The Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors’ National Association (SMACNA) said “aloha” to Maui recently for its 65th annual convention. According to the association, more than 1,400 people attended enjoying meals, concerts, recreation, products, and educational and business sessions at the Grand Wailea Resort and Spa.

The four-day event kicked off on Sunday with the College of Fellows golf outing. This event raised money to fund future scholarships. Later that evening a meet-and-greet reception welcomed all members and attendees. Over the next three days, convention business transpired.

New SMACNA executive committee members: (left to right) Immediate Past President Ron Palmerick, AABCO Sheet Metal Co., Ridgewood, N.Y.; Vice President Richard Rivera, Key Air Conditioning Contractors Inc., Santa Fe Springs, Calif.; President John Ilten, Ilten’s Inc., Cedar Rapids, Iowa; President-Elect John Lindemulder, Amber Mechanical Contractors Inc., Alsip, Ill.; and Secretary-Treasurer James Boone, New England Sheet Metal Works Inc., Fresno, Calif. The committee will serve until October 2009.


The SMACNA board of directors installed its new executive committee that will serve until Oct. 14, 2009. John Ilten, president of Ilten’s Inc., Cedar Rapids, Iowa, was named president.

“These are exciting times for our industry,” he commented, looking forward to his time of service. “This year, I will have the honor to shepherd SMACNA’s strategic planning process to focus our products, services, and industry involvement to make my fellow contractors and SMACNA even greater leaders in this industry. Great change is in our future and with it will come great opportunity. I’m excited and honored to be at the helm of SMACNA during these changing times.”

Other executive committee members include: John Lindemulder, chairman of Amber Mechanical Contractors Inc. of Alsip, Ill., who will serve as president-elect; Richard Rivera, president and CEO of Key Air Conditioning Contractors Inc. of Santa Fe Springs, Calif., who will serve as vice president; and James Boone, president and CEO of New England Sheet Metal Works Inc., Fresno, Calif., who was elected as secretary-treasurer. SMACNA also designated Ron Palmerick of AABCO Sheet Metal Co in Ridgewood, N.Y., to serve as immediate past president.

The SMACNA board of directors received new members during the convention. William Blazvick of Royal Metal Works Inc., Las Vegas; Richard Freeman of Stromberg Metal Works Inc., Beltsville, Md.; Richard Mertz of H.T. Lyons Inc., Allentown, Pa.; and Matthew Smith of Smith Heating and Air Conditioning Inc., Stockton, Calif., were all elected to four-year terms that began at the close of the convention.


Multiple awards were announced at the convention as well. Keith Wilson, CEO of Miller Bonded Inc., Albuquerque, N.M., received the SMACNA Contractor of the Year award.

“Keith has been heavily involved in SMACNA both at the national and local levels for many years,” said Palmerick. “His dedication to promoting partnerships between labor and management and his vision for the future have proven invaluable.”

David McCoy, executive director of the New Mexico Sheet Metal Contractors Association (NMSMCA) in Albuquerque, N.M., received the Petersen-Dunn Award for Chapter Executive of the Year. The award is presented annually to the SMACNA chapter executive who has made a substantive contribution to the local association and SMACNA.

Dwight Silvia, CEO of D.D.S. Industries Inc. in Somerset, Mass., was recognized as the Legislative Contractor of the Year; David Oschman, president of Striker Sheet Metal Inc. of Medford, N.Y., was recognized with the Distinguished Legislative Service Award; and Thomas Gunning, executive director of SMACNA Boston was recognized as the Chapter Executive Legislative Advocate of the Year.


Along with special speakers hosting luncheons, breakfasts, and business planning sessions, there were four specific market sector forums - HVAC contractors, architectural contractors, industrial contractors, and residential contractors.

Jerry Yudelson, principal of Yudelson Associates, led the HVAC contractors forum “Catching the Green Wave: New Business Opportunities in Sustainable Design and Development.” As the leading national green building authority, according to SMACNA, Yudelson discussed where the green wave is going and how participants could catch and ride this wave to create new business. He also discussed the current state of green buildings and the latest technology developments in the field.

The Product Show on Tuesday morning hosted an array of industry suppliers, giving attendees the chance to have open discussions about new and future products. The four-hour session included a continental breakfast and over 25 exhibitors.

The final evening of the convention brought attendees together for a special dinner, including entertainment by Huey Lewis and The News. Next year’s event is planned for Oct. 11-15 at the Desert Springs JW Marriott Hotel and Spa in Palm Desert, Calif.

Publication Date:12/22/2008