Once again, women attending World of Concrete can take a breather from the show and enjoy good food and the company of their fellow “women in concrete” at the annual Women in Concrete Luncheon and Forum.
This year the program includes a panel of women discussing some of the hot industry trends they really believe in: green concrete, pervious concrete, as well as an economic forecast.
It's a nice little package—everything you need to know about what is happening in the industry. More importantly, it's just a great time to relax and meet your peers in the industry.
The one consistent trend among these speakers is that they all have a cause, or a mission, they believe in. They want to let others know just what concrete can do, because they believe it can change the world.
Kristin Cooper-Carter from California State University, Chico, will talk about green concrete and how it will affect business next year. Shauna Young, of Smith's Ready Mix, Hot Springs, Ark., will explain how she donates her spare time to promote pervious concrete for with the Arkansas Ready Mix Concrete Association (ARMCA). Michelle Wilson at the Portland Cement Association, will sum it all up with an economic forecast of what to expect in 2008.
Young will share her story about how little by little she and the ARMCA are making a difference in Arkansas—one architect at a time. She believes pervious concrete can change the world—or at least Arkansas.
“I heard about it through the ready-mix courses and took the certification,” says Young. “It's not an easy concrete to make, but it can be used everywhere. It solves the environmental issues, such as water running off of asphalt.”
Young is talking with developers and hotel owners about considering pervious concrete. One architect heard about pervious through the ARMCA and got his contractor involved. They put in a pervious parking strip for a bank, which then did not need a retention pond. “Using pervious, you get better land use by eliminating the sludge pit retention pond,” says
Young. “With concrete, it's something different everyday.” Young grew up in her father's ready-mix business and didn't plan to pursue it as a career. “I was working as an interior decorator when my father said he needed a sales person,” she recalls.
She hasn't regretted the decision to join him. For the past four years, she has been trying to learn everything she can about concrete: how concrete can benefit society, how to make it work best, and how to make it beautiful.
Now she takes the next step and stands before a room full of women and tell them about the product she loves the most.