AWS Honors 2013 Image of Welding Award Winners
at FABTECH in Chicago

Complete the 2014 Nomination Form Online

WEMCO and the American Welding Society (AWS) announced its Image of Welding Awards winners who were honored in an award ceremony in Chicago on November 20, 2013. The winners are listed in their respective categories as follows:

  • Individual Category – Dennis A. Wright - Olathe, KS
    Dennis A. Wright is a plant manager at Zephyr Products, Inc. and also runs his own business, Wright Welding Technologies. He is a Certified Welding Inspector and Certified Welding Educator who uses his knowledge to train his employees at Zephyr how to weld. His employees are minimum security inmates from a local correctional institute. By sharing his love and knowledge he's giving these employees a skill to help them get back on their feet when they finish their sentence. Dennis' participation in community services is demonstrated by his involvement on several welding advisory committees and his involvement as a District Director of AWS. He has won several awards prior to the Image of Welding Award, including an AWS Meritorious Award and both the Section and District CWI of the Year awards.
  • Educator Category – Nanette Samanich - Las Vegas, NV
    Since learning to weld in 1994, Nan has gone on to become certified in various welding processes and is an AWS Certified Welding Inspector and Certified Welding Educator. While working as a welder and then as an inspector, Nan started volunteering at area high schools. Three years ago she left her welding inspection career to become a full-time high school welding instructor at Desert Rose Adult High School. Her devotion to the future of the welding industry is clear. Nan sits on several educational advisory boards and was the lead advisor for her school at the Nevada State SkillsUSA Competition 2011-2013. She's also volunteered at Boy Scout Welding Merit Badge clinics and has served as a judge for many welding competitions. An AWS member for over 15 years, Nan has held several official positions and is currently a District Director.
  • Educational Facility – Canadian Centre for Welding and Joining - University of Alberta - Alberta, Canada
    The Canadian Centre for Welding and Joining opened in 2010 at the University of Alberta and currently operates under the supervision of Dr. Patricio Mendez. A world-class graduate level research center, the schools also offers undergraduate and graduate students a fundamental to welding course which has given engineering students a unique course on basics of welding processes and theory combined with valuable hands-on training. Graduate students also work with high school students to educate them on robotic welding and the interaction has caused a renewed interest in a younger generation becoming interested in welding and engineering fields. The Centre is the home of the AWS student chapter, which on a quarterly basis hosts an open lab where students, professors, and the public can come learn about welding.
  • Small Business – Bay State Industrial Welding & Fabrication, Inc. - Hudson, NH
    Bay State Industrial Welding & Fabrication was founded in 1992 by Rick McCartney, who after years of working as welder was intent on serving customers with the utmost attention. With only 23 employees, Bay State Welding does all it can to shed a positive light on the welding industry including donating time and materials to construct the Benson Park 9/11 Memorial, and teaming up with "Building Dreams for Marines" to renovate homes for local Marines that need improved accommodations after suffering war-related injuries. In the near future the company is looking to welcome apprentice and internship opportunities to those in local welding classes in effort to attract more young welders to the industry.
  • Large Business – SME Steel - West Valley City, UT
    Since 1992 SME Steel has been providing comprehensive structural steel fabrication and erection in a variety of industries. With a core belief in giving back to the community they have provided the West Jordan Rotary Club with funding to complete a baseball field for disabled youth, named "SME Steel Field of Dreams." They also have provided support in material and labor to fix the deterioration found at the Veterans Cemetery located in Salt Lake City.
  • Distributor – Cee Kay Supply, Inc. - St. Louis, MO
    Cee Kay Supply is the largest independent supplier of gases, welding, and cutting equipment supplies in Missouri. A proud supporter of the welding industry, Cee Kay has hosted and helped sponsor the American Welding Society - St. Louis Section's Mini Weld Show for the past 11 years. The show is an annual celebration used to showcase the latest in safety, testing, welding tools and welding technology. In addition, Cee Kay partners with local colleges and technical schools to promote the image of welding and was a major contributor in helping fund the local AWSchapter's Hil Bax Memorial Scholarship. Recently the company also held a Boy Scouts of America Welding Merit Badge clink where 8 local Scouts earned their badges.
  • AWS Section – Ivy Tech Community College Student Chapter - Anderson, IN
    Ivy Tech Community College Student Chapter of the American Welding Society has only been in existence for a little over a year and half but they have hit the ground running with ideas and projects to benefit their school and community. Their first major project involved making a steel sculpture representing a graduating student that now stands in front of Anderson Ivy Tech. Other community projects include rebuilding a pontoon trailer, repairing a cast iron farm tractor wheel for the Frankton, Indiana, Heritage Days, fund raising to buy Christmas presents for needy children and building tables for the Ivy Tech Engineering Department. They've also raised enough money to present $1,000 to the AWS Indiana Section scholarship fund.

The Image of Welding Awards Ceremony is organized by the WEMCO Image of Welding Committee and AWS. The FABTECH show ran from November 18 - 21 at McCormick Place in Chicago and also featured a variety of seminars, conferences, professional and educational programs.

2014 Image of Welding Awards will be announced at
the FABTECH show in Atlanta in November 2014.