After more than a year of working through the details of a potential combination of the Insulating Glass Manufacturers Alliance (IGMA) and the American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA), members of both organizations have voted to proceed with the unification process. The organization’s new name will be the Fenestration and Glazing Industry Alliance (FGIA).
Beginning this month, the two existing boards will work together to execute the unification implementation steps throughout the remainder of the year. A strategic planning meeting will be held, most likely in October, to blend the vision and priorities for the new organization and to create a three- to five-year strategy. They will also begin brand development work.
“The value of the new organization will be a stronger industry voice, offering members and the industry single-source access to critical information,” says AAMA board chairman Donnie Hunter, who is the director of global product management for Kawneer. “With knowledgeable professionals from both the fenestration and glass industries, better synergy for the whole finished fenestration product will be available, as well as direct access to Canadian market, codes and regulatory expertise. A combined organization also delivers expanded technical competencies and a broader document base to support more extensive educational opportunities for members.”
IGMA board president Nathalie Thibault, who is architectural sales director for the Maritimes and Ontario and technical advisor for the New England territory at Prelco, adds, “These expanded technical competencies will further support educational opportunities. Plus, members can look forward to enhanced conference programming through an expanded content offering and broader networking opportunities through combined events. There will also be more resources available by harnessing the intellectual knowledge of the associations.
“A stronger financial position allows for future investments in industry research, technical resources and educational programs, which solidifies the new organization’s position as the single source for the industry moving forward,” Thibault concludes.
It is unclear when AAMA and IGMA will hold their first meeting under their new name. AAMA’s upcoming events schedule includes an upcoming conference from September 30 to October 2 at the Hyatt Regency Lost Pines in Austin, Texas, followed by a conference February 10-13 at the Marriott Harbor Beach in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.
IGMA and AAMA first announced the possibility of forming a unified organization on June 5, 2018. The discussion came about, in part, due to IGMA executive director Margaret Webb’s impending retirement and the need to establish new management for IGMA. An exploratory team with members from both organizations spent the next year developing a framework for the new organizational structure and seeking member feedback. Leadership of both organizations maintained that preserving their individual brand equity was important, while emphasizing their previous collaborations and synergies.
IGMA and AAMA held a Joint Summer Conference in Victoria, B.C., in June 2019 to give members of both organizations a chance to experience how the other worked. The formal ballots of the AAMA and IGMA memberships were released on July 2, along with the full prospectus outlining the strategy for structuring, operating and branding the new organization, which included adjustments and clarifications to the proposal, based upon member feedback. Voting was held throughout the month of July.
All of AAMA’s category 1 members were eligible to vote while all fenestration and insulating glass manufacturers, as well as suppliers and auditing and testing members were able to vote within IGMA.