Plumbing apprentices shine at PHCC Connect

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With a program chock full of heavy hitting seminars, a straight-from-the-heart keynote and a trade show floor that featured some of the newest products and services, it was the plumbing apprenticeship contest that turned heads at this year’s PHCC-National Association’s Connect show in Hollywood, Fla.

Some of the future’s brightest competed for bragging rights—and a ginormous set of tools—while only three could stake a claim at the winnings. Three top plumbing apprentices received awards in the annual Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors–National Association (PHCC) Educational Foundation’s National Plumbing Apprentice Contest.



The Foundation’s Plumbing Apprentice and Journeyman Training Committee members were on hand to set up and judge the contest, which was a highlight of the PHCC–National Association’s CONNECT 2015 Product & Technology Showcase.

This year’s awards went to:

PlumbingContestWinnerJames Petersonjt copy

James Peterson

  • 1st Place – James Peterson, John J. Maurer, Inc., Cataumet, Mass. – sponsored by A. O. Smith
  • 2nd Place – Jared Beninati, Evan Hibbs Plumbing, Portsmouth, Va. – sponsored by Milwaukee Tool
  • 3rd Place – David Spaeth, Harty Mechanical, Austin, Minn. – sponsored by Uponor

Foundation volunteers operating this year’s event included:


  • Bob Carpenter, SharkBite/Cash Acme, Reliance Worldwide Corp., Atlanta, Ga.
  • J. Daniel Crigler, III, L & D Associates, Inc., Aroda, Va.
  • Tom Gent, France Mechanical Corp., Edwardsville, Ill.
  • Victor Hatcher, Tyler Pipe & Coupling, Tyler, Tex.
  • Andrew Kireta, Jr., Copper Development Association, New York, N.Y.
  • Harold Moret, Copper Development Association, Sarasota, Fla.
  • Vic Poma, Universal Plumbing & Heating Co., Las Vegas, Nev.
  • Patrick Sheridan, SharkBite/Cash Acme, Reliance Worldwide Corp., Atlanta, Ga.
  • Jim Steinle, Atomic Plumbing, Virginia Beach, Va.
  • James Walls, Cast Iron Soil Pipe Institute, Garland, Tex.
  • Luke Westman, Westman Plumbing, Inc., Aitkin, Minn.


IMG_0219The Show’s keynote was an authentic, gripping story of a bartender done good. Doc Hendley’s epiphany about bringing people together at the local “watering hole” gave him a brand new mission in life to provide clean water to some of the worst places on the planet — security and sanitation-wise. His wine to water organization has put a spotlight on the need for clean water and has him nominated as one of CNN’s Heroes.

The trade show floor featured some of the best products and services out there — from plumbing and heating services to fleet and service management software.


Dan Lucy, Rothenberger, shows off the Kibosh emergency temporary pipe repair product at the National PHCC Show.



The boys from Bradford White enjoy a laugh with a contractor during the show.



After four months and hundreds of stops across the country, the Avalanche Performance Tour came to an end. Gerber announced that Wade Sammons, Sammons Plumbing, Oshkosh, Wis., won the grand prize of a Harley-Davidson Fat Bob motorcycle.



Speaking of giveaways, the Hub and industry friend Milwaukee Tool partnered to give four lucky winners a set of four hand tools. The Hub’s Eric Aune gives the thumbs up with with on the winners.


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