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From the Fabricator: 2020 MVP

Before I get into the MVP process, I wanted to mention I was honored to be on the John Wheaton “Creating Structure” podcast that went online at the end of the week. It was an absolute blast to do. A chance to talk about where I came from, marketing, where the glass industry is now and where it’s going, along with a lot more. Please check it out here. I appreciate it. Thank you, John. 

As this is the last post of 2020, hopefully we can put the unusual nature of this year behind us and see better things ahead. But first, as is tradition here, it’s time for the 2020 Glass Industry MVP race. Below are my runners-up and this year’s winner. All are very deserving and excellent folks.

The criteria I use to determine this is the following. People or companies that stepped up and supported the industry beyond the norm. People or companies who represent our values and push the greatness of what we do beyond the typical approaches. And last, I try to not repeat people, so I try to find folks I have not recognized on these lists previously. There are quite a few runners up in the last seven years and I don’t have space for that, but I did want to once again recognize who the past MVP’s were:

2019 Bill Sullivan 

2018 Nathalie Thibault

2017 Joe Erb 

2016 Chuck Knickerbocker

2015 Jon Kimberlain

2014 C.R. Laurence

2013 Tracy Rogers 


2020 First Runners Up

Casey Anderson, ICD

Casey is somewhat recent into our industry, but in her short time she’s done an incredible job on many levels. Raising educational awareness, supporting events and advocacy and promoting the overall appeal of glass has been huge. Personally, I am jealous because I’ve seen some of the technical presentations that Casey helped drive and they blow me away. I wish I had that skill. Casey is a super addition to our world, and I think she’ll continue to push the best of us out there.

Sam Hill, Oak Cliff Mirror and Glass

Sam, like so many in the great state of Texas, truly gets the meaning of giving back to the industry. Sam could easily note he’s too busy to help or support but never does, and in fact in many times he’s looking for ways to add on or extend the reach of either the regional associations (like the excellent Texas Glass Association) or national ones, like the National Glass Association. Sam has a genuine care for where we are and where we are going, and we need more of that throughout our industry and, quite frankly, our world.

Bill and Keith Daubmann, My Shower Door, D3 Glass

If I only had 2 percent of the energy that Keith has or 2 percent of the business skill that Bill has, I’d be so much further along in life. (Note, both guys have energy and skill, not to short-change either!) These guys are unreal. They are constantly grinding, pushing and improving. And, in doing so, they are raising the image of our industry with it. But they don’t stop there; they are always open to promoting the greatness of what we all do, and hustling to get into the mainstream, which is so rare for us. It is no accident that national pubs give them recognition all the time; they are fantastic operators and their support for our industry is a major priority for them. =

Now to our winner for 2020… and this person also takes the final spot on my “Influential 15” list that I have been doing the last few weeks to mark the 15 years of this blog. 


The 2020 Glass Industry MVP is Tim Kelley of Tristar Glass

I think we all can say this year has not been a great one. Yes, we have all been resilient and made the most of the situation, but this surely has been a challenge. Tim Kelly absolutely dominated this challenge. He kept an amazing positive attitude at the start and pushed forward with plans that most would’ve tried to cancel. His company and people are among the best we have to offer―all class and care―and to me that’s indicative of the culture that Tim has built at Tristar. Tim pushes to support the industry in every possible way and drives to make us all better. 

Then, for the influential part, Tim is my 15th and final member of that class, and I look at what he’s done, how his company has grown, the people who work and are incredibly loyal to him, and it’s obvious he should be on my list. He’s raised the profile of the “typical” glass fabricator from “meat and potatoes” to high-performance and sophisticated. End of the day, the combo of what Tim has built with how they operate each and every day and the effect they’ve had and are having in the industry truly is influential and it’s been a breath of fresh air for me to experience. 

There you go; this year’s MVP race is in the books and it makes me proud to be a part of this amazing industry and the great people who work in it. We have all battled this year and it looks like we will have some more adventures ahead until it calms some. I have confidence, though, that our community will continue to overcome, continue to put our products on display, and continue to be a great industry to work in. 

To all of you who read this weekly, and to those of you who may have just stumbled on this post, here’s wishing you only the best for 2021. May you have a great holiday season and a Happy and Healthy New Year! Take Care!

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Max Perilstein

Max Perilstein

Max Perilstein is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. Contact him at