ICPI recently recognized industry leaders Chris Ross and David Bender for a life of significant contributions to the segmental concrete pavement industry.
The ICPI Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes life-long, high-impact contributions to the industry through knowledge, technical innovation, and advocacy. The award emphasizes innovation, dedication of the recipient to safety and well-being of employees, demonstrated leadership, and/or outstanding contribution to the industry from volunteer service to ICPI which promotes growth and advancement of the association and/or industry. The award recognizes noteworthy public service activities at the local, regional, state, national or international levels that bring honor to the industry or to ICPI.
ICPI Chairman David Pitre noted, “Both Chris and David helped lay the groundwork for which our association and industry operates. Without them, our industry would not be where it is today.”
Chris Ross served as ICPI’s Chairman-elect in 1998 and 1999, and then as ICPI Chairman in 1999 and 2000. With his oversight, he supported the transition of ICPI from a small association management company to Bostrom Corp. who helped grow ICPI from a $700,000 budget in 1998 to more than $2 million in 2007. Under Mr. Ross’ chairmanship, ICPI laid some foundations that their board and committees rely on today. Some of these include the ICPI policy manual, policies on financial reserves, development of the certification courses, and regional meetings. The ICPI Foundation was created while he was chair.
Several groundbreaking projects were supplied by Mr. Ross, including Massey Coal Terminal in Newport News, VA (now owned by Shell). This project led to another landmark project, the Port of Baltimore. The Baltimore project set a successful example among port engineers and engineering consultants, and helped open other U.S. ports to using concrete pavers.
In 1980, Mr. Bender moved from Canada to Texas and established Pavestone Company, now one of the largest paver manufacturing companies in North America. Seven years later he returned to Canada to establish Pavestone Plus (later renamed Navastone) where he worked for the next 20 years. In 1986, Mr. Bender penned a very passionate letter to the National Concrete Masonry Association (NCMA) detailing how pavers are different [than other pavements] and persuaded the need for the industry to support and market pavers accordingly. Long before its inception, his efforts helped lay the groundwork for the creation of ICPI in 1993.
Mr. Bender continued his passion for growing the industry. His company is a charter member of ICPI. Soon after its establishment, Mr. Bender led the association serving as chairman from 1995-1997. He is attributed with several leadership accomplishments that helped shape the association and industry. One of these was the development of the ICPI Certification Program, which today has had more than 25,000 participants. Mr. Bender also directed several marketing efforts to help overcome other barriers to paver sales success. These included the development of the product certification program, a multi-national public relations campaign, municipal products slideshow and a video on mechanical installation.