By Heidi Ellsworth, RCS Partner.
Western Colloid’s Tim Ford teaches roofing classes in Beijing, China.
Earlier this year, Western Colloid’s Tim Ford received a call to teach a class.  That is not very unusual for Ford who specializes in liquid-applied roofing installation training, but this class was in a very faraway land, Beijing, China.
Discussions on providing training began earlier in the year when a large Chinese manufacturer and contractor noticed Western Colloid at a United States trade show.  They were very impressed with Western Colloid’s cool roof and sustainable roofing systems and solutions.  Curious about how the Western Colloid systems could work in China, they approached the leading liquid-applied roofing manufacturer and inquired about their extreme need for green roofing solutions that could be added to their current product offerings.
After meeting with Greg Hlavaty, president of Western Colloid, Hlavaty knew that they could supply not only the green roofing products they were looking for but also the training.  He sought out Ford, their lead trainer, for the task.
“Western Colloid is fortunate to have Tim Ford on our staff,” stated Hlavaty.  “His experience with different roofing products in various climates along with his understanding of the right equipment and techniques made him the only candidate to teach our far-east neighbors.”
Western Colloid selected the product specifications they felt would meet the green roofing needs specified and shipped their asphalt emulsion, polyester fabric 770 and 720 acrylic coatings for the trainings.  Ford arrived the first week of October and began working with his Chinese counterparts.  He demonstrated the proper technique for WC’s 20-year specifications among other things.
“The team in China was curious about our chopped glass systems which are not widely used,” stated Ford, Technical Manager for Western Colloid.  “We offer both glass and polyester and the team was very interested in how we pick which system for which roofing project.  Western Colloid is well-known for their asphalt emulsion and chopped glass system and we have been an industry leader in the use of polyester ply specifications.  It was important to help them understand both technologies.”
Ford trained twenty men and women ranging from scientists, installers on the roof, to the company’s CEO.  Trainings were held on their warehouse where the CEO even participated in his full-dress suit.
“Besides the most insane travel adventure, I found the people to be very nice and the food was incredible,” stated Ford.  “The Chinese firm was extremely impressed with the quality of Western Colloid’s asphalt emulsion and acrylic roof coatings along with the ease of installation.”
“The trip was very successful. After Tim’s safe return to the states, we are happy to keep him close to home,” concluded Hlavaty.  “Western Colloid is very proud to be able to add a new international client to its family of happy customers.”
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