To commemorate a special anniversary, the board of directors of the Valve Manufacturers Association created a special award: “Man for the Decades.” The recipient was none other than VMA President Bill Sandler, who received the award at a surprise ceremony in honor of Sandler’s 40th anniversary working for VMA.
The award was presented during VMA’s Annual Meeting, Oct. 11-13, in Florida.
VMA 2016/17 Board Chairman Jim White of Curtiss-Wright presented the award to Sandler as an expression of VMA’s gratitude for his four decades of tireless dedication to the association and its industry. Sandler is the longest-serving employee of VMA, and almost half of his time with the association has been as president.
White noted throughout his tenure, Sandler “has guided the VMA and its members through our always-changing valve industry and has continuously and honorably represented the organization, always working to provide VMA’s members with the highest quality association services possible.”
In addition to receiving an engraved crystal ice bucket, VMA staff presented Sandler with a special plaque commemorating an article that appeared in the Winter 2017 issue of VALVE Magazine about his long-time service to VMA.
Sandler’s wife Ellen also was recognized for her commitment to attending every annual meeting and for serving as a guiding force for the spouse events.
White organized the event and served as master of ceremonies at the presentation, which was held poolside at the Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island. Before the ceremony, White solicited numerous congratulatory messages from members and staff, who recorded their messages for a special video. The video was viewed throughout the evening at monitors placed around the pool.
“I am shocked and humbled to be honored in this way by the organization that has been so much a part of my life,” Sandler said after the ceremony. “But I’m also grateful to have had such a rewarding career in the valve industry, which is populated with an extraordinary group of people.”
On a personal note, he added, “Ellen and I have formed some deep relationships with members over the years and those friendships have meant as much to me as being recognized professionally.”