What do Gene Barwick and Paul “Bear” Bryant have in common? They both were named to the Sports Illustrated Silver Anniversary All American football team. Barwick was known for much more than that, of course, specifically his innovative ideas and enthusiasm. He was responsible for several “firsts:” first wide-width tufting machines, first with vulcanized roller coatings, first to make tufted nylon, first to use jute as a primary backing material, first to heat-set nylon, first to use polypropylene. Barwick was devoted to the carpet industry and worked with the federal government to develop standards that today make carpet one of the safest products. He was also lauded for his generosity and philanthropic efforts that aided many people in the carpet industry.