You're driving down the highway and a familiar orange sign warns you to slow down. Everyone has seen it: "Men at Work." And even in politically sensitive times - when sports teams are changing their nicknames - I've haven't heard about a grass-roots petition drive for a "People at Work" sign.
That would be silly, of course, but the fact is that one of 10 workers in a construction-related job is a woman, according to the National Association of Women in Construction. And the number of women who work in construction increased by about 90,000 from 1998 to 1999.
Now, equipment rental has always been called a "mom and pop" industry, but most of the news tends to be about pop. We know mom and her daughters are out there, too, but where?
Two of RER's newest editors, who also happen to be young women, asked that question soon after they started covering the rental industry. Assistant editor Candy Cuenco and editorial assistant Gretchen Gary set about answering that fair question in "Leading Ladies" - this month's cover feature, which begins on page 46.
Meanwhile, RER managing editor Peter Cannon, also new to the industry, has revived an old RER tradition. On page 66, you'll find "Tool School" - the return of a column devoted to maintenance issues that has been missed since rental legend Bill Grasse finally decided to go on vacation.
While the seminal "Rentopics" column that Grasse provided for decades can never be replaced, its mission - to address and solve the equipment challenges faced in the service department - is still an important one. With your help, "Tool School" will bring back the community of maintenance ideas and tips that Grasse started so many years ago.
Finally, it should be noted that executive editor Michael Roth worked on his 140th issue of RER earlier this year. A lot of magazines come and go before they publish half that many issues. With all of the new faces and ideas at RER, we also are proud to have someone who has been talking and listening and sharing insights with you longer than any other editor in the rental business. You probably already know you can find him on page 10.
And you can find all of us in Las Vegas this month at the Rental Industry Association show. Look forward to working with you.