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The transformation of the Built-up Roofing System Institute

Johns Manville BURSI 1977
May 21, 2024 at 3:00 p.m.

By Johns Manville. 

Nearly fifty years later, BURSI is still going strong. 

1977 was a great year for Johns Manville. They celebrated five years of BURSI at a time when Atari was debuting its new 2600 video game series, and the Apple computer first went on sale. If you were a kid at the time, Space Mountain was the newest ride at Disneyland, and Pet Rocks were the cool thing to have.  

And while Pet Rocks and the Atari 2600 have faded into history, Space Mountain and Apple are still going strong. So, too, is BURSI. So strong that one attendee from 1977 returned for a second go-round at the BURSI Roadshow event in Oak Brook, Illinois this March. 

“Of course, back then it was called the Built-Up Roofing System Institute… Single ply did not really exist then or maybe it was starting to very slowly come around,” Wayne Babiak, an associate architect at JMA Architects in Holland, Illinois, said via email. 

The BURSI acronym has adapted to the times and now stands for Better Understanding of Roofing Systems Institute and includes sessions on EPDM, PVC and TPO, too. 

Babiak and other attendees at the March 20 and 21 Roadshow in Oak Brook spoke about BURSI programs held way back when, in Denver, Colorado. One attendee said he was there in 1978, but Babiak could do him one better and had memorabilia from the 1977 program to prove it — a class completion plaque, a commemorative paper weight and a class photo. 

“Check out the clothes from back then,” Babiak said, adding a smiling emoticon for emphasis. 

Fashions may have changed but the value of BURSI has not, according o Babiak. 

“The program was well organized, and the presentations and demonstrations were very informative,” he said. 

Original article source: Johns Manville 

Learn more about Johns Manville in their Coffee Shop Directory or visit www.jm.com.



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