WSA Memorial Scholarship Fund

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The World Sweeping Association currently offers two memorial scholarships. These are named after two people who had long-time power sweeping industry involvement. You may read about each below, as well as about the qualification requirements for the scholarships.

The Dale McCaskill Sr. Memorial Scholarship Fund

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Dale McCaskill Sr. was one of the unquestioned leaders of the U.S. power sweeping industry until his untimely passing in a car accident in November of 2011.

In the photo to the left, Dale is shown in 2009 being presented with the industry’s highest honor, WorldSweeper.com’s Award of Excellence in Power Sweeping. Dale was a past president and founding member of the North American Power Sweeping Association. He was also a perennial attendee and frequent presenter at the yearly National Pavement Exposition.

However, what I believe would have been even more important to Dale if we were able to ask what he would like to be remembered for, is that he was always ready to provide whatever assistance he could to any current or prospective sweeping contractor in need of business advice.

In his personal life, Dale was a talented singer and keyboard musician who was well known in his regional area. One of his accomplishments was to have sung for President Bill Clinton during a New Year’s Eve event the President and his wife, Hillary, were attending. In the sweeping industry, McCaskill was the keyboardist and primary vocalist member of the ‘legendary’ All Star Sweepers Band that debuted at the Schwarze Roundups some years ago. Other members were Gale Holsman, of American Sweeping, Inc. on guitar; Steven Hanvey, Schwarze engineer (now at Victory Sweepers, Inc.) on bass; and, myself on drums.

Given Dale’s penchant for educating others, it is only fitting that WSA’s initial Scholarship Fund was named in his honor. Our initial plan was to provide the first scholarship toward the end of the 2012 year to one or more college- or tech school-bound students whose parents work for a U.S. sweeping contractor. Ultimately, two scholarships, each in the amount of $2,000, were awarded. The second was awarded in the name of Carl J. Austin.

The Carl J. Austin Memorial Scholarship Fund

In 2012, long-time industry leader, Carl Austin, passed away. As a result, an additional scholarship was started in his name, as well.

Carl (Julian) Austin was involved in the power sweeping industry for more than 30 years. Most will remember him as a ‘fixture’ at Schwarze Industries, Inc. for two decades. Carl’s introduction to power sweeping came when he found himself the personal banker of Bob Schwarze, founder of Schwarze Industries, Inc. There is no question that Carl was instrumental in helping the Schwarze family’s financial picture as they struggled to grow their burgeoning company. I know that Carl put his own reputation on the line more than once to keep the sweeper company financed.

In the mid-70s, Carl was one of the individuals who met together in the Los Angeles area to discuss what might be done in terms of starting a sweeping association. This resulted in the very first association for power sweeping, the National Contract Sweepers Institute.

CarlAustinCloseCarl also was the primary author of the white paper that is today on the World Sweeping Association website. The document, which is freely available, provides a detailed analysis on how to assess a used sweeper prior to purchase.

There’s no question that Carl had a significant impact to the sweeping industry in USA. What many don’t know about is Carl’s impact elsewhere. Malcolm Cameron, Schwarze Industries’ International Business Manager, wrote to point out how well Carl Austin was known and respected in other parts of the world.

“I first met Carl when he came to Australia with Mark Schwarze in 1999,” said Cameron. “They came to oversee the start of Schwarze Industries in Australia, and to set up the manufacturing at James Engineering in Brisbane. Schwarze Industries’ Australia grew from those early days into a major sweeper supplier in Australia and throughout Asia.

“Carl was responsible for export sales for Schwarze and, as our exports from Australia grew, I had an increasing amount of contact with him. Always helpful and courteous, Carl’s knowledge of sweepers and sweeper dealers throughout the world was of great help.”

All who knew Carl Austin praised his many great character traits. The World Sweeping Association is proud to have a scholarship fund named in his honor.

Here’s what WSA did to get things started.

To ‘get the ball rolling,’ $25 was donated to the scholarship fund for each new member who enrolled with WSA for the yearly membership rate of $325 between December 2012 and February 2013. Also, all of those who signed up by the end of February were additionally designated as ‘Founding Members’ of World Sweeping Association. The total Founding Members who joined during this membership drive numbered 32, which led to an $800 contribution directly from WSA.

Others in the industry also matched some or all of WSA’s $25/member contribution.

The following leading industry suppliers and contractors also contributed:

This provided WSA with a starting amount of $5,500 to get the program rolling. In addition, Mark Schwarze, President of Victory Sweepers, Inc., donated one of the company’s T600 sweepers. This sweeper was then auctioned off, with the proceeds going to the Scholarship Fund.

To qualify, applicants must be children of employees; children of company principals will not be considered at this time. Applicants are juried by WSA’s Advisory Board; then, the winner(s) chosen by the general WSA membership. 

If you would like to donate to the Scholarship Fund, or to get any questions answered, give us a call at 866) 635-2205 or use the contact form below and we’ll get back with you promptly. Thanks for considering becoming a part of the WSA Memorial Scholarship Fund!

– Ranger Kidwell-Ross, Executive Director

 

 

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