April 2019 News


5th Annual Golf Tournament and Convention A Great Success!
by Melanie McKee, NAXSA Executive Director

The beautiful Bear’s Best Las Vegas Golf Course hosted NAXSA’s 5th Annual Golf Tournament. The group of 88 players enjoyed beautiful weather, great food and fun had by all!
The 2019 Annual Convention drew record attendance to the Park MGM Resort and Casino, where 177 industry professionals, exhibitors, and guests enjoyed 2-days of general sessions, breakout sessions and networking receptions.    
Ron Chilton, NAXSA President, kicked off the convention with a warm welcome to all attendees at the opening general session. Guest speakers included industry professional and NAXSA President-Elect, Brian Crandall, Icon Products, who spoke on Expanding Our Market Through Innovation.

The group also heard from Richard Hearn, National Trench Safety and Larry Modak, Trench Shoring Services, on the success of the NAXSA-OSHA Safety Summits. NAXSA will be supporting 3-4 safety summits across the country in 2019. Details will follow in future newsletters.

In the afternoon, the group enjoyed an informative session from Scott Ketcham, CSP, Acting Director, OSHA Directorate of Construction, as he provided an OSHA Update on Construction Safety.

Breakout sessions included topics on Site Specific Engineering, Tab Data and Deflection in Shoring, as well as Rental Yard Pavement Designs and a 2019/2020 Construction Market Outlook. Our great speakers included Jasper Calcara, PE, D.H. Charles Engineering, Kim Kennedy, Dodge Data and Analytics, Todd Scholz, PhD, PE, GeoDesign, Inc., and Dave Nicoli, President of D.P. Nicoli Inc. and NAXSA Past President.

Our Friday General Session featured Keynote Speaker - Jake Harriman, Founder and CEO of NURU International. Jake's experiences as a Special Operations Platoon Commander in the Marine Corps and several deployments in poverty-stricken areas, convinced him that the "War on Terror" wouldn't be won on the battlefield alone.

Since 2009, Nuru Kenya and Nuru Ethiopia have enabled over 100,00 people to lift themselves out of poverty. Jake's heartfelt stories were inspiring to all, and he was a welcome addition to our speaker line-up.  

Our Friday morning session concluded after an enlightening presentation on Active Attackers and Emergency Procedures from Trooper Sam Acosta, Nevada State Police. The group was presented with common sense approaches that may save your life in an active attacker situation. 
The President's Reception and Exhibitor Reception offered attendees and exhibitors time to network and enjoy great food and cocktails. Several people participated in the Hoover Dam Tour and we hope everyone enjoyed all events at the 2019 Annual Convention. We look forward to hosting you again in 2020 when the convention returns to the Wild Horse Pass Hotel and Casino, February 5-7, 2020.

NAXSA committees held meetings during the convention and the following article is an update on the insurance program.
 Insurance Committee Report 
by Blake Dickens, HMP Insurance
The NAXSA insurance program has made substantial stride since its inception. We’d like to give a brief background of the insurance program and where it started for those that may not be familiar and will then jump into upcoming goals.



The insurance program was formed with the goal of providing NAXSA members with property & casualty insurance that improved coverage while lowering premium cost. The premise which led to the inception of the committee was that insurance carriers did not fully understand the trench safety industry and as a result were assigning conservative risk factors when rating companies that fell into this niche industry.

NAXSA partnered with Harris Madden Powell (HMP) to put the insurance program into place and HMP actively began meeting with insurance carriers to educate the carriers on the trench safety industry, explaining that our equipment keeps contractors safe and when used properly helps to prevent the very type of incidents that give rise to claims. Concurrently with that process HMP began marketing interested NAXSA member renewals to these insurance carriers.


NAXSA is pleased to state that the insurance program has been able to partner with [6] NAXSA members to write insurance policies that lowered cost and or improve coverage as of [3/18/2019]. There are several members going through the underwriting process or using HMP as a resource to help with their current risk management strategy. These insurance policies are specific to the individual members and the confidential information provided is held in strict confidence by HMP.



The insurance committee would like to encourage any member interested in reducing insurance spend and or improving insurance coverage to have an exploratory phone conversation with Blake Dickens with HMP to determine whether the program may be a fit. Blake is happy to discuss any insurance questions about your current insurance program and be a resource for you moving forward, whether a policy is put in place in the program or not. Blake can be reached at (901) 312-5300.

Additionally, with the continuing rise of healthcare costs today the committee is actively monitoring healthcare legislation as it is passed to determine whether the association can put into place a similar insurance program for members healthcare program. If favorable legislation is passed, the goal would also be to improve coverage and lower insurance premiums here as well.


Melanie McKee
NAXSA Executive Director

NAXSA is an association created to promote the safe and efficient use of excavation shoring practices.

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