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Natural Stone Council Elects New Offices, Announces Initiatives

March 3, 2011
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The Natural Stone Council (NSC) recently announced its 2011 slate of officers, voted upon during the organization’s annual board meeting, held January 24 at StonExpo/Marmomacc Americas. Elected to one-year terms were Brenda Edwards of TexaStone Quarries, Chairperson; Harry Triebe, Sr. of Sonny and Sons Stone Company, Vice Chairperson; Jim Owens of the Indiana Limestone Institute, Treasurer; and Jane Bennett of the Building Stone Institute, Secretary.

The board also acted to re-establish several key committees to support one of the primary initiatives of the organization, which is to fund and promote the development of an American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Dimension Stone Standard. This global effort will establish a credible sustainability certification program and environmental standard for natural stone. Critical to the successful completion of the certification process will be its funding. Presently, the NSC is funded only through industry donations, and is pleased to announce that for 2011, affiliate member association Natural Stone Alliance, has pledged to match industry contributions dollar for dollar, up to a maximum of $100,000. The NSC reports recent pledges for 2011 now total more than $30,000. NSC will continue to actively seek donor contributions.

Other key committee work will focus on improved awareness and promotion for both the NSC and its efforts to position natural stone as a sustainable and preferred building material. Publicity, Web site and Video Development teams will work to ensure the message behind the Natural Stone Council’s collective effort is well documented, explained, and reaches its audience.

In 2003, The Natural Stone Council (NSC), a not-for-profit organization, was formed to unite a diverse industry of natural stone producers to actively promote the attributes of natural stone. Their Genuine Stone® brand now represents a mark of authenticity to differentiate natural stone products from their manufactured alternatives. For years, the NSC has been aggressively researching natural stone’s role in green building through a partnership with the Center for Clean Products at the University of Tennessee. They have successfully completed benchmarking of industry operations, identified and communicated best practices, publicized industry environmental data and established life-cycle framework for natural stone cladding against alternative materials. Technical data supporting this research is available on the NSC Web site at www.genuinestone.com.

In a logical next step, the NSC has contracted with Ecoform, an experienced technical analysis company, to focus on the environmental performance of natural stone and to develop a dimension stone standard. Natural stone producers who can certify to this high level standard of criteria will then earn an advantage over non-certified product through the use of a proprietary eco label. Through the NSC promotion of this authentic mark, designers and end-users will easily recognize products bearing this eco label and understand its presence to be synonymous with consumer trust. To learn more about the NSC, its affiliate members, or to pledge support, visit www.genuinestone.com , or email dukepointer@aol.com.

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