NECA 2016 Boston: BLOG

All The Latest News from NECA 2016 Boston

Oct 12

Thousands Gather in Bay Area for NECA 2015 San Francisco

The National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) 2015 Convention and Trade Show was deemed another rousing success, with more than 6,000 members and Chapter staff attending this year’s events in San Francisco. 

The annual gathering continues to be an exciting mix of opportunities for education, inspiration, networking, and fun!

“Every year, they get better and better,” said Sonja Rheaume of Christenson Electric in Portland, OR.

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NECA kicked things off by hosting the opening reception at the world-famous Exploratorium where conventioneers and guests danced the night away with music from the Milwaukee Tool band. Located at San Francisco’s Pier 15, the Exploratorium is internationally recognized as the premier museum of science, art and human perception containing over 650 interactive exhibits ranging from mechanical contraptions to “physical phenomenon” artworks to high-tech computerized displays. Attendees were able to explore museum exhibits, enjoy specialty cocktails, fortune telling, karaoke and much more!

JCP_5053On Sunday, the NECA Show opened with the ceremonial ribbon cutting by NECA executive director, Beth Ellis. The NECA Show is the #1 trade show of it’s kind in the electrical construction industry presenting the largest gathering of manufacturers and distributors showcasing thousands of solutions contractors need to save time and money on the job, and grow their business.

JC2_7659Highlights of NECA 2015 San Francisco, which concluded Tuesday, included dynamic speakers such as education visionary Sal Khan who shared his global vision of learning and the creation of the Khan Academy. Learn more »

The second general session speaker was endurance swimmer Diana Nyad, who talked about her historic swim from Cuba to the United States and the importance of having a dynamic and amazing team. Learn more »

Read more about these sessions on the blog

 

JCP_5378There were also preconvention workshops and educational opportunities throughout the weekend. View full schedule here » 

Other meetings included theNECA Business Development Meeting, the Women in NECA (WIN) Roundtable and the NECA Student Chapters Job Fair and Green Energy Challenge.

Iowa State University was named the winner of the Green Energy Challenge. The student team from Iowa State beat out two other finalists, Penn State University and the Illinois Institute of Technology, for the top spot. Purdue University won the poster contest.

Charles Freeman of Gulf Electric in Mobile, AL and his wife Shaleen said they enjoyed their trip to the Bay Area. They gave rave reviews for all of the presentations at NECA 2015 San Francisco, especially the one about Alcatraz, Life on the Rock.

Chart-topping musician Kenny Loggins had NECA 2015 attendees getting Footloose when he performed an exclusive concert Tuesday evening for the closing celebration at the Warfield.

Education presentations and credit hours are now avilabile, learn more here »

Be sure to check out NECA’s Flickr stream at flickr.com/necanet for photos of everything that went down during NECA 2015 San Francisco — we may even have one of you!

NECA2016Boston ShowBanner 1100x300Next year’s convention will take place in Boston, October 7-10 at the Boston Convention & Exposition Center. Save the date and be sure to sign up again when registration opens on June 3.

More information will soon be available on necaconvention.org.

See you in Boston!

Oct 03

Welcome to NECA 2015 San Francisco!

Welcome

You have arrived at the electrical construction industry’s No. 1 event of the year — The NECA Convention and Trade Show — an exciting mix of opportunities for education, inspiration, networking, and fun!

For all the information you need, go to www.necaconvention.org.

There, you’ll be able to view a full schedule and get to know your way around San Francisco.

Here are a few things you can look forward to: 

  • NECA will kick things off by hosting the opening reception at the world-famous Exploratorium on Saturday night. Conventioneers and guests are invited to gather at a mad scientist’s penny arcade, an inventor’s funhouse, and an experimental laboratory all rolled into one eye-popping, playful place. Enjoy refreshments, delicious nibbles, stunning views of the Bay, camaraderie, and, of course, endless exploration!
  • You will also get to hear from several dynamic speakers while you’re here.
  • The Opening General Session will feature Sal Kahn, founder and CEO of the Khan Academy, a not-forprofit organization with the mission of providing a free, world-class education to anyone, anywhere. And endurance swimmer, broadcaster and noted swimmer Diana Nyad is sure to impart some valuable lessons during the Closing General Session.
  • Preconvention workshops start on Saturday. Other meetings to attend include the NECA Business Development Meeting (Saturday), the Women in NECA Roundtable (Monday) and the NECA Student Chapters Job Fair (Saturday).
  • Educational tracks include business management; labor relations (new this year!); leadership and communications; project management; standards and safety; and technology, process and innovation.
  • If you’re ready to take in a rousing concert and dance the night away, the Warfield is the perfect spot. Join us Tuesday night at our Closing Celebration for an exclusive concert by chart-topping musician Kenny Loggins. Seating and an open bar will be available.

Don’t forget to share your experiences while in San Francisco, use the tag #NECA15 on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Flickr.

We hope you enjoy your stay in San Francisco and get the most out of NECA 2015 San Francisco. See you around!

Oct 03

2015 Highlights: Top Can’t-Miss Events at NECA San Francisco

 

With so much to experience at NECA, US Builders Review has pulled together some can’t-miss highlights. The industry’s biggest and brightest event features countless workshops, exhibitions, product showcases, networking opportunities, dynamic speakers and so much more.

Continue reading on US Builders Review »

 

The 2015 NECA Convention and Trade Show kicks off Saturday, Oct. 3, and runs through Tuesday, Oct. 6, at the Moscone Center South in San Francisco. The industry-leading event features countless workshops, exhibitions, product showcases, networking opportunities, dynamic speakers and so much more.

With so much to experience at the industry’s biggest and brightest event, US Builders Review has pulled together some can’t-miss highlights.

Convention Must Sees

Opening Reception at the Exploratorium Museum – Saturday, Oct. 3, 7:15 – 9:30 p.m.

One of San Francisco’s landmarks, newly relocated at Pier 15, the Exploratorium Museum offers more than 650 interactive, educational exhibits about science, art and changing human perception. NECA invites attendees to come see the wonders at the Exploratorium. Attendees will experience the exhibits firsthand while enjoying hors d’oeuvres and live entertainment, all with waterfront views of San Francisco Bay.

Closing Celebration at The Warfield Theater – Tuesday, Oct. 6, Doors at 7 p.m. – Concert at 8 p.m.

The Warfield is one of San Francisco’s largest historic concert venues. With 2,300 seats, the venue has hosted thousands of notable artists over the years. This year, NECA invites attendees to round out their convention experience with a concert by chart-topping, Grammy-award winning musician Kenny Loggins.

Special Events

Student Chapters Job Fair – Saturday, Oct. 3, 3:30 – 5:30 p.m.

With unprecedented labor shortages across the country, the importance of finding young talent is pressing for NECA contractors. Following the Green Energy Challenge Student Competition – another event well worth stopping by to see Saturday – is NECA’s second annual job fair, part of the Student Forum at the 2015 Convention. NECA invites contractors looking to find everything from interns to part-time and full-time positions to attend this event and meet some of the most talented students from around the country.

NECA Convention event

Safety Roundtable – Sunday, Oct. 4, 8 – 10 a.m.

If there’s one hallmark of a NECA contractor, it’s the dedication to keeping employees safe on the job. This is the sixth annual Safety Roundtable. The two-way discussion opens the dialogue between NECA’s safety-related activities and the needs of contractors across the industry. The safety roundtable is moderated by Michael J. Johnson, executive director of standards and safety for NECA and Wesley Wheeler, director of safety for NECA.

Before the roundtable discussion, Johnson and Wheeler, as well as James T. Dollard, Philadelphia Electrical JATC, James McGowan, Quanta Services, and Palmer Hickman from the electrical training ALLIANCE, will offer in-depth safety trainings with five pre-convention workshops held Friday, Oct. 2, and Saturday, Oct. 3.

  • OSHA ET&D 10-hour Train-the-Trainer Course
  • Creating and Maintaining Effective Safety Programs and Policies
  • 2014 National Electrical Code (NEC) Summary of Significant Changes
  • Temporary Power Installations
  • Significant Changes in the NFPA 70E-2015 and Employer’s Responsibilities

Women in NECA (WIN) roundtable – Monday, Oct. 5, 2 – 4 p.m.

WIN supports the professional development of women working in the electrical industry through education and networking events. The organization encourages more women to explore careers in the electrical industry. The annual WIN Roundtable is an open forum and chance for women from the executive level to newcomers to the industry to connect. A joint reception with NECA Future Leaders will be held immediately after the WIN Roundtable.

Workshops

New leadership and communications workshops – Saturday, Oct. 3, 8 a.m., 1 p.m.

Attendees can benefit from a range of pre-convention and convention courses, covering a broad scope of topics from labor relations and business management to leadership and professional development. New this year is a series of workshops by Alice D. Domar, Ph.D., a leader in the field of mind/body medicine. Her research focuses on the relationship between stress and medical conditions, as well as the impact of lifestyle habits on mental and physical health.

Domar will offer research-driven insight and practical exercises in physical and psychological strategies to reduce stress.

Trade Show Floor

Showstopper Showcase – The industry’s No. 1 product showcase and awards program

Sunday, Oct. 4, 10:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Monday, Oct. 5, 10:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Tuesday, Oct. 6, 8 a.m. – 1 p.m.  

The Showstopper Showcase is a leading awards program sponsored by NECA and ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR Magazine. This ongoing display at the convention draws people from around the world. The Showstopper Showcase exhibit, found on the trade show floor, presents new products and services that have been available in the electrical market since Jan. 1, 2014. The product selection is completed by a panel of independent, expert judges from the industry. This display is a must see because all of the award-winning products and services are designed to help electrical contractors improve efficiency on the job.

Oct 01

NECA 2015: Chapter Managers Explain How to Get the Most out of San Francisco

Get the most out of NECA 2015 – Chapter Managers explain how.

US Builders Review turned to local chapter managers at the top of their organizations to gather advice on how to navigate the industry’s most talked about event. With hundreds of exhibitors on the trade show floor, educational sessions, new product demonstrations, speakers, networking events and so much more, the amount to do, see, hear and experience can be a bit overwhelming.

Continue reading »

Sep 28

New to NECA 2015? Navigating the NECA Show 2015: Contractors Share Best Advice

To help the first timers or those just looking for a way to get more out of the NECA Show, US Builders Review asked NECA member contractors for their best advice. With hundreds of exhibitors and a sprawling trade show floor, educational sessions, new product demonstrations, and so much more, the NECA Show is full of ways for contractors to learn how to grow, improve and enhance their businesses.

Continue reading »

Oct 02

2014 Showstopper Awards Announced; Best New Products of the Year

BETHESDA, Md.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Electrical Contractor magazine has recognized 20 outstanding new products at the 2014 NECA Convention and Trade Show in Chicago with its annual Showstopper Awards.

“This year’s diverse Showstopper winners represent the best of new product ingenuity for the growing $130B electrical community”

“This year’s diverse Showstopper winners represent the best of new product ingenuity for the growing $130B electrical community,” said Electrical Contractor Publisher John Maisel.

The 2014 Showstopper winners include:

Bridgeport Fittings Mighty-Rite steel split grounding bushings
Cree, Inc. LED T8 tube
DeWALT Gyroscope screwdriver
Eaton POW-R-Command intelligent panel boards
Flir Systems, Inc. Digital multimeter
Fluke Corp. Fluorescent light tester
Garvin Industries Universal square-to-round raised ring
Greenlee CLM-1000 cable length meter
Hilti Cordless combihammer
Legrand AV ceiling box
Leviton Omnitouch touchscreen monitor and control
M.K. Morse Co. 811 portable band saw blade
Orbit Industries, Inc. Easy access lighting box with swivel
Project DocControl Automated daily field reports
Schneider Electric Q) and Homeline dual function circuit breakers
Siemens Industry Dual function AFCI/GFCI combined in one device
Southwire SIMpull reel
Werner KNAACK StorageMaster
Westex UltraSoft line of arc-rated, flame-resistant fabrics

Electrical Contractor will cover the Showstopper winners in its January 2015 issue.

In addition to awarding the Showstoppers, Electrical Contractor magazine introduced its new monthly e-newsletter and a new app available through the iTunes Store, Google Play and the Amazon App Store in iOS, Android and Kindle versions.

In recent issues, Electrical Contractor reported the findings of its 2014 Profile of the Electrical Contractor, a biennial, independent industry survey that offers the most detailed, current data on electrical contractors’ growing involvement in the design, specification and integration of a broad spectrum of building operating systems.

The survey shows that more than 2,700 owner- and top-management level U.S. electrical contractors report a high influence in electrical system design and brand specification – maintaining a steady gain over the past decade. The top three reasons for original brand selection and substitution are availability, price and compatibility with existing systems.

Published by the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA), Bethesda, Md., Electrical Contractor magazine delivers 80,0 00+ electrical contractors 61,000+ electrical contracting locations, more than any other industry publication. Telephone: (301) 657-3110. Website: http://www.ecmag.com. Twitter: @ecmagdotcom / App: iTunes Store, Google Play, Amazon App Store in iOS, Android and Kindle versions.

Oct 01

Closing General Session: Rob O’Neill

ROB O’NEILL
Former Navy SEAL Team Leader  •  Tuesday, September 30 1:15 pm


Decorated military veteran and Navy Seal Rob O’Neill closed out NECA Chicago 2014 with a detailed account of various combat missions and his recipe for success in life.

O’Neill, who grew up in Montana, served for more than 16 years as a Team Leader on the Naval Special Warfare Development Group.

He spoke about a range of topics including making informed decisions and teamwork. A common theme was never quitting.

“Success is not attained or purchased,” he explained. “It is rented. And rent is due every day.”

O’Neill took pride in saying no member of his team was ever killed in more than 400 combat missions. He said they improved each day because they were trying to stay on par with each other. They also learned how to face their fears.

“Fear is healthy but panic will breed and it will get you killed,” he said.

O’Neill also told the audience not to be afraid of chasing success and to stick around successful people who have learned from failure. Finally, he said, effective communication is paramount.

Earlier in the program, NECA CEO John Grau shared his thoughts on the association’s progress and addressed problems facing the electrical contracting industry.

“Our members are more optimistic, and we’re on the right track,” Grau said.

Grau also said the a shortage of skilled workers will dominate the national discussion moving forward.

Later, outgoing President Dennis Quebe presented awards to several people connected to the industry, For a full list of recipients, visit necanet.org.

Dan Divane, chairman of ELECTRI International, gave an update on organization’s activities. He also announced that Iowa State University was the winner of the 6th Green Energy Challenge.

Sep 28

Exciting Finish for ELECTRI’s Green Energy Challenge 

The results are in for ELECTRI International’s 2014 Green Energy Challenge and the winner is Iowa State University.

Iowa State University NECA Student Chapter, Photo by Chuck FazioThis year, ELECTRI challenged each college team to select a student use facility, conduct an energy audit of the building’s power and lighting systems, and design and propose a retrofit for both. The teams entered in the competition included construction management and engineering students who actively participate in their university’s Student Chapter of the National Electrical Contractors Association.

Competition judges, including contractors and industry partners, evaluated 15 entries from top universities throughout the United States. The three finalist teams were hosted by ELECTRI International at NECA’s National Convention in Chicago where they made their final oral presentations.

Best Presenter, Maggie Holt, Iowa State University, Photo by Chuck FazioELECTRI awarded Iowa State $4,000 for the win. Iowa State proposed updating the on-campus Memorial Union by improving the multi-use facility’s lighting, adding solar technology, and sub-metering. San Diego State placed second and received $3,000.Colorado State was third with a grant of $2,000. Iowa State team member Maggie Holt was selected as the competition’s Best Presenter and received an ELECTRI award of $500.

Poster Competition Results

San Diego State NECA Student Chapter, Photo by Chuck FazioNine teams entered the Green Energy Challenge Poster Competition. The top schools receiving awards for their posters included: San Diego State ($1,000); Iowa State ($750); and Illinois Institute of Technology ($350).

 

For additional information about ELECTRI International and its Green Energy Challenge, contact Sylvia Selwood, ELECTRI Director of Operations and University Relations, at 301-215-4539 or sselwood@electri.org.

 

Jul 18

Chicago’s Must-See Sights: Part 5

Magnificent Mile

photo from www.luxurytravelmagazine.com

One of the most famous avenues in the world is north Michigan Avenue which is affectionately referred to as the “Magnificent Mile”.  Located in the heart of downtown Chicago, this 13-block stretch of road goes from the Chicago River to the south to Oak Street to the north extending a full square mile.  The stretch includes residences, retailers, boutiques, restaurants, museums, hotels, and education and medical facilities.  In 1909 local planners devised a plan to transform Michigan Avenue from an Indian trading post to a major commercial boulevard titling the plan the ‘Chicago Plan’.  The planners envisioned the ‘Chicago Plan’ as becoming similar to the Champs Elysees in Paris.  They started the process by widening the street and building the Michigan Avenue bridge across the Chicago River.  The purpose of the bridge was to connect the older south section of Michigan Avenue with the new north section.  In a plan to draw shoppers and businesses to the new district, the city helped to build the Wrigley Building right next to the bridge in 1920 and the Tribune Tower just a couple of years later.  In 1947 real estate developer Arthur Rubloff who was the leader of The Greater North Michigan Avenue Association, which had been created in 1912 to develop and promote the project, began an extensive promotional campaign to revitalize the district.  During this campaign he coined the term “The Magnificent Mile”.  The most famous building on the stretch of road is the John Hancock Building.  Opening in 1970, the building rises 100 stories which, at the time, made it the tallest building in the world.  To build the structure, the John Hancock Mutual Life Insurance Company invested $100 million in the project.

Jul 07

Chicago’s Must-See Sights: Part 4

Historic Water Tower

img src: wikimedia.org

Built in 1869, the Chicago water tower is 154 feet high.  The building was originally commissioned to hold the 138 foot tall standpipe that would help the water flow and pressure for the pumping station.  While the standpipe was removed in 1911, the pumping station is still in use.  The importance of the water tower and pumping station is that they are two of the only buildings in the city that survived the Great Chicago Fire of 1871.  The water tower’s importance is that it stands as a symbol for the rebuild of the city of Chicago which gave it the nickname “Second City”.

More “Second City” Happenings:

Join NECA for a very special lifestyle program presenting the best of the Second City, Monday September 29 at 10:00pm.

SecondCity

Celebrating 50 Years of Funny

The Second City, America’s first improvisational theater troupe, has helped launch the careers of countless stars, including Alan Arkin, Joan Rivers, Gilda Radner, John Belushi, John Candy, Catherine O’Hara, Eugene Levy, Mike Myers, Chris Farley, Tina Fey, Stephen Colbert and Steve Carell, just to name a few. This year’s Lifestyles program is a revue featuring the best sketches from their stages, along with improv games that will allow the audience to make suggestions that the performers will spin into comedy gold.