So, you might be wondering, “Why is there yet another person’s photo on this page? Who is she? Where can I get a cute scarf like hers?” Wait … that would be a different magazine.
Hello. My name is Erika Taylor and I’m the new editor-in-chief of Professional Remodeler. Although I have no expertise in the field, I do know quite a bit about the swimming pool industry, which is like remodeling’s second cousin who comes over for the holidays.
My love of all things pool started nearly 15 years ago when I took a job as editor for a large publication serving that market. During my time there, I gained enormous respect for the family-owned businesses that make up the backbone of that industry. They are fiercely (some would say stubbornly) independent, hardworking people who take pride in each and every backyard they transform.
They are a vocal enemy of lawmakers who write legislation affecting their business without understanding it, and a loyal friend to anyone promoting change that makes sense. They are getting older, and that worries them since no one is stepping up to take their place. Who will build the pools of the future? Young people entering the field are in short supply, and in some markets there aren’t enough subcontractors to fill demand.
In other words, they’re a lot like remodelers. So, while I approach my new job with humility and an eagerness to learn, I also bring experience to the table that will provide a useful reference point as I grow my knowledge base.
Speaking of a knowledge base, I have a favor to ask.
The best way to learn about an industry is to listen to its members, and to that end I’m hoping to talk with a few remodelers every day to get the benefit of their insights into the field.
So, if you’re reading this column, I want to hear from you! Call or send an e-mail, and I promise you’ll fi nd an attentive ear to listen to your thoughts.
A trade publication should serve as a conversation between its staff and audience, and I’m excited to get the party going.
I’m also excited by some of the things that Professional Remodeler has planned for 2015. As in prior years, you’ll find the design awards as well as programs that celebrate outstanding remodeling companies. But while those are all wonderful, we’ve got a fresh iron on the fire that I find especially inspiring.
Every year at pool industry events, I would see a handful of women—company owners or managers—among the many men in attendance. They would often tell me that they wished they had a place to network and discuss the unique challenges and opportunities facing females in their field.
Happily, that’s about to happen for remodelers.
This September you’re going to see a new conference debuting solely for women in residential construction. It’s being organized by Professional Remodeler and one of its sister publications, Professional Builder. No media company in our field has ever done anything like this, and I’ll let you know more as the schedule and speakers are fleshed out. For now, all I can say is that I’m psyched to be involved in something that’s so relevant and so overdue. PR
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