Volume 2   Issue 3               Fall 2001

Check Mate

WDMA Plans its Next Strategic Move

The main focus of the recent summer conference of the Window and Door Manufacturers Association (WDMA) was strategic vision—a systematic and continuing look at the mission, organization and operation of the association. 

Led by a strategic vision committee chaired by Jerry Mannigel of Marshfield Door Systems, and its technical subcommittee, WDMA had been performing process mapping and a gap analysis study to determine its strengths and weaknesses. The goal was to create the vision of a perfect organization. (For more information on the Strategic Vision Committee, see page 18.)

Focus On Green

WDMA 2001 chairman Rick Liddell of V-T Industries noted that the association has been a leader in the environmental arena and is well on its way to drafting a statement of green belief.

A featured speaker at the summer meeting was Dr. Patrick Moore of Greenspirit, Vancouver, B.C., Canada. A co-founder of Greenpeace, Moore now preaches the message of sustainable forest management.

“Forestry is the most sustainable of all primary industries that provide energy and materials for our daily needs,” said Moore. North American forests, he maintains, now grow 20 percent more wood fiber than they did 100 years ago.

Moore said deforestation is seldom caused by forestry, but by agriculture and urbanization. A farm has about 5 percent of the land’s original bio-diversity while a sustainable forest has 98 to 100 percent of this bio-diversity. 

“Wood is the most renewable of all materials,” Moore said. “Growing trees and using wood instead of non-renewable fossil fuels is the best tool for reducing CO2 emissions and climate change. Trees are the answer.”

WDMA has created a Green Products Task Force chaired by Greg Jolly of Weyerhaeuser Co. Earlier this year, the task force joined with manufacturers, associations and other interested parties in the creation of a Wood Building Product Alliance to foster a better understanding of green certification programs for wood products.

Architectural Trends

The guest speaker was Reed Kroloff, editor of Architecture magazine, who discussed trends in architecture. Kroloff also noted several trends in the business side of architecture, including: 

• A trend toward consolidation and the growth of mega-sized architectural firms. The smaller firms with individual stars will still be strong, but mid-sized firms are disappearing;

• Architects are taking equity positions in their projects, which means they are interested in specific product selections;

• Software technology now allows you to link directly to the manufacturer of a particular product;

• The green revolution is not a fad. Expect a huge push in solar energy systems. MIT is developing transparent insulation that goes between double lite glass and raises the R-value from 15 to 17;

• Use of rapid prototyping computers that can easily cut materials to fit allows architects to now specify buildings of any shape;

• The preservation movement is growing. In the next ten years, architects could spend up to 40 percent of their time on renovation. 

Committee Reports, Division Activities

A host of committee and division meetings were held throughout the conference. The door division meeting included reports on standards activity as well as updates by Jerry Heppes, executive director of the Door and Hardware Institute and Jeff Wherry, managing director of the Steel Door Institute. It was reported that I.S.-6A (WDMA’s architectural wood stile and rail door standard) is now going through the ANSI approval process and the first draft of I.S.-9 (WDMA’s standard for wood primary entrance doors) is expected by the end of the year.

The window division meeting discussed emerging trends that will impact the window industry with presentations by Nanette McElman of the Institute for Business & Home Safety, Garrett Stone of Brickfield, Burchette, Ritts & Stone and Tom Schwartz of Simpson, Gumpertz & Heger Consulting Engineers.

The WDMA will hold its annual meeting February 22-27, 2002, at the Hyatt Maui in Maui, Hawaii.

© Copyright 2001 Key Communications Inc. All rights reserved. No reproduction of any type without expressed written permission.