Newsmakers

OBITUARIES

AFG Industries founder Randall Dee (R.D.) Hubbard, died April 29, 2020 in Palm Desert, Calif., at the age of 84. He became president of Safelite Auto Glass in 1968 after working as a salesperson for several years. In 1978 he founded glass manufacturer AFG Industries by effectuating and merging Fourco Glass of West Virginia and ASG Industries of Tennessee. According to an article by the Los Angeles Times from 1985, AFG Industries acquired several other companies, including many that focused on architectural specialty glass, which made up 51% of the company’s sales in 1985.

Hubbard grew the company and sold it to Asahi Glass Co. (AGC) in 1992, which expanded AGC’s reach into North America.

Hubbard was the youngest of eight children and worked in his family’s ice-house before attending Butler Community College. He was also an accomplished Quarter horse breeder.

Hubbard and his wife, Joan Dale, founded the R. D. and Joan Dale Hubbard Foundation in 1986; The Shoemaker Foundation, formed in 1991; and the Hubbard Museum of the American West in Ruidoso Downs, N.M. Hubbard also was founder and chairman of Bighorn Golf Club in Palm Desert, Calif.

As of press time funeral arrangements had not been released.

Frank R. Radich, former owner of North End Glass in Seattle, died on March 25 at the age of 76. Radich was the first treasurer of the Washington Glass Association (WGA) and a charter member when the WGA was established in 1983.

“Following his retirement, and the closing of North End Glass, where I was first introduced to the glass and glazing industry, Frank and his wife, Janice, moved to South Carolina to take an active role in their grandchildren’s lives,” says his sister Maryanne Howell, who is also the executive director of the WGA.

In addition to Howell and her husband, Timothy, Radich is survived by his sister Teri Radich (Ed Fijalka); his daughters, Lisa Radich and Shawna Kelly; his son-in-law, Jeffrey Kelly; and three granddaughters, Rosanna, Renee and Bethany. He was preceded in death by Janice Mae Rostad, his wife of 53 years.

Roy Verne Van Buskirk of Champaign, Ill., passed away on April 21, 2020. He was 89 years old.

Van Buskirk was born on June 10, 1930 in Champaign, the son of Verne and Bernice Van Buskirk. He married Marilyn Goodell Van Buskirk in 1952 and had two children, Julie and Rodney. Marilyn died of cancer in 1997, and Van Buskirk later married Joyce Parkhill and then Phyllis Flynn, both of whom preceded him in death.

He is survived by his children, Julie (Stephen) Stock of San Diego and Rod (Donna) Van Buskirk of Champaign, as well as five grandchildren.

Van Buskirk joined the family business upon graduation from college and became president of Bacon and Van Buskirk Glass Co. Inc. from 1967-1997. He also founded and owned the Illini Pella Window Company from 1967 to 1996. He was a past president of the Glass Association of North America (then FGMA) and past chairperson of the National Glass Association. Van Buskirk was the only person to head up both of the U.S. glass industry trade associations.

William (Bill) Brodie, passed away on March 14, 2020.

Brodie founded Classic Glass of Woburn, which he owned for 46 years. His love of the glass industry began in the family business, JN Phillips Glass.

His greatest passion were his children: Shari Fabiani (Tom), Jami Marad (Paul), and grandchildren, Paige Ilyce Fabiani, Jacob Brodie Fabiani, Samuel George Marad, and Matthew David Marad.

He is survived by his wife, Bobbi Brodie; his brother, Philip Brodie (Naomi); and sister-in-law, Janet Brodie.

APPOINTMENTS

Sparklike

Jukka Manner is the new CEO of Sparklike, replacing Miikkael Niemi, who held that role since 2012. Before that, Niemi held the roles of chief operating officer and product manager and had been with Sparklike for 15 years.

Manner has been the company’s sales and marketing director since January 2019, a position he will continue to perform in parallel. He has more than 30 years’ experience from diverse international sales and marketing positions in the technology industry.

Iiro Jantunen, CTO of Sparklike will work alongside the CEO. Jantunen has been responsible for product development, production maintenance, and quality assurance since joining the company on November 1, 2019.

PROMOTIONS

Soft Tech

Darryl Huber was promoted to vice president of global customer strategy for Soft Tech. Previously he was strategic account manager of North America. He is now part of the senior leadership team.

The company also has appointed Bob Koegler global operations manager, and a part of the senior U.S. leadership team. Koegler has more than 35 years’ experience in the commercial construction industry, and will oversee Soft Tech’s operations in the support and training and implementation teams based out of India, Europe, Australia, New Zealand and the U.S.

Linetec

Jake Kriewald was promoted from inside sales lead to outside sales manager for Michigan, Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky. He reports directly to vice president of sales and marketing, Jeff A. Fochs, Jr., who previously managed the territory. For the past five years, Kriewald worked as part of the company’s inside sales team.

NEW HIRES

Vetrotech Saint-Gobain

Jennifer Friedland is the new Midwestern regional sales manager. Friedland will cater to customers in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, North and South Dakota and Wisconsin.

Mike Miller, formerly the company’s Midwestern regional sales manager, will transfer to the Pacific Northwest as the regional sales manager there. He will focus on Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and western Canada.

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