. “Our offerings have garnered tremendous support Supply, Flagstaff, to new building materials,” she says. “We had to fabricate an elaborate porti- Az., has reopened with a new owner. from both andPVC fabricators,” Ubertini, “What we’respecifiers seeing with trim, in- said coRon that called for dozens ofConstruction small pieces,industry veteran Darwin Dahozy purchased VP-product management. “TFL is a key part thatof pilasters the business cluding smarter techniques for using it includingofa row with aand wa-inventory, and reopened in early October after offering, and this next expansion is a continuation of our a month of prepping the long-vacant space. He admits their and specialized new products and tools, ter table running right through it. Some CONTINUOUS SWEEPING curves with fewer strategy to enable us to meet growing demand and better current collection of used,realized recycled and PVC discarded building joints, in long mouldings, distinis a system that’s part of that overall of the components were only a couple serve our customers.” materials requireguish morea time to organize, initially will shingle-style coastalsohome. Tonguerevolution.” of inches square. Making themwill out of and-groove soffit and otherasPVC millwork will closed on Mondays through Wednesdays it continues to Another builder, John Seifert of modern pine was out ofbethe question. If withstand harsh waterside conditions for de“clean up and organize.” Lowe’s Bulking Up in the West Long Island-based Seifert Constructhey didn’t break in fabrication, they’d cades, requiring little or no homeowner attention. Dahozy, 49, moved to the area two VanDuyne years agoBuilders, lookingInc.; to Totold meet fast-growing for building materials, tion, us that continuing demand refinements fall apart in a year; we’re not getting Contractor/fabricator: buy or start business,S.J. after a career as a welder and Lowe’s Home Improvement Centers, Mooresville, N.C., willmy grandfather Fenwick Associates. in premium PVC means he can produce the same wood washis us-own architect: residential/commercial fencer. invest $1.7 billion to update its supply chain—with much of

Deck Building Solutions • 866-767-1850 • www.suredrive.com • sales@suredrive.com Building-Products.com 32 n The Merchant Magazine


November 2020

November 2021 n Building Products Digest n 13 Building-Products.com

DECORATIVE BRACKETS, custom-fabricated from solid PVC stock, harmonize with sharply detailed standard PVC mouldings and trimboards. Premium PVC brings the luxury of complex architectural personality within reach, without the drawbacks of weather damage or upkeep. Contractor/fabricator: Seifert Construction; architect: Bruce Nagel + Partners.

A 270º ROOF, sheltering an upper-story porch, illustrates the range of challenging curves achievable in frieze boards, soffit and crown mouldings thanks to increasing lengths and enhanced workability of PVC trim components. Contractor/fabricator: VanDuyne Builders; architect: S.J. Fenwick Associates.

ing. Instead, we brought the architect’s vision to life partly in custom-carved PVC, and partly in sharply detailed, stock PVC profiles from the same manufacturer, like crown mouldings and standard five-and-a-quarter boards.” “One development worth mentioning: the amazing progress they’ve made in eliminating any hint of a “plastic” look and feel. Once you could spot manmade trim from a mile away. The material we use today comes across as authentic and substantial at any distance. Even historical districts that used to be strictly wood-only for restoration projects are looking at the expense of painting and maintenance, and starting to come around.” Bill McConville, of Fenwick Architects in Linwood, N.J., is on the same page. “Take something like a decorative, painted wooden bracket,” he says. “If they’d had cellular PVC in 1901, they would have used it, because then they wouldn’t have had to scrape it and paint it every few years. Now that the technology has come into its own, homeowners accept PVC without giving it a thought. And now even preservationists are willing to consider it. We love to use it. From the architect’s standpoint, it holds up, looks good, and makes sense.” We live in a world where homeowners show more knowledge about design and construction—and less patience with maintenance—than ever before; where exterior building materials take an increasingly heavy beating from the environment; and where a fresh idea can be your strongest competitive advantage. My colleagues and I are convinced that this is a world where an evolving spectrum of building products, including premium PVC, have a major role to play. And we’re pretty sure today’s builders, architects, and clients are ready for new waves of possibility. – Rick Kapres is vice president of sales for VERSATEX Building Products (www. versatex.com).

WEATHER-RESISTANT millwork characterizing this South Jersey region home can withstand extreme storms as well as day-to-day sunlight and spray, in part because advances in installation techniques, fastening systems, and adhesives have kept pace with PVC formulations. Credit: VanDuyne; Fenwick.


n Building Products Digest n November 2021


MARGIN Builders

By Michael Vejar

COLORED LUMBER TAGS have become a difference maker for treater Culpeper Wood Preservers.

Trust through tags Product ID helps fulfill your brand’s promise

ll consumer products require some type of identification in the form of a label and related packaging, which comes in all manner of shapes and sizes to help get noticed and stand apart from competitors. But what do you do when all the “packages” look the same and the label is quite small, like with pressure treated lumber? You take a footprint measuring just 7/8” tall by 2” wide and make as broad a canvas as possible. A lot of people see truckloads of pressure treated boards heading down the highway. Too small to read as they pass by, the tags look functional at best. Held firmly in place with that staple and holding up well to 70+ MPH gusts and all sorts of weather conditions. Though unreadable, you can clearly see there are different colored tags from one bundle to the next. Hard to miss that even at 70+ MPH with a turbulent wake of mist. For the DIY-type of person who knows his or her way around a home improvement store, chances are they recognized those colored lumber tags as the Culpeper Wood Preservers brand of pressure treated lumber. Even for the casual observer wandering the isles looking for a furnace filter, they



likely passed by those small end tags, which are crammed full of essential details. “The end tag is literally our brand packaging,” said Chris Brown, director of business development and marketing, Culpeper Wood Preservers, Culpeper, Va. “It is a vital source of product and application information, but also a major part of our branding platform. The end tags also have to build trust and deliver peace of mind for our customers, from weekend do-it-yourselfers to seasoned contractors.” The face of the tags features a solid color treatment to reflect product type. Reverse-out copy and graphics allow the white color of the tag stock to show through. There are also various combinations of the solid color with black ink for specifications, as well as some tags featuring an alternate color for the product name/type. The back side of all the tags is printed in black. The small size of the text is still easy to read against the white color of the tag material. The printing is executed by MidSouth Design, Birmingham, Al. The tags are flexographic printed with proprietary

n Building Products Digest n November 2021

(Continued on page 50) Building-Products.com




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By Belinda Remley

The importance of industry involvement here is nothing more empowering than being able to impact your industry, your company, and yourself. Every day, treaters, sawmills, preservative manufacturers, forest land owners and more have the opportunity to do just that as they engage in the numerous organizations that both govern and support the wood industry. “Through involvement, both the company and individual become part of the process and support mechanism for wood products,” explains Tim Carey, industrial specialist for Arxada. “My former colleague used to say ‘It’s important to give back to where you make your living.’ And our organizations collectively provide opportunities for us to individually and collectively contribute to the betterment of our industry.” These organizations are varied in what they offer the industry, but all strive to create solidarity and to affect wood use in a positive way. “Arxada is involved in about 70 different organizations,” explains Grady Brafford, industrial sales director for Arxada. Grady, a 40-year veteran of the wood


ARXADA Wood Protection industrial specialist Tim Carey speaks during the recent AWPA annual meeting. Building-Products.com

industry is active with many of those organizations including the American Wood Protection Association (AWPA), Treated Wood Council (TWC), and Southern Pressure Treaters Association (SPTA). “Each organization plays an important role in helping further the wood industry’s agenda,” Grady says. Tim, who is involved with nearly a dozen groups, explains that these associations’ main purpose is to aid the wood industry through creating standards, lobbying, and promotion as well as advocating the benefits of wood over its competitors such as concrete and steel. “These organizations help build expectation and regulatory guidelines for the wood treating industry as well as develop or provide an educational resource for contractors and building industry members,” says Mike Wiechec, national sales manager for Arxada. “As members, we understand the value they offer the industry as a whole. Being a member of an association that supports wood means connectivity to not only our customers but also to the entire wood business. We can understand regulations and expectations for the treated wood industry and provide a voice or a seat at the table where we have the opportunity to positively impact our industry.” All of the associations serve different roles in their support of the wood industry. For example, AWPA, American National Standards Institute, Railway Tie Association, American Railway Engineering & Manufacturers Association, and International Council on Large Electric Systems are national/ international standards writing groups for wood products. “By providing standards, our products can be easily purchased for the intended application,” Tim says. “And, many of those standards are set by the wood industry for the wood industry.” AWPA is made up of more than 500 individual members who work together to provide a foundation for the quality and performance of treated wood products for residential, commercial, military, and industrial uses. According to Colin McCown, executive director for AWPA, “Being involved in the standards development process gives each member an opportunity to shape and improve upon those standards. Because AWPA’s membership includes many people from outside the treated wood industry, involvement allows participants with different perspectives to come together November 2021 n Building Products Digest n


ARXADA code specialist Josh Roth participates in building related organizations, here talking to officials about the changes in codes in Georgia.

and develop standards that are beneficial to manufacturers, specifiers, and end-users.” Colin further explains that AWPA’s primary contribution to the wood industry is the development of consensus-based voluntary standards for treated wood products, preservatives, quality control procedures, laboratory analysis methods, evaluation of new wood preservatives, and other valuable standards. “This is important because standards give end-users and specifiers confidence in the performance of treated wood products and help to maintain a consistent level of quality across the entire industry when implemented,” Colin says. “AWPA also contributes to the industry by educating its members regarding new and emerging technologies, by providing a forum for discussion of industry and end-user issues, by giving individuals an opportunity to develop standards upon which their industry relies, and by supporting the use of those standards within the industry as well as to specifiers and end-users.” Serving on organizations’ sub-committees to affect standards the wood industry lives by is just one outlet for involvement. SPTA and Western Wood Preservers Institute (WWPI) are examples of treated wood support organizations, providing information to end users on how to best use products. TWC is a lobbying organization that monitors the national and local government activities that may affect the use of treated wood products. Forest Products Society is a research organization that provides support through testing and research of wood products in various applications. Butch Bernhardt, senior program manager for WWPI, explains that this group serves as a voice for the treated wood industry in the West, advocating the safe and sustainable use of preservative- and fire-retardant-treated wood products. “Our responsibilities include increasing public and consumer awareness of our products and industry, securing reasonable regulations for treated wood products and processes at the federal, state, provincial and local levels, and promoting the development and application of codes, standards and quality assurance programs to meet the needs of both treaters and product users,” Butch says. Butch explains that “with more than 60 active treater and service member companies, WWPI offers a voice and forum for its members, while working to influence the industry and the way the public views the industry. Within those member


n Building Products Digest n November 2021

companies, hundreds of active individuals work together on four standing committees that cover the products, uses, and regulatory issues affecting preserved wood products.” SPTA caters to the industrial market through support, education, and research. Its members produce more than 75% of the U.S. market utility pole supply and also produce wood crossarms, piling, and other industrial timbers that are the backbone of the U.S. utility grid and national infrastructure. SPTA executive director Kevin Ragon explains, “SPTA allows the opportunity to network, exchange ideas, discuss production issues, supplies, advise and comment on regulation at the state and national level. We offer the ability to disseminate product information and performance to our customer base and we comment on product standards, market issues, and provides product research to address specification and environmental issues.” But, really, why be involved at all? “Being involved, among other things, shows our commitment to the industry we play in,” says Chris Leslie, retail marketing manager for Arxada. “In the competitive world we live in, it is imperative to be present and keep your name prominent. In addition, being members of industry organizations and attending their events is crucial to staying aware of what is happening in the business as well as who the key decision makers are.” Additionally, Butch explains, “The treating industry faces significant challenges in many areas, from onerous regulations and restrictions on the use of treated products to misperceptions and bias against preserved wood as well as competition from alternative materials. These challenges often cross product lines, customer groups and geography.” The best way to address these changes as well as any other issues facing the wood industry is to bring all elements together within the industry to fully understand the issues and develop effective, proactive solutions. The only way to affect movement within the industry is to get involved, joining with other like-minded companies and individuals who strive to make their voice heard and their industry successful. – Belinda Remley is a marketing professional with Arxada in the Wood Protection business unit. She has been promoting wood and the protection of wood for nearly 30 years.

NOT JUST hard work but also comaraderie is a reason to participate in industry associations. During the recent SPTA annual meeting held in Memphis, Elvis stopped by for a visit. (L-r) David Pike, Belinda Remley, and Tim Carey from Arxada Wood Protection enjoy some time with the singer. Building-Products.com

Treated Above the Rest™ Setting the standard, Fortress Wood Products® offers the highest-quality of pressure-treated wood and preservative technologies to exceed your customers’ expectations. At Fortress, our wood is treated to protect, and our customers are treated above the rest.

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COMPETITIVE Intelligence

By Carla Waldemar

Stick to your niche emember—of course you do— the day the distressed astronauts called out, “Houston, we’ve got a problem?” To translate to a different dilemma recently facing another city, Brent Emery, owner of E&E Lumber & Home Center, based in Marysville, Wa.—fast becoming a bedroom


community of Seattle 35 miles distant along the main corridor—was perhaps tempted to believe that, there in the headquarters of firms like Boeing, Microsoft, Google and Amazon, a problem loomed. “Because we are situated with mountains to the east, the ocean to

the west, it’s a pocket of development here,” Brent explains—lots of industry coming in, and we’re right on the main drag.” Thus, E&E was supplying packages for 300-plus houses a year. Until. Until the bad years of 20112013. “It got to the point that banks weren’t loaning money, so we dialed back. I changed our format, limited our expenses. And now”—the good news—“we’re making way-better margins with less volume.” In the meantime, along came COVID with its unforeseen bonus: “We had a captive audience; everybody was working from home. We were deemed an essential business, so we had our biggest sales in 54 years in 2020.” Essential, for sure, but also crazy: How to handle the demand? “I decided to close for one week in March to assess the situation. Then in April we re-opened, under COVID, with hours from 7 to 3, Mondays through Fridays. But still, the amount of profit was absolutely insane, so we said, ‘Screw it! We’ve gotta go for it,’ and went back up to our normal, pre-COVID hours, and everybody stayed healthy. It was the best 18, 19 months in the history of the company, though it’s starting to drift back to normal now. Which,” he says, “is a good thing, because we couldn’t have survived. We’d been working six days a week, 14-hour days. We’d close at 8 or 9, then come in again at 5 a.m. to pull packages. We were pretty well burned. “Plus,” he view the insult heaped on injury, “The supply issues—which will take another couple of months to get back to normal—brought on extortion from the mills. We were also E&E LUMBER owner Brent Emery illustrates the advantages of exceling in—and sticking to—your niche.


November 2021 n Building Products Digest n


THE WASHINGTON STATE dealer owns just two trucks, despite turning over a volume equivalent to a nearby operation with a fleet of seven.

out of paint, but the supply of building materials was pretty normal. Steel, however, was going crazy, with a 20% price increase in metal roofing. The supply of everything just got sucked out of the market. We’ve gotta play catch-up, but without jacking up the prices,” he pleads. “We’re sticking to our [dialed-back] niche,” Brent reiterates. “We didn’t put on an outside salesman when that was trendy, to go the ‘volume’ route. And, over the years, we’ve had the opportunity to buy other facilities. Instead, we opted to build on what we have. If we did buy another store, that would become a fixed asset, and we’d have had to put $1 million into new inventory. “‘Do more with less’ is our motto. For instance, we own two trucks, and with them, we do a volume similar to a company in the area running seven: We just run ours efficiently! Plus, lots of our customers pick up their own product. (We did finally break down and buy a forklift, after 50 years. But! It can carry three or four loads at a time, not just run out with one,” he justifies.) “Our staying power,” Brent continues, “is—no debt. We worked hard to get to this point and so to take advantage of opportunities. Personally, I still question a lot of stuff when folks don’t stay in their lane….” Well, E&E did jump lanes once, when, back in 1972, it purchased a second location. The way Brent tells it, “Dad’s attorney called and said a widow was selling out. Dad ran up at 3:30 in the morning, before we opened, to look at the inventory. Then he bought it… for less than the inventory.” The two locations carry the same product mix, allowing for inter-store transfers. Together they employ a staff of 32. Why do these employees sign on and then stay put? “We give good benefits, we pay well, and we offer a good environment. We’re like family—a good core. And we have fun. We often hire folks who come on over to us from another store, so they have plenty of experience, too.” Business is 60% drop-in and 40% contractor-driven. Those pros swear by E&E, Brent notes, because “they’re assured of good quality product, like Doug fir. They rely on service by a staff with 15 to 30 years’ tenure.” That’s also why the cluster of big boxes surrounding E&E poses not much of a threat. “We’ve got competitive


n Building Products Digest n November 2021

prices, quality materials, and a knowledgeable crew, with tenure that’s built on working here, day in and day out.” Business is so robust that E&E doesn’t advertise. “We haven’t for the past two years. Anyway, why would we advertise when we can’t [nowadays] get a product, anyway?” he wants to know. Word of mouth works just fine, and 60% of the outfit’s business is built on walkins—“a really good mix. Not all our eggs in one basket. Instead of volume, we’ve always had the retail to fall back on during each recession. “Contractors like the attention you get here, and that attention to quality: Every stick of lumber can be used on the job—no substandard stuff. Framers,” he says, “love us.” Well, what about your neighbor, Amazon—the websales behemoth? About online competition, Brent has this to say: “I believe in bricks and mortar. People want a personal experience with other people; they want to kick the tires. But,” he allows, “Amazon does make shopping easy.” (So does E&E with its own online presence.) And, soon again, in person. “In December, we plan to return to a Customer Appreciation sale, on hold for the past two years—as well as monthly barbecues, where our pros can meet with our vendors.” Clearly, Brent will be around for the long haul. “I grew up working retail here while I was in school, and I love it—always a new challenge. My dad, at 90, and my uncle, 92, are still plugging along here, too. And I must be setting a bad example,” he jokes, “because my kids are now doing the same thing.” He offers a parting bit of advice, and that is: “Don’t deviate from your niche. If you think more is better, remember: It creates more debt; it’ll come back to bite you.”

Carla Waldemar cwaldemar@comcast.net Building-Products.com

OLSEN on Sales

By James Olsen

4 pillars of sales success here are four things we need to work on to have a great sales career: work ethic, sales skills, account box, and lumber/product knowledge.


Work Ethic

A lot of salespeople just don’t work hard enough. I’ve heard salespeople say, “When my customers start buying, I’ll start selling more.” These salespeople do not have enough accounts but won’t prospect because they are “experienced” now and no longer need to. The first and last hour of the day are the most important for being productive. When we make our last sales call of the day, we should prepare for the next day before going home. What does that preparation look like? Last hour preparations: • Make a call list for the next day. • Who are we going to call and what are we going to offer them? • Prepare more than one item per customer. Inside sellers, minimum of 20, outside sellers, minimum of six. • Have multiples of each item to offer. Never offer just one unless that’s all you have. • One call every 10 minutes is 48 calls in an eight-hour day. Most inside sellers are making 30 calls or less. Train yourself to make 50 and give yourself a 40% advantage! First hour preparations: • Do not eat your breakfast at your desk! • Do not sit at your desk until you are ready to start work. • When your tail hits the chair, your finger hits the phone. • Outside sellers, hit the road.

Sales Skills

Great salespeople stand out, are easy to say yes to and difficult to say no to because they do things differently than most: • They take the time to treat the receptionist like a real person. I cannot stress this enough: BE NICE TO THE RECEPTIONIST. Most salespeople treat the receptionist like a piece of furniture. Superior salespeople treat everyone at the account just as well as they treat the buyer. The receptionist is our number one ally if we choose to make them one and give us a competitive advantage. • They know how to listen. Most salespeople interrupt customers all the time without even knowing they are doing it. Interruptions break rapport and tell the customer that we really don’t care about them. This is easy to say no to.


n Building Products Digest n November 2021

• Speak in a warm and natural way. Many sellers have verbal tics: o Ums, uhs, ya knows, like o Beat-around-the-bush-it-is. Many sellers use filler words when asking questions or promoting their products. o Interruptions. We need to count to three at the end of our customers sentences, especially on objections. Often customers will pause to think or just take a breath. When we jump on their sentences or don’t wait to let them keep talking, we break rapport. People are dying to be listened to. Master Sellers do it. • Ask for the order. As simple and fundamental as this is, most sellers do not ask for the order. Most sellers present the product and then wait for the customer to buy. The Master Seller tells customers why their product is a good deal for them and then asks for the business.

Account Box

If we are working hard enough and our sales skills are at a high level, one of the only ways to increase our income is to upgrade our accounts. We cannot have an A+ sales career working a B- account box. It takes just as much time and effort to work 40 decent accounts as it does to work 40 great accounts. Master Sellers continually upgrade their accounts by prospecting regularly. Most sellers do not prospect at all or do so sporadically or when they lose accounts. This is treading water and is the reason many sellers are plateaued.

Lumber/Product Knowledge

The most dangerous salespeople are the ones who work hard, have great sales skills, continually prospect, and have excellent product knowledge. If I have to choose between a salesperson who understands people or one who understands products, I’d choose the people person every time, but if I can find someone who knows people and products, I know I’ve got a monster on my team. We all need to work on these pillars throughout our career to ensure sales success. James Olsen Reality Sales Training (503) 544-3572 james@realitysalestraining.com Building-Products.com

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By Kim Drew

A Special Series from Northeastern Lumber Manufacturers Association

Sprucing up Rock Center ockefeller Center is more than just a building, an easily recognizable square with gorgeous fountains, and a skating rink in the winter: it’s a massive complex that includes 19 buildings on 22 acres. It sprawls between 48th Street and 51st Street and Fifth and Sixth Avenues in Midtown Manhattan, highlighted by the gorgeous sunken square in the middle we all know and love. Of the 19 buildings, 12 are original Art Deco structures commissioned by the Rockefeller family. Tourist highlights of Rockefeller Center include the magical view of Manhattan from the Top of the Rock (look how big Central Park is!), ice skating in the square


(is that Buddy the Elf??), the iconic Rainbow Room, and so much more. Without a doubt, the most well-known element of the area’s mystique is the annual installation of the magnificent Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree. To quote the folks at Rockefeller Center: “It’s more than a tree. It’s a symbol of the spirit of the city and the people who create its traditions.” From the moment a perfect tree is chosen in the fall, to the exciting timeline of its journey to the city, to the decorating process, to the televised lighting, the glory and beauty of the tree dazzles our eyes, captures our imagination, and serves as the official welcome to the Christmas season. But what do we really know about the tree itself?

History of Rockefeller Center Christmas Trees

The first tree was a small, 20-ft. balsam fir purchased when workers at Rockefeller Center pooled their money. The decorations were hand-made garlands, courtesy of their families. In 1933, the tree became an official annual tradition, and the first tree lighting ceremony was held. Fast-forward through a ton of fascinating history, and we most recently enjoyed the 2020 tree, a glorious Norway Spruce clocking in at 75-ft.-tall, 45-ft. wide, and weighing 11 tons. As a matter of fact, over the past several decades, ALL of the Rockefeller Center Christmas trees have been Norway spruce!

Why Norway Spruce?

ROCKEFELLER CENTER 2020 Tree Lighting, courtesy of Diane Bondareff AP Images for Tishman Speyer.


n Building Products Digest n November 2021

Norway spruce is a non-invasive species from Europe with roots in America dating back to pre-Civil War. In October 2016, it became the first new U.S.-grown, fully tested softwood species to be tested for strength values since lumber testing began in the 1920s; the species was folded into the SPFs grouping and approved by the American Lumber Standards Committee, following testing from University of Maine’s Structures and Composites Center, and approved for construction and industrial applications. NELMA, the not-for-profit rules writing agency and steward of the lumber industry in the Northeast and Great Lakes, oversaw the entire Norway spruce testing process and now oversees the grading of the lumber by NELMAmember mills. Grown primarily throughout New York state, Norway spruce is found in Maine, down into New England, and Building-Products.com

as far west as Wisconsin. You know a Norway spruce when you see it: tall, beautiful, with easily identifiable large, drooping branches. Perfect for hanging upwards of 50,000 multi-colored LED lights on five miles of wire! What makes Norway spruce even more perfect as the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree is what happens after the holidays. Once the tree comes down, it is donated to a Habitat for Humanity chapter that serves the community where the tree originated. While Christmas is a special time of togetherness for families nationwide, for a few Habitat families, the holidays are a special reminder that their house is part Christmas tree. A Rockefeller Center spokesperson added, “For years, Tishman Speyer (owner and operator of Rockefeller Center) has donated the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree to be made into lumber for Habitat for Humanity. The Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree’s lumber is returned to the community the tree came from, and for us, being able to donate the tree each year is just one small way we can give back to families in need during the holiday season.”

NYC Christmas Tree Fun Facts • There’s typically a two-week span between the time the tree arrives at Rockefeller Center and when it’s officially lit for the season. • On Christmas Day, the lights shine for a full 24 hours. • The tree typically remains lit until just after the New Year, giving December 31st revelers one last chance to soak in the lights before welcoming a brand-new year in Times Square. • The origin and species of the 89th Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree hasn’t been announced yet… but we’re keeping our fingers crossed!

From a Beautiful Tree to a Hand Up

Once Norway spruce is processed into dimension lumber, it is virtually indistinguishable from white spruce. This means that even the most experienced of graders is unable to discern one from another, and the SPFs category has more to offer builders and contractors. Approximately 65% of Norway spruce is graded at #2 and above, making it a very strong addition to the SPFs category. In areas where Norway spruce is grown, harvested, and milled, the economic impact is present for job growth along the entire log and lumber chain of command. The introduction of Norway Spruce to lumber inventories across the growing region means increasing the availability of a locally grown, renewable, strong building product. For more information on Norway spruce, please visit www.nelma.org/norwayspruce. For more on the history of the Rockefeller Center Christmas Trees, please visit www.rockefellercenter.com/holidays. – Kim Drew, APR, is a long-time communications consultant in the building products and construction industry. She may be reached at kimdrewpr@gmail.com.


November 2021 n Building Products Digest n



By Paige McAllister

Vaccine accommodations

e know there is a lot of confusion around vaccine mandates and applicable accommodations. To help you plan the best course for your company, we wanted to share some resources we have found on these topics.


President Biden’s Vaccine Mandates

President Biden recently announced several initiatives to help the country recover from the ongoing pandemic. One of those initiatives, “Vaccinating the Unvaccinated,” will implement vaccine requirements which will cover 80 million employees. These new rules will extend vaccine mandates to all federal workers and federal contractors and subcontractors. In addition, employees of private employers with 100+ employees will either have to be vaccinated or be tested weekly. These employers will also need to provide paid time off for their employees to get vaccinated and to recover from any side effects of the vaccines. OSHA is expected to issue an Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) in 30 to 60 days with a short time frame before it becomes a requirement. After six months, OSHA is expected to replace the ETS with a permanent standard.


Conversations about vaccine mandates trigger questions about reasonable accommodations. While the EEOC has not said employers can require employees to be vaccinated, it clarified that there is no law preventing an employer from establishing the requirement. Employers must apply the same requirement to employees regardless of protected group (race, gender, religion, age) and must offer reasonable accommodation due to disability or religious belief. Reasonable accommodation could include allowing the employee to work from home, requiring the employee wear a mask and socially distance from others, modifying the employee’s work shift or schedule to reduce personal interactions, mandating the employee to regularly present a negative COVID-19 test and/or creating a job reassignment. While there are many possible accommodations, employers must only offer those that are reasonable, mean-


n Building Products Digest n November 2021

ing they do not cause an undue hardship on the company. This means that what works for one company or employee may not be possible for another. Employers must be consistent in their consideration of accommodations for all employees, but every case should be assessed individually. Employers should name one person to review and maintain any reasonable accommodation requests to maintain consistency. A good process for considering a reasonable accommodation includes: ● the employee making a request for accommodation; ● employer starting a dialogue to determine what accommodations are needed and what is reasonable; ● employee providing acceptable documentation of possible accommodations; ● employer considering each accommodation to determine what is reasonable; and ● employer offering reasonable accommodation, if any. The employer should then have the employee sign a written acknowledgement of the details of accommodation including requirements, timing, an ongoing review process, repercussions if the employee fails to maintain certain standards, and the right to rescind the accommodation if needed or the situation changes. Each arrangement should be reviewed regularly to ensure it is working for the employee and the company and, if not, adjusted. The whole process must be kept confidential. Medical: Under the ADA, people with a disability that prevents them from receiving the vaccine should be offered accommodation. While most people with health issues are encouraged to get vaccinated, there are some medical conditions that may make it contraindicated such as being allergic to components in the vaccine or having a neurological condition such as Guillain-Barre Syndrome. Anyone needing accommodation due to a disability should provide documentation from their health care provider certifying they can’t receive the vaccine and outlining possible accommodations. Religious: Under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, employees can’t be required to get a vaccine if it violates their religious belief, practice, observance or sincerely-held belief. Employers do not need to accept general statements or form letters, but should require documentation from the employee’s personal religious leader explaining the reason the vaccine violates the person’s beliefs. Employers have the right to challenge a request that is not supported by documentation from the employee’s health care provider or religious leader. Even if they disagree with the documented reason, both employer and employee should defer to parameters given by the provider or leader. If employees have vaccine hesitancy, you can refer them to an unbiased resource such as the CDC and UCLA. – Paige McAllister, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, is VP for compliance of Affinity HR Group (www.affinityhrgroup.com). Building-Products.com

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DEALER Briefs Mill Creek Lumber & Supply Co., Tulsa, Ok., agreed to purchase three-unit, 50-year-old Fox Building Supply, Oklahoma City, Ok. Existing management, including Jim Fox and son J.P. Fox, will continue.

US LBM has acquired 100-yearold Oldham Lumber Co., with yards in Dallas and Melissa, Tx. GRAND OPENING of newest Pleasants Hardware in New Kent County, Va., featured community leaders, including county supervisor Tommy Tiller and local Chamber of Commerce president Sam Drewry.

Pleasants Hardware Extends in Richmond Family-owned Pleasants Hardware celebrated the opening of its newest store Oct. 2 in Quinton, Va—its ninth location in the Richmond market and second addition since Taylor’s Do it Center acquired Pleasants in 2016. The celebration began with a ribbon cutting and the company’s traditional

board cutting ceremony, followed by demos from Big Green Egg, Burly Fire Pits, STIHL, and deals and giveaways throughout the day. Managing the new store is Jason Askew, who previously headed the new Pleasants Hardware in Hanover County, which opened in March 2020.

SRS Purchases Wimsatt

In order to meet increased capacity, the complex will also expand its log yard storage and incorporate a new debarking and log processing line. A new continuous dry kiln will help ensure production capacity, while a new high-speed planer will replace the current 60-year-old equipment.

SRS Distribution, McKinney, Tx., it has acquired Wimsatt Building Materials and its eight distribution locations across Michigan and Ohio. Headquartered in Wayne, Mi., Wimsatt was founded in 1936 by James Wimsatt and his brothers and is currently run by Bob Hoffman and his sons, Rob and Charlie. Charlie Hoffman will continue to lead his dedicated team under the Wimsatt banner. SRS president and CEO Dan Tinker called Wimsatt “the preeminent distributor in Michigan and one of the most respected independents in the industry. We have admired their business over the years, and I am very excited for what we can now accomplish together.”

G-P Modernizing Texas Mills

Georgia-Pacific’s Pineland Lumber Complex, located in Pineland, Tx., will undergo $120 million in additions and improvements in an overall modernization effort that will also increase the mills’ overall production. The modifications include a new sawmill, which will replace the existing stud mill that was built in the 1960s. Construction is expected to begin early next year and is scheduled to be completed in late 2022. The current mill has the capacity to produce 380 million bd. ft. of dimensional lumber each year; the new mill’s capacity will increase to 450 million bd. ft.


Nation’s Best Adds in OK, TX

Nation’s Best continues its rapid growth with the acquisitions of 27-yearold Ron’s Lumber & Home Center, Howe, Ok., and 43-year-old Gilmer Lumber, Gilmer, Tx. Chris Miller, president and CEO of Nation’s Best, noted, “Ron’s Lumber, with its large home center and unique, niche category offerings, along with a full-line lumberyard, is central to our access to markets in Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Texas. Gilmer Lumber has been a trusted pro builder resource for nearly 100 years and complements our growing presence in the North Texas market. We are pleased to partner with the Blake and Williams families to continue our growth in these markets.” As part of Nation’s Best’s acquisition strategy, both locations will maintain operations under their existing names with their management teams overseeing company operations alongside Nation’s Best, which will provide the strategic and financial support necessary to achieve optimal growth and profitability.

n Building Products Digest n November 2021

Johns Building Supply, Pittsfield, Ma., has built a two-story, 11,000-sq. ft. hardware store across the street. Johns Ace Hardware opened to the public on Oct. 12 and will hold a grand opening Nov. 12-14. Griffin Lumber & Hardware

has increased to six locations with its purchase of Baldwin Builders Supply, Milledgeville, Ga.

Fairhaven Lumber, Fairhaven, Ma., has been acquired by Koopman Lumber Co., Whitinsville, Ma., as its 10th location. McCoy’s Building Supply

has begun construction on a new store in Spicewood, Tx., projecting a summer 2022 opening. It will feature a spacious interior retail area, paved lumberyard, and large drive-thru lumber storage area.

Genesee Lumber, Batavia, N.Y., has acquired 65-year-old Smith Lumber & Hardware Center, Lakeville, N.Y. Burggraf’s Ace Hardware, Grand Rapids, Mn., has purchased Moorhead Ace Hardware, Moorhead, Mn., from Mandy Peterson, who is retiring after 43 years due to health issues. Westlake Ace Hardware

plans to open an 18,000-sq. ft. store in Twin Oaks, Mo., in June.

Ace Hardware is opening a new store early this month in Reed City, Mi. Beacon has opened a 30,000-sq. distribution center in North Port, Fl., and a 125,000-sq. ft. OTC Network hub warehouse in Houston, Tx., which also houses will-call and central dispatch operations. Building-Products.com


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SBP Acquires Reeb, DW Distribution

Two weeks apart, Specialty Building Products, Duluth, Ga., announced plans to acquire Reeb Millwork Corp., Bethlehem, Pa., and DW Distribution, DeSoto, Tx. Reeb, reportedly the largest door fabricator in the Eastern U.S., will maintain its existing brand name, geographic locations, and management team, led by CEO Scott Kerr. Founded in 1955, DW Distribution is a third-generation, family-run distributor of LBM, millwork and doors, serving Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Arkansas and New Mexico.

West Fraser Gets Near-New SYP Mill

West Fraser Timber Co. Ltd., Vancouver, B.C., has agreed to purchase two-year-old southern yellow pine sawmill Angelina Forest Products, Lufkin, Tx., for $300 million. The state-of-the-art mill opened in late 2019 and has been steadily ramped up toward full production capacity of approximately 305 million bd. ft. Anticipated to be among the lowest-cost operations in West Fraser’s lumber mill portfolio, the Lufkin site is strategically located near low-cost and abundant fiber as well as large and growing end-markets and its additional lumber production will allow the company to better serve its growing customer base in Texas and the Southern U.S. The deal will raise West Fraser’s North American lumber production capacity to 7 billion bd. ft., half of it SYP.

Machinery, Tooling Giants Merge

USNR and Wood Fiber Group are merging to create the world’s most comprehensive supplier of equipment, technology and tooling for wood processing facilities. Woodland, Wa.-based USNR is an industry-leading global supplier of sawmill and plywood mill machinery, aftermarket parts, and technical and engineering services. Wood Fiber Group, Fitchburg, Ma., is the largest supplier of cutting tools, filing room equipment, and critical consumable products to the wood products industry, with such brands as Simonds International, Burton Saw & Supply, BGR Saws, Global Tooling, and U.S. Blades.

DSI Rebrands Product Lines

To increase its profile in the market, Digger Specialties Inc., Bremen, In., is remaking its branding structure. The DSI corporate brand will be featured with the tagline “Transforming the Outdoor Living Experience,” which reflects the premium designs of DSI building products. Aligned under the DSI brand will be product-brands with logo designs based on DSI’s Westbury Aluminum Railing logo to reflect continuity in DSI brand images. Getting new logos are Westbury, PolyRail, DSI Columns, Magena Star Lighting, and fencing lines CourtYard, Regis, Polyvinyl and PolyRail. The branding will appear on product packaging, DSI website, literature, P-O-P signage, advertising and social media. DSI president and CEO Loren “Digger” Graber said, “The new brand architecture represents our objective of making our company and products more visible in the marketplace.”

Roseburg Grows Timberlands

Roseburg, Roseburg, Or., has completed the purchase of approximately 30,000 acres of timberland in the southern U.S. from Forest Investment Associates, Atlanta, Ga. The lands, located in northeast North Carolina and southeast Virginia, consist of well-managed loblolly pine plantations. The deal follows on the heels of Roseburg’s announcement to build a high-capacity mill in nearby Weldon, N.C.


n Building Products Digest n November 2021

SUPPLIER Briefs PJ Clark has completed the purchase of the Little River Dry Kiln facility in Cadiz, Ky.

The operation, which includes 11 dry kilns, planer/grading facility, and warehouse on 23 acres, will be led by GM Jake Wallace and director of purchasing Steve Biggs.

Huttig Building Products will distribute Silvermine Stone mortarless stone veneer in New England from its DCs in Augusta, Me.; Hooksett, Ma.; and Newington, Ct.

Weyerhaeuser Distribution’s DCs in Dallas and Houston, Tx., are now supplying AZEK Building Products’ AZEK Exteriors trim and TimberTech outdoor living products througout Texas. Palmer-Donavin, Columbus, Oh., is now distributing Stone Creek Products’ Affinity Stone manufactured stone panels.

Russin, Mongomery, N.Y., is now exclusive Northeast and mid-Atlantic distributor for Tropical Forest Products’ new Black Label brand of ipé and other tropical hardwoods. Some Black Label products are already in stock; others, including branded fasteners and oil, will arrive over the next few months. BlueLinx is now stocking a full line of MoistureShield composite decking products at seven additional branches— Charlotte and Raleigh, N.C.; Denville, N.J.; Yaphank, N.Y.; Burlington, Vt.; Bellingham, Ma.; and Portland, Me. Sherwood Lumber, Melville, N.Y., is now distributing Digger Specialties Inc.’s Westbury aluminum railings in

New England and the mid-Atlantic. Sherwood was also named a premier distributor of Ply Gem Stone and ClipStone products and will begin distribution in early 2022 to the Northeast and mid-Atlantic.

Barrette Outdoor Living acquired railing manufacturer Madden Manufacturing Co., Lake Ozark, Mo. UFP Industries subsidiary UFP Distribution has acquired the operating assets of Shelter Products , Haleyville, Al., for $6.5 million. Shelter’s president and CEO Stephen Sampson will stay on as a consultant to assist with the integration of the factory-built manufacturer into UFP. Knauf Insulation will build a 600,000-sq. ft. fiberglass insulation plant in McGregor, Tx. Capital Forest Products , Annapolis, Md., has finalized its five-year-long transition to 100% employee-owned. Huttig Building Products , St. Louis, Mo., has retained Lincoln International as financial advisor to assist with “a process to evaluate potential strategic alternatives to maximize shareholder value.” M S International, Orange, Ca., acquired luxury vinyl tile manufacturer ROKplank, Cartersville, Ga. Its factory will operate under the name Premium LVT Manufacturing. AFCO Industries, Alexandria, La., is celebrating its 75th




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By Morgan Wellens

How to parlay a pandemic OVID-19 changed the building materials sector. Countless l e s s o n s h a v e e m e rg e d a s t h e pandemic has unfolded and evolved. Two years into the public health crisis, business is gradually returning to normal, but it won’t be the same as before. We’ve learned too much about who we are and what we’re capable of achieving. In my experience at Nicholson & Cates (N&C), three takeaways in particular come to mind: (1) We, as an industry, were more prepared than we thought we were. (2) Sometimes, saying “no” is just as important as saying “yes.” (3) Building materials really are essential.


Ready, or Not?

It really wasn’t the least bit funny, but we at N&C joked (in a laughto-keep-from-crying kind of way) that our experience at managing a business during a pandemic amounted to ZERO. We were pleasantly surprised, however, at our readiness to confront the challenges thrown in our path. Building products companies aren’t known to be advanced on the IT side, but collectively we had some systems that performed very well. Some of our suppliers and competitors, for example, are using live microphones in everybody’s home office. It’s turned on at the start


of the work day—although it can be muted as needed—and the whole team can talk and interact just as if they were in the office. It’s almost like being there. While those early adopters were a little bit ahead of the curve, most of us in the industry came to rely heavily on videoconferencing. For N&C, there was a realization that we had been somewhat non-inclusive prepandemic in terms of looping in some of our remote sales staff on meetings. If anything, widening the use of video calls out of necessity has helped us to liaise and communicate with those workers more efficiently today. While building materials is very much a people business, videoconferencing, live mikes, and

n Building Products Digest n November 2021

other technologies helped the industry to see that it still could thrive in an environment without onsite customer visits, travel or trade shows.

Just Say “No”

Setting up staff to work from home may have been the easiest part of N&C’s pandemic response, but learning to say “no” to employees— for the good of the company on one hand and for their own personal safety on the other—may have been the toughest. N&C, and the rest of the industry, was fortunate to experience exceptional demand this spring as public lockdowns kept people cooped up in their homes and anxious for an outlet—such as renovations. The


A Special Series from North American Wholesale Lumber Association

reversal was a welcome change from the onset of the crisis, when every commodity was crashing and the company was taking orders at a loss. But the challenge was in getting our salespeople to change gears. The makeup of a salesperson is to never tell a customer “no” if it can be helped. If we can’t provide what they need right away, we’ll quote when we will be able to fill the order. Because of the extreme demand, however, a firmer stance was warranted. Customers were willing to wait weeks for something from the mill, but we had to coach our sales team to STOP SELLING so that we could catch up. Not to mention, with the cost of raw materials going up so fast, taking orders for, say, eight weeks out was going to be a moneylosing move. That was really tough for the sales team. If there’s an order on the table, they want to take it— that’s the nature of the job.

was critical for vaccine distribution. It was a rewarding process to learn a little more about some of our customers and why they warranted an “essential” label. Not only that, it was a great opportunity to convey to them the importance of N&C remaining open in order to continue its support of essential supply chains. Not only has the industry proven to be essential, it has demonstrated that it is adaptable. There are certain areas that we still don’t know how well they’re going to work when business returns to normal; for instance having to hire and train people remotely is one of the little obstacles that I’m not sure we’ve managed to overcome yet. But certainly we have managed to overcome all the other ones, so I think that we will. – Morgan Wellens is sales and marketing manager for the trading division of Nicholson & Cates, Burlington, Ont. (www.niccates.com), and a member of NAWLA’s board of directors.

“Essentially,” a Win

About NAWLA North American Wholesale Lumber Association is the association that delivers unparalleled access to relationships and resources that improve business strategy and performance through sales growth, cost savings, and operational efficiencies for wholesalers and manufacturers of forest products and other building materials that conduct business in North America. Learn how NAWLA can help your business at nawla.org.


Meanwhile, for our employees in the mill and distribution settings, who were not able to perform their functions from home, N&C had to say “no” when those workers started feeling the fatigue from wearing masks during their entire shifts, having their temperature checked every day, sanitizing and other pandemic safety protocols. The pushback was strong, with some mill staff even threatening to quit. To help them feel safe and comfortable, we took measures such adding evening and weekend shifts and paying overtime so that we could split people up and avoid overcrowding at any one site at any given time. While there was a bit of staff turnover nonetheless and some older people at the mill did elect to stay home, N&C was able to maintain staffing levels. We actually pulled in some folks from the food and beverage industry—not too many, but enough to compensate and avoid a huge labor shortage—since restaurants and bars were shut down.

The government didn’t classify restaurants and bars as essential services; and for a moment, the status of Canada’s building products firms was up in the air. Local government officials had advised us to assemble lists of essential services that they then would review. As we began to look at our customer base and do a little more analysis on the supply chain we support, it became increasingly clear just how vast the reach of lumber products truly is. It can support everything from the food and the pharmaceutical packaging industries to nuclear energy to refrigeration—which, as we know,

November 2021 n Building Products Digest n


MOVERS & Shakers

Mark Hennessey, ex-Arrow Building Centers, is now general mgr. of Spring Lake Park Lumber Co., Spring Lake Park, Mn. Jack Saunders joined the industrial sales team at United Treating & Distribution, Muscle Shoals, Al. Andrew Tate is new to outside sales. Don Riley, ex-Cornerstone, joined US LBM, Buffalo Grove, Il., as executive VP and COO. Manish Shanbhag is now executive VP and general counsel, and Pat Managan, senior VP of supply chain. Josh Moore, ex-Georgia-Pacific, has rejoined Canfor, Mobile, Al., as sales mgr.-SYP specialty lumber. Rudy Juroshek, ex-Lowe’s, joined the sales team at Huston Lumber, North Plainfield, N.J. Justin St. Hilaire has been promoted to president of Harvey Building Products, Londonberry, N.H. Anna Hall-Klaers, Simonson Lumber, St. Cloud, Mn., has been appointed BisTrack implementation mgr. Patrick Burke is gypsum mgr. at Maner Builders Supply, Augusta, Ga. Mark Godwin, ex-Winton Plywood, is now sawmill superintendent at MidSouth Lumber, Meridian, Ms.


LSI Rebrands as Arxada Chase Williamson was promoted to territory sales mgr., primarily for Virginia, with Do it Best Corp. Trish Boomsma is the new branch mgr. at L&W Supply, Grand Rapids, Mi. Alex Mallon is a new window specialist at Drexel Building Supply, New Berlin, Wi. Connor Smith has been promoted to branch mgr. at Lansing Building Products, Columbus, Oh. Bridgette Gage joined Cornerstone Building Brands, Cary, N.C., as senior VP-supply chain. Keith Scherzer is now senior VP-operations, U.S. Windows Group.

Specialty chemicals company LSI has rebranded as Arxada, effective Oct. 21. The new name follows the firm’s recent launch as an independent business, after the completion of Lonza Group’s sale of Lonza Specialty Ingredients. The re-brand reflects the company’s passion for delivering high performance and realizing potential, both for its customers and within its own operations. The name Arxada derives from arx and arcis, the Latin words for citadel and fortress. In the same way a citadel acts as a protector, Arxada provides solutions that strengthen the performance of its customers and their products, and help protect people, places and the planet.

Brett Katsma has joined SPAX/ Altenloh, Brinck & Co. US, Bryan, Oh., as product mgr., focusing on structural applications. Chris Portwood is the new yard operations mgr. at FoxworthGalbraith Lumber Co., Norman, Ok. Eric Butzier has been named senior VP of finance for Contract Lumber, Pataskala, Oh. Ferris Wheeler is making the rounds as chief morale officer for MungusFungus Forest Products, Climax, Nv., report owners Hugh Mungus and Freddy Fungus.

n Building Products Digest n November 2021

DURING the American Wood Protection Association’s annual meeting in Nashville, president Jim Healey presented Tank Fab Inc. owner Tom Lippincott (right) with the AWPA Award of Merit for his contributions to the wood preservation industry. His innovations included reducing the time it takes to treat wood within the treating cylinder, and bulk piling wood packs.


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Do it Best Fall Market

Sales momentum energizes Do it Best fall market

DO IT BEST retailer members brought home the bacon from the group’s fall market—$170 million in rebates, as announced by president and CEO Dan Starr.

Do it Best kicked off its fall market at the Indiana Convention Center in Indianapolis, eagerly welcoming member-owners and vendors from across the country. The annual event, held Sept. 27-30, offered key industry insights, proven best practices, and exclusive purchasing opportunities. The co-op celebrated a record-setting year, with $5.19 billion in sales and an incredible $170-million member rebate. With the theme of “Building for Growth,” Do it Best leaders shared how the co-op plans to accelerate member growth in the year ahead. Do it Best loaded the busy event with new product reveals, seminars on operational and marketing excellence, and exclusive deals on hot products. A highlight was the debut of a new Signature Store Design program, which transforms the customer experience inside and out. The new design combines modern style, bright open floor plans, and engaging displays to create a superior shopping and buying experience.


“There is a tremendous opportunity for Do it Best members to build on the impressive growth we achieved together over this last year,” said Dan Starr, Do it Best president and CEO. “We want to provide every member with the opportunity to continue growing their business in the years ahead through new programs, store expansions and acquiring additional locations. We’re confident they’ll leave Indy with the confidence and inspiration to take full advantage of the momentum that’s been built.” The market opened Monday morning with the Power Preview at nearby Victory Field, a hands-on experience featuring the latest in power tools and grilling equipment, along with delicious grilled samples. Later that morning, Knowledge Central offered a full slate of free seminars, ranging from recruiting and hiring the best talent to building a powerful digital marketing program, and more. At lunchtime the LBM Industry Update provided the

n Building Products Digest n November 2021

latest insights on industry trends, challenges and areas of opportunity. That afternoon, the Merchandising Preview allowed members to maximize their purchasing game plan before they hit the market floor. Core Solutions presented 6,000 sq. ft. of the best outdoor product assortments, and in the New Item Gallery, members discovered an exciting selection of new products, hand-picked by Do it Best merchandising experts. Running throughout the week, Sneak Peek gave access to a select group of vendors with show-exclusive deals on popular products. Day two began with the Market Kickoff, where attendees gained insights on growth strategies while saluting member and vendor excellence. The 2021 Vendors of the Year were announced, including Stanley Black & Decker (for Overall Sales Growth and Power Tools), Metal Sales (LBM Excellence and Building MaterialsDirect), Canfor (Lumber), RoyOMartin (Structural Panels), Deckorators (Millwork), Quikrete (Building Materials), Channellock (Hand Tools), and Hillman Group (Hardware). Afterward, LBM Super Specials let dealers lock in amazing deals from key lumber mills and building material suppliers. The evening concluded with the much-anticipated LBM Reception. After another busy day on the market floor, members gathered on Wednesday night for the annual Shareholders’ Meeting & President’s Address. During the high point of the evening, members received their share of their co-op’s record-shattering rebate. “Attending the Do it Best fall market is more than an opportunity for our members to build their businesses,” Starr said. “It’s a chance to build relationships with other members, our vendors, and our team. To connect with long-time friends and discover new ones. To learn from each other and help every member grow their business—together.” Building-Products.com




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NEW Products

Super Mark It Tough-Terrain Combi Goes Electric Combilift’s new multidirectional Combi-XLE electric forklift offers up to 10,000-lb. lift capacity, while combining emission-free operation with powerful performance. The original engine-powered XL C-Series model was developed for tough working environments. The new version retains such key design features as high ground clearance, large cushioned front and rear tires, and a spacious cab, for smooth, comfortable operation on semi-rough terrain. Other features include all-wheel traction that reduces tire wear, load swing, and enhances braking, and Eco-Steer System for a smaller turning radius and improved user experience.

Duramark’s ChalkShot from U.S. Tape provides a unique, high-visibility, nonpermanent marking solution when working on greasy, dirty, rust-covered and other hard-to-mark surfaces. The dispenser shoots chalk with high-visibility green nonpermanent pigment to mark on drywall, concrete, metal and dirty surfaces. The marking dye is environmentally friendly and can wipe off easily if a mark needs to be moved, yet it is also long lasting. By reaching where pencils can’t reach, it can mark up to a 2” thick template and can be used at every angle. One unit can mark over 250 locations. n CHALKSHOT.COM (800) 472-8273

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Wide Views

Bosch Power Tools’ new 12V and 18V cordless sanders—the GEX12V-5 and GEX18V-12 Brushless 5” Random Orbit Sanders—feature brushless motors and are designed for optimal balance and convenience, allowing users to tackle hard-to-reach work areas with power, control and precision. In addition to an ergonomic palm-grip design, they offer a compact body with close-to-the-workpiece design for control, an easy-to-reach on/off switch for intuitive operation, and a vibration-dampening element to help minimize user fatigue.

Weather Shield has expanded its Contemporary Collection and Premium Series aluminum-clad wood windows and patio doors with newly-redesigned multi-slide door systems that combine improved performance, modern styling, and easy assembly with narrow profiles for expansive, unobstructed views. With options up to 57’6” wide, the new multi-slide doors are available with designer hardware and two panel variations to ensure balanced and clean viewing experiences. The Contemporary Collection comes with narrow stiles and rails that are 3-1/4” wide, while the Premium Series offers a wider 5-1/8” stile and rail with a height range that can be expanded up 12 ft. The panels for both are 2-1/4” thick.

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Orbit Sanders


n Building Products Digest n November 2021


Trendy Swingers Customer-Connected Software Buildxact, the leading estimating and project management software for residential construction, is now offering construction management software for pro dealers. This one-of-a-kind connectivity lets dealers collaborate online with their customers to build loyalty and win more work. Dealers can now collaborate with their customers across estimating, quoting and orders to create project cost estimates. With actual costs from the dealer’s integrated price lists, builders can work with them on quote requests for specialty items and streamline purchase orders with correct product SKUs to ensure accuracy and increase speed. n BUILDXACT.COM (972) 587-7057

The reimagined Marvin Ultimate Swinging door and Ultimate Swinging French door G2 prioritize beauty and expert craftmanship with a contemporary aesthetic and more expansive glass, allowing for more light and views. Available in both inswing and outswing configurations, they offer customizable finishes, flexible configurations and sizing options for refined style in any space. Exterior-facing aluminum is finished with industry-leading, commercial-grade paint for resistance to fading and chalking. For interior tones, choose between Marvin’s selection of natural, stained or painted wood. Each individual piece of wood is sanded, conditioned, stained and oven-cured before pieces are clear-coated, sanded and clear-coated again for an ideal finish. n MARVIN.COM (888) 537-7828

Black Mesquite Flooring Elemental Hardwoods has expanded its exotic hardwood flooring line with the addition of Black Mesquite, a beautiful, hard-to-source species known for its extreme stability, durability, distinctive character, and chocolate and gray brown grain patterns. Sourced sustainably from Argentina and Paraguay, Black Mesquite is dense, with a silky texture, wild grain and character, possessing a range of lustrous brown and gray-brown colors that will darken with age. Its extreme stability makes it not only highly workable, but also a top choice for glue- or nail-down applications, especially in difficult environments. The flooring is available in unfinished square edge TG4S in ½” and ¾” thicknesses, widths that span from 3” to 8”, and 1’ to 7’ lengths. n ELEMENTALHARDWOODS.COM (504) 756-8876


n Building Products Digest n November 2021

Wire-Brushed Stair Treads Viewrail has added wire-brushed stair treads to its collection of treads for Flight, Stratus and Terrace floating stair systems. They are also available as stand-alone items. The process of wire brushing wood with the grain brings out the unique aspects of each grain of the tread, producing a weathered or aged look, as well as a tactile feel and a more vibrant appearance. The exposed heartwood is more resistant to normal wear. Treads come in 15 species, 39 finishes, and six widths (36” to 72”) with left, right or double returns. n VIEWRAIL.COM (866) 261-8013 Building-Products.com


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Northeast manufacturers revel Northeastern Lumber Manufacturers Association was back in-person celebrating pandemic survival and lumber revival at Lumbah Paloozah, its 88th annual meeting (and festival). Held Sept. 15-17 at the Omni Resort in Bretton Woods, N.H., activities included a scramble golf tournament, economic presentation by Paul Jannke, a look at the latest equipment and technology on Vendor’s Row, and fun with The Maine Cabin Masters (at right). As a bonus, NAWLA concurrently held its Northeast regional meeting (see bottom of next page).









HEADLINING the NELMA annual meeting: [1] Kim Drew with Maine Cabin Masters Chase Morrill, Ashley Morrill Eldridge, Ryan Eldridge. [2] Andy Loiacano, Robert Weithofer, Jordan Rago. [3] Win Smith, Jim Robbins, Gil Adams, Alden Robbins. [4] Josh Phillips, Nate Barrett, Clint Vinson. [5] Todd Bennett, Sue Mendleson. [6] Mark Anthoine Jr., Josh Chase, Building-Products.com




12 William Edwards. [7] Ryan Satterfield, Sean Covell, Eric McCoy. [8] Ben Crowell, B. Manning, Tim Stovall. [9] Ginny Prey, Jethro Poulin. [10] Matt Chesley, Bob Bell. [11] Jeremy Howard, Henco Viljoen, Khurran Irshad. [12] Christian & Ann Smith. (More photos on next page) November 2021 n Building Products Digest n














24 NELMA: [13] Michael Conlin, Ryan Wittig, Jeff Evans. [14] William Edwards, Brian Moses. [15] Beth & Steve Singleton. [16] Jeff Hardy, Geoff Gannon, Bob Pope, Jon Comber. [17] Jack Bowen, Rob Hoffman, Tim Stovall. [18] Mike Kretchmer, Elizabeth Dingley, Matt Pomeroy. [19] Jeff Easterling, Russell Edgar, David Kretschmann. [20] Mark Metzger. [21] Susan Coulombe, Jim Dermody, Tonia Tibbetts. [22] Karl Smith, Phyllis & Prisco DiPrizio, Evelyn & Hal Smith. [23] Paul Jannke, John Krueger. [24] Chuck Casey, Mark Swets.


NAWLA Northeast Regional Meeting North American Wholesale Lumber Association staged its Northeast regional meeting in partnership with NELMA’s annual meeting Sept. 16 at the Omni Mount Washington Resort in Bretton Woods, N.H.

n Building Products Digest n November 2021

NAWLA put a clever twist on the networking event—presenting it as “Speed Dating” between mills and the wholesalers—as the one-on-one conversations were limited to a few minutes and then partners rotated.


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Trust Through Tags (Continued from page 16)

ink systems. The white opaque material is 5-mil polypropylene with a two-sided matte finish. The construction offers strength and rigidity, so the tags will not rip or tear from being stapled to the boards. “Protecting the Culpeper brand identity and reinforcing their positioning is always top of mind,” said Ben Schneider, senior account manager, MidSouth Design. “These tags provide instant brand recognition with visual consistency in both layout and the use of color as a distinguisher of the product category. “We use every bit of available space on the tags to effectively leverage the Culpeper graphics and detailed user information. And with a label that’s just seven-eighths of an inch by 2 inches, we have to be extremely precise. There is no margin for error.” The tag material and inks are engineered with added durability to withstand full exposure to the treatment chemicals. In addition, tagged lumber on a job site is subjected to all types of weather conditions. The printing cannot fade or smear, so there is a higher level of UV resistance and added protection from abrasion.

“While some people might look at Culpeper products as just wood boards, we take our packaging and branding efforts very seriously,” Brown said. “It comes down to how we represent the Culpeper brand with customer support. And that support begins with the end tags.” “They have to confirm the customer’s decision to use our products. That’s why every tag must be completely readable. They also have to be front and center on the end of every board at retail and the job site. When you consider the level of information those tags have to carry, legibility is a must and losing even one in transit is not acceptable,” he added. – Michael Vejar is VP of sales & marketing for MidSouth Design, Birmingham, Al. (www.midsouthdesign.net), manufacturer

DATE Book Listings are often submitted months in advance. Always verify dates and locations with sponsor before making plans to attend. Northeastern Retail Lumber Association – Nov. 3, fall roundtable, Beauport Hotel, Gloucester, Ma.; www.nrla.org. Northwestern Lumber Association – Nov. 3, sales seminar, BlueLinx, Brooklyn Park, Mn.; Nov. 9-11, Estimating 1-2-3, Delta Hotels, Menomonee Falls, Wi.; www.nlassn.org. Midwest Building Suppliers Association – Nov. 3, Roadshow annual meeting, Grand Rapids, Mi.; Nov. 4, Canton, Mi.; Nov. 11, Carmel, In.; www.thembsa.org. Building Material Suppliers Association – Nov. 7-9, purchasing manager roundtable, Savannah, Ga.; www.mybmsa.org. Eastern New York Lumber Dealers Assn. – Nov. 9, annual meeting/ tradeshow, Holiday Inn, Saratoga Springs, N.Y.; www.nrla.org. Florida Building Material Alliance – Nov. 9, blueprint reading workshop, Mt. Dora, Fl.; www.fbma.org. North American Wholesale Lumber Association – Nov. 10-12, annual NAWLA Traders Market, Louisville, Ky.; www.nawla.org. Western New York Lumber Dealers Association – Nov. 12, annual meeting, ARTISANworks, Rochester, N.Y.; www.nrla.org. Northern New York Lumber Dealers Association – Nov. 13, annual bowling tournament, Market Lanes, Potsdam, N.Y.; www.nrla.org. Northeastern Retail Lumber Association – Nov. 15, Rising Women in the Lumber Industry roundtable, Lenox, Ma.; www.nrla.org.

COLOR CODING—such as orange for #1 Grade Ground Contact and green for #2 Ground Contact—makes the grades easily identifiable and enriches the Culpeper brand.

For example, Culpeper has a treating operation in Lancaster, Ma. They treat year-round at the facility, so when the wood comes out of the treater in the winter, it freezes. Still, the tag must hold up against all the elemental conditions. As for the tagging process, that’s done in the lumberyard. Culpeper uses the MidSouth Tagger, a pneumatic stapler engineered by MidSouth Design that automatically feeds a single tag from a roll and simultaneously staples it in place. Compared to holding a stapler in one hand and a roll of tags in the other, the MidSouth Tagger combines both elements into a single action. This increases productivity and speedto-market for Culpeper. Lumber end tags do not require approval from Underwriters Laboratories, but they do offer compliance elements about the chemical preservative, affiliation with a third-party inspection agency, industry standards regarding use, warranty statement, and treating plant location.


n Building Products Digest n November 2021

Construction Suppliers Association – Nov. 16-18, estimating training; Residence Inn Bricktown, Oklahoma City, Ok.; www.gocsa.com. Deck Expo – Nov. 16-8, in conjunction with International Pool Spa Patio Expo, Dallas, Tx.; www.poolspapatio.com. Eastern Building Material Dealers Assn. – Nov. 18, annual meeting, Hilton Garden Inn-Inner Harbor, Baltimore, Md.; www.nrla.org. Rhode Island Lumber & Building Material Dealers Assn. – Nov. 19, holiday party, Downtown Marriott, Providence, R.I.; www.nrla.org. New Jersy Building Material Dealers Association – Dec. 1, holiday lunch & board meeting, Wolfgang’s Steakhouse, Somerville, N.J.; www.nrla.org. Northwestern Lumber Association – Dec. 1, contractor sales seminar, Sioux Falls, S.D.; Dec. 6-7, Estimating 2 & 3, Omaha, Ne.; www.nlassn.org. Northeastern Retail Lumber Association – Dec. 7-9, fall roundtable; Dec. 8-9, 128th LBM Expo, Rhode Island Convention Center, Providence, R.I.; www.nrla.org. Mid-America Lumbermens Association – Dec. 8-9, Estimating 2 & 3, Kansas City, Mo.; www.themla.com. Northwestern Lumber Association – Dec. 14, contractor sales seminar, Lake Delton, Wi.; www.nlassn.org. Building-Products.com

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Ace Garners Big Turnout

More than 10,000 attended Ace Hardware’s recent fall convention in Orlando, Fl. Ace occupied more than 800,000 sq. ft. indoors, with an additional 150,000 sq. ft. outdoors for grilling and outdoor power equipment. The outdoor space— featuring outdoor power and BBQ demos as well as the latest grilling innovations from the top grill brands —was twice the size of Ace’s last inperson show held in Atlanta in 2019. In all, there were over 3,300 Ace stores in attendance from all 50 states and over 1,200 vendor exhibits making this year’s event one of the most successful in recent years, with attendance exceeding Ace’s last in person convention in Atlanta in 2019. Additional show highlights included more than 15,000 new items added to the RSC network, countless impactful programs unveiled, 8,000 vendor deals, nearly 50 live and virtual training sessions, more than 200 Ace Handyman Services franchisees attending for the first time, and—despite torrential rains—more than 5,500 attendees participated in the private Ace night at Universal Studios.

IN Memoriam Dale Lee Bell, 67, salesman at T.H. Rogers Lumber Co., Neosho, Mo., died Aug. 20. Prior to joining T.H. Rogers, he worked in sales for Tap Jac Home Center, Carthage, Mo., and spent 38 years with Four State Supply, Joplin, Mo.


Thomas James “Tom” Quick, 91, retired co-owner of Thomas E. Quick Lumber Co., Roscoe, N.Y., passed away Oct. 11. He helped operate the family lumberyard from 1950 to 1972 and from 1962 to 1968 he, his father, and his brother ran a lumberyard in the Dominican Republic. He then worked as a lumber broker and lumber grader until retiring to Florida in 2016. Robert Paul Cameron, 87, longtime manager with Crane Johnson Lumber Co., passed away Oct. 13 in Fargo, N.D. After his discharge from the U.S. Army in 1955, he attended Aaker’s Business College, Grand Forks, N.D., then joined Crane Johnson in Fargo. He worked at yards in Pelican Rapids, Mn., and Cooperstown, before being named manager of the Hallock, Mn., yard in 1969. He was named the chain’s Manager of the Year several times. Carl L. Rosenberry, 90, retired co-owner of Carl Rosenberry & Sons Lumber, Fort Loudon, Pa., died Oct. 1. After his discharge from the U.S. Air Force in 1955, he joined his father as a partner in the lumber company. His father retired five years later, and Carl took full charge. He was later joined by his own sons to form Carl Rosenberry & Sons Lumber. Jean A. Feltz, 90, co-owner of Feltz Lumber Co., Stevens Point, Wi., passed away Oct. 16. In the early 1950s, when her husband, Albert, returned from the Korean War,

n Building Products Digest n November 2021

the couple joined his father as partners in the sawmill. They passed the business on to their sons in the late 1970s. James Joseph “Jim” Maloney Jr., 82, former owner and president of St. Georges Lumber Co., St. Georges, De., passed away Sept. 15 in Port Charlotte, Fl. A graduate of Goldey Beacom College, he was a sergeant in the Delaware Air National Guard, flying supplies overseas during the Vietnam War. Robert Joseph Potvin, 89, founder and operator of Potvin Lumber Co., Stamford, Vt., died Oct. 6 in Stamford. John H.P. Brightman Jr., 83, owner of Brightman Lumber Co., Assonet, Ma., died Aug. 20.

TALK Back REFLECT & REMEMBER Thanks for putting things in perspective with your latest column (“Things We’ve Lived Through,” BPD Oct., p. 8). You always lead me to nod my head, take a step back, reflect and remember we are here for a short time. It is always good to do the right thing for our fellow man. Hoping your supplier delivers a better outcome for your family. Mark Reum Avon Plastics Paynesville, Mn. Building-Products.com


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89 Years Ago This Month


ighty-nine years ago this month, in November of 1932, BPD’s sister publication, The California Lumber Merchant, noted slipping lumber production as the country struggled with the Great Depression. Nonetheless, the lumber industry remained one of the largest employers in the nation during the Great Depression. In Idaho, 72% of all wageearners were employed in sawmilling or logging operations. Out of the state’s 15,648 wage earners in 1929, 11,228 were employed by mills or logging firms. These businesses paid $16,051,860 in wages, leading to production of $33,886,402 worth of products. In other news of November 1932: • Nineteen leaders in the lumber industry, representing about every species of wood grown in the U.S., accepted Secretary of Commerce Roy Chapin’s invitation to help draft a new lumber manual for the use of the federal government. The committee, chaired by

THE NOVEMBER 1932 issue of The California Lumber Merchant promoted Union Lumber Co.’s Noyo Brand Redwood interior paneling.

Weyerhaeuser executive George F. Lindsay, was to work with the Commerce Department’s National Committee on Wood Utilization to create a handbook of recommended uses for softwood and hardwood lumber. The federal government was purchasing a billion feet of lumber annually, but a “lack of dependable information regarding species and grades for each particular purpose led in many cases to wrongful and

uneconomic use and has resulted to the disadvantage of both producers and consumers.” The committee’s aim was “closer and more intelligent utilization of wood, not only as a practical means of promoting reforestation, but primarily for the elimination of consumer waste.” They, in fact, boldly predicted “that the Government will become the leader in the movement of putting each wood to its rightful and most economic use.” • The original Humboldt Redwood Co.—which operated a large redwood mill in Eureka, Ca.— was purchased by the Hammond & Little River Redwood Co., San Francisco. Hammond discontinued the Humboldt Redwood name, which was picked up 76 years later as the new name of the former Pacific Lumber Co. operations.

HAMMOND LUMBER CO. provided the redwood seating installed in the new grandstands at the Los Angeles County Fairgrounds in Pomona, Ca.


n Building Products Digest n November 2021

• Lumber manufacturers increasingly began demanding that railroads ship them products in wood-walled and roofed boxcars instead of suspect steel cars. National Lumber Manufacturers Association explained that their insistence was not just to promote the use of their own products, but “fully justified by the superior protection given by wood cars to their contents.” They claimed that steel boxcar roofs frequently leaked. The railroads responded that they had little choice, since the vast majority of their boxcars had metal roofs. Building-Products.com


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