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Our year-to-date recruiting results are impressive: Four new Faculty Members. Two new Government Members. One new Practitioner Member. And twelve new Member Firms. To you all, a sincere "Thank you and welcome aboard!"
- George L. Costa, P.E., professor at the Springfield Technical Community College.
- John T. Germaine, Sc.D., senior lecturer at MIT.
- Ehsan Ghazanfari, Ph.D., P.E., assistant professor at the University of Vermont.
- Michael P. McGuire, Ph.D., P.E., assistant professor at Lafayette College.
- Rys Miranda, P.E., Chief of Design & Construction, Alaska Department of Natural Resources, Division of Parks and Outdoor Recreation.
- Frank Huber, manager of major projects, management systems, and utility support for the Water Services Department with Metro Vancouver.
- Michael Pereira, CHMM, environmental risk officer for Sterling Bank.
- Cal Engineering & Geology, Inc. Phillip Gregory, P.E. is the contact for the firm.
- Cibor, Inc. GBA Past President Joseph M. Cibor, P.E., D.GE is the firm's president.
- CRL Associates LLC William C. "Bill" Kwasny, P.E. is the firm's president.
- Doctor Mole Incorporated Gary S. Brierley, Ph.D., P.E. is the firm's president.
- ICA Engineering, Inc. J. Shannon Provance, P.E., is the firm's GBA representative.
- Dr. Jan Hellings & Associates Ltd. No stranger to GBA, Jan has his own firm after leading one of the most complex brownfield programs in history.
- Juruhesa Perunding Sri Arif Sdn. Bhd. Sabah, Malaysia
- Langerman Foster Engineering Company, LLC Scott M. Langerman, P.E. a geotechnical engineer, is a principal of the firm and one of its two cofounders.
- Palmerton & Parrish, Inc. Brandon R. Parrish, P.E. is the firm's GBA representative.
- Phoenix Environmental, LLC. Jeff Paetz is founder and CEO.
- Sneider Engineering, LLC Christopher A. Sneider, P.E. is the firm's founder and CEO.
- Yogi Kwong Engineers, LLC James K. P. Kwong, Ph.D., P.E. and David R. Yogi, P.E. are the firm's cofounders.
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Schoenwolf, James named ASFE/GBA Fellows
David A. "Dave" Schoenwolf, P.E. and Lee R. James, CPA, CMC, CBI have been elected Fellows of ASFE/The Geoprofessional Business Association (GBA).
A past president of GBA (2012-2013), Dave is a senior vice president/principal consultant of Haley & Aldrich, Inc. Located at the firm's McLean, Virginia office, Dave is a senior leader in the firm's transportation-market segment and the client leader for several major infrastructure clients. Lee is a certified public accountant, certified management consultant, and certified business intermediary. Through his firm — Lee James & Associates — he provides an array of services, such as benchmarking, coaching, facilitating, ownership transition, and software conversions, as well as numerous training programs.
Brownfield Renewal Awards competition now taking entries
Now's the time to enter the 2014 Brownfield Renewal Awards competition. Awards are given in four categories:
social impacts, and
Any individual or organization is eligible to submit. Projects can encompass:
industrial reuse of a brownfields site, or
The deadline to submit is midnight (CST), Friday, June 27, 2014. The Website has information to help make applying easy.
So much fun for the whole family in Hawaii!
While you're planning your conference attendance in Hawaii, don't forget about these great activities:
Golf: Interested in playing golf? If so, please e-mail Barb Nappy at email@example.com with your name, cellphone number and dates available to play April 9-15. She will put you in touch with others interested in playing so arrangements can be made for tee times.
Spouse/guest activities on Friday, April 11; space is limited — sign up early!
Hawaiian floral lei-making class: Learn the art of stringing a traditional Hawaiian floral lei. The lei is a symbol of welcoming and a congratulatory offering on occasions like weddings, graduations, and birthdays. Enjoy your time with your dedicated lei instructor and create a Hawaiian floral lei of your own for yourself or a loved one. $30 per person; e-mail Barb@asfe.org to sign up.
Hula lesson/demonstration: Hula is the heartbeat Hawaii, continuing the perpetuation of Hawaii's history, myths, love stories, and more. One of Hawaii's treasured arts is the hula. Learn hula basics, history and folklore along with dance steps that you will long be sharing with friends and family. For participants of all ages, everyone is welcome. $30 per person; e-mail Barb@asfe.org to sign up.
GSA budget ask ten times current allocation
U.S. General Services Administration
Major new-construction projects in D.C., California, and New York, along with major renovations in D.C., Michigan, and Missouri form the base of a $506 million General Services Administration construction budget, a ten-fold increase over the $50 million appropriated for the past two years. The question is, Will Congress give GSA all it’s looking for. According to GSA Administrator Dan Tangherlini, "There are still vital investments that need to be made." And as American Institute of Architects Managing Director of Government Relations Andrew Goldberg remarked, "[T]he longer you delay, the more expensive it gets."
Bring home the best of GBA conferences with content on demand — online and on DVD.
Download Spring Conference presentations
Presentations for the 2014 GBA Spring Conference in Hawaii, April 10-12, are now available online for download as PDF files. Get all the GBA 2014 Spring Conference presentations now!
Ride-sharing to the 2014 Spring Conference in Hawaii
Want to share a ride to this event? Sign up on the ride board.
Download the ASFE/GBA app for full conference details
Download the ASFE/GBA app now, for your iPhone or Android smart phone or tablet, especially if you're attending the upcoming April 10-12 Spring Conference in Hawaii. The app gives you access you all the hand-outs (they're all virtual now), speaker bios, and all else conferencewise, updated to the last possible moment. And there's so much more to find via the app, including the latest NewsLog and access to all our publications. Put ASFE/GBA in the palm of your hand.
$6 billion liquefaction-export project underway in Louisiana
The Times Picayune
Cameron LNC, LLC has hired Netherlands' Chicago Bridge & Iron Co. (CB&I) and Japan's Chiyoda International Corporation to design and build its $6 billion liquefaction-export project in Hackberry, LA. The two companies comprise some 50,000 employees, with 1,000 of them located in Baton Rouge, HQ of CB&I's government-solutions division. According to CB&I CEO Philip K. Asherman, "This project will utilize a large number of engineering and construction craft workers, and we feel fortunate to be able to contribute to both the growth in jobs and the infrastructure in the state." Shogo Shibuya, Chiyoda's CEO, noted that the company "has been accelerating its involvement in the development of LNG projects in North America, based on its innovative plant design and world-class project-execution capabilities, with a relentless drive for safety and contributing to the local community."
Environmental lab services in the palm of your hand
Con-Test Analytical Laboratory has launched iLab, something Kevin Gibbons — the firm's director of sales & marketing — claims is the environmental industry's first-ever mobile app for laboratory testing. In a recent interview, he said that iLab provides "our clients in the field with quick access to every resource Con-Test has to offer… the ability to view sampling guidelines, our training videos, our method databases, and directories of federal and state regulations; place a bottle order; request courier pick up; receive secure push notifications regarding data results; and much more."
Call for abstracts: Fall Conference in San Francisco
The theme of the ASFE/The Geoprofessional Business Association (GBA) Fall Conference in San Francisco, October 23-25, 2014, is "Confronting Risk: Leading in an Era of Rapid Change." Do you have a creative idea for a presentation there? If so, this is your chance to share it with us. Just download a submission form, fill it out, and send it to us. The ASFE/GBA Conference Committee evaluates every submission we recommend.
Webinar: Limitation of liability
Some people still believe it's wrong to limit one's liability. Can you explain why it isn't? Learn about the concept and where, when, why, and how it got started. Learn, too, about some of the fundamental aspects of the concept and some of the negotiating tips that can help you gain acceptance. John Bachner leads you through an informative discussion, and he should know: He was there when it all began. This on-demand webinar may qualify for one professional-development hour (PDH).
For a complete list of upcoming events, click here.
GBA's webinars at your fingertips
Nearly every webinar GBA has ever done is available on-demand at your convenience — and you can earn PDHs, too! Check out the list of nearly two dozen professional practice and writing topics today.
BUSINESS 101: Are you an Excel "power user"?
Are you a Microsoft Excel "power user"? To answer "Yes," you have to be familiar with these 11 truly rather-neat-but-seldom-used Excel features:
- Vlookup (to herd data that's scattered across different sheets and workbooks),
- chart creation,
- "If" formulas (IF and IFERROR),
- PivotTables (to count, average, sum, and perform other calculations according to the reference points you enter),
- PivotChart (to easily look at complex data sets in an easy-to-digest way),
- Flash Fill (to pull needed pieces of information from a concatenated cell),
- Quick Analysis (to minimize the time needed to create charts based on simple data sets),
- Power View (to pull and analyze large quantities of data from external data files),
- Conditional Formatting (lets you easily highlight data points of interest),
- transposing columns into rows (and vice versa), and
- essential keyboard shortcuts.
Good news, bad news about Harlem gas-line explosion
March 12, 2014: A gas leak results in an explosion that levels two five-story buildings in New York City's East Harlem, killing eight people and injuring sixty more. The good news: All such explosions are not the result of our aging, neglected infrastructure. In fact, says the Pipeline & Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), U.S. gas-distribution pipelines contend with "significant incidents" every four to six days, with excavation work being a common cause. The bad news: Our aging, neglected infrastructure is to blame for some of the incidents, and undoubtedly will take a growing percentage as time moves on.
Small Business Computing
Thinking about an office move? Proper planning will save you time and money. Consider these five basic recommendations:
1. Get on-site estimates, not online quotes
Your moving company needs to understand everything you plan to move. It can do that only by conducting a detailed on-site inventory early in the process.
2. Listen to your expert
During the survey, pay attention to your vendor's advice. For example, you can move some filing cabinets even if they're full. However, you generally need to empty the top two drawers of four-drawer laterals to prevent cabinet damage.
3. Embrace efficiency
Take advantage of any tools that streamline your move; e.g., individual cardboard boxes are giving way to reusable plastic totes and time-saving carts. Once employees fill a tote, they close it up and affix a label.
4. Plan ahead
Creating a floor plan and a seating chart beforehand helps everyone get situated in the new space quickly. It's also important to assign one person to manage the moving-day operation, so everyone has a single point of contact.
5. Purge before you go
The less stuff you have to move, the faster and cheaper your move will be. Either donate the old equipment and use it as a tax write-off or sell it to a used-furniture store.
The Economic-Loss Doctrine Today
BIBLIOGRAPHY OF ECONOMIC LOSS DOCTRINE CASES: The economic-loss doctrine is an important protection for geoprofessionals, provided they know in which states it is and is not applied, and to what extent. The economic-loss doctrine bars use of tort claims (e.g., professional-negligence and negligent-misrepresentation claims) to recover purely economic losses, such as those stemming from property damage or construction delays. In states that uphold the doctrine in full, purely economic damages may be recovered from design professionals only via breach-of-contract suits, limiting claimants to design professionals’ clients, as opposed to third parties.
GBA website — a wealth of information
The information you and everyone in your firm needs to manage risk and achieve business excellence is available on asfe.org. And, every single employee in a member firm is considered a member of GBA. Make it a point to visit the site daily, and encourage your colleagues to visit GBA's website and sign up for a password at http://www.asfe.org/index.cfm?pid=12065.
New computer model tracks post-spill oil movement
U.S. Geological Survey
A new U.S. Geological Survey-developed computer model could help environmental scientists track and predict where oil will go after a spill, sometimes years later. The USGS developed the model to track the movement of sand and oil found along the Gulf of Mexico since the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The new tool can help guide clean-up efforts and improve response to future spills. USGS conceived the model when, after the spill, it found denser-than-water conglomerates of sand and oil — ranging from less than one millimeter to mats up to a few meters — in the surf zone (i.e., where waves break as they approach the shore).
THE HR DEPT.: Market your small firm to attract top talent
For well-known geoprofessional firms, attracting top talent can be as easy as tweeting, "We're hiring!" and watching the applications pour in. Smaller firms may have to wait months to find the right person. Why? Because, says Raj Sheth, CEO and co-founder of applicant-tracking software RecruiterBox, many small firms don't do it right. He advises firms to market themselves to prospective employees just as they do — or should do — to prospective clients. He suggests establishing an active presence in the communities that their potential employees are active in, creating dialogues and relationships with others even when they have no openings. Four more tips:
- Refine your message. How will it be regarded by those who read it?
- Treat all candidates with respect. Contact candidates who don't make the cut. Get the message across as nicely as possible.
- Give candidates a timetable. When should they submit materials? How long will it take to review? When will you let them know?
- Understand what you're selling. Know your company's core benefits so you can communicate them to candidates clearly and enthusiastically.
2013-2014 ASFE/GBA BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Kurt R. Fraese, L.G.
(GeoEngineers, Inc., Seattle, WA)
Steven D. Thorne, P.E., D.GE
(Terracon, Somerset, NJ)
Gordon M. Matheson, Ph.D., P.E., P.G.
(Schnabel Engineering, Inc., Glen Allen, VA)
Joel G. Carson
(Kleinfelder, Omaha, NE)
Stewart G. Osgood, P.E.
(DOWL HKM, Anchorage, AK)
Laura R. Reinbold, P.E.
(TTL, Inc., Nashville, TN)
Woodward L. Vogt, P.E., D.GE
(Paradigm Consultants, Inc., Houston, TX)
7701 Las Colinas Ridge, Ste. 800, Irving, TX 75063