By Peter A. Schkeeper, PE

Substantial progress has been made with our Standard of Practice Committee work.  I am very proud of their work ethic and work product.  Committee collaboration was very effective achieved by terrific leadership of Russell Strahan, P.E., excellent diverse membership involvement, and use of GoToMeeting.  A draft had been presented to your Board of Directors and is being refined after legal review so I am confident that it will be ready for final approval by the time of our conference.  As you will recall we generated committee interest at our last annual meeting with a panel presentation.  I prepared a guidance document based on all of the input we had received.  The committee met almost weekly generating a new set of standards and then 20 revisions were crafted and debated.  Our approach is to have a performance standard that replaces the prescriptive standard and that applies to all types of buildings and building engineering.

The effectiveness of the Standard of Practice Committee suggests a potential model for future committee work.  One by-product of the Standard Committee deliberations has been to confirm the limitations of our existing marketing and web site information.  Our Board has asked that we produce a Forum at our next Conference with a panel presentation and member interaction devoted to marketing.  I hope we can agree to create and achieve an equally effective committee for development of marketing and web based information.

I was invited to make a presentation at the NSPE Board meeting in July where I sought greater awareness of NABIE as ambassadors for NSPE; greater visibility for NABIE on the NSPE web site and through PEPP; and a survey of NSPE members about their building inspection work.  David Carlysle, P.E., Past President has been doing similar presentations for years. I think we are making progress.  NSPE did send out a survey which indicated that only 24% of those who responded knew of NABIE.  Unfortunately, we did not include a question to identify those who are already members of NABIE.  To help us refine that survey, I would appreciate if each of you who responded would send me an e-mail to that effect.  See my e-mail address in the officer column.  83% indicated that they do perform some aspect of building inspection is their work.  More than half of the respondents reported their involvement to be 10% or less.  NSPE has offered to publish more of our articles in PE magazine.  Please send me your suggested articles for us to consider submitting.  We were also invited to assist with presentation of webinars.  Bill Coulbourne, P.E., our VP, is presenting the first webinar for NSPE on behalf of NABIE.  We do such a great job at our conferences that I am sure we will have additional presenters of NSPE webinars helping to increase the awareness of and interest in our specialty society and affinity group of NSPE.

You have seen some improvement in our technology area with our direct e-mail capability and our LinkedIn private social networking group.  Much more improvement and interaction is needed.  We will discuss this at our business meeting during the Conference.  Our Executive Director John Cronin, P.E. with assistance from our V.P. Bill Coulbourne, P.E.  has been planning next year’s meeting in San Antonio.  It will be a terrific location for an outstanding Conference.

Please reach out to your officers to assist with their area of focus. Our newsletter includes the e-mail address for all officers.  Bill Coulbourne, P.E., VP, is overseeing a strategic planning process and is focusing on membership growth.  Mark Soderlund, P.E., Treasurer, is focusing on membership services.  And, Mark Waldman, P.E., Secretary, is focusing on technology and the development of tools that will help us strengthen NABIE’s mission and support our members.  Please let them know of your ideas and offer whatever assistance you can.  Thank you.