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AGC Introduces Charity Program to Make Disabled Veterans' Homes Accessible

Associated General Contractors of America kicked off its first-ever national charity effort this week at the construction group’s 90th annual convention in San Diego.

March 06, 2009

Associated General Contractors of America kicked off its first-ever national charity effort this week at the construction group’s 90th annual convention in San Diego.

Under the new program, construction industry businesses will be donating time and materials to make disabled veterans’ homes accessible, AGC President Douglas E. Barnhart announced. The association’s 33,000 member companies and chapters will be urged to identify and help disabled veterans returning from service who need to have their houses made accessible, Barnhart explained.

AGC also introduced at the convention new software standards that will allow sharing of data and key information between different construction programs, along with announcing winners of Marvin M. Black Excellence in Partnering Award, cited for successfully maintaining support and cooperation among the many groups involved with their construction and oversight.

Operation Opening Doors

Barnhart said the charity effort, known as Operation Opening Doors, was chosen because it provided the best way for the construction community to show its support for America’s wounded veterans. He noted that the program originally was established by the association’s South Dakota Building Chapter.

"No wounded soldier should ever have to feel out of place in their home again," Barnhart said. "Our goal is clear: Turn a bold vision into a national reality of success for those who sacrificed so much for our freedom."

Barnhart noted that as president of the association he has made increasing the construction community’s charitable contributions a main focus of his tenure. As part of that, he established a new national awards contest, the AGC in the Community Awards, as the best way to recognize the largely "unheralded" efforts of the chapters across the country.

Barnhart announced the winners of the first-ever AGC in the Community Awards during the opening session of the convention. The winners were:

  • Aid to Children with Muscular Dystrophy, Contractors Association of West Virginia
  • Dominican Center and the Sojourner Truth House, AGC of Greater Milwaukee
  • Habitat for Humanity, AGC of Virginia
  • Operation Opening Doors, AGC of South Dakota, Building Chapter
  • Rebuilding Together Pittsburgh, Master Builders of Western Pennsylvania
  • St. Hermann’s House of Hospitality, Ohio Contractors Association
  • The Haven, Arizona Builders Alliance

Partnering Awards

The Marvin M. Black Excellence in Partnering Awards are designed to recognize construction companies for their ability to achieve a common goal, honor all stakeholders, maintain momentum, perpetuate partnering, improve communication and incorporate team-building activities.

"These awards acknowledge that the hardest part of most construction projects isn’t laying bricks or pouring cement, its building a foundation of understanding, trust and support with everyone involved," said Doug Pruitt, incoming president of AGC. "Successful projects need technical skill and know-how, but a commitment to community support, worker safety and great communication are essential."

The 2009 Marvin M. Black Excellence in Partnering winners include:

  • I-15 NOW Design-Build Reconstruction Project , Greater Ogden Area of Weber County, UT - Granite Construction Inc., Sponsoring Partner of Weber County Constructors
  • LAUSD Central High School No. 11, Los Angeles, CA - Hensel Phelps Construction Co.
  • Virginia Approach Spans for the Woodrow Wilson Bridge, Alexandria, VA - Granite Construction Co., Sponsoring Partner of Virginia Approach Constructors
  • Milwaukee City Hall Historic Restoration, Milwaukee, WI - J.P. Cullen & Sons, Inc.

The 2008 Special Recognition Award winners include:

  • Red Mountain Freeway/SR L202, Mesa, AZ - Pulice Construction Inc.
  • I-15 Virgin River Bridges #2 to #7, Virgin River Gorge, AZ - Austin Bridge & Road
  • Lake Pleasant Water Treatment Plant, Phoenix, AZ - McCarthy Building Companies, Inc.
  • Connecticut College Asset Reinvestment 2008, New London, CT - Konover Construction Corp.
  • SR87 Emergency Embankment & Slope Repair Project, Gila County, AZ - Royden Construction Co.

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