Sandra Berg Receives ACA’s Heckel Award

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Washington, D.C., April 5, 2022 – The American Coatings Association (ACA) presented Sandra Berg, chairman and CEO of Pacific Resource Recovery Services, with the George Baugh Heckel Award – the association’s highest honor. Berg was recognized for her leadership efforts on behalf of the association and the industry. She received the award during ACA’s Awards Reception & Dinner, which was held prior to the American Coatings Show in Indianapolis, Ind.

A former ACA chairman, vice chairman, member of the Board of Directors and Executive Committee, Berg’s tenure as ACA chairman, from 2014-2016, marked a period of notable milestones and growth for the association: Berg was the first woman to serve in this role.

Under her leadership, ACA succeeded in establishing the industry’s landmark paint stewardship program, PaintCare, in Colorado, Maine, and the District of Columbia. Additionally, during her tenure at ACA’s helm, the association undertook an evaluation of its mission and organizational structure. As a result of that effort, ACA revised its mission to include declarations about PaintCare and a commitment to Sustainability; and the association’s longstanding committee structure was reconfigured to better align with ACA’s directional focus. Berg’s tenure also saw the issuance of ACA’s initial Product Category Rule (PCR) for Architectural Coatings. The PCR created a framework by which industry could assess the environmental life-cycle impacts of architectural coatings to publish Environmental Product Declarations, if they chose.

In addition to leading the association, Berg served for many years on ACA’s Budget & Finance, Bylaws, and Nominating Committees, and chaired the association’s Coatings Care and Industrial Coatings Committees. She was also the founding chair of the California Paint & Coatings Association and served as its president for several years.

Berg joined her family business, Ellis Paint Company, in 1977, and held varied management roles before becoming president of Ellis Paint and the other Berg family company, Pacific Resource Recovery Services, in 1992. In 1995 she took on the CEO role for both companies. She grew her family companies and their operations for some 40 years, and in 2017, oversaw acquisition of Ellis Paint Company by Axalta Specialty Coatings.

Berg is a board member of the California Air Resources Board (CARB), a role she has served since her initial appointment in 2004 by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. She was re-appointed to the board by Gov. Jerry Brown in 2011, and in 2015, she was elected by CARB to serve as its vice chair. CARB is California’s lead air quality agency, responsible for protecting public health by reducing air pollution. In this role she has chaired several committees overseeing a billion dollars of public incentive funding and facilitated key policy implementation groups, emphasizing the need to protect public health and the environment while simultaneously keeping business strong.

In addition to her service with CARB, ACA, and the coatings industry, Berg has a passion for youth and education. She is a past board member of the Hollenbeck Policy Activity League and was honored with the 2015 Pal of the Year Award. She served for 10 years on Rep. Roybal Allard’s Congressional District Student Art Competition committee and chaired the committee for two terms. She is a trustee member of the Jack Corwin Family Foundation, and a past member of Young Presidents’ Organization and C-200, a philanthropic organization of businesswoman.

ACA’s award is named for George Baugh Heckel, a pioneer of the paint and coatings industry. An artist, poet, novelist, journalist, physician, and surgeon, Heckel devoted much of his life to promoting the interests of the coatings industry.

The American Coatings Association (ACA) is a voluntary, nonprofit trade association working to advance the needs of the paint and coatings industry and the professionals who work in it. ACA serves as an advocate and ally for members on legislative, regulatory, and judicial issues, and provides forums for the advancement and promotion of the industry through educational and professional development services.

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