Friday, 20 February 2015

GAI appointments boost business support for the architectural ironmongery industry

GAI Team Douglas Masterson, Rachel Tipton and Lucy Apsey

The Guild of Architectural Ironmongers (GAI) has recently appointed three new people to its London based head office team to strengthen further the services it provides to its members.

Rachel Tipton has been appointed as the GAI’s Training and Development Manager. This new role emphasises the GAI’s commitment to helping architectural ironmongers continually expand and enhance their technical and commercial knowledge.

Rachel has worked in the architectural ironmongery industry for more than 28 years. She started her apprenticeship with Josiah Parkes & Sons (Union Locks). She then moved to Thomas Laidlaw and also secured a silver medal for the GAI Diploma. During 18 years at Laidlaw, she worked in many sales and customer service roles gaining a wide range of experience and expertise including technical product knowledge, contract management, selling to specifiers and contractors and assisting architects to write specifications.

Rachel says:
“For over half a century the GAI has been offering a successful Diploma programme that is undertaken by hundreds of students every year. Diploma holders are encouraged to follow the GAI’s CPD programme and achieve RegAI status. One of my objectives is to provide opportunities for students to continue their personal development to meet the requirements of the industry and their lifelong learning needs.”

Douglas Masterson is the GAI’s new Technical Manager, the first time that the Guild has had a permanent, full-time expert who, amongst other responsibilities, will be managing its technical helpline, providing technical updates to members and representing the interests of the Guild membership when sitting on technical and standards committees in the UK and Europe. Douglas has worked in the architectural ironmongery industry for more than 25 years, ten of these as Regional Manager of MB Architectural for MacNaughton Blair/Lloyd Worrall Group. Prior to that he worked for major players in the sector including Allgood plc and Laidlaw. He also obtained a silver medal in attaining his GAI Diploma in 2000 and has sat on the Executive Committee of the GAI since 2008.

Douglas says:
“I am relishing the challenge of taking my commercial experience and knowledge and using it to help GAI members large and small, increasing technical knowledge across the wider AI industry.”

Lucy Apsey has joined as the Guild’s first marketing manager tasked with enhancing GAI’s position as the only trade body in the UK that represents the interests of the whole architectural ironmongery industry - architectural ironmongers, wholesalers and manufacturers. Lucy has 7 year’s experience in marketing across various industries and countries. She holds both an Honours degree in Marketing and a specialised CIM in digital marketing.

Lucy says:
“The GAI is revered as a professional trade body. My focus is on helping the Guild and its members move forward by optimising the use of digital media and online communications to ensure that dialogue with members is appropriate, timely and proactive.”

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