Jim Weber bestowed with NCMA Lifetime Achievement Award

Jim Weber, retired from Oldcastle Architectural Inc., receives NCMA's highest honor.

James L. Weber, retired from Oldcastle Architectural, Inc., Atlanta, Georgia, was presented with NCMA’s Lifetime Achievement Award on August 5 at the association’s Midyear meetings held at The Pfister Hotel in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

This award is NCMA’s highest recognition for achievement or service by individuals through a member company (or companies). The award recognizes those individuals who have made extraordinary contributions to directly advance the industry and/or the association in a profound and lasting manner.

Jim’s is known for his sense of humor and sharp wit, traits that are prevalent in all aspects of his life, including business. In addition to his humor, he’s also known as being the consummate devil’s advocate. Jim was exposed to the value of hard work and the concrete block industry early in life when his dad Wally bought Appleton Concrete Products in 1946. His official start date was 1957, the year that he graduated from Appleton High School. In those days, Jim drove the delivery truck, the forklift, the front-end loader, and did every other job to support the family business.

But not for long. Jim was preparing to see more of the world and gain new experiences and he made full use of those life opportunities. After high school, Jim spent the next four years at St. Norbert College as an ROTC cadet, graduating with a degree in business administration. He was commissioned into the U.S. Army as a Second Lieutenant in June of 1961. It was at St. Norbert he married his wife Janet in 1962. Jim and Janet lived the military life as Jim served his country with distinction over the next six years. He attended armor school at Fort Knox and later became part of the Ordinance Corps, rising to the rank of captain. In 1964, he served at several weapons depots, and his final posting was commanding an ammunition depot in England.

Jim and Janet were busy during this time, and that included building a new family. They were blessed with the births of all three of their children, Debbie, Darcy, and Jim in a span of just two and a half years. Following military service, the family returned to Appleton where Jim resumed work with his father, Wally. Jim considers his father his first and most influential mentor. In 1972 Appleton Concrete Products merged with West Bend Concrete Products and formed Bend Industries. West Bend’s Fred Yahr became the president of the expanded company with Jim serving as the vice president of sales and marketing. Fred Yahr, who served as the NCMA chairman of the board in 1981, is the second most influential mentor cited by Jim saying, quote “He had more confidence in me than I deserved.” Jim and Janet attended their first NCMA convention in 1968.

Jim remarked how those conventions have provided him the opportunity to meet the most interesting and daring people. In 2003 Jim, as president of Bend Industries, negotiated their sale to Oldcastle Architectural Products Group. His more than five decades of involvement with NCMA has included service on dozens of committees. Jim served as Chair of the NCMA Board in 2006 and was inducted into NCMA’s Hall of Fame in 2009.

A few of the accolades and congratulations received for Jim are below.

“What really sets you apart is your committee involvement and what you bring to the table, which with each meeting, you’re always prepared, always challenging, always have the guts to be the contrarian and I think in the end helps NCMA reach its goal of being a member-driven organization.” – Peter B. Hoyt, retiree of Oldcastle Architectural, Inc. and NCMA 1998 Chair.

“Jim has been very supportive of NCMA and he’s also been very supportive of the NCMA Foundation and in both of those I have had the opportunity to work hand and glove together in.” – Bill Holden, CarbonCure Technologies and NCMA 1990 Chair.

These days, life just seems to continue to get even better for Jim and Janet. Their plans for the future include “doing everything we are doing now, only slower.” It sure doesn’t look like they are slowing down yet. And it doesn’t look like the Weber clan, including seven grandchildren, are ready for that either.

NCMA recognizes Jim’s legacy is secure and it is fitting that he be recognized with NCMA’s highest recognition – the Lifetime Achievement Award.

For a PDF copy of this press release, click here.

Published September 1, 2021
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