Craftsman Fabricated Glass president Bob Lawrence says he has friends, family and golf in mind now that he has retired.
Lawrence, who has been in the business for 45 years, delivered the news Monday in a widely-circulated e-mail to friends, family and industry insiders. Lawrence, during his years, had owned Glass Wholesalers Inc. (GWI), and Craftsman Glass, among others and has long been a strong voice within the glass community.
“The glass industry has been an important part of my life since 1968,” he says in the e-mail. “I extend my humble thanks for your support of our company and for being an integral part of the Craftsman organization becoming something truly unique … it is more than just a glass fabrication plant.”
Lawrence has often spoken of getting into the glass business by “accident” by taking a job as a draftsman with El Paso Plate Glass and Materials Co. while attending the University of Texas-El Paso (then called Texas Western), where he later received an electrical engineering degree.
He later took a sales job with American Saint-Gobain (ASG) before eventually assuming a manager’s position with Glass Wholesalers. Lawrence continued to expand his business footprint, eventually becoming a partner at Craftsman Fabricated Glass in 1991 and later the company’s president and sole owner.
Also that year, he established a manufacturing and distribution group of companies called Glass Wholesalers, Inc. Craftsman Fabricated Glass blossomed under his leadership. Cristacurva assumed majority ownership of Craftsman in 2010.
“As a company, we’ve been blessed with an abundance of great employees, customers and vendors,” Lawrence says in the e-mail. “This bred mutual respect and unshakable friendships that will outlast our time here.”
He previously served as president and director for the Houston Area Glass Association and the Texas Glass Association.
“Now, I face an opportunity to step aside to become a cheerleader for all the people who have given so much to OUR many successes,” Lawrence says. “This week, I start dedicating more time and energy to be with family and friends, for golf and, finally, to share drink and culinary delights with as many old and new companions as possible.”