Natural Stone Council Introduces New Branding Initiative

The Natural Stone Council (NSC), a collaborative organization representing the stone industry's business and trade associations, has launched its new branding program. The goal of the branding strategy is to promote the value and unique benefits of genuine stone and educate the design, construction, and consumer communities on what makes nature's own building material so special.

The multi-faceted program consists of a newly designed “Genuine Stone” logo inspired by ancient coins, the development of an NSC website to centralize and disseminate the best information on natural stone that the industry has to offer, and three print advertisements suggesting that natural stone is “As genuine as you.”

“The NSC's top priority is to be proactive in positioning natural stone as a high-quality product in the category of construction materials,” said Mark Fernandes, president of the NSC. “Our program will generate an awareness among builders and consumers that the benefits of natural stone, such as durability, make it an excellent building choice.”

Each component is designed to support the idea that every piece of natural stone is a one-of-a-kind work of art. The majority of the campaign components will be complete in spring 2007.

Industry Contributes to Habitat for Humanity Project

Contributions by the St. Louis-area masonry industry will provide newly constructed Habitat for Humanity Homes in the Jeff-Vander-Lou area with brick front facades, in keeping with that area's architectural heritage. The project on the city's north side consists of 20 new homes – 16 single-family buildings and two town houses.

“I'm proud of our industry contractors and suppliers who answered the call,” said Darrell McMillian, executive director of the Masonry Institute of St. Louis. “Working with Habitat for Humanity is a wonderful way to give back to the community by building neighborhoods that last.”

Mason contracting firms that contributed crews and equipment included Heitkamp Masonry, John J. Smith Masonry Co., ABC Masonry, Brinker Contracting Co., Caswell Brickwork, Fred L. Davis Co., E.C. Landers Brickwork, Frisch Masonry, Grant Contracting Co., Martin Heck Brick Contracting Co., Jahnsen Masonry Contractor, JDS Masonry, Lampkin Masonry, Leonard Masonry, L&L Brick Contracting, Doug Nichols Masonry, Spencer Brickwork, and Swanson Masonry.

Masonry materials were supplied by Kirchner Block & Brick, Irwin Products, Buchheit Supply, Earthworks, Enloe Enterprise, Missouri Brick & Supply, Raineri Construction Products, Richards Brick Co. and Simpson Materials Co.

The photo shows a masonry crew under the direction of Lynn Lober, representing L & L Brick, Ellisville, Mo., working on one of the homes.