BEC 2019 was like a blur to me. One moment it’s starting and the next I’m in a crazy cab line at 3:30AM headed back to the airport. Thankfully I took notes along the way to share with everyone… My overall feel was the event was a huge success at every level. Networking is always top notch and it did not disappoint this year. More on that below. The educational content was off the charts incredible. We had a lot of new voices and personalities on stage and they brought a great energy to the event. There was so much detailed info that it almost was too much (if that’s possible!) The planning committee has its work cut out for it for 2020. One person I hope is back at the next BEC is Cynthia Paul of FMI- her forecast and sharp presentation was a major highlight for me. On a personal note, I was very fortunate to host a panel that featured some serious brilliance. Paul Robinson of Pioneer, Brian Filipiak of Alliance Glazing and Neil Opfer from UNLV were fabulous. Getting to work with industry guys like Paul and Brian was a thrill for me- they are superstars.
– The tabletop area was really interesting- so many neat products- main ones that stood out were the handrail glass and IG with glass spacer from sedak. The other one was the new safety clothing from Bohle America. I saw this material at glasstec and fell in love and now its advanced from what was on the floor in Germany. Game changer for safety.
– So now on to the networking and the folks I got to run into and visit with… and I’ll say it up front, it is an honor to share an industry with these folks and all that attended. Class acts everywhere!
– So the industry MVP from 2018 was there and getting a few minutes with Nathalie Thibault of Prelco is awesome. As is reminiscing with her co-worker Greg DiVona. Greg remembers me when I was breaking in and he treated me just as great then as he does now- I will always be grateful for that. It was great to Darand Davies who just started a new company Black Line Glazing and was 150 pounds lighter- he looked tiptop! Meanwhile seeing Keith Stockman of Glassworks was very nice, a reminder of a great friend from past work history.
– Dan Pompeo, one of the best manufacturers reps around was a bit down in the dumps, after all it’s been like 28 days since one of his Boston teams won a world title. Poor guy. LOL. I always love visiting with Mike Gainey of Ensinger. Mike’s knowledge base never fails to impress me and I always learn something when we visit. The same goes for Dr. Helen Sanders, as it doesn’t matter what she’s focused on- I am learning.
– It was very cool to meet Josh Wignall of EFCO for the first time in person. He is a force online with a great marketing mind, so to meet him face to face was an honor. Same with Steven Brooks of Smart Lift USA. His energy level is infectious! Not the first time I met him but it was Tom Donovan of Suntuitive’s first BEC and it looked like he was doing well with tons of people interested in his growing product.
– A blast from the past was Brad Austin of Harmon- this event and its success can be sourced back to the support that Brad gave it in the early years when he was at Viracon. And of course speaking of that great company, once again my admiration for Garret Henson, Cameron Scripture, and Seth Madole could not be any higher. Such good people and I appreciate them giving me just a few seconds of their time. Same with Jim Stathopoulos of Ajay Glass who is always welcoming and classy.
– This was the 2nd BEC where NGA and GANA were combined and I thought about the commitments that people like Stanley Yee of Dow made to make this industry better. Stanley is always ten steps ahead of the rest of us. So is Julie Schimmelpenningh of Eastman. We were on same flight out and got to catch up at the airport because once we get to the conference Julie gets mobbed by people and I never see her again. Same scenario with Chris Dolan of Guardian- airport catch up and then not again. Their popularity is awesome.
– It wouldn’t be a BEC without celebrating a birthday for Jerry Moser of RA Kennedy. Jerry is an absolute legend. Love the guy. And if I didn’t include Max Halls and Ian Patlin is that same category I’d be doing a massive disservice to them.
– It would not be an industry event if I didn’t see the great Tom O’Malley from Clover Architectural and the amazing Shelly Farmer from Trex Commercial. Both of them do such a great job working the room and event- they get it. I should put Chuck Knickerbocker of TGP in that same group too!
– I was bummed that Jon Kimberlain of Dow could not make it to the event. Jon is another one who had such a major role in BEC’s past; it was noticeable not to have him there. Hopefully he followed along on social media.
– Last this week a quick story. Twice during the event I was confused for Max Halls. Both folks who confused me for Max had a bit too much to drink but I have to say I was pretty pumped to be confused for a very skinny, tanned guy with great hair. I guess I should hang around folks drinking more? Anyway this event is now done, now my focus show wise will be on GlassBuild America in September. Get ready folks we have an event like no other coming in a few months… and we are going to pack the A-T-L with thousands of glass industry professionals who all want to advance their businesses and careers.
VIDEO of the WEEK
If you didn’t catch the first season of Cobra Kai on YouTube last year you missed out. Now comes the trailer for season 2 and my gosh it looks good. Plus I’m loving the remix/remake of Bananarama’s “Cruel Summer.”
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