RICHMOND, Virginia – For Athena Construction Group in Dumfries, Va., the McGuire VA Medical Center was an important government project that would help veterans and improve indoor air quality.

"I suspect this is a first in the history of government contracting," says Amber Peebles, President of Athena Construction Group, which was awarded the contract by Trillacorpe Construction of Bingham Farms, Mich. "A first for a service-disabled, veteran-owned company to partner with another service-disabled veteran-owned company to build a state of the art facility for disabled veterans."

Athena Construction used Sherwin-Williams coatings to meet the job's environmental requirements. Pro Industrial Pre-Catalyzed Waterbased Epoxy was specified for stair rails as it met regulatory standards while providing a durable finish in a high-traffic area. For interior walls, Athena used ProGreen 200 Egshel and Duration Home Satin, coatings that have earned Sherwin-Williams GreenSure designation for combining maximum performance with minimum impact on air quality.

"Our sales rep Brian Young is a U.S. Army veteran," Peebles says. "His enthusiasm and commitment to this project reflects highly upon him and the caliber of people employed by Sherwin-Williams."

The company was instrumental in the success of the job, she says.

"Sherwin Williams was our technical partner throughout this entire process. Some of the applications were new to us, and we worked with Sherwin-Williams to give our customer the best finished product," Peebles says. "We consider it to be a sacred duty to provide exceptional interior finishes to our injured colleagues. We think the quality of the work will convey a message to the patients that 'you are worth the very best we have to offer and we thank you for everything you have done for America.'"

Seven States Adopt Own Lead Rules

The EPA's Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting (RRP) rule took effect April 22. Seven states adopted their own RRP programs in lieu of the federal program: Kansas, Iowa, Mississippi, North Carolina, Rhode Island and Wisconsin. Contractors in those states can contact their local agencies for guidance. More information on the federal RRP is at