The Concrete Foundation Association (CFA) announces the presentation of its 2012 Contractor of the Year Award to Lance Jordan, chairman of Stephens & Smith Construction Co., Inc. of Omaha and Lincoln, Neb. Jordan has been a member of CFA for over a decade. He served as a Board member for a 3-year term ending last year. He was nominated for this prestigious award for his leadership in a CFA position on OSHA’s residential fall protection regulation that became effective earlier this year.
“I am very humbled to be recognized by our 'peer companies' who are members of the CFA,” Jordan states. “For well over 30 years we have admired many of the CFA companies and their owner/managers. In fact we have tried to duplicate many of their processes and systems, which we felt fit our own business model. The CFA and its members definitely have set the standards of quality, excellence and professionalism for the cast-in-place foundation industry.”
The annual award recognizes the contributions of a poured wall contractor to the industry. This year’s award was presented at the CFA Summer Convention held on Jul. 26-29 in Acme, Mich., at the Grand Traverse Resort.
According to Jim Baty, technical director of the CFA, Jordan’s dedication to the Association and commitment to a leadership position within their region inspired a major effort undertaken this year to educate and assist contractors to be prepared as conscientious employers.
“Lance exemplified what we see in the legacy of many great CFA leaders,” Baty states. “When faced with the challenge of a significant business risk that would completely change their proven safe-working culture, Lance and his company formed an alliance first within their region and then opened up their effort to national attention. He quietly but quickly assumed a leadership role that led our industry into communications with key OSHA officials both regionally and nationally to fully understand the implications of their latest directives to an industry where little, if any, technical advances were being made.”
The focus was on the Occupational Safety & Health Association’s (OSHA) reversal of a decade-old position exempting residential foundation construction from requiring active fall protection systems. The exemption from 2001, had allowed foundation companies along with other residential constructions, to continue protecting their workforce through education. The reversal was founded on evidence that work-related injuries and deaths were not being reduced and were even on the rise. The exception to this trend was the residential concrete foundation industry where a perfect safety record for the past three years had been logged and only one fatality in the past five years. In addition, Lance and many others in the industry felt that the technology presently available to companies placed workers at greater risk or hazard for both falls and physical stress, thus potentially increasing the problem rather than reducing it.