In October, the Clemson Brick Forum met in Anderson, South Carolina where it marked its 63rd anniversary. For over six decades the forum has brought together researchers, manufacturers and suppliers from across North America to share innovations and advancements.

John Sanders

John Sanders

By virtue of its sponsorship, the National Brick Research Center (NBRC) has made Clemson University an active partner of the forum since 1955, the first year the event was held. North Carolina State College hosted the inaugural gathering, but the forum has established its home at Clemson since its fourth year.

Since its founding in 1987, the NBRC has had just three directors. Gilbert C. Robinson came to Clemson in 1946 as the first professor of ceramic engineering.  He founded the Center for Engineering Ceramic Manufacturing and served as its first director.

Two years later Denis Brosnan was named director, and led the institution for nearly a quarter-century.  During his tenure he oversaw the establishment of the Bishop Ceramic Laboratory, a research facility and testing lab for ceramic materials and products. The lab was constructed using donations from industry and is owned by the Clemson University Research Foundation.

Gil Robinson

Gil Robinson

Then in 1999, the Center for Engineering Ceramic Manufacturing was renamed the National Brick Research Center.

To reflect the expansion of the field to include advanced materials beyond ceramic and brick, in 2009 the Bishop Ceramic

Laboratory became the Bishop Materials Laboratory. Three years later the NBRC celebrated its 25th Anniversary, and John Sanders became the third director.

Over the past five years Sanders has supervised facility expansion and service improvements that have gone a long way to ensuring that the National Brick Research Center continues to be a vibrant global resource for this vital and important industry.

Denis Brosnan

Denis Brosnan