Stephen Byers, Ritec International

Stephen Byers, co-developer of the ClearShield System and co-founder and managing director of Ritec International, died on March 6, 2021 as a result of pneumonia. He was 79 years old.

Byers and his wife and business partner, Karen, are well-known figures in the international glass industry.

“The inseparable team set out over 40 years ago to challenge the glass industry and transform perceptions and attitudes toward the protection and maintenance of glass surfaces. They displayed staunch determination and admirable dedication to raising awareness on the corrosion of glass, and, most importantly, how it may be avoided
or corrected. And their efforts paid off,” reads a company statement. “Stephen and Karen single-handedly created a new and global industry for the protection of glass surfaces, now firmly and permanently accepted by the whole of the glass and construction industry.”

The couple’s achievements were recognized in 2019 by the Glass & Glazing Federation (GGF) when they received an award for Outstanding Contribution to the Industry. Byers worked with the GGF to begin the development of some industry standards, and to make health and safety and ethics driving factors in the growth of this new industry.

“I feel privileged to have enjoyed such a wonderful life with Stephen and to have shared the excitements and challenges of creating amazing innovations with him,” says Karen Byers. “I am determined more than ever to keep Ritec International running smoothly, feeling great strength to ensure its prosperity so that Stephen’s legacy may live on for
many years to come.”


YKK AP America

YKK AP America has promoted Derick Clutchey to director of branch sales. Clutchey will be responsible for overall branch sales and their oversight, as well as support strategy development and execution with emphasis on business growth.

Clutchey joined YKK AP in 2016 as the Baltimore branch manager, a role that expanded to include the Boston branch in 2018. He has led the northeast regional team throughout this time with effective leadership and a strong talent for building relationships with employees and customers, according to the company.

Steel Encounters Inc.

Utah-based glazing and specialty contractor Steel Encounters Inc. has promoted Tom Jackson to president and CEO and Derek Losee to executive vice president of the architectural division.

Jackson was formerly president of the company. His career began with Window Supply in 1989. He later owned and operated Custom Window Solutions before joining Steel Encounters in 1996 as construction manager.

Losee was formerly vice president and general manager. He was a former co-owner of Reflective Product Sales before joining Steel Encounters in 2005. Losee manages the company’s architectural division, which includes a team of 195 professionals.


FeneTech Inc. has promoted Brett Wilson to Quality Assurance Group manager and Nick Orlando to development group manager.

Wilson joined the company in 2011. During his nearly ten years with the company, Wilson has demonstrated the ability to expand his knowledge of the software and proven his commitment to quality, according to the company. In 2019, Wilson was promoted to quality assurance testing lead.

Orlando has served the development group as quality lead for the last two years, and was responsible for much of the development team’s customer support. In Orlando’s new role, he will serve as group manager for both the software development’s production and service teams.

In addition, FeneTech Europe Sàrl has promoted Yannick Paulis to group manager. Since joining FeneTech in February 2011, Paulis has been involved in many projects, demonstrating strong customer commitment, according to the company. In his new role, Paulis will help build a customer base in the German-speaking market.

Comings and Goings

NSG Group

Richard (Dick) Altman has retired from NSG Group after 41 years. Altman joined Libbey- Owens – Ford (LOF) in 1979 and had a variety of responsibilities, covering finance, supply chain and manufacturing. He has seen the company transition from LOF to Pilkington to the NSG Group. Altman was named regional director of architectural glass and solar in 2006 and in this role wasresponsible for the company’s architectural business as well as the growing solar business.

Stephen Weidner has been named head of architectural/North America, replacing Altman. Weidner has been with the company for 33 years and in the flat glass industry for 40- plus years. Most recently, he held a dual role leading the commercial side of the architectural business in North America and a global role driving the company’s value-added strategy.


After more than 28 years with Mapes, Jay Marshall retired on January 1, 2021. He joined Mapes Industries in May 1992 as a sales representative after his previous employment with Kawneer. Marshall was named sales manager in 2001, and was involved directly in the development of many of the company’s products. He was named president of Mapes Panels in October 2005 and served in that role for more than ten years.

Bacon & Van Buskirk Glass Co.

After working 43 years, Rod Van Buskirk will assume the role of board chair at Bacon & Van Buskirk Glass Co. Aaron Hiatt, former vice president of operations, is the company’s new president. Jeff Aldridge, vice president of business development, and Brent Huisinga, vice president of the Indiana territory, will continue in their specific areas. Sandra Snodgrass, corporate vice president and office manager, who was with the company for 48 years, also retired. Chief finance officer Angela Wingstrom will assume the office manager’s role.


M-D Building Products

Ryan Plotkin has been named president for M-D Building Products Inc., a family-owned company that develops, manufactures and markets a range of residential and commercial weatherization, flooring, caulking and specialty extrusion products. Loren Plotkin remains the company’s chief executive officer and chairperson of the board.

Ryan Plotkin joined M-D Building Products in 2008 as a global business manager. Since then he’s held the roles of vice president of corporate development and senior vice president of operations.

Wojan Window & Door

Brian Ockert is Michigan-based Wojan Window & Door’s new chief financial officer. Ockert has more than 16 years of experience in accounting, finance and operations, most recently as controller for Brick Packaging, a Saxco Company. In his new position and as a member of the executive team, Ockert will be responsible for overseeing the company’s financial activity in conjunction with evaluating how to further improve day-to-day operations.


OcuGlass, an acid-etched glass manufacturer, has named Hunter Richards its new director of engineering. Richards has been at OcuGlass since April 2019 when he began as the mechanical engineering intern. Richards will join the company’s leadership team alongside chairperson Steve Williams, CEO Brad Aldrich and plant manager Brant Ryynanen, who was promoted from production manager after five years with the company.

In his new role, Richards will oversee engineering and maintenance and all production lines and processes.

Soft Tech

Jim McCord is Soft Tech’s new business development manager. The company also named Bruce Brecht its new business development manager for North America.

McCord began his career in the building materials industry after graduating college. During this time, he gravitated toward the fenestration industry, selling brands such as Andersen, Marvin and Loewen. In 2007, McCord made the switch to manufacturing.

Brecht has more than 40 years’ experience in the building products industry, specializing in fenestration for the past 25 years.

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