Lisa Pate, FRSA Executive Director
Throughout 2022, this column will recap some of FRSA’s rich history, through accounts from meeting minutes and a published book called FRSA The First Half Century.
A new professionalism marked the Association as it entered its fifth decade – a professionalism fostered and developed over long, hard years by the dedicated men who first laid the foundation for the Roofing and Sheet Metal Contractors Association of Florida; professionalism fostered by a paid Executive Secretary and a first class trade magazine, Florida Forum, that brought the major issues of industry concern to every Association member each month.
During the ensuing decade, union demands would become greater, legislation more restrictive, competition fiercer and quality more essential, but the collective power and expertise of Association members along with the dedication of its leaders would grow at a gratifying rate. No challenge would be too great, no task too small, no success too insignificant to command the attention of the Association.
There had been good years and there had been bad years in the past and there would be more of the same in the future, but nothing could seriously damage the organization of contractors who flexed their muscles each time the Board met, each time a Convention was held, each time a challenge was sighted.
Haydon Burns, Jacksonville Mayor who would became Governor of Florida, presented the keynote address at the 40th annual Convention in Jacksonville. During the session, Forest Dean, Clearwater, was elected President. A highlight of the Convention was a preview of the Association’s new sheet metal safety film, “Heel.” This film was the first sheet metal safety film ever produced by a state trade association.
In an address to the management and labor participants at the annual meeting of the Florida Apprenticeship Council in Miami Beach, Governor Farris Bryant sought the “continuance of a beneficial labor climate in Florida.” Speaking by telephone from his office in Tallahassee, the Governor told the group Florida possessed “a fine climate of cooperation between labor, management and government” and urged all three fields to work toward progressive cooperation. He said, “This climate has not always existed in Florida and we have reason to be proud of the spirit which leaders of labor, of management and of government have brought to their conferences and which guides the daily contacts we share.” Read more.