Roofing industry veteran Andy Clarke has spent the past decade of his nearly 40-year career dedicated to serving the Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA). That work, representing countless hours in volunteered time, culminated last year when he was chosen to serve as association president. RC caught up with Clarke, vice president of Tecta America Arizona, just before he turns over the seat to incoming WSRCA President Mike Wakerling, of General Roofing Co., at this year’s Western Roofing Expo., Sept. 23-25 in Las Vegas.
RC: WHAT ARE A FEW THINGS YOU’RE PROUDEST OF ACCOMPLISHING IN YOUR TENURE AS WSRCA PRESIDENT?
AC: Overall, it has been a pretty quiet and uneventful year as the president. That alone is an accomplishment of sorts just keeping the train on the tracks that have been laid before me by past presidents. The association is extremely fortunate to have such an efficient board of directors and staff that everything always seems to be business as usual, and everyone does their part on time without much of anything needed from me.
The most exciting thing this year is the Safety App going live. This is such a great benefit to our members, especially the smaller businesses that may not have the resources to have something like this on their own.
RC: WHAT ARE THE CHALLENGES FACING MEMBERSHIP RIGHT NOW?
AC: After two years of the material crisis we all lived through the one thing that still is most prevalent is the challenge of finding enough qualified help to get things done. We are seeing more roofing contractors relying on sub-contractors to provide flexibility in the labor force. I think this is great if everyone is doing things the right way.
RC: HOW IS MIKE WAKERLING AND THE EXECUTIVE BOARD POSITIONED TO HELP?
AC: I believe the best thing Mike and the executive board can do is to continue to support the education of our members, whether that is in regard to the dos and don’ts of using sub-labor or ideas on how to recruit new employees and keep the ones we have now.
RC: WHAT ARE YOU PROUDEST OF THE WSRCA AS AN ORGANIZATION?
AC: One of the best things about the people of WSRCA, on the staff and the board, is everyone’s pride and dedication to the common cause to provide relevant information and useful resources to our members. There is never a sense of complacency. Everyone is always striving to be better and do more for the membership.
RC: HOW HAS MEMBERSHIP CHANGED YOUR BUSINESS AND IMPROVED YOUR ROOFING CAREER?
AC: As a member of WSRCA I have learned a lot through the on-going opportunities by attending the seminars at the EXPO and using the resources that are available online. As a board member, the association has provided me the opportunity to become a better leader with support and mentorship from so many successful people within the roofing industry.
RC: DO YOU REMEMBER YOUR FIRST EXPO?
AC: My first time at Expo, many years ago, I was a bit at awe with the trade show and the seminars seeing how much more was involved in the roofing industry then I ever really thought of as a roofer.
RC: WHAT SHOULD ROOFERS EXPECT AT THE WRE 2023?
AC: The staff of the WSRCA is always striving to make the Expo experience better every year and this year will be no different. The trade show floor is sold out and they have new things coming to the trade show stage as well. We are hoping for record attendance so the atmosphere will be awesome.
RC: ANY ADVICE TO MAXIMIZE THEIR ATTENDANCE AT THE EXPO?
The best thing is to plan ahead and know what seminars are most relevant for your company and it’s even better when you can bring other people so you can divide and conquer and cover as many subjects as possible. The information is endless and trying to take it all in alone is impossible.
I also try and plan my trade floor days to visit my “must-see” on the first day and then just relax and look at all the new stuff on the second day while visiting with vendors I don’t know to learn about the latest and greatest new products and equipment.