Volume 50, Issue 12 - December 2015

GANA: Leadership Creates Solutions for the Industry

by Bill Yanek

When we recently asked our members why they belong to the Glass Association of North America (GANA), they cited a few key phrases:

• Networking;

• Staying up to date on industry issues;

• Being a part of advocacy efforts.

But what does all this add up to? In one word, leadership. Our members, their collective expertise, and their collective drive to shape the outcomes they want for the glass and glazing industry, have led to a number of successful solutions. Below are just a few examples of the many ways in which the leadership efforts of GANA have provided powerful solutions to the glass and glazing industry.

GANA: Leadership is delivered through our Glazing Industry Code Committee (GICC). This group exists to promote a better understanding and acceptance of architectural glass, glazing materials and glazing systems as safe, efficient, effective and economical construction products. Their goal is to provide this education to building code organizations; federal, state, and local regulatory agencies; and the general public. In addition, they assist the glass and glazing industry by staying informed on the activities of these building code bodies and regulators. For more than 20 years, GICC and GANA have advocated for glazing industry interests in crafting, shaping, and educating on fire, safety, security, structural and energy code initiatives for the betterment of people’s lives.

GANA: Leadership is critical as glazing industry and building envelope stakeholders continue to debate “Window-to-Wall Ratio” and its impact on commercial construction energy efficiency. The “battle for the wall” came to a head most recently in early 2014. While this topic has surfaced many times before, GANA members and consultants (with the collaboration of other stakeholders) were successful in countering a proposal to reduce the window-to-wall ratio by 25 percent in both ASHRAE 90.1 and 189.1 standards. This accomplishment prevented what would have been a devastating blow to the glass and glazing industry and legitimized the understanding that glass can be a value-added asset in high-performance buildings.

GANA: Leadership significantly impacts energy issues. In 2011, GANA leaders formed the association’s Energy Division. GANA leaders, and specifically energy leaders, participate in this division’s efforts to advocate the expanded use of glass and glazing in commercial construction. This is a key component to building healthy, efficient and sustainable building envelopes. They also emphasize energy conservation and onsite renewable energy strategies. GANA leads through support of energy efficiency tax credits and tax policies that will foster high-performance glazing solutions. GANA’s Energy Division, in concert with our Flat Glass Manufacturing Division, are working together to lead the development of the flat glass and fabricated glass Product Category Rules (PCRs). These PCRs will allow our industry to successfully navigate the developing effort of establishing Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs), which will help to define the parameters that brand our material toward a more environmentally sustainable world.

GANA: Leadership is demonstrated by our event line-up, which is second to none. The GANA Building Envelope Contractors Conference (BEC Conference) is the No. 1 resource for contract glaziers and suppliers to explore industry trends, ownership solutions and find innovation that works. GANA’s Annual Conference serves as a yearly opportunity to commemorate our efforts, network with experts and discuss where we’ve been and where we are going. Finally, the GANA Fall Conference provides the most thorough, most advanced discussions on technical issues affecting the industry. All GANA events equip participants with the connections and resources they need to be successful in the glass and glazing industry.

GANA: Leadership is dependent on the members involved. We are fortunate to have the most influential, the most knowledgeable, the most ambitious and the most creative minds involved in GANA. Our association covers areas of building envelope contracting, decorative, energy, flat glass manufacturing, insulating, laminating, tempering and more. Our volunteer leaders have the pulse of the entire commercial architectural glazing industry. Our association is the voice of that industry.

Give More, Gain More

In today’s world, we’re often asked to do more with less. But here at GANA, we’re bucking the system. We’re challenging that train of thought. We’re calling you to join GANA and to give more. We want your expertise, your ideas, and your desire to grow. Our members know that by giving more, you actually get more. By volunteering to help develop industry-recognized publications, you gain insight and build connections that help you grow as a professional. By volunteering with education and advocacy efforts, you gain a foothold to shape the outcomes of your company’s operations. By volunteering to help plan events, you gain an understanding of critical issues arising in the industry. GANA members give to support the industry and advance our mission. In turn, they gain a great deal from their contributions; they become the leaders of the glass and glazing industry.

Learn more about the many opportunities in which you can give more and gain more. Contact GANA today: gana@glasswebsite.com.

the author

Bill Yanek is the executive vice president of GANA in Topeka, Kan.

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