By Colin Sheehan, RCS Reporter.
In Season 3, Episode 47 of Roofing Road Trips, Heidi J. Ellsworth visits with Joel Viera, executive director of Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA) about the upcoming Western Roofing Expo (WRE). One of the largest regional roofing shows, the WRE has its own unique culture bringing roofing contractors and crews together from across the western states. Starting with the exciting Davis Memorial Foundation events and progressing through educational classes, Joel will share all the reasons WRE is a must attend.
Joel has been with WSRCA for 20 years, and has worn many hats during his time. He started as the Davis Memorial Foundation events coordinator and the WRE trade show coordinator, but has also been the membership director, the entire expo director, the deputy executive director, and in 2019 become a certified association executive.
“I've got a lot of experience here in the association doing a lot of different roles, a lot of important roles that [focus on] networking and knowing our members and our exhibitors and our attendees,” said Joel. “So, I have a strong base of relationships with the people in our area.”
Since 1974 WSRCA has been connecting, serving and uplifting contractors all the way from Texas to Hawaii and Alaska. They represent 15 states and have a strong membership base of about 650 roofing professionals.
“We hang our hat on being a strong technical association [and] we try to provide as many technical bulletins and articles and webinars as we can during the year," said Joel.
Last year, WSRCA had to quickly pivot from their in-person trade show and make it into a virtual roofing expo, the first organization to do this in the industry. This year, they are excited to have an in-person tradeshow which will include 22 seminars and a bustling floor. Masks will be mandated and there will be a few other revisions to their typical trade show to ensure the health and safety of everyone who attends.
“We have to take care of ourselves and be smart about things, it's the new wave of the way things are going to be,” said Joel. “We have the entire conference center, so we've made it a point to have every other seat at the seminars taken [out] and instead of having 10 sit at a table, we're going to do rounds of six. We're just going to take every precaution we can and just [do] things smarter.”
Listen to the entire podcast to hear more about this upcoming trade show and what you can expect when you arrive in at The Mirage in Las Vegas.