AGG1 Preview: Must-attend classes

By |  March 14, 2016

The number of educational sessions at the AGG1 Aggregates Academy & Expo jumped from 48 sessions last year to 53 sessions for the 2016 show.

Catherine Whalen, the National Stone, Sand & Gravel Association’s (NSSGA) director of education, helped decide which educational sessions would take place at the 2016 AGG1 show. She says the show’s educational committee tries to find as much fresh content and new case studies to share with producers each year. Of this year’s 53 sessions, she says only 10 percent are repeats from previous years.

Some staples that returned to this year’s educational lineup include Crushing 101 with Mark Krause of McLanahan; Screening 101 with Joe Schlabach of Deister Machine Co.; and Washing and Classifying 101 with John Bennington of Superior Industries.

A full program of AGG1 and World of Asphalt’s educational sessions can be found online. The following are a few new sessions Whalen anticipates will be popular among producers this year:

T43 Aggregate Ticketing Innovation with Robert Cote of Dolese Bros. Co.
When: 7:30 to 9 a.m. Tuesday, March 22
Room 106 A
Why attend: This session discusses aggregate ticketing innovations used at a Dolese site that significantly boosted the company’s customer cycle times. Whalen says show attendees often like to hear from other operators on how they solved common problems at sites. “The problem at this Dolese operation might be a common problem for other producers, so it’s worth learning how this company solved their problems.”

T55 How Leaders Drive a Successful Company Culture in a 107 Year Old Aggregates and Construction Company with Bill Carpenter of Rogers Group, Inc.
9:30 to 11 a.m. Tuesday, March 22
Where: Room 106 A
Why attend: This course will provide an overview of the cultural differentiators that allow this Rogers Group quarry to remain competitive and successful. Whalen says the company offers a unique perspective on “boomerang employees,” who leave a company for a period of time and then return to lead that same company.

W55 New Tech in an Old Business with Alan Perry of Pine Bluff Sand & Gravel and Anna Berlekamp of Kalleo Technologies
10:30 to 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, March 23
Where: Room 104 D-E
Why attend: Sometimes, older companies might surrender to the idea that “the way we’ve always done things is the only way.” Whalen says this mentality can hurt producers today as new technologies are introduced to the industry. This course talks about the thought process behind implementing new technology at older operations, and how it can improve safety and production.

TH41 Changing the MSHA Refresher Training Process with Dr. Joseph McGuire of Oldcastle Materials Group
7:30 to 9 a.m. Thursday, March 24
Where: Room 104 A
Why attend: This course discusses how McGuire created a hands-on way to update his employees on Mine Safety & Health Administration (MSHA) Annual Refresher Training that didn’t put his employees to sleep. Whalen recommends this course for any attendee who will likely have to train aggregates employees on MSHA topics. “The way he teaches the material is not dry or boring like what you sometimes get with MSHA training,” Whalen adds. “He has received fantastic feedback from his employees on how he taught this material.”

TH44 Drones and Stockpiles with John Davenport of Whitaker Contracting and Adam Rice of Kespry.
7:30 to 9 a.m. Thursday, March 24
Room 105 A-B
Why attend:
This course will teach attendees how mining companies are using drone aerial images to automatically get perimeter, volume and weights of aggregate stockpiles. Whalen says the course will somewhat reflect NSSGA’s Drones and Mining webinar with Kespry in February. Even if a producer has already listened to NSSGA’s recent webinar, Whalen recommends checking this session out, as it will offer slightly different information.

About the Author:

Megan Smalley is the associate editor of Pit & Quarry. Contact her at or 216-363-7930.

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