During his too-short life, Dan Cohen made a lot of good decisions but none better than when he became the executive director of the Arizona Roofing Contractors Association (ARCA). A former roofing contractor (his company appropriately was named Road Runner Roofing Co.), Dan found his real calling in association work.
He took a rather typical state association and infused it with energy and passion, almost single-handedly putting it on the map as one of our industry's finest associations. He did this through a combination of stubbornness and persistence that, I'm quite sure, resulted in some members paying their dues just so they wouldn't have to take another one of his calls.
Persistence can be a virtue, but there are other lessons to be learned from Dan's tenure at ARCA. He understood the value of having suppliers involved in the association not just for sponsorship money but to help with membership development, convention planning and lobbying. Contractors and suppliers in Arizona have a special relationship, and a lot of it has come about because of their mutual involvement with ARCA.
Dan also was smart enough to get the right people involved with ARCA as its leaders. Former ARCA presidents are the "who's who" of the roofing industry in the state; Dan understood you can't build an effective organization without the best and brightest.