As this reaches you, we will have completed our visit to Orlando and two important events for ASHI this year. The first being the Institute of Building and Home Safety (IBHS) conference, where we have been actively participating as stakeholders to help reduce insurance risks and contributing our knowledge of building science through the tremendous help of ASHI Member Bill Mason in Florida. Bill’s attendance at IBHS meetings has allowed ASHI to interact with its committees looking at safer home construction, hurricane-and wind-resistant housing and other ways to improve the safety of our clients around the country. I was reminded how important this work is as I drove around Orlando and saw the obvious damage from the recent hurricanes. As a result of Bill’s work, Don Norman, Rob Paterkiewicz and I were invited to IBHS’ annual conference to meet and greet some of its staff and directors. We were able to participate in the seminar and to mix with insurance industry stakeholders discussing ways for ASHI to work closely with IBHS in design, regulation and public relations.
Secondly, we visited, along with Angela Orlando, our meetings and conference director, and a contingent of Florida volunteer inspectors, the National Association of Realtors® conference. This year, we inaugurated a larger presence to better state our identity and level of importance as the voice of the profession. The booth was impressive and our presentation at this important conference, with over 27,000 participants, would have made you proud. Frankly, it’s time for us to make sure that both real estate professionals and consumers across the country know that there is a significant advantage to hiring an ASHI Inspector, and that there is a wealth of important information available for them at ASHI.org. In the past, this has been an important conference for us to attend, but our presence, due to costs, had been limited. Whether you get referrals from real estate agents or they just tell others that ASHI Inspectors are a cut above in the profession, our presence as a Society is important at this event.
For the record, many of you have sent me e-mails, letters and requests to look into various problems and situations. I’m happy to report that I have been able to intervene withmany of those issues and, as a result, some subtle changes have been possible. Some issues that were brought up at recent chapter meetings were addressed at our recent board meeting in Chicago and, as a result some promising changes have occurred. The board has proposed a gamut of positive actions to promote ASHI, the Web site, and many of our projects with more media and Web presence. We have changed some focus and, as a result, I believe stilled some of the unfounded and unnecessary conflicts between the board and the COR. We have tweaked the Realtor®, appraiser and lender parts of the Web site as a result of some criticisms we received, and again added enhancements to make the site even more user-friendly. Our Complaints Committees are taking on the task of following up on problems in a timely fashion, and rigorously working on dealing with both logo misuse and ethical concerns. We had an incredibly positive Chapter Leadership Day, with 60 chapters represented and over 170 leaders attending. Their input regarding our important issues assures you, the Membership, that we are hearing your concerns, and that all the leaders attending are focused on this coming year’s needs and special projects for the Society.
Over the next few months, we will be transitioning to get committees ready for Don Norman’s presidency. And, as the new committees power up, the chairs will be flying to Chicago for orientation and putting the committee work plans into motion for 2005.
I hope you will be getting ready to join us in Austin for InspectionWorld, and that you will be looking forward to all the educational offerings the Conference Committee and the Education Committee will be providing.
Finally, as the holidays approach, I hope you will all take a deep breath and take the time to examine how lucky we all are to be involved in such a great profession—one that provides a great need to our clients, offers us a good living and a personal satisfaction knowing we are doing something important and
beneficial. During almost every chapter visit, when I’ve asked those attending who adored their business, all raised their hands and many felt they had made life-changing decisions when they started doing home inspections. And, to our Members and Candidates in Florida who suffered setbacks due to the storms, let’s hope things get back to normal soon.
At this time of the year, we should reflect on how fortunate we are and share these thoughts with those around us. Happy holidays and a prosperous new year to all.