From the Desk of Randy Smith:

Smith Retires as BAC 3-CA Field Representative

Change is a part of life and as we move toward the sunset years of our lives, many new and different aspects of life take on new meaning and priorities are forced to change.

From the days of the long hours on the wall, commutes  to far away jobs, mortar and grout covered clothes and sore wrist, elbows, knees and back,  to the endless hours in BAC Committee and Trust  meetings, fund raisers, donation jobs, contractor, developer and job site meetings, Building Trade Council  meetings, PLA Pre-jobs, BAC negotiations, on the computer, answering phone calls and emails long after the usual evening and weekend hours should have begun, this has all been a part of a career built on service and dedicated to the BAC trades.  Although there have been great rewards in all areas of my BAC career from being a part of creating a building from the dirt to the sky and to helping members with benefit details and making decisions for the good of the Union, it is now time to let the sun set on this chapter of life.

With both feelings of melancholy and new energy, March 30, 2018, will be my last day as a BAC 3- CA Field Representative.  There is no doubt that it will be a big change and that my world will be a different place without this position, but it is solely my decision to hang up the hard hat, put away the job site boots, safety vest and glasses and let a new generation fill this place.  I can guarantee that the trowel won’t stay in the bag forever as I will always be a bricklayer and I’m sure that there will be many a home project to do using the skills that were acquired only because of the fine leaders and brotherhood of BAC 3.  For today, however, the new focus will be taking extra time to enjoy my family, supporting my wife Cynthia and finally starting on some of those projects involving home and car restoration that have been waiting years for my attention.

Over the past nearly 40 years we have seen a variety of changes in the masonry business, enjoying times of great prosperity and growth, to enduring the very difficult economic struggles and hard times.  All of these times have been filled with experiences to learn about myself, the Union, our great country and how important the relationships developed through BAC have shaped my ability to stay strong and to always be steadfast in personal dedication which is the basis on which the brotherhood is built and will remain a part of a commitment to work together and build with pride and quality.

I take great pride in what has been achieved over the years and feel very privileged to have shared the journey with all of you.  The times shared with my fellow journeymen laying block, brick, stone and pavers were not only opportunities to refine our skills together, but also a great time to build a camaraderie that will last a lifetime.   I am so thankful for these relationships and it has been an honor to work beside you on the wall and also to serve as a BAC representative for you, my fellow members.  I am grateful for our BAC Signatory Contractors who provided work opportunities and an environment that was safe, clean and respectful, upholding the commitment to the contract that they signed to be a part of BAC.  With the common goals and efforts of all of us working together under the BAC leadership, my experience has been gratifying in many ways.  It is only because of the quality workmanship and project labor agreements through BAC that I have had the opportunity to be a part of some of the grandest and most extraordinary projects like The NFL 49er’s Levi Stadium and the Apple Campus, not to mention many high-tech, commercial, educational, institutional, religious and residential projects that showcase masonry as an enduring and beautiful product compared to many other building materials.

As I moved into the second half of my BAC career as a Field Representative, I was given new responsibilities and gained new relationships with our BAC members, their families, my fellow Field Representative, the Officers and BAC office staff.  I am proud to be a part of the member representation team at BAC and to work with of the finest Union leadership in the industry.  We have been honored to serve the BAC International Union under the leadership of former BAC 7-CA President Jim Boland; even though he is now leading the International Union from Washington D.C., he still has a special way of watching over us, his home local.  At the helm of BAC 3-CA today is President Dave Jackson.  We are very fortunate to have his leadership as he understands every phase of BAC 3 through practical on-the-job experience and leadership, providing guidance and support daily.  Our current team of Field Representatives, Officers and Organizers are not only my colleagues, but my friends.  The team of Troy Garland, Secretary-Treasurer; Darin Compton, Steve Kantoniemi, Gary Peifer, Officers; and David Tafoya, Organizer; are a very fine group of men dedicated to serving the Union.  I also must acknowledge all of the behind the scene work of office staff Cecilia Aguilar, Lani Chen and Carmen Olivo-Garcia who keep the day-to-day operations running and are always there supporting us.

I am also grateful and honored to have had the opportunity to serve as a member of a variety of BAC Trusts.  This has given me the insight into just how important BAC is to our members and their families, allowing me to serve the membership in a personalized way that is one of the most gratifying aspects of being a Field Representative.  I’m pleased to have been able to play a part in decisions that affect BAC and the future, serving as BAC Trustee for BAC Brick 3 Health and Welfare, BAC 16 Pension, BAC Apprenticeship and Negotiation Committees as well as serving as BAC 16 Recording Secretary.  Working with our Administrators, Attorneys, Investment Managers and Actuary have given me invaluable insights into the inner-workings of the Union. This responsibility has instilled in me the importance of being a part of BAC and all of the benefits Union membership provides, not only throughout the working years but also how important it is to retirement and future planning.

I feel very fortunate to come from a family where the Union was a part of every day.  Their example provided me with an understanding and respect for the American work force and the benefits of being a Union member.  BAC has honed my masonry skills, provided work opportunities, family benefits and pension plans that are so very important.  I will always be a proud card-carrying member of BAC 3-CA and am grateful to have had a fulfilling career working with amazing people, having a variety of job responsibilities and the privilege and confidence in a secure future.

Whether you are reading this sitting on a stack block, pallet of mortar mix, scaffold, at your desk or in your easy chair, I wish to thank you all for the part you have played in my BAC career.  May your future be blessed with good health, happiness and success for you and your family.  Thank you for the opportunity to be of service.

All the best,
Randy Smith