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When commenting on any CFA Summer Meeting, I feel that it is almost obligatory for me to tell everyone what a huge success it was and that anyone who could not attend really missed out on a great experience. However, in the case of this year’s meeting that was held in Stowe, Vermont, those comments are certainly true and then some.

The summertime setting in upstate Vermont was of course serene and peaceful as expected, but at the same time opportunities abounded for activities and excursions. Many CFA members found time to explore the quaint village of Stowe and also tour the famous Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream factory. The CFA sponsored activities included barbeques, hot air balloon rides, canoeing, and of course great golf. The associate members once again came out in force and also contributed with an exciting product rodeo that really put the contractor members to the test. A welcome addition this year was a “kid’s camp” that gave many couples the opportunity to “escape” from their children for a few hours in order to take further advantage of the meeting opportunities. It is also probably worth mentioning that while most of the country was sweltering in 100 degree temperatures, those who were able to attend the summer meeting had to put up with mid 70’s – low 80’s; and as the sun went down many people were even seen reaching for a jacket!

The educational portion of the event was on par with the normal high standards and expectations. The topics this year were very diverse and seemed to be particularly timely with today’s current market conditions and challenges. The crown jewel of most summer meetings is of course the unparalleled networking opportunities. My observations were that this year many people took greater advantage of this opportunity than ever before. Perhaps the slumping housing market and concerns about the economy added to the high level of camaraderie and fellowship.

As we look to the calendar, the next important task is the Strategic Planning Session that is scheduled for late October in Salt Lake City. Some major goals for this meeting include an evaluation of the Association’s performance, reassessing member benefi ts, analyzing committee structures and effectiveness, and reviewing the vision of the CFA to make sure we are appropriately meeting the needs of today’s members. Input and involvement is welcomed from all members. This would be a great opportunity for you to share your thoughts and ideas in a way that will help to shape the direction of the Association for years to come.

Brad Schrock, CFA President, Custom Concrete Company Inc.

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