The Legacy of the Trade: The 2019 MCAA Masonry Hall of Fame Inductees

In 2019, the MCAA will be introducing six new inductees into the Masonry Hall of Fame. On Thursday, January 24th, during the MCAA Annual Convention at the World of Concrete, the newest members of the prestigious group will be honored at the Vdara. 

This year, Kenny Foeste, Clem Hellmann, Alonza Lewis, Robert Merrill, Michael Sutter, and Angelo Tedesco will join the esteemed group of masonry professionals in the Hall of Fame.  

Kenny Foeste – Kenneth E. Foeste Masonry, Inc. 

Nominated By: Ashley Sparkman, Kenneth E. Foeste Masonry, Inc. 

His Nomination: Kenneth E. Foeste, age 76, owner and President of Kenneth E. Foeste Masonry, Inc. was born, raised and has lived in Cape Girardeau, MO all of his life.  

In 1963, at the age of 22, he entered the masonry field as a hod carrier. He naturally progressed into the Bricklayer Apprentice program and became a Journeyman Bricklayer on April 8, 1969. Four years later, after working for both Drury Company and Ste. Genevieve Building Stone, he started his current company, Kenneth E. Foeste Masonry. His company was incorporated six years later in 1979 and his wife, Judy, joined him full-time as Vice President and Senior Estimator in 1980. They both are still in the field and in the office on a daily basis overseeing operations. Their son, Mark Foeste, has worked in the field for the company from a young age, but became officially employed after he graduated high school in 1983. Within the last four years, three of their grandchildren have also joined the company. Two in the field and one in the office. 

Foeste Masonry has long been known and respected as the largest mason contractor between St. Louis, MO and Memphis, TN. Kenny has overseen many large projects in the Southeast Missouri, Southern Illinois and Western Kentucky areas. Some of the larger ones being the Closed Maximum Security Prison in Tamms, IL in 1997; the Procter and Gamble Paper Making Plant in Cape Girardeau, MO in 1999; the United States Federal Courthouse in Cape Girardeau, MO in 2006; and the Jackson High School Addition in Jackson, MO in 2008.  

Kenny has been a long time member of the Mason Contractors Association of America and also the Mason Contractors Association of St. Louis. He was a member and past President for many years of the Mason Contractors Association of Southeast Missouri. He has carried the title of Certified Mason Contractor for most of his career. At one point in time he served as an Instructor at the Bricklaying School in Cape Girardeau, MO. He is also a HEK Platforms and Hoists, Inc. Qualified Instructor and was the first mason contractor to bring HEK scaffolding to projects in the Southeast Missouri area. He has also served as a judge for the Fastest Trowel competition in Kansas City, MO. 

Kenny has always felt strongly about promoting masonry within the building industry. As President of the MCA of SEMO, they would invite and send an area architect yearly to the Masonry Showcase to help educate and promote masonry in the architectural/design process. He has also attended many area job fairs educating and encouraging young people to get into the masonry trades. You will always find apprentices on his jobsites as he tries to help educate and train more individuals in the trade.  

Kenny was very impactful in the fight for the rights of the Laborers on Lifts’ in this region. It was due to his petitioning and persistence that they were able to keep those rights in the laborers’ agreements versus the operators’. This was a major issue that required court appearances during the construction of the multimillion-dollar Tamms, IL Maximum Security Prison project.  

Kenny has attended many continuing education opportunities and earned many certifications during these years including: 

MCAA Management Institute; Computer Assisted Masonry Estimating; 30 Hour OSHA, MCAA Forklift training; CPR/First Aid; Scaffolding Competent Person.  

Kenny Foeste is up every day about 3 AM and drags into bed as the sun goes down only because his body cannot go 24 hours a day, because he would if it could. Masonry has been his life and his passion for the past 54 years. People in the Southeast Missouri region and communities who know of him know his business and his work ethic and will always associate the masonry trade with his name. 

From His Plaque: Began masonry career in 1963 as a hod carrier. Established Kenneth E. Foeste Masonry in 1973. Longtime member of the Mason Contractors Association of America and the Mason Contractors Association of St. Louis. Member and past President of the Mason Contractor’s Association of Southeast Missouri. Served as an instructor at the Bricklaying School in Cape Girardeau, Mo. Felt strongly about promoting masonry within the building industry, and helped educate and promote masonry in the architectural/design process. Attended many area job fairs, educating and encouraging young people to get into the masonry trades. Impactful in the fight for the rights of the “Laborers on Lifts” in the Missouri region. Masonry has been his life and his passion.  

Clem Hellmann Quality Block 

Nominated By: Lisa Prichard, Arizona Masonry Contractors Association 

His Nomination: To quote well-known scholar and author Peter Drucker “Leadership is doing the right things. Great leaders set direction, build an inspiring vision, and guide people to achieve common goals.” Clem Hellmann embodied these qualities throughout his 30-year career in the masonry industry.  

 

Clem and his wife Mary Jo entered the masonry industry in September of 1987 with the purchase of Quality Block Company in Phoenix. Clem was actively involved in the masonry industry and lived the “Givers Gain” philosophy. A philosophy of “What we are given in life, we need to share and give back.” 

As a member of the Arizona Masonry Contractors Association, Clem not only supported AMCA financially, but truly gave of himself. He was actively involved— or in today’s terms “showed up” and “was present.” 

He volunteered many hours to the masonry industry serving as a long-standing Board Member of the Arizona Masonry Contractors Association (AMCA) and Arizona Masonry Guild (AMG) and was State Chair for the Mason Contractors Association of America (MCAA).  

He is credited with helping producers and contractors understand that non-masonry products/systems are the true “competition” and was the unifying force that brought members together to work for the good of the industry.   

He was the industry’s official “Master of Masonry Ceremonies” for all major events including AMCA’s Annual Dinner, Regional Fastest Trowel & Masonry Skills Challenge Competitions and AMG’s Excellence in Masonry Architectural Awards Banquet.  

Clem was a strong supporter of our industry’s workforce development efforts. While serving on the AMCA Apprenticeship Committee, he was involved with the move of the AMCA’s apprenticeship program to the East Valley Institute of Technology (EVIT), where it is still in place today. He also served as the Chairman of the Advisory Board for the Construction Technologies Class at EVIT. 

He believed the way to attract new talent into the industry was to expose students to the masonry trade in high school.  In his words, “If we can interest students at this level, it is the best way to begin to fill the vast need for construction personnel and careers at all levels.” His belief was so strong that he paid for a full-time masonry instructor at the East Valley Institute of Technology (EVIT) to work directly with construction students for over five years.  

Clem also encouraged and supported members of the Quality Block staff to volunteer their time during works hours to take part in various masonry industry association meetings, events and committee meetings.  

In 2007, Clem was presented the AMCA’s Leader of the Year Award. In fact, he was the first person to receive the award established to recognize a member of the masonry industry who contributes time and expertise to industry associations, plays an active role in civic and community affairs, and assists fellow industry members. In short, he or she exemplifies the very best by continually bringing credit to the industry. 

Clem’s service and contributions to the masonry industry were so well respected that he also received the Arizona Masonry Guild’s Bart Del Duca Award in 2007 as well. The Arizona Masonry Guild bestows that honor upon one person in recognition of notable and outstanding performance, service or significant achievement in the masonry industry.  

Clem passed away in October of 2017. In his honor, the Arizona Masonry Contractors Association established the Clem Hellmann Leadership Award in 2018. This award recognizes an individual who has made significant contributions to the masonry community through leadership of, and/or involvement initiatives that have resulted in industry-wide impact and is representative of the highest level of leadership and involvement. The first Clem Hellmann Leadership Award was presented to Mike Sutter, of Sutter Masonry on February 21, 2018. Clem’s absence in the masonry industry is felt every day but his legacy of working together to build a better future for our industry will live on and inspire many generations to come. 

From His Plaque: Entered the masonry industry in 1987 with the purchase of Quality Block Company in Phoenix. Actively involved in the masonry industry and lived the “Givers Gain” philosophy. Volunteered many hours, serving as a long- standing Board Member of the Arizona Masonry Contractors Association (AMCA), the Arizona Masonry Guild (AMG), and as Arizona State Chair for the Mason Contractors Association of America (MCAA). Official “Master of Masonry Ceremonies” for all major AMCA events. Strong supporter of workforce development efforts including active involvement in the AMCA’s Apprenticeship Committee. Awarded AMCA’s Leader of the Year Award in 1997. Clem Hellmann Leadership Award established in his honor in 2018.  

Alonza “AC” Lewis National Masonry Instructors Association 

His Nomination: Alonza “AC” Lewis is the third child born to late parents Sam and Alice China Lewis. He was born in Sumter, SC., and was educated in the Sumter county schools. He graduated from Eastern High school, where he played football and sang in the choir. After graduation, AC attended Area Technical Trade School, now known as Denmark Technical College. There he received a degree in Brick Masonry, he also received a degree in Education from the University of Tennessee (Knoxville). AC furthered his education at Winthrop University, Clemson University, University of South Carolina and South Carolina State University.  

AC loves brick masonry and teaching. He realized the need for the brick mason trade to be taught in high schools, so he answered the call and taught brick masonry for 38 years. He taught at Spring Valley and Lexington High schools and Midlands Technical College. His students refer to him as Mr. Lewis and they still appreciate all that he has given them. He has had several students compete in various competitions and win on the State and National levels. AC has assisted several students open, run and operate their own brick masonry companies. Currently, many of his former students will gladly assist him with various brick laying jobs. He was not just a teacher but a mentor to his students. AC served as President of the VICA (Vocational Industrial Club of America) Association for many years. This organization is now referred to as SkillsUSA. He also served as President of the SC Masonry Instructors Association for many years but being the visionary that he is he saw the need to broaden the horizon of the masonry trade on a national level. So, in 1988, he was instrumental in the organization of the National Masonry Instructors Association. AC’s passions for his students and this trade have won him the prestigious honor of being inducted into the National Masonry Instructors Association Hall of Fame in 2008.  

AC loves sports especially football. He is a basketball and football official, he has been officiating for 43 years. AC has officiated two State Football Championship games and the 2009 North-South All-Star Football game. He has also officiated four State Basketball Championship games and the 2007 Carolinas All-Star Basketball Classic. AC has served as the District Five Basketball Director and in 2004 was inducted into the South Carolina Basketball Officials Hall of Fame. He currently serves as a Sideline Crew member for the University of South Carolina home football games. 

AC Lewis is a member of Emmanuel AME Church, he has been a member for 27 years. He has served on various committees and was a previous Local Lay President and previous Third Vice-President of the Columbia Conference Lay Organization. AC was also Chairman of the Building Committee for the construction of the current church. He is currently the Steward Pro tem, a member of the Men’s choir, Sons of Allen, Lay Organization, and President of the Columbia District Lay Organization. 

AC loves the Lord and loves to worship Him. His favorite hymn is “O Thou, in Whose Presence.” His favorite scripture is St. John 17:1 and it reads “Jesus spoke these things, and then he lifted up his eyes to heaven and said, O my Father, the hour has come; glorify thy Son, so that thy Son may glorify thee.” 

AC has been married to the former Dorothy McCants for 46 years. They have two children, Doretta (Eric) Gibbs and Cornelius Lewis. They also have three grandchildren: Byron Lewis, Eryka Gibbs, and Jomaryi Gibbs. 

From His Plaque: A pioneer in his own time! Realizing the need for brick masonry to be taught in school he initiated and started teaching the program at Spring Valley High School in Columbia, SC in 1972. For over 38 years he taught brick masonry at Lexington High School and Midlands Technical College. His students have competed in and won competitions on both state and national levels. He assisted several former students in opening and operating successful masonry companies. He served as President of the SC Masonry Instructors Association for several years. Instrumental in organizing the National Masonry Instructors Association and served as President for three years. He was inducted into the National Masonry Instructors Association in 2008. He was awarded Honorary Life Membership for 20 years of Service Award in the Opening and Closing Ceremony of Skills USA 2018. A teacher, mentor and trailblazing pioneer in the masonry field on the local, state and national levels.  

Robert Merrill – Merill Masonry, Inc.  

Nominated By: Lynn Nash, North Carolina Masonry Contractors Association 

His Nomination: The North Carolina Masonry Contractors Association is pleased to nominate Robert L. “Bob” Merrill Sr. for consideration as an inductee to the MCAA Masonry Hall of Fame. Mr. Merrill is the founder of Merrill Masonry, Inc., a commercial masonry contracting firm located in Brevard, North Carolina. He is 88 years old and retired from the company. Which is still in operation and managed by his son-in-law Steve Stout and daughter Debbie Merrill Stout. Mr. Merrill is a founding father of the North Carolina Masonry Contractors Association and served as NCMCA’s fourth president in 1977. He has been a consistent supporter and leader of the NCMCA “Land of the Sky” Chapter which is active in far western North Carolina and the Greater Asheville area.

Mr. Merrill has selflessly served the masonry industry with his exceptional capability and willingness to recruit, mentor and encourage others in the trade. His service to his community and church are legendary, having served on his county’s school board and county commission for numerous terms, and always willing to donate time, materials, labor and money to missions, community building projects and charitable causes. Robert Merrill is truly an exemplary ambassador for the masonry life. 

North Carolina Masonry Contractors Association 

Began meeting with MCAA Hall of Fame member Glenn W. Sipe and commercial masonry contractors Ivey Griffin and Red Brookshire to form what is now NCMCA. Served in several different capacities, on committees, and was NCMCA’s fourth president (1977.) He served as president of the Land of Sky Mason Contractors many times, as well as other offices in the chapter.  

Community  

Mr. Merrill taught Sunday School for 35 years and served as a deacon for 50-plus years at First Baptist Church in Brevard, NC. He was an active member of the Brevard High School Blue Devil Club and was instrumental in the construction of the field house and the press box. He served two terms as a member of the Transylvania County School Board and one term as a Transylvania County Commissioner. He is a lifetime trustee for Mars Hill University after serving active terms for 25-plus years. He was also active in the Shriner’s Club for 40-plus years. 

Missions 

He has been involved in many mission trips during his life, laying brick and block in communities in Paraguay, Brazil, Dominican Republic, and West Virginia. 

Since beginning Merrill Masonry, at least 20 masons who worked for him or apprenticed under him, went on to own their own masonry companies. 

From His Plaque: Began first apprenticeship in 1945 at age 16. Formed Merrill and Smith Masonry in 1958, and incorporated Merrill Masonry in 1967. Helped form the North Carolina Masonry Contractors Association (NCMCA) and served in several different capacities and committees including as NCMCA’s fourth president in 1977. Has served as president of the Land of Sky Mason Contractors many times, as well as other offices in the chapter. Has been involved with many mission trips during his life, laying brick and block in communities in Paraguay, Brazil, Dominican Republic, and West Virginia. Has selflessly served the masonry industry with his exceptional capability and willingness to recruit, mentor and encourage others in the trade.  

Mike Sutter – Sutter Masonry 

Nominated By: Lisa Prichard, Arizona Masonry Contractors Association 

His Nomination: In 1991, Mike and his wife Colleen opened Sutter Masonry. Mike lives the “Givers Gain” philosophy in both his personal and professional life. A philosophy of “What we are given in life, we need to share and give back.” Mike’s greatest gift to the industry is the investment of his time and service to our state and national masonry associations.  

Mike has been a member of the Arizona Masonry Contractors Association since 1994 and a board member since 1995. He has served as President, Vice President, Treasurer, and Apprenticeship Committee Chair. In fact, he played a pivotal role in getting the apprenticeship program up and running in Arizona. In addition to serving on numerous committees such as Certification and the Regional Fastest Trowel Competition. He also served as Chairman of the Golf and Safety Committee.  

Mike has also been a member of the Arizona Masonry Guild since 1995 and a board member since 2000. During his involvement in both associations, he has chaired many committees and participated in the development and implementation of many AMCA and AMG initiatives and programs.  

Mike is very passionate about workforce development for the industry. In 2017, Mike’s passion for recruiting our next generation of masons led him to form a partnership with the Construction Trades Program at West-MEC’s Verrado Campus. In typical Sutter style, Mike offered to provide an experienced mason to work with students during the masonry unit only if the school was willing to increase the length of instruction time from 2 weeks to 8 weeks- the school agreed. Mike Gray from Sutter Masonry, along with Mike Sutter spent most of August and September of 2017 working with the 1st and 2nd-year construction students. Sutter Masonry’s investment of time in that program has paid off! In the October 2017 Masonry Skills, Mike’s West-MEC students swept the competition taking 9 of the 10 top spots in the high school division. Sutter Masonry also sponsored the top 3 West-MEC students and their instructor to attend the Masonry Madness Day during the World of Concrete/World of Masonry Convention in Las Vegas last month. In addition, six of the students applied for and were accepted into AMCA’s Central Masonry Apprenticeship Program and now have jobs waiting for them when they graduate from West-MEC in May of this year.  

Over the last few years, Mike has played a pivotal role in the industry’s lobbying efforts at the state capitol. His testimony during various legislative committee hearings has helped prevent bills from going into effect that would have been detrimental for our industry. Mike’s participation in stakeholder meetings for House Bill 2114 Declaration of Independent Business Status during the 2016 legislative session led to the construction industry being carved out of the bill. Without this change, the practice of misclassification of employees as independent contractors in the construction industry would have become even more widespread than it is today, and would have made it more challenging for companies who comply with the state and federal regulations and laws to compete on a level playing field.  

More recently, Mike has been the driving force behind the development of a new funding program which will be a “game changer” for the masonry industry throughout the entire state. When launched, the program would establish Arizona Masonry Council and finally provide the financial resources to move our industry from its traditional reactive position to being a proactive industry. 

Those a just a few of Mike’s contributions to our industry at the state level. But his contributions do not stop there. Over the years, he has made a number of contributions to the industry at the national level.  

In January 2018, Mike completed his term as Chairman of the Mason Contractors Association of America and Colleen as First Lady of the Masonry Industry. Although his term as Chairman was only two years, he served a total eight years on the MCAA Executive Committee, and that does not include his years of service as Region G Vice President and Arizona State Chair prior to that.  

During his term as Chairman, Mike and Colleen spent numerous hours away from their company in order to travel to various MCAA chapters and other masonry state associations meeting and events. This was all done at their own expense. 

During his tenure as Chairman, MCAA went from a membership of 620 members to 930 members- which sets the recorded for the largest growth in membership in any two year period in MCAA’s history.  

Under his leadership, MCAA also developed a Silica Train-the-Trainer Compliance program for members. MCAA has trained over 520 trainers across the US. MCAA estimates that these trainers have since trained close to 3,000 masonry employees since the program was launched in early 2017.  

Mike also played a vital role in deciding to bring MASONRY Magazine back “in house” under the MCAA after a period of 20 years. This move has allowed the MCAA to more effectively communicate its message and has had a significant impact on membership recruitment and many other initiatives.  

As Chairman, Mike oversaw MCAA’s purchase of the MASONRY DESIGN Magazine, which is targeted to the design community and will provide MCAA with the means to communicate the advantages and benefits of designing with masonry products and systems.  

Mike also pursued the goal of securing MCAA state chairs in every state. He reached a high number of State Chairs, and as a result, the participation level has increased significantly during his term.  

Mike initiated the development of employee onboarding videos for members in order to continue to add value for members. These videos will be safety driven and will be free for members to use to train their new employees and prepare them within a day for going onto the job-site. They will be rolled out late Spring, early Summer this year.  

In February 2018, Mike was the first recipient of the Clem Hellmann Leadership Award, which was established to honor the memory of Clem, who passed away in October of 2017. The Clem Hellmann Leadership Award recognizes an individual who has made significant contributions to the masonry community through leadership of and involvement in initiatives that have resulted in industry-wide impact. 

Despite his success, he still is very grounded and humble. He is the first to credit his extraordinary team for their support, which over the years has enabled him to be so actively involved the state and national masonry associations, and know that everything back at the office is in good hands. This team is lead by his partner in life and business- Colleen Sutter; his daughter, Aimee who has become an integral part of the Sutter Masonry organization, and his brother Jack who has worked with Mike since the beginning of Sutter Masonry.  

When he is asked what he does for a living, our Mike doesn’t say he owns masonry company or that he sits on various boards and committees. He simply replies, “I’m a bricklayer.” To us, to many of our counterparts across the country, Mike is much more than simply “a bricklayer.” Through his active involvement, leadership, and dedication to our industry, he has laid the foundation for many generations of block and bricklayers to come. 

From His Plaque: Opened Sutter Masonry, Inc. with his wife Colleen in 1991. Served as MCAA Arizona State Chairman, Region G Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary, Vice Chairman, and Chairman; AMCA Apprenticeship Committee Chairman, Safety Committee Chairman, Treasurer, Vice President, and President. Head judge for several national and state competitions. Played a pivotal role in the industry’s lobbying efforts at the state and national level. Driving force behind a funding program for the Arizona Masonry Council. Awarded Clem Hellmann Leadership Award in 2018 and C. DeWitt Brown Leadman Award in 2019. A leader whose dedication to our industry has laid the foundation for many generations of block and bricklayers to come.  

 

Angelo Tedesco – A. Tedesco Masonry, Inc.

Nominated By: Guy Tedesco, A. Tedesco Masonry, Inc. 

His Nomination: Angelo Sr. was born on November 13, 1936 in San Martino, Avellino, Italy. He is the oldest of six children and was the last of his family to arrive in the USA on July 4, 1958.

He has dedicated his life to the masonry industry since his late twenties and has impacted the growth of masonry in the northeast by his leadership both within and outside of the trade.  

Upon arrival in America, speaking and understanding none to very little English, his first job was at a restaurant in Killington, VT, the largest ski area in the Eastern United States. Thirty-nine years later, he was the president of his own successful masonry company that was constructing the single largest masonry project, that same Killington ski area had ever built, at the Killington Grande Hotel and Conference Center incorporating cmu, stone, fireplaces, precast and granite. His company has continued to perform additional masonry work there over the years and has completed projects there as recently as June of 2017.

During his early years in America, he developed his understanding of the English language and made long-lasting contacts and relationships at the Vermont Railroad company based in Proctor VT from 1959 to 1961, and then at the Howe Scale Company at the Foundry Plant in Rutland, VT from 1961 -1962.   

He was married on April 28, 1962 to Anna Lena. The honeymoon was short as he was drafted in October of 1962. He was in the US Army until 1964, stationed for many months in Greenland. In April 2019 they will celebrate 57 years of marriage together.   

Upon returning to America from Greenland, he worked at Callahan Machinery in Proctor, VT from 1964 to 1966. He would return to Proctor, VT in 2002 as the mason contractor for the national award-winning (by the Natural Stone Institute and the Marble Institute of America) extensive Proctor Marble Bridge Rehabilitation project, as listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Originally built in 1915, this historical project featured extensive replacement of all the marble spandrels and balustrades across the 170 feet span that is 36 feet above the Otter Creek. A total of 528 pieces were installed, totaling over 1,500 sq. ft. of marble.   

During the mid 60s, was the time when Angelo would begin his masonry career, quickly learning and progressing his way up through the ranks working for masonry companies that had available work. The first company he joined was in Burlington, VT from 1966 to 1969, where he completed his training as a mason. He was also a member of the National Guard during this time from 1964 to 1969. From 1970 to 1977, he would then work for a company in Clifton Park, NY. Keep in mind that each company’s location required a two-hour drive, each way to the job sites. 

Angelo Sr. never let his persistent learning of the English language or the closed-mindedness of other people against foreigners inhibit him from continued growth and advancement in the masonry industry and in the fulfillment of life. He and Anna Lena would also begin a family during these early years. As a team, they would eventually raise 4 children, one daughter, and three sons. 

In 1977, Angelo decided to stay closer to home and work in VT. The union was in decline in Vermont so he began doing chimneys and stonework for the people he met and the lasting contacts he made along the way at the other non-masonry companies he previously worked for. He began to take on more intricate work and developed a passion for masonry, honing his craft while gaining valuable experience with all types of masonry materials and concrete. He also began investing in more employees, constantly training and teaching others that were interested in learning the proper skills of the masonry trade. When they were available, he still helped out some of his past masonry employers on some of their larger masonry projects. 

In May of 1988, Angelo Tedesco Inc. was officially incorporated. The business grew steadily over the years through quality workmanship and by word of mouth referrals from pleased customers, business owners, and general contractors. 

These traits are still active today, as his business has evolved into A. Tedesco Masonry. Family has always played a huge role in the success of the company and all four of his children are currently active and involved with the masonry business and the advancement of the masonry trade. Through his years of continued learning and dedication to the craft, A. Tedesco Masonry has developed a strong reputation for quality and efficiency and is currently one of the largest masonry contractors in central/southern Vermont while also completing work in NY, NH and MA. 

The current masonry industry in the state of Vermont can be very grateful for the major impact Angelo Sr. has had on the development and knowledge he has accomplished and extensively shared with others in the trade since the early eighties. Towards the end of his career, he had also consulted on many historical masonry projects and renovations. If a masonry project was extremely difficult or unpopular, Angelo Sr. was usually contacted to get involved in one way or another, either as a mason contractor or a consultant and many times, both. 

Angelo Sr. has also taken the time over the years to introduce local high school students with technical aspirations to the masonry trade. He has invited these students on project sites, in order to give them a first hand look and feel of a real masonry jobsite and give them a try at laying a brick or two. He has donated his time to brick chimney builds with these same students over the years, on homes the technical center students have constructed. He has also donated labor and materials to the exterior faces of Habitat for Humanity projects in order to promote the value and materials of masonry. 

Angelo Sr. has been an active member of St. Peter Catholic Church and the Italian-American Club, where he has been a bocce player for more than a few decades and a captain of the Old Timers bocce team for the past 12 years. He has been an active supporter of many local community events and A. Tedesco Masonry has sponsored numerous schools, athletic events, clubs, teams and Churches ranging from donations, to equipment use, to sponsoring youth soccer programs with thousands of masonry t-shirts being given out over the years. 

Tedesco Masonry has been a member of the MCAA for 21 years, joining in 1997. The company, under Angelo Sr.’s leadership, has always promoted masonry, as well as, safe job sites and development. His eldest son, Angelo II, has learned under his guidance since he was on the job sites at the age of 13. Angelo Sr. has helped mentor and develop well over 50 masons and mason tenders throughout his time in the trade. He has always made it a point to help general contractors and other subs, to complete projects on time with profitability. 

The MCAA has been a great partner with Angelo Sr. in the promotion of the masonry industry and the development of the future workforce. With the MCAA resources and conventions, the company has always promoted industry awareness. It has always been one of the first companies in Vermont to utilize masonry innovations and new products and procedures along the way including crank upstaging, to mast climbers, to grout hogs and mixers with silos. Each year employees are participating in MCAA sponsored meetings, events, auctions, and education. 

Angelo Sr. has dedicated his life to building his family and the masonry trade through grit, never being afraid to try something new, through development and learning and through honorable values as a husband, a father, a business owner and as a leader of the masonry trade both on and off the job sites. Well deserving to be a member of the MCAA Masonry Hall of Fame. 

From His Plaque: Born in Italy and coming to America as a late teen, he started his masonry career in the mid-1960s. Incorporated Angelo Tedesco, Inc. in 1988. Had a major impact on the masonry industry in the state of Vermont. Passionate about workforce development, introducing local students to the masonry trade and teaching the proper skills of the trade to anyone interested in learning. Has donated labor and materials to many local charitable projects in order to promote the value and materials of masonry. Always willing to share his knowledge with others and has consulted on many historical projects. A true advocate for the professional development of the masonry trade and its craftsmanship. Always promoted technical advancement of masons and tenders in a wide variety of materials and innovative equipment. Dedicated his life to the masonry industry and has supported the MCAA since 1998.  

Words: MASONRY
Photos: MCAA, MASONRY, Bruce Starrenburg