Article tools: Share:

TCA Selects Recipients of 2006 Professional Achievement Awards

TCA has announced the recipients of five professional achievement awards presented at TCA’s annual meeting held on Thursday, Jan. 19, in conjunction with the World of Concrete.

The awards recipients for 2006, selected by the Association’s Board of Directors after nomination by the general membership, are:

  • Dave Kelly, vice president of engineering for Meadow Burke for the Peter Courtois Memorial Award
  • Tex-Cote for the Robert Aiken Innovation Award
  • Sherman Balch of Balch Enterprises for the Murray Parker Memorial Award
  • Intergroup Architects for the Architectural Achievement Award
  • John Lawson of Kramer Lawson, Inc. for the Engineering Achievement Award



This award honors Peter Courtois, who died in 1992 after serving as senior vice president of engineering for Dayton-Richmond Concrete Accessories (formerly Dayton-Superior Corporation). Courtois, an employee of Dayton-Richmond for 32 years, immeasurably contributed to the Tilt-Up industry through his tireless effort and dedication to several industry associations. He served on seven ACI committees, most notably the ACI-551 Tilt-Up Construction Committee. In addition, he was a fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers and served as the initial president of TCA, for which he was made an honorary member in 1991.

This year’s recipient, Dave Kelly, a long-term member of the TCA Board of Directors, holds several patents on Tilt-Up erection, bracing, forming and structural hardware components. A member of the Tilt-Up industry for more than 40 years, he has been responsible for setting the design criteria on more than 3.5 million Tilt-Up panels and has served as the engineer-of-record for more than 200 buildings. Kelly is a Registered Professional Engineer and frequent speaker on Tilt-Up in several states as well as in Canada and Australia. A member of the ACI 551 Committee, Kelly also served as president of the TCA in 1990.

“Dave Kelly’s commitment and early belief in the Tilt-Up concrete building sys- tem is one of the important foundations of Tilt-Up concrete technology,” said Glen Stephens, president of Stephens Architectural Associates and a past president of the TCA. “Dave is always looking for new approaches to deliver ever better solutions. His recognition and acknowledgement is extremely well deserved.”



This award honors Robert Aiken – a founding father of Tilt-Up construction. Known for initiating a more architectural direction for Tilt-Up, Aiken is credited with the concept of casting panels face-up to provide a medium for developing craftsmanship in the construction method.

Known as the largest textured coatings manufacturer in the word, Textured Coatings of American (Tex-Cote) not only introduced textured paints to the Tilt-Up industry, but also has continued to expand their product line into an increasingly broad variety of finishes. This made them a clear choice for this year’s Robert Aiken Innovation Award. Their product can be seen on countless Tilt-Up buildings throughout the country and has helped propel the method into new markets.

Clay Fischer, President of Woodland Construction Company, said they think so highly of Tex-Cote products that they used them on their own office building.

“We recommend Tex-Cote product to all of our customers,” said Fischer. “We know we won’t have any problems with these coatings on Tilt-Up buildings.”



Named in honor of Murray Parker, who died in 2000, this award was created to recognize a contractor who has significantly contributed to the Tilt-Up industry. Parker was regarded for his development and promotion of Tilt-Up throughout the industry, especially in the Atlantic Provinces region of Canada. As general manager/vice president of B.D. Stevens, Ltd. in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Parker is credited with introducing Tilt-Up to an area of the world where many thought it was impossible to use the medium. His contributions and commitment to excellence helped the method gain credibility in the area and paved the way for future Tilt-Up projects.

Sherman Balch, vice president of Balch Enterprises in Hayward, Calif., was selected for this honor based on his service as a member of the TCA Board of Directors for six years, as well as his contribution to educating others about the ACI/TCA Tilt-Up Supervisor certification program. Balch has also pioneered several construction techniques, including curved panels. A true partner in the industry, he is committed to working with others to share his knowledge, as evidenced through his participation in seminars and networking opportunities.

“Sherman had been instrumental in certifying individuals through the ACI/TCA Certification program,” said Shawn Hickey, Vice President of SiteCast Construction Corp. and a frequent co-speaker with Balch on the topic of preparing for the exam. “He has contributed largely to what is now more than 700 certified individuals by spreading the message of Tilt-Up construction through seminars and acting as a primary networking reference.”



The TCA created the Architectural and Engineering Achievement Awards to recognize members of the Tilt-Up industry who are committed to pursuing design excellence and advancing the industry. The two recipients of these awards have continuously demonstrated their dedication to increasing awareness of the Tilt-Up method, as well as pursuing new concepts to aid the industry.

The recipient of the third Architectural Achievement Award, Intergroup Architects of Littleton, Colo., is the premier Tilt-Up architectural firm in one of the fastest growing Tilt-Up markets – Denver, Colo. An active member in TCA, the firm is a frequent participant in the Achievement Awards program and has won several awards. Their commitment to advancing the method has helped propel the growth of Tilt- Up in their area.

“Intergroup Architects is very recognizable throughout the Denver market as the premier architect when it comes to incorporating Tilt-Up technology,” said Jim MacKinnon, Preconstruction Manager for Saunders Construction of Centennial, Colo., who has worked frequently with Intergroup. “Our firm has selected them on more than one occasion to participate with us on projects that we controlled.”

Another award winner who is committed to advancing the Tilt-Up industry is John W. Lawson, S.E., vice president of Kramer and Lawson, Inc. from Tustin, Calif. Since 1976, Kramer & Lawson, Inc. has provided structural engineering services to the western United States with a specialty in Tilt-Up concrete construction. A registered structural engineer and civil engineer in California, Lawson also is a structural specialist for the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services and the Orange County Fire Authority. He has a M.S. in Structural Engineering from Stanford University and B.S. in Architectural Engineering from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.

Lawson was selected for this award because of his significant efforts to correct and clarify seismic elements of the building code related to Tilt-Up buildings and improving the standards that deal with seismic issues. He specializes in Tilt-Up construction in a mature market, is an ICBO seismic design example author and Tilt-Up Ad-Hoc Committee Chairman with the Structural Engineers Association of California (SEAOC). Further, Lawson is a member of the newly created TCA Seismic Task Group and an active member of ACI’s 551 Committee (Tilt-Up Construction).

“The structural design of Tilt-Up is being impacted more and more by complex seismic codes,” said Lawson’s partner, Dave Kramer. “John has been indispensable in providing engineering guidance, not only to our office, but also unselfishly to all engineers with his various speaking engagements, his authorship of SEAOC’s Tilt-Up seismic design examples, and his willingness to provide guidance to other engineers who call and ask John for his opinion. With very few engineering publications on Tilt-Up, his contributions to SEAOC’s Structural/Seismic Design Manual series under both the UBC and IBC have filled a sorely needed gap in our profession. I can’t imagine another individual more deserving of this award than John.”

Leave A Comment

Get Connected

Like us on Facebook
Follow us on Twitter
Connect with us on LinkedIn
Subscribe to us on YouTube


About us

TILT-UP TODAY, a publication of the Tilt-Up Concrete Association, is THE source for Tilt-Up industry news, market intelligence, business strategies, technical solutions, product information, and other resources for professionals in the Tilt-Up industry. A subscription to TILT-UP TODAY is included in a TCA membership. Subscriptions for potential TCA members are also available. If you would like to receive a complimentary subscription to the publication, please contact the TCA.