April 4, 2014
Throughout the next year, members of the National Stone, Sand and Gravel Association’s (NSSGA) Manufacturers and Services Division will be led by Jennifer Hise, vice president of Cemco, Inc. Hise takes over from Jeff Sikora, vice president and general manager of Hazemag USA, Inc., and will hold a unique position in the organization: she is the division’s first female chairman and also the daughter of a former chairman, Neil Hise.
The gavel exchange took place during a luncheon held during the NSSGA Annual Meeting in Las Vegas, which features an annual roast of the outgoing chair. After the luncheon, Sikora said that he was most proud of “the friends that I made and being part a wonderful industry that’s about to take a new leap forward.” (It should be noted that this comment was made after Sikora received his commemorative past chairman’s cane.)
For her part, Hise said her biggest challenge will be ensuring that the programs put in place this year come to fruition.
“I don’t think being a past chairman’s daughter or a woman in this position is intimidating,” she said. “What scares me is that it will intimidate the past chairs at the roast, in terms of what they can and cannot say.”
Sikora quickly debunked that concern.
During her tenure, Hise said she hopes to serve as a facilitator for the hard-working members of the division, noting that many are passionate about the industry and eager to serve.
“They show what’s attainable,” she added.
Hise also promoted the benefits of membership in the M&S Division, particularly to those who have not yet joined.
“They are missing out on the quality opportunities, the networking, the potential customer base, and the chance to share how they contribute to the industry,” she said.
“Unfortunately, all business is now political. If you’re not politically involved, it’s detrimental to the business as a whole,” her father chimed in. “If you don’t belong to an organization that has some clout – and NSSGA does – you’re missing the boat.”