Dick Bus … once a young pioneer … now an industry veteran & leader
Some people work their way into our industry. Dick Bus was born into it and he lives it every day. And usually, he’s smiling.
If there is a Metal Construction Association event or a Metal Roofing Alliance Meeting, you’re going to see Dick there. As much or more than anyone in the metal roofing industry, Dick Bus is a believer and a carrier of the metal roofing flag.
Metal Roofing Magazine announced its inaugural class of the Metal Roofing Hall of Fame in 2007 by inducting four industry pioneers. Since then, seven more prominent members of our industry have been inducted into the Hall.
Dick Bus got started in the family business when he was very young. His parents, Jack and Nel, started Aluminum Trim And Shapes in the basement of their home in 1963. Under the guidance of Dick and his brother Jim, ATAS International has evolved into a national manufacturer of a wide variety of products, including metal roofing, wall and ceiling panels for commercial and residential buildings, as well as accessories, trim and moulding.
Today, Dick clocks in as president of ATAS and continues to serve the industry in a variety of roles, including vice president of the Metal Roofing Alliance. It’s safe to say the metal roofing industry is growing because of the efforts of Dick Bus -— as well as our other Hall of Famers.
Annually, ATAS has submitted some of the most impressive projects to be featured in the idea book, An Architectural Design Resource, including the projects pictured on the next page.
So as ATAS International celebrates its 50th anniversary, the company can celebrate Dick’s induction to the Metal Roofing Hall of Fame. The following is a Q&A with the newest member of the Metal Roofing Hall of Fame, our friend and 2013 inductee, Dick Bus. MR
Q. What are you doing nowadays?
A. I am still active as president of ATAS International Inc., vice president of Brightsmith Coil Coating and vice president of the Metal Roofing Alliance.
Q. How did you first get involved in the metal roofing industry?
A. My father started the company in 1963 as an Aluminum Trim And Shapes (hence the name) manufacturer for the aluminum siding industry. Needless to say I have been a part of the company since it was founded.
My brother and I now run the company, along with my wife, two of my three children, and two of Jim’s four children. We have a lot of great employees that we work with. Over the years we introduced many innovative products and services. Our first architectural, concealed fastened roof panel was introduced in 1978.
Q. How has the industry changed since you became involved?
A. The industry has grown substantially in the past 50 years. There is now a professionally run association representing the industry. Metal roofing is accepted as a long-term solution for all types of buildings. Superior metallic coatings and paint systems are the norm.
The industry has become commoditized with margins being squeezed which will create the need to educate building owners to know what they are buying in regards to quality products.
Q. How has ATAS International changed through the years in regards to roofing?
A. ATAS has strived to be at the forefront of innovative products and ideas. We keep sustainability in mind, not only for products but for our company also. ATAS started with an architectural standing seam, expanded into metal tiles, then to metal shingles. We are starting to see less volume in standing seam than we were doing five years ago even though as a company we continued to grow.
Q. What contributions have you and your company made to the metal roofing industry?
A. ATAS has been an exhibitor at every METALCON show since its debut.
I served for 19 years on the board of directors for the Metal Construction Association.
ATAS was one of the first members of the Metal Roofing Alliance and I represent the metal industry on the National Roofing Contractors Association’s Industry Advisory Board.
Q. What does the future look like for our industry?
A. I think metal roofing will continue to grow across all construction segments with the biggest growth in the residential replacement roof market.
More and more building owners of all types want long-term value for their dollars. With metal roofing having the best long-term benefits, it will make their choice simple. There will be increased use of different profiles and multi-colored products. MR