Since 2007 the BIA staff has selected an employee of a member company as the Volunteer of the Year. This award is given to someone who has made diligent contributions of talent and time in advancing the strategic initiatives of the brick industry. Previous winners are Joe Rice of Belden Tri-State Building Materials, Mark Kinser of General Shale Brick, Brett Packer of Packer Brick, and Ted Corvey of Pine Hall Brick. In 2011 the winners were employees of the companies that contributed to the cost of the Kyle Lawsuit.  Susanne McAnallen, Donley Brick, was the recipient last year.

A speechless John E. Miller, Engineering/Environment, Health and Safety Manager for Whitacre Greer, accepted the award. In presenting the award, Gregg Borchelt, BIA President and CEO, noted that John was being honored for his exemplary service and dedication to BIA in our efforts to reduce the effects of government relations on brick manufacturing.

John has his Master’s degree in Science in Environmental, Safety and Health Management from the University of Findlay. He joined Whitacre Greer in 2001 and has been active in BIA National since 2009.  John has serves on the Environment, Health & Safety Task Force and the MACT Task Force since 2009. During the past year John has visited the offices of his US Representative, Bill Johnson and welcomed Johnson to the Whitacre Greer plant in Alliance. Since Whitacre Greer is a small business, John sits on the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act Panel. He has been deeply involved in the efforts to send letters to Congress on the MACT Rule and to OSHA on the silica rule.

In support of his recognition, BIA staff had the following comments about John:

  • Helps me understand the issues
  • First to finish any survey or data request
  • Significantly involved in our strategy
  • Always ready to review documents
  • Always there to harass and tease me
  • Makes my job much more fun
His fellow employees used these terms for John:   
  • Connects easily with people
  • Dedicated to the industry and to his job
  • Willing to share expertise
  • Stalwart supporter of staff and the association
  • Someone who always responds when called

The award was presented at the Wednesday Luncheon of the 2014 Forum for Brick Distributors in Greensboro, NC. An audience of more than 450 was there to see John accept his award. He was literally speechless. Later he remarked that he was surprised, but was honored.

Congratulations, John, for your contribution to the Brick Industry Association.