Volume 47, Issue 2 - February 2012

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GANA Expands Its Conference
GANA Plans its Annual Conference in Sarasota, Fla.

It’s still a full week of in-depth glass discussions, and still a great place to help create the resources used by the glass industry and network with its experts, but more has changed than just the name of the event formerly known as “Glass Week.”

This year, the Glass Association of North America (GANA) has slated its annual conference for February 20-24, 2012, in sunny Sarasota, Fla. All of its seven divisions have meetings planned at this event, along with its various committees.

New this year is a separate Energy Session. In addition to presentations on “Requirements and Potential for Windows and Concentrating Solar Power Mirrors” and the “Future of the Solar Industry,” it will feature a tabletop trade show to highlight products and services available in the energy industry.

The GANA Towne Hall Meeting is new this year as well. Based on member input from recent surveys, board members will lead discussions on what is important to members, what the association needs to focus its time on and other new initiatives that need to be considered. GANA hopes to collect comments from members to form the future of GANA.

In addition, sessions are slated to cover an overview and outlook for the glass industry; background for understanding LEED and the IgCC code; the use of glass in solar energy applications, and the effects of the ASCE 7 wind map changes.

Networking Bayside
After a long day of committee sessions, GANA provides plenty of opportunities for networking and general R&R.

February 21 kicks off the conference for members new and old with a Welcome Trivia Night Reception. Event organizers advise that there’s no need to worry about gathering up your team, because you’ll become well acquainted with all members during a night of networking and trivia. You’ll want to start brushing up on your ASTM knowledge, as well as your pop culture expertise, to help your team win bragging rights.

The Wednesday, February 22, luau reception will have attendees walking into a luau paradise surrounded by steel drums, leis and freshly roasted pork. Enjoy a game of bocce ball and savor the warm Florida weather poolside. And on Thursday, February 23, event organizers are inviting GANA members to enjoy a final night at a come-and-go reception at the Boat House. Attendees can enjoy cocktails and light appetizers on the bay before preparing for the final day of the conference.

Rooms with a View
The host hotel, the Hyatt Regency Sarasota, has recently benefited from a $22 million head-to-toe renovation designed to enhance the blend of bayside location and pampering amenities. All rooms have water view and WiFi access; what more could a business traveler want? Ah, yes: onsite visitors can find the hotel’s Currents Restaurant, overlooking the bay, with an innovative menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The Currents Bar provides a meeting place for cocktails and conversation in a contemporary, recently updated waterfront lounge. And of course the Hurricane Hut allows guest to enjoy a tropical cocktail beside the pool.

Stroll to town for the theater, shops and sightseeing, spend your meeting breaks at the beach, or head to St. Armand's Circle, a unique island shopping experience, or Longboat Key, a beachfront destination just across the bay, all just minutes from the hotel set in the heart of the Cultural District.


Member Report
Long-time and New GANA Members Share Reasons to Join
The Glass Association of North America (GANA) has a dedicated group of volunteer members who help craft resources for the industry at large. But these volunteers, whether they’ve served for decades or just a year or two, have plenty of reasons for being part of GANA year after year.

James Wright, GCC
James Wright, technical sales rep for Glass Coatings and Concepts (GCC) in Monroe, Ohio, first got involved with GANA in 2009. GCC has been a member since 2003, and has representatives involved within the Tempering and Decorative Divisions.

USG: What do you get out of your membership?
JW: We’re a member because we are a supplier to the glass fabricators, we supply ceramic enamels for spandrel applications and decorative glass. … We’re involved as much as we can because we want to start on the ground level with industry specifications and help out where we’re able to and where our knowledge can help.

USG: What value have you gotten out of your membership so far?
JW: …The networking opportunities have been one of my favorite parts. The people I get to interact with at GANA conferences are some of the technical people within the organizations that I call on, and I don’t get to see them when I visit their locations. But at GANA [events], it gives me the opportunity to speak with them and learn more technically, about what their needs are and how we can help.

USG: What projects are you looking forward to working on in 2012?
JW: New this year at the annual conference, we have a New Professionals Committee. I’ve been working with Ashley [Charest, account executive] and the board members, and all are happy that something like this is coming to GANA. Essentially it’s a committee that’s being developed for members with five years or less experience in the industry and in GANA.

What we hope [new members] will get out of it will be learning the parliamentary procedures that go on during committee hearings; some of the acronyms (there’s a plethora of acronyms within GANA that for new folks coming in can be overwhelming); and then Kim Mann is going to speak to this group about the anti-trust rules…

This year it’s going to be open to all members to come in and learn more about the parliamentary procedures. Then the second half will be a closed session to those committee members that fall within the five-year guideline … and it will be more of a town hall meeting where we can ask questions of experienced, veteran GANA members that we may not want to ask during committee sessions because we feel shy or feel maybe this isn’t the right time to ask this question. So hopefully we’ll get a lot of questions answered for some of the inexperienced GANA members.

USG: Any advice for people considering getting involved with GANA?
JW: One thing that my general manager Jeff Nixon, who’s been attending GANA for a while, recommended to me when I first started going is sitting in every meeting that I can. I still try to do that even though it may not pertain to our company; it’s given me exposure to all the different acronyms and parliamentary procedures—and everything that GANA has to offer.

Mike Rupert, PPG
Mike Rupert, director of technical services for Pittsburgh-based PPG Industries Inc., has been a member of GANA since 2004, although the company’s involvement well precedes him. PPG is involved today in the Flat Glass Manufacturing, Building Envelope Contractors, Insulating, Tempering and Mirror Divisions.

USG: What projects are you looking forward to in 2012?
MR: The one that personally I’m working on, and I think the timing is good, is the new glass informational bulletin on the proper applications for heat-treated glass. We assigned a task group to that at the fall meeting, primarily to address those concerns that were raised within the tempering industry, if you will, regarding breakage done in Texas and up in Toronto (see October 2011 USGlass, page 32). That’s going to be important. Our task group meets [soon] to review the first completed draft of it. Hopefully by the annual conference we’ll have made some progress. I’d like to see it completed; I don’t know if we’ll get everybody’s returned comments by then, but I think it’s moving along quite nicely. I am looking forward to getting that one completed.

USG: What is the most notable development you’ve seen in GANA during your involvement?
MR: … For me, without a doubt, the document on Construction Site Protection and Maintenance of Architectural Glass. The content is good, but what’s really unique about that one is it was a collaborative effort between GANA and the International Window Cleaning Association. That went from an adversarial relationship to one of cooperation, and I see that as a win-win too. To collaborate outside of the association with another [group], I think is notable.

USG: What services do you take advantage of the most?
MR: I’d say our company probably takes most advantage of the technical documents and publications. The manuals are first rate, they include a vast wealth of knowledge that I think in this day and age is particularly difficult for a single individual to experience firsthand. So this is great sources of information and we use those quite a bit.

USG: Do you find it challenging to balance GANA with work at PPG?
MR: That is a tough one at times, but I don’t think so. If you look at all the members of GANA, we’re all in the business to serve our customers. That’s our job, that’s what our companies pay us to do. But I think working collectively on industry issues brings benefits to all our common customers, as well as the stakeholders that are out there, the architects, the code officials, the developers. It’s all part of the same job responsibilities, whether it’s direct customers of our companies or customers of the industry...

USG: Any advice for people considering getting involved with GANA?
MR: ... The access to quality information and knowledgeable people far outweighs the annual dues and time commitment. It’s a great bargain.

More Information?
For more information about the GANA Annual Conference, or to register, visit www.glasswebsite.com.

USG
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