Down to the Wired

Lots of wired glass installed long ago remains in this country. This fifth floor elevator lobby skylight at the Marriott Fisherman

I have kept my tongue long enough and it’s time to let loose. I have had it with FOX News, and I am ready to tell you why.

A Worldwide War

I have seen lots of differing opinions, some disagreements and a few heated arguments in my 32 years in the glass industry. But I have to say the 90.1 brawl, the battle for the wall, and even the repair vs. replacement feud, pale in comparison to this one. This one is a full blitzkrieg with all the hallmarks—ideology, politics, money and some personal attacks—of a great war. The subject of this great quarrel is the fight surrounding the importation of foreign curtainwall into this country.  To briefly recap, the Commerce Department ruled affirmatively when asked last summer by a group of domestic glazing contractors if its ruling on anti-dumping and… Read More »

The Leadership Thing

It really is the most elusive of qualities. It can’t be taught, yet it isn’t genetic either. So where do the qualities that make a great leader come from? And how do we get them? I’ve been pondering this question a lot in the past few weeks, especially because of an interview I recently saw on the TODAY show. The interview was in advance of this weekend’s opening of a movie about his called “Captain Phillips.” In the interview, the real-life captain of the Maersk-Alabama, who had been kidnapped by Somali pirates, talked about leadership. But the captain, Captain Richard Phillips of New England, did not respond to the question… Read More »

Ah, the Hum


It wasn’t an overwhelming buzz, it was more like a hum—a strong, steady hum. Last week’s show in Atlanta brought a greater air of optimism than I have seen at any time in the past five years. And those great harbingers of business—the machinery and truck manufacturers—were deliriously happy. It may be September, but it feels like spring! Now some of it is pent up demand as they say, that’s true, but pent up demand alone could not account for nearly every single piece of machinery being either pre-sold or sold on the floor. And deals–real deals–were being done. Gone was the “How are you, really?” question of the last… Read More »

The Stories You Don’t Write

I just settled into my seat on Delta 1483 headed to Atlanta … for the 32nd time. Yes, that’s right, this is my 32nd year of consecutive attendance at this show. If there is someone out there who has attended more consecutive shows, I have yet to find them—though I think Dan DeGorter has been to more overall shows, just not consecutively. As one of my co-workers said “I don’t know whether to envy you or pity you.” They have a point. You decide. This year’s event is back at the site of the first one in which I participated in 1981, though in those days the whole event, including… Read More »

Prayers Most Welcome

Lyle and his oldest grandchild Jack, looking for gold last week.

This is the hardest blog I have ever had to write and one of the toughest things I have ever had to announce. There is really no way to make bad news any better than it is, so I will just tell you. Our dear friend and USGlass magazine columnist Lyle Hill has been diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer. He knew something was wrong because, in less than seven weeks, a small nodule inside his left cheek had grown into a large mass upon the left side of his neck. Luckily, he was on it right away and had sought diagnosis and treatment early. It is a very… Read More »

The News Today, Oh Boy

The M&A news these past two weeks has been so thought-provoking that we must once again shine a light on it. In doing so, I think I know how Dwight Eisenhower felt when he shined one on the military-industrial complex. Everyone nodded their heads in knowing agreement, some even publicly said Ike had gotten it exactly right; and then everybody went back to doing things the same old way. First came the announcement that MiTek Industries had acquired Benson Industries LLC of Portland, OR. Anyone who has been around the industry for a while would surely categorize Benson as a solid contract glazier. Under the expert leadership of Lou Niles,… Read More »



We are into the dog days of summer in the East. I’m not sure why they are so named as I can assure you my dog doesn’t like them either. So what’s a girl to do but leave her panting puppy and head west to more temperate weather? Thus, I have spent the past few days basking in the downright cool climate of San Francisco. My sister and I told our nephew that we would take him anywhere in the continental United States he wanted to go if he made the ninth-grade honor roll. So when he proceeded to do so, we thought he’d choose Cooperstown; instead he chose San… Read More »

A Familiar Ring

Okay, okay, it’s happened to you. I know it has. And you will soon nod with recognition because you know it too. It’s been a light week news-wise and I’ve been saving this YouTube clip for you for awhile now. You will clearly recognize the “sound of business” as you watch it tell me what you think. Happy viewing! How about you? Got any business pet peeves? I’d love to hear them. Let me know and have a good week. Regards, Deb

Denver Sprint

Just as every parent is sure their baby is the most beautiful in the world, most suppliers would say the products they debut are “new and revolutionary.” And just as beauty remains in the eye of the beholder, so, too, does uniqueness and originality. Some services and products (i.e. low-E glass) truly are revolutionary; others are variations on a theme or evolution of an existing product.  New products–brand spanking new products–are a welcome rarity. One of the reasons that I look forward to the annual American Institute of Architects (AIA) Annual Convention is because it’s all there: the truly new products, the next-generation variations and the fine-tuned permutations all find… Read More »

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