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Concrete Industry Associations Partner to Form Certification Consortium

In an effort to increase the awareness of certification opportunities for concrete professionals, while promoting the advantages of such programs, eight concrete associations have joined forces to form the Concrete Industry Certification Consortium (CCIC).

Comprised of the American Concrete Pumping Association (ACPA), Architectural Precast Association (APA), Concrete Foundations Association (CFA), Concrete Sawing and Drilling Association (CSDA), International Concrete Repair Institute (ICRI), National Precast Concrete Association (NPCA), Post-Tensioning Institute (PTI) and the Tilt-Up Concrete Association (TCA), the Concrete Industry Certification Consortium is a non-profit clearinghouse dedicated to serving those interested in improving the quality and safety of concrete construction and renovation. Through its participating associations, the Consortium seeks to increase the recognition of the concrete industry’s commitment to quality through certification and to promote and distinguish companies with a demonstrated level of competence and history of positive contribution to the industry.

The Consortium initially plans a unified marketing piece that raises awareness of the program variety offered to the industry. This will be available in electronic format by the end of August and will be available through the websites of all participating organizations. Additionally, the Consortium plans a website for unified information and links to the certified personnel directories for each program. The unified message supporting the value and importance of certification in the concrete industry will be visible throughout organizational conventions and during the World of Concrete, to be held February 4-8, 2013 in Las Vegas, Nev. where master certification certificates and the majority of these opportunities are offered.

“The Consortium idea came about during gatherings of the Small Association Group Executives (SAGE), which the participating organizations of the Consortium started several years ago,” states Ed Sauter, Executive Director for the CFA and TCA. “This networking effort has contributed to a wealth of variety and creativity.”

The Consortium itself was spawned a little over a year ago as SAGE gathered during their regular spring meeting. Each association represented in the Consortium has been working for years to develop, refine, maintain and promote certification as the next step forward for the future of their respective industry.

As a group, the associations will concentrate on providing concrete industry professionals with certification opportunities. According to Christi Collins, Executive Director of the ACPA, maintaining the strictest standards for safety in the concrete industry is crucial. “Every contractor has an obligation to provide a safe work environment for their workers and utilizing the most qualified, knowledgeable and professional personnel in their respective fields will help them achieve this assurance. Through the collaborative promotion efforts of the CCIC, we are able to expand the awareness of our pump operator certification program which will go a long ways towards improving the overall quality of our industry,” said Collins.

“Certification of companies or individuals is a topic found in all segments of the construction market as builders and code departments attempt to establish competency and accountability in construction, “ said James Baty, Technical Director of CFA and TCA. “In the end, it is about assurance and knowing that an industry segment has a commitment opportunity that results in that assurance. CFA determined that a combined message of the importance of certification throughout the concrete industry was the best way to hold the attention and the commitment of the entire industry rather than it being just another certification,” said Baty.

According to, Pat O’Brien, Executive Director of CSDA, their existing company certification program for sawing and drilling contractors is the first of its kind. “Our three-tier audit program provides owners, architects, engineers, general contractors and government officials with a valuable pre-qualification tool to improve the knowledge and skills of cutting contractors and enhance their public image,” said O’Brien. “We have found it very difficult to grow the recognition of our certification program individually. Of even greater importance is the holistic effort the concrete industry, across all technologies and markets, has toward the message of quality through certification. This Consortium then was a natural fit to strengthen the combination of recognition by the design and development industries as well as the commitment to quality throughout the construction industry.”

Certification is also important for the companies that produce architectural precast concrete panels and cast stone products. The APA Plant Certification Program has been a trusted part of the construction community for over 18 years and APA believes it will be served well through the Consortium. “Assuring the quality production and performance of architectural precast products is crucial for not only successful project outcomes but for maintaining the highest quality standards and commitment to safety,” said Fred McGee, Executive Director. “

For more information, please contact Ed Sauter, Executive Director for the Tilt-Up Concrete Association at esauter@tilt-up.org or 319-895-6911.

About American Concrete Pumping Association

The American Concrete Pumping Association is non-profit trade association consisting of contractors, suppliers, manufacturers and other professionals dedicated to improving the conditions under which concrete pumping is carried on and to foster and advance the concrete pumping industry as a whole.

The ACPA Concrete Pump Operator Certification Program, first instituted in 1986, offers the only industry-recognized certification program which provides for an independent written assessment of an operator’s knowledge regarding concrete pump safety and the growing importance of having all your operators safety-tested. For more information, please visit www.concretepumpers.com.

About Architectural Precast Association

The Architectural Precast Association is a national trade association organized in 1966 to advance the interests of architectural precast concrete in North America. Membership in the Association is made up of highly qualified craftsmen whose commitment to quality and excellence is a long standing tradition. The membership collectively represents virtually hundreds of years of experience in precasting. This expertise is freely shared with fellow APA Members, thereby greatly reducing difficult production problems which can arise when innovative and original concepts are specified by creative design professionals who take advantage of the unequaled versatility of architectural precast concrete. The Architectural Precast Association, working through its six standing committees, has established many worthwhile programs that have benefitted not only APA Members and the architectural precast industry, but also the building industry in general.

About Concrete Foundations Association

The CFA was established in 1974 for the purpose of improving the quality and acceptance of cast-in-place concrete foundations. Since that time, the CFA has transitioned to a network where foundation contractors can focus on building better businesses and improving the recognition of performance in codes and standards. CFA provides promotional materials, educational seminars, opportunities for networking, and technical meetings for members throughout the U.S. and Canada involved in segment of the market now identified as Removable Concrete Forms (RCFs), walls produced by forming, placing concrete and then removing the forms of wood, aluminum or steel-ply. For more information about CFA, please visit www.cfawalls.org.

About Concrete Sawing and Drilling Association

CSDA is a nonprofit trade association of contractors, manufacturers and affiliated members from the concrete construction and renovation industry. The CSDA mission is to promote the selection of professional sawing and drilling contractors and their methods. Concrete cutting with diamond tools offers the industry many benefits including lower total project costs, precision cutting, maintenance of structural integrity, reduced downtime, reduced noise, dust and debris, limited access cutting and the ability to cut heavily-reinforced concrete. Founded in 1972, CSDA has 500 international member companies. For more information, please visit www.csda.org.

About International Concrete Repair Institute

The International Concrete Repair Institute (ICRI), a nonprofit association with more than 1950 members worldwide, is a leading resource for education and information to improve the quality of repair, restoration, and protection of concrete and other structures.

About National Precast Concrete Association

Founded in 1965, the National Precast Concrete Association is dedicated to expanding the use of quality precast concrete across all markets. NPCA provides industry leadership by promoting precast concrete, identifying opportunities, addressing challenges to the industry, and supporting and developing member success. With nearly 1,000 member companies, NPCA represents a significant portion of the precast concrete industry in North America. In 2012, NPCA’s Plant Certification Program earned accreditation from the American National Standards Institute. ANSI accreditation signifies that NPCA certification is consistently administered in accordance with international standards. For additional information, visit http://precast.org/.

About Post-Tensioning Institute

The Post-Tensioning Institute is recognized as the worldwide authority on post-tensioning. We are dedicated to expanding post-tensioning applications through marketing, education, research, technical knowledge, certification, teamwork, and code development while advancing the quality, safety, efficiency, profitability, and use of post-tensioning systems. For additional information, visit www.post-tensioning.org.

About Tilt-Up Concrete Association

TCA was founded in 1986 to improve the quality and acceptance of site cast Tilt-Up construction, a construction method in which concrete wall panels are cast on-site and tilted into place.  Tilt-Up construction is one of the fastest growing industries in the United States, combining the advantages of reasonable cost with low maintenance, durability, speed of construction and minimal capital investment.  For more information about the TCA, visit www.tilt-up.org or call Ed Sauter at 319-895-6911 or e-mail esauter@tilt-up.org.

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