Professional pride

There are many reasons we should be proud to be a part of the roofing industry. Certainly, we can take pride in the high-quality work of the men and women who install, repair and maintain roofs throughout the U.S. But that's not the only thing that should generate pride.

We also should be proud the U.S. roofing industry is distinctively an American experience. Our raw materials are sourced here. Our roofing products are manufactured here. And our roof systems are installed by our neighbors and friends. Unlike much of the economy, the roofing industry contributes at a uniquely local level.

As I have traveled throughout the U.S. speaking at regional and local roofing association meetings, I have witnessed the industry's generosity. I saw it as the Western States Roofing Contractors Association held silent and live auctions that raised more than $60,000 for the group's educational foundation. And I watched as the Florida Roofing and Sheet Metal Contractors Association awarded several scholarships to college students. Scenes like these are repeated throughout the U.S.

At NRCA, I am lucky enough to have a front-seat view of our members' generosity and community service. Those who are a part of The Roofing Industry Alliance for Progress manage the Melvin Kruger Endowed Scholarship Program, which was established in 2007. The goal has been to create a permanent scholarship fund of at least $2 million so a minimum of $100,000 in scholarships can be awarded annually.