Over 170 NADRA Awards presented at the two-day event at the Sheraton Sand Key Resort in Clearwater Beach, FL.
The North American Deck and Railing Association (NADRA) recognizes and promotes excellence in the outdoor living & decking industry. Each year, the organization honors outstanding deck & dock projects in the industry at a prestigious awards presentation & celebration. This year, the 11th annual awards were held on April 22nd, 2021 at the Sheraton Sand Key Resort in Clearwater Beach, FL.
“The association decided that we did not want too much time to go by without showcasing our award-winning decks and deck builders. Since conferences around the world were canceled, we made the decision (approximately 6 weeks ago) to put together a small event in which we could not skip out on spotlighting our 2020 National+ Deck Competition winners. We selected an unbeatable location. Once we had that secured, we knew we had to forge ahead and create a small event. Initially, we thought only a handful of people would attend. Our estimate of just 25-40 people blossomed to over 100 people attending the two-day event,” said NADRA’s Director of Marketing, Heather Marchand.
“The event was so well received, that we are looking into doing this again in early 2022. It was truly a must-attend event. And while we were unable to get together with everyone, we know that you were with us either online or in spirit and hope you can join us next time. As we said, it is a must-attend event!” – Heather Marchand, NADRA
The event was broken down into two days. On day one the Association held their cocktail reception, annual meeting, awards dinner, and after-party. Day two, was the much-anticipated First Annual NADRA Beach Olympics and a farewell luncheon on the beach.
“What an event! It was such a joy to attend this event and share not only in the excitement of the awards, but also the clear happiness that the attendees felt from seeing their industry family members. That’s really what it felt like. Family.” – Rebekah Schuld, Marketing Manager, TimberTech
The event kicked off with an open bar networking event outside between the firepit and the pool. It was a warm, windy, Spring afternoon and the perfect setting to kick off the awards festivities. Everyone who attended picked up their badges, leis, and enjoyed drinks and passed hors d’oeuvres to start the evening off on the right foot. Attendees came in various states of dress from beachwear to sport jackets and beautiful dresses. Everyone looked fantastic and were happy to see each other face-to-face.
“Considering the challenges our industry has been through over the last year, it was a welcome change of pace to reconnect in person with many fellow NADRA members that I’ve grown to consider friends.” – Butch Palaza, Director of Global Contractor Development, Trex
After attendees got a taste of things to come, they all made their way to the ballroom for dinner.
Annual Awards Dinner:
The dinner was fabulous! People could sit at any of twelve tables to converse with their partners, spouses, dates, significant others, family members, and friends from across the country. And the food! The food was spectacular! From fancy salad shooters to seafood paella, carving stations, to some fine southern cooking like brisket and beer can chicken. (Did anyone not like the cornbread?) And even more drinks at the yet again, open bar.
NADRA Annual Meeting:
This image below will take you to our Annual Meeting PowerPoint presentation:
The rite of passage honor for this year’s Annual Meeting was given to Dave Kogan, NADRA’s new Education and Marketing Coordinator, as he had to read the Anti-Trust Statement. Barry John Davis still holds the dubious honor of reading it at lightning speed, but we will get to him in a minute.
Next, our Executive Vice President, Michael Beaudry thanked the Board of Directors for their time in helping to steer the ship we call NADRA, they are:
NADRA’s 2021 Board of Directors:
- President: Heath Bowman, Southeastern Underdeck Systems, LLC / Haven
- Treasurer: Bruce Verblaauw, NJ Decks and Railings
- Secretary: Bruce Verblaauw, NJ Decks and Railings
- Past-President: Matt Breyer, Breyer Construction & Landscape
- Vincent Carrubba, Admiral-Spacemaker, Inc.
- Gary Converse, Koppers Performance Chemicals
- Andrew Pantelides, Regal Ideas
- Brent Gwatney, Century Aluminum Railings
- Mike Reasons, BlueLinx
- Executive Vice President: Michael Beaudry, NADRA HQ
Deck for a Soldier®: Chairman: Bruce Verblaauw
THIS PROGRAM IS A SMALL WAY OUR INDUSTRY CAN GIVE BACK TO THOSE THAT HAVE GIVEN US SO MUCH … OUR FREEDOM!
We are finalizing the current Deck for a Soldier® build overview as we are publishing this recap! We will have more pictures and information posted soon. Speaking of Bruce…
2020 Recognition Awards were presented to:
- Bruce & Judy Verblaauw (or is it “Juice and Brudy”?) – for their exceptional accomplishments and outstanding contributions that make NADRA as successful as we are today. Thank you to these two amazing souls for all the hard work and dedication they put into the Deck for a Soldier® program.
Code Committee Update: ASCE 7 Sub-Committee Chairman: John Kozal.
This sub-committee worked tirelessly to persuade a Design Standard Committee of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) to DROP a recent 220 Point Load Proposal in ASCE 7 for any type of Deck Board.
Code Update: NADRA’s Technical Advisor: Glenn Mathewson – presented a 9-minute video on all the advances NADRA has made with its inclusion in the ICC Code Book for Decks. In addition, there is a new Deck Code Book that Glenn has worked on, including pictures from our very own Deck Competition submissions, and we are selling for a 20% discount.
Because we care so much about the industry, we worked with the ICC to offer ALL OF YOU 20% off Deck Construction Based on the 2021 International Residental Code Book!
Click on the image of the book below to order. Use Code: NADRA2021IRC to receive 20% off.
Education: Michael Beaudry spoke about NADRA’s new initiative on Decks Done Right® and the Deck Evaluation / Inspection Class. More on that in our PPT found here.
DeckExpo: Is now held in conjunction with the International Pool, Spa and Patio Expo and was spoken about by Ray Giovine from Informa. This event will take place this November 16-18, 2021 in Dallas, Texas at the Kay Bailey Hutchinson Conference Center. This event truly complements NADRA and looks to be a nice partnership between the two organizations.
American Institute of Building Design (AIBD): Steve Mickley attended our event and spoke about the partnership between our two organizations and offered any of our members an incredible membership deal with AIBD. Just reach out to Steve and he will get you enrolled. Steve.email@example.com
Engineering Express: Frank Berrnardo, CEO & Founder, spoke about this great program to help our members in obtaining permit-ready plans. Check out the slides here.
Remember that we mentioned above that we would get to Barry John Davis? Well, since he could not attend, he recorded an educational video rife with humor that truly makes Barry who we all know and love, and presented on… Answering Big Questions as the International Ambassador for NADRA. He spoke about the size of the marketplace and how it all began and the importance of the Deck Surveys that NADRA has to offer its members. And even though his history is educational, we are still left wondering, “was the North American Deck Market created by the British?”
We ended the Annual Meeting on an even higher note with the announcement of the…
2020 Terry Award Winner:
- Matt Breyer – in recognition of Matt’s outstanding performance, dedication, and his consistent willingness in helping the North American Deck and Railing Association
We took a short break, grabbed a drink, checked phone messages and scanned social media; then we rolled right into the awards.
After the prestigious Terry Award was handed out, we decided to kick off the awards with a newer award that we have created and ran over the last several of years, namely the People’s Choice Award: where members and their followers voted on projects on Instagram. You can see the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners right here.
Once we were through with the popular vote, we moved onto the main event, the 2020 National+ Deck Competition!
We are proud to announce the winners of the 2020 National Deck Competition! Click Here to View All Winners at NADRA.org.
Thank you to all our members who entered, partners and official sponsors. We invite you to scroll through and share these beautiful, national, award-winning projects from some of the best in the industry. Feel free to check out our Instagram page to see all the winners as well. Congratulations to all our members and a special thank you to our sponsors.
“NADRA recognizes excellence in the outdoor living and decking industry. Those who were awarded this year are recognized and celebrated as the industry’s finest builders and it is an enormous accomplishment and success. Being able to serve as a judge for these works of art has been an incredible privilege and honor. Success is no accident, it is hard work, perseverance and loving what you do! And with that, Congratulations to the NADRA 2020 Award Winners! – Taylor Young, Acquisitions & Client Support Specialist, Engineering Express
Before we launched into the awards, which by the way, we handed out over 170 of them to some extraordinary projects, among other great projects; we heard some heartfelt welcomes from members across the globe. It was great to hear from many of our Canadian members (and one in Australia) who were unable to join us in Florida. You were missed, but you made it hard to forget you! Watch the video below:
The colorful commentary on our Facebook Live Feed via comments and background conversations added for another level of entertainment for thousands of viewers at home. We have plans for next year to kick the live feed up a notch (or five). But we assume many viewers got a few chuckles from the experience.
At long last, we began the Awards Ceremony, with our special emcee, Bob Lett, aided by NADRA’s own Heather Marchand.
“Having our work recognized by our peers in the industry is a huge honor. We are humbled with this award. NADRA is a collection of the finest builders in the business and to be a part of this organization means a lot to our entire team. We are inspired weekly by the projects we see being designed and built around North America. Together we all continue to push the envelope.“– John Lea, DeckSouth
Overall First Place Winner: Decksouth Inc. Official Partners: Trex & Fortress
“I recognize the effort that goes into organizing an event like this and just wanted to say thank you for making it such a great time. You and your family’s passion for our industry is evident and I hope to see everyone again next year. Until then, congratulations again to all the award winners.” – Butch Palaza, Director of Global Contractor Development, Trex
Overall Second Place Winner: Deck Remodelers. Official Partner: Wolf Home Products
“Speaking as a deck builder and as one of NADRA’s first-ever Gold Medal Olympians, this year’s awards felt like a much-needed family reunion…seriously! I don’t know about the rest of the family, but I suspect that much like myself and my team, that everyone appreciated the well-deserved break from the hyper pace and pressure of the last 13-or-so-months. A comment made by one of our ‘first-timers’ really resonated with me, and I feel it really summed up the trip. She said, ‘It’s pretty awesome to see how all of you guys from across the country that haven’t seen or even spoken with each other in over a year picked up right where you left off, like old friends.’ Little does she know many of us really are old friends, and those who weren’t before last week will be now. We are all building outdoor dreams, fighting the same battles every day all over North America and around the world. We can’t wait for the next event to hang with everyone again!” – Sean McAleer, DeckRemodelers.com
Overall Third Place Winner TIE: LS Underground. Official Partners: TimberTech & FastenMaster
Overall Third Place Winner TIE: Infinite Decks. Official Partners: TimberTech & FastenMaster
Normally, once all the awards are doled out and everyone has had their fill of food and drink; attendees head back from the awards ceremony (whether on site or off) and go their separate ways. Many go to their rooms for a much-deserved rest and relaxation to prepare for the next day, or they go off and imbibe in cigars, after dinner drinks and conversations at the bar for a couple of hours to be with friends. However, since we were not at a conference, we kicked the awards ceremony up a notch and included a second day to keep the networking alive with our First Annual NADRA Beach Olympics and farewell luncheon on the beach.
Those who were up for the challenge met on the beach and were separated into teams and competed for the first NADRA Olympics Gold Medals. Games included Sand Skiing, Spear Throwing, Beer Pong, Corn Hole, and Flip Cup. Beach music was blaring, the sun was shining, the drinks were flowing, and laughter and fun was had by all who attended. And the lunch was delicious!
A special thank you to our volunteer referees:
- Greg Hartman, CAMO
- Mary Gearheart, Digger Specialties
- Mike Reasons, BlueLinx
- Dave Kogan, NADRA
- Ray Giovine, Informa – PSP/DeckExpo
“NADRA continues to unite the best builders and manufactures in our industry and continues to raise the bar in education and deck safety awareness. This past event was an example of the Association’s strength in unifying members nationally and internationally during the two-day event. Thank you to the entire NADRA team for making this years event interactive for those that could not attend due to travel restrictions. It was incredible to see the creative masterpieces that took the stage at this years event. Each year the projects get bigger and more intricate. Can’t wait to see what is being created this year. Honored to be a part of this association.” – Andrew Pantelides, VP of Marketing and Business Development, Regal ideas Inc.
After the luncheon ended and everyone went their separate ways: some headed home that very day, others stayed with family and explored the area and enjoyed the resort; we were able to take a break and reflect upon the event that we just held. Mike Beaudry sums it up perfectly…
“We did it. We did what most said could not be done. We came together, face-to-face, and we put it all together in just under six weeks. The feeling from the minute we arrived at the hotel to heading out on Sunday was of a family getting together after being apart for close to two years.
Building an organization with a solid foundation of core values based upon integrity, trust, honor, and the highest level of professionals willing to share and give to one another through this brotherhood has been our vision and goal over the past 17 years. NADRA.org has indeed achieved this position, thanks to all of you.
For those that were unable to join us and were watching from throughout the nation and around the world: thank you for being a part of this special event.
Your board of directors is extremely excited and already working together with the committees to increase education and to drive membership which in turn will help promote the association’s growing sponsorships.
We encourage every industry professional take part in your industry’s association, join our family, and show your support by becoming a Deck Safety Ambassador.
Congratulations to each-and-every one of you who entered and to the member partners who supply the incredible innovative products we get to use as we change the lives of our clients.
We are so proud of you all and are stoked for what we will accomplish together in the years ahead.”
Michael Beaudry, Executive Vice President, NADRA
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