Best Installer Finalists
In an effort to spotlight the people who make the Glass Magazine Award-winning products and projects possible, this year’s program includes people award categories, for which the industry submitted their picks for best installer, production supervisor, project manager and sales rep. After narrowing down the nominations to three finalists in each category, the Glass Magazine editors are asking you to decide the winners.
Here are the nominees for the new Best Installer Glass Magazine Award. The nominees are counting on your votes so read all about them, then CLICK ON THE VOTE BEST INSTALLER ICON at the bottom of the page.
VOTING CLOSES JULY 31 AT 5 P.M. EST.
Kenneth “Ned” Witham, general field superintendent, Giroux Glass Inc.
As Giroux Glass’ Las Vegas general superintendent, Witham oversees installations on the glazier’s projects in the city from start to finish, including estimating, bidding, scheduling hours and manpower, procuring required materials, and putting the right people on the job. “Ned oversees the overall project, from conception of the estimate, to strategically measuring and creating the best means and methods, from manpower to logistics in order to execute the install,” says Stephanie Lamb, Giroux’s vice president of operations.
Witham started in the industry 37 years ago and rose quickly through the ranks, serving as superintendent within his first 10 years. “When customers see Ned leading his core team of union-qualified glaziers, they are assured that high quality standards will be maintained,” Lamb says. “The fact that 90 percent of Giroux’s Las Vegas projects are with repeat customers speaks volumes for his expertise and customer satisfaction.”
Witham has overseen numerous notable projects throughout Las Vegas, including the complex black glass façade signage for the Dolce & Gabbana storefront at The Shops at Crystals. “With his countless years of experience, he has been a key ingredient to the success of Giroux Glass in Las Vegas since 2001,” Lamb says. “Ned can truly say he has had a hand in and helped to build the City of Las Vegas to be what we all see today.”
Elmer Armentrout, foreman, Service Glass Industries Inc.
Armentrout and the "Pillar of Fire"
Armentrout celebrated 20 years with Service Glass Industries in May. He serves as foreman for the company, and acts as Service Glass’ trainer for safe use of a bosun’s chair. “Elmer is an expert at water testing installations in the field, and is the go-to guy on any specialty projects or art glass installations,” says David Himes, vice president of field operations at Service Glass.
“Elmer makes sure that the job gets done right and on time. If there is ever a problem on a project, Elmer figures out what went wrong and how to solve the problem,” Himes says. “General contractors jokingly refer to Elmer as ‘Service Glass Man,’ and treat him like a super hero.”
Armentrout has been instrumental in installing several specialty and art glass projects for Service Glass, including “The Dreaming” by artist William Cochran, a five-story layered installation of architectural art glass and etched stone in Frederick, Md. He also installed the public art piece, “Pillar of Fire,” in Washington, D.C., pictured. Armentrout has been instrumental on more traditional glazing installations as well, including the interior of the University of Maryland Medical Center, which features all glass doors and stainless steel panels throughout the lobby.
Robert Kimzey, lead glazier, trainer, The Glass Guru, Roseville, Calif.
Kimzey has served in the glass industry for 15 years, and as lead glazier for the Glass Guru in Roseville, Calif., since 2009. In addition to handling the installation responsibilities for the local store, Kimzey also handles technical calls for the franchise. Before joining Glass Guru, Kimzey worked with Champion Windows and then Milgard Windows in southern Utah, covering 40,000-square-miles of territory. During his tenure at Milgard, he worked with the company’s Ultra University to develop a training manual.
“Robert is a tremendously dedicated guy,” says Sean Young, director of franchise operations for the Glass Guru. “He has been an integral part of our franchise team, and a top money maker for the company store as well.” Kimzey touts technical expertise and problem solving skills that makes him a critical member of the Glass Guru team, Young describes. “He has relinquished his cell phone number to franchisees to take technical calls from anywhere,” he says. “He is constantly problem solving, and is able to trouble shoot in the field or over the phone.”
Kimzey is an accomplished glazier for residential and commercial jobs. However, the Roseville location primarily sees interior specialty residential glass work, including shower enclosures, mirrors and furniture tops. “Robert has done a number of unique projects lately, including glass for furniture and new window installations,” Young says. “He likes to work with customers, and recently installed an in-glass pet door, and went above and beyond by engineering a ramp for the pets.”