Meet 2018 HBA President Gary Kerns
Company: Gary Kerns Homebuilders, LLC
Background: Gary Kerns, a third-generation home builder, grew up in Hemple, Mo., which is a very small town north of Gower, Mo., and east of St. Joseph, Mo. Gary’s parents, Wayne and Betty Kerns, were home builders in St. Joseph, Mo. They started building homes in 1963 alongside Gary’s grandfather, Orville.
Joined the HBA: 1999; Elected to Board of Directors in 2007
Committees: Membership (Chair), Parade Committee, HBA PAC, and HBA of Missouri (President)
Goals for 2018:
- Advocacy. Kerns wants to proactively engage with local municipalities to strengthen relationships. He wants the HBA to maintain an ongoing dialogue with city officials and staff in order to bring awareness and receive feedback on various topics.
- Membership. The HBA has a membership goal to hit by 2018 and it is close to achieving it. Gary strongly believes we must encourage those that are not members to join. “We are the voice of the home-building industry and we are stronger together than apart,” said Kerns.
- Young Professionals Group. The HBA’s future depends on the young builders and subcontractors getting involved now. “We must teach them what we know, and we must listen to what they have to say. They are the ones that will be leading this organization someday,” said Kerns. With Kerns’ leadership, the HBA is setting up this committee with ideas and suggestions from members.
- Workforce Development. Kerns plans to support the HBA’s efforts to alleviate the labor shortage the industry is currently facing. The Workforce Development Committee, established in 2017, has completed a strategic plan and will be putting it into action in 2018.
- Renovation of the HBA’s Building. Kerns will continue the renovation work to the building, which was initiated by 2017 HBA President Harold Phelps, to make it an asset that its members are all proud of.