From relief funds to more personal reflections, there’s plenty to celebrate this holiday

Gary Thill

November 18, 2021

4 Min Read
What Roofers Are—and Can Be—Grateful for this Thanksgiving

From ongoing pandemic-related headaches, to supply chain shortages, to labor woes, it’s been one of the most challenging years in memory for many roofers.

But as roofers gather with family, friends and co-workers this Thanksgiving, there’s plenty to be grateful for as well.

To get everyone in the spirit of the holiday, here are three things that happened this year roofers can be grateful for, followed by gratitudes from industry leaders and roofers around the country. 

  1. Pandemic relief funds. The government pumped a whopping $9 trillion into the economy since the pandemic, according to the COVID money tracker, giving roofers needed relief—and homeowners more money in their pockets than ever. At the same time, the lockdown gave homeowners a new appreciation for their homes, leading to a boom in repair and renovation. The result: roofers across the nation typically have more work than ever.

  2. Infrastructure funding. After months of wrangling, Congress finally passed the $1.2 trillion infrastructure spending bill, which AGC and other organizations are celebrating, “Ultimately, these new infrastructure investments will provide a needed boost for the construction industry while making our economy more efficient,” said AGC CEO Stephen E. Sandherr. Roofing and exteriors pros will benefit significantly from the bill as well. Sec. 40551. Weatherization assistance program provides $3.5 billion for a weatherization assistance program, which would include roofing. Sec. 40542. Energy efficiency materials pilot program provides $50 million specifically for improvements that include “a roof or lighting system or component of the system; a window; a door, including a security door.”

  3. Mother Nature. Call it climate change or just the weather, but either way, extreme storms have kept roofers extremely busy this year. “In 2021 (as of Oct. 8), there have been 18 weather/climate disaster events with losses exceeding $1 billion each to affect the United States,” according to the National Centers for Environmental Information. The 1980–2020 annual average is 7.1 events, the NCEI noted. In just the first nine months of this year, disaster costs have reached close to $105 billion, exceeding the $100 billion for all of 2020. The upshot for roofers: increasingly extreme weather means there’s no shortage of work on the horizon.

Along with those points, here’s what industry leaders and roofers are thankful for this season:

Reid Ribble, NRCA CEO:

  • NRCA is thankful for the loyalty of its members, especially in these challenging times.

  • We are thankful for the hundreds of volunteers who work tirelessly on behalf of the entire industry by serving on our committees.

  • We are thankful for a skilled and dedicated professional staff that seeks daily to execute the NRCA Strategic plan and build a more profitable and secure industry for our members.

Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3), a consortium of thought leaders exploring emerging technology solutions for the roofing industry:

  • We are thankful for the support we receive from the roofing industry in sharing the message of technology, and how it can help contractors and the industry overall. The industry gives us the opportunity to host educational panels at shows, the media provides coverage of our activities and publishes our educational articles.

  • We are thankful for our members, who are always willing to share their knowledge and experiences to help the industry, giving their time and allowing tours of their facilities.

  • We are thankful for those technology resources who are outside the roofing industry, such as the Microsoft Innovation Lab, Boxabl, The Wond’ry at Vanderbilt University, The Advanced Technology Development Center at Georgia Tech, and 3M’s World of Innovation who allow our members to visit and learn about technology solutions that could potentially benefit our industry.

Derric Stull, president and CEO of Ridge Valley Exteriors Inc. with offices in Florida and Georgia:

  • I am grateful for our day-to-day relentless team of experts who call Ridge Valley Exteriors Inc. home. We could not deliver the RVE experience and our industry exclusive "Hold Your Hand Guarantee" without them. 

  • I am incredibly grateful for our manufacturing and supplier partnerships. These partners have helped us navigate the craziest supply chain issues we have ever seen! 

  • I am grateful for our partnership with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Giving every child a chance at a healthy and fun-filled life reminds us every day why we push so hard for such a special client experience. Simply put, every job matters because every child at St. Jude matters! 

Michelle Boykin, COO, Rackley Roofing, with offices throughout Tennessee:

  • I’m grateful for such a welcoming industry we have in roofing. The roofing industry truly is a family, and the connections you make become long-lasting friendships. Some of the most meaningful mentors, coaches, and friends I’ve had are people I’ve met in roofing.

  • I’m grateful for the learning opportunities we have in roofing. Whether it’s the NRCA TRAC Program, NWiR Day with amazing speakers and breakout sessions, or hands-on demos from the manufacturers, everyone in our industry is willing to teach others. There really is no limit to what you can do in the roofing industry, and the availability of training really speaks to that.

  • I’m grateful to work at Rackley Roofing, where we truly live out our core values and work hard every day to transform the roofing industry. We focus on our teams, our families, and our customers. I couldn’t imagine a better place to work!

About the Author(s)

Gary Thill

Gary Thill is an independent writer and editor with an extensive background in the residential and commercial construction sectors. He served as editor of the Replacement Contractor newsletter for five years and has contributed regularly to Remodeling and other construction-focused publications for several decades. He lives and works in Portland, Oregon.

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