Steve Friess, Vice President of concrete operations at Milestone Contractors, LP, was named Chairman of the Board for the American Concrete Pavement Association (ACPA) at the organization’s 59th Annual Meeting, held November 29 – December 1, 2022 in Nashville, TN. Friess takes the helm at a time when the paving industry is poised to receive approximately $350 billion over five years in highway and bridge funding as part of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA).
Under Friess’ chairmanship, a significant focus of ACPA will be to continue progress on improving concrete’s sustainability and resiliency. Concrete has proven durability on roadways and airfields across the nation, many of which boast a lifespan of 50, 75 or even 100 years of service. Resilient concrete infrastructure can recover after a disruptive event, like flooding, reducing future reconstruction costs and societal costs associated with the inability to use the infrastructure during rescue, recovery and rebuilding.
Friess will also help the association navigate several critical workforce challenges the concrete industry faces. “As an association and as individual employers, we must commit to formally training our workers and leaders, so they are positioned to have the ability to meet the upcoming demand,” said Friess. “Certification, which is being increasingly specified for projects, is key. For example, plant operator training that satisfies the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) P501 ‘Portland Cement Concrete Pavement’ specification will ensure a continually improved product.”
Friess knows all about improvements to concrete products and pavements. With 35 years of industry experience, Friess has been instrumental in developing Heritage Construction + Materials expertise in concrete at Milestone Contractors. “We’ve enhanced our concrete offerings so dramatically that I’m proud to say we’re the only concrete paving contractor in Indiana with accreditations in ASHTO R-18 and ASTM C1077 concrete testing lab,” said Friess.
“One way I’ll lead the charge at the ACPA is by working with the team to promote our success stories—especially stories about long-lived concrete roadways,” said Friess.
Helping spread the word about concrete’s longevity will help increase the use of a material that saves taxpayer dollars, conserves natural resources, reduces greenhouse gas emissions and frees up state resources to pursue other infrastructure projects. Friess states that he is “passionate about concrete and will bring that passion to his role as chairman for the ACPA.”
Friess lives in Indiana and has been married to his wife, Nancy, for 28 years. They have seven grown children and ten grandchildren.