Another new year, another with major changes and opportunities on the horizon.

We here at the BNP Media Plumbing Group have a new leader in Darrell Dal Pozzo, who takes over as Senior Group Publisher from the retiring Bob Miodonski. For all the information on the changing of the guard, read here. It only has been a couple of weeks, but I am excited about the leadership and direction Dal Pozzo is going to bring to pme and the rest of the Plumbing Group’s titles.

I would be ashamed of myself if I didn’t take some time to say thank-you to Bob after working with him for nearly seven years. Also, you should take the time to read Bob’s goodbye to the industry he loved and worked dutifully in for nearly 30 years. His final column is appears in this issue.

My journey with Bob started when I was sitting in the parking lot of my former employer back in the summer of 2011 when he first called me and asked if I was interested in interviewing for an editor role with BNP.

Of course I was intrigued, but I had one question: “What industry would I be covering?”

“Plumbing,” he responded.

I hope my silence was more a pregnant pause than speechlessness. Thankfully, the interview remained on the books.

A week later, Bob and I met in his office, the same office where we said our goodbye, and after a few introductory questions about my career and personality I came clean.

“Bob, I don’t know the first thing about plumbing. I can’t fix anything in my home.”

“That’s fine. We cover business, the trends and the people that make up the industry,” he replied.

“I can do that.”

And because of Bob’s guidance, my colleagues' help here at BNP and you in the industry, I remain.

I know I’ve told that story to many people while out at trade shows or during face-to-face interviews. I’ve probably told it in this space before as well, but it will always resonate with me because of how Bob was willing to take a chance on someone from outside the industry. He trusted me and helped me grow to where I am today.

I probably bothered him with questions more than most in the Plumbing Group, but he never showed annoyance and gave me — or better yet, set me on the right path to find — the solution.

So as we in the Plumbing Group and pme move forward with a new leader, we always will have the infrastructure that Bob put in place.

I wish you all the best and hope you enjoy a wonderful in retirement. I can’t thank you enough for the opportunity to be part of this industry.