Article tools: Share:

Next Generation Leadership Leaves Their Mark on Outdoor Demo

Español | Translation Sponsored by TCA

It was in Dallas last year when the then-TCA president, Tim Manherz of TAS Commercial Concrete, challenged his young high-potential leaders, Chase Carter and Hector Valenzuela, with leading the TCA Outdoor Demo as part of the 2018 Tilt-Up Convention and Expo. Having participated in one of the first large-scale outdoor demonstrations in Houston (2013), Tim felt confident TAS could take the event to the next level with Chase and Hector in the driver’s seat. In fact, Tim pointed, out there were valuable lessons learned by his team in 2013, and the opportunity to use this process of putting together the outdoor demo presented a unique opportunity.

In 2013, Tim had assigned Cory Lehnert and Juan Junco to the task, and according to Tim, Juan hadn’t been to many of the TCA’s events in the past and really had little exposure to any companies or technologies used outside of their region. “He had a lot of interaction with all of the vendors, created relationships that he would have never cultivated on his own and collaborated on a technical level with all of them to keep improving the process and product,” Tim said. “It doesn’t get any better that.”

When presented with the same opportunity in Dallas last year, Tim was quick to turn over the reins to a new young duo with the hope that they, too, would benefit from the process. Chase and Hector did not hesitate to make their mark on the event. 

“My experience with the outdoor demo in Dallas was really the first exposure I had to a TCA event,” said Chase. “It was critical for me to gather the knowledge from my team on the exact expectations of the event to ensure the high standards were upheld.” 

Chase likened the process to building 12-15 mockup panels, as opposed to one job with a certain type of panel, making it interesting and challenging. “Of course, you want to make sure each exhibitor’s panel is perfect and meets their expectations, so there is some pressure there,” Chase said. “Additionally, there were many items we had never seen in the DFW market that we were trying to place into the panels with no prior experience. Now that made us nervous! Many calls were made, photos shared, etc., to ensure we got it right.”

“When any team member is tasked with putting on a national event where the best of the best come to visit from all over the nation, and even some from other countries, there is a lot of pressure to get it right and make it a first-class event like the TCA does as an organization,” said Tim. “Our team does all this without missing a beat in their full-time jobs, and they carried that personal pride through the outcome of the event. I think it is a huge growth step for all that were involved, and relationships and products were strengthened through the process.”

“It was a great opportunity for Hector and me to gain knowledge from other members of the TCA,” Chase said. “Along with that comes the relationships and the bonds you create with the folks from inception to completion of the process. I think the favorite part for me was just meeting all of the new people and learning about the way tilt is constructed in various regions throughout the U.S. and the world.”

Inspired by the work of TAS in Dallas, Rick Galloway of Martin Concrete Construction decided to charge his young professionals with the task of putting this year’s event in Atlanta together. 

“I had so much fun working on the TCA demo,” said Jeremy Wingfield with Martin Concrete Construction. “My role was to review each individual exhibitor’s shop drawing and execute a plan with our superintendent in charge. The exercise was almost puzzle-like in the way that each exhibitor had a different set of requirements to demonstrate their specific product. We built tilt panels with formliner, thin brick, formliner/thin brick combo, insulated tilt panels, insulated tilt panels with a fiber reinforced wythe, conventionally reinforced tilt panels, and even a shrinkage compensating slab. Normally, on a tilt building there are typical panels which are duplicated over and over (formwork, reinforcing, etc.). In this case, every panel was different, so a lot of time reviewing each concept was necessary to make sure we got it right.  This was all part of the fun!”

Kyle Eason with Martin Concrete Construction handled the front end of the demonstration and made sure the demo ran smoothly and comfortably for attendees once they arrived onsite. “The hardest part of the project was getting all of the demo vendors’ shop drawings and deliveries set up so that Jeremy, superintendent Joe Bamfield, and team could have a seamless transition to the construction phase of the demo,” said Kyle. “Trying to get communication going with so many different vendors from across the county was a challenge, but it was a challenge we were ready and willing to take on.”

Jeremy agreed that the task of juggling so many different products was especially challenging, and that this challenge was multiplied by the number of panels and the fact that no two panels were anything alike. To stay organized, they set up a numbering system for the panels. The next difficult task was sorting out deliveries and pairing them with the correct panels.

“Exhibitors would ship boxes or pallets of material with no real way to identify what it was unless it was opened,” said Jeremy. “The shipping label might have a company name listed, but the product inside would be for a completely different panel.”

In addition to the lessons learned, Jeremy, Kyle, Chase and Hector offered ideas and set in place processes that will benefit those who take on the task in the future. In fact, it is a microcosm of everything that the TCA is. There are lessons to take away, experiences to share, and knowledge to impart at every turn.

“I cannot begin to describe how grateful I am to be a part of this great event,” said Kyle. “During our talks at the conference I mentioned how different the tilt-up industry is from other types of construction because of the collaborative way everyone joins together to make the industry better as a whole.” 

Chase agreed, saying, “This is a great opportunity for any young leader looking to gain knowledge, contacts, and friendships in the tilt industry. I am very grateful to have been given the opportunity.”

Their hard work paid off, as both events (Dallas in 2018 and Atlanta in 2019), were very well received. “I would listen to random conversations as I walked around the evening of the event, and to hear so many praises was awesome,” Jeremy said. “All the hard work was certainly worth it.”

“It is a priceless experience,” said Tim. “Our team members got to show off what they do best everyday, just like those from Martin Concrete did in Atlanta.”

Rick Galloway, vice president with Martin Concrete Construction, summed it up best: “The TCA product demonstration was a great opportunity for a couple of our young professionals to be responsible for something bigger than themselves, bigger than our company, and very high profile. They put a lot of energy and effort into planning and executing the event. The result was something Martin Concrete is very proud of, and I believe [the experience] will be a highlight in their careers when they look back years from now.”

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.