The star of this year’s American Society of Concrete Contractors (ASCC) CEO Forum was Coeur d’Alene and its magnificent scenery—the Friday evening reception on the immaculate lakefront grounds of resort owner Duane Hagadone’s home was a special treat for attendees. The keynote speaker was former Navy Seal Eric Greitens, author of The Heart and the Fist and founder of The Mission Continues, an organization that challenges returning vets to continue to serve their country in new ways. And, as always, the networking among contractors was invaluable. Next year’s newly named Concrete Executive Leadership Forum will be held in Palm Beach, Fla., July 25–28; get it on your schedule now!

Safety Awards

W. Burr Bennett was executive director of what was then called the American Society for Concrete Construction in the early 1990s following a long career in the industry. President of ACI in 1988, Burr encouraged me to return to work at ACI after teaching English to Japanese engineers; I took his advice and so did most people—he was a wise and kind man. ASCC named its safety awards after Burr, an honor I know he would have appreciated. Before his death, Burr was instrumental in preserving the Enola Gay, the plane that dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima, and its eventual permanent display at the Smithsonian.

America’s Best

There’ve been questions over Gulf Coast Construction’s 1st place rank in CC’s list of America’s Best Concrete Contractors (formerly CC100). Some have questioned how a company can generate this much revenue and be relatively unknown. We’ve always relied on the honor system in listing the top companies. If we insist that Gulf Coast prove what it says, then we’d have to do that for everyone. Starting next year, we are taking a new approach. I’ve never been a fan of ranking companies based strictly on revenue so we will instead select 50 of the best contractors based on things like safety record, industry and community involvement, and quality of work. Send me your ideas on what makes a company great.

Staff Addition

Sharon J. Rehana has joined the staff of CC as managing editor. Sharon has worked for Hanley Wood on and off for several years, starting in 2003 as an editorial intern. With Kate Hamilton’s departure, Sharon came in as a temp and has now joined our staff full time. She is also working on our social media outlets and generating big increases in CC’s followers. Check out our Facebook page or LinkedIn group site. There’s a lot of talk going on that you won’t want to miss.