President's Message Fall 2005

Although my term as 2005 Chapter President is not quite finished, I’d like to take this time to thank my Board for their hard work in making my tenure successful.

It all began with our Executive Board Retreat in January. I’ve always felt that planning and analyzing the details is essential before taking the first physical step. Perhaps this is why I’ve chosen Contracts and Specifications as my niche. At the retreat we reviewed, revised and finalized our Bylaws – finally! We also updated our Long-Range Plans and modified our State provided services contract. It’s my hope these forethoughts will provide a framework for our chapter to thrive long after my tenure is over.

A devastating health issue required our Treasurer to step down. Our prayers are with Brian Brandis, AIA and his family. His contributions are sorely missed. This deficit in the Executive Board inspired two individuals to “step-up to the plate.” Many thanks to Gene Berg, AIA who has picked-up the books and keep our finances in order, and impeccable I might add.

Brian was also the catalyst for reinstituting our Golf Outing. In his absence, Joe Balsamo, intern architect, planned, organized and ran a very successful golf event raising almost $2000.00 for the American Cancer Society and the Wildlands Conservancy!

Sylvia Deye has joined our team as Secretary and comes to our chapter with great experience from the Denver chapter. The one thing I asked was to use an outline format for the minutes and now every meeting runs like a jobsite progress meeting. That’s a good thing!

Directors David Drake, AIA and John Hill, AIA have provided me with tremendous help and mentoring as senior members of our Chapter. Both, along with Howard Kulp, AIA,   have kept us informed of State level happenings and John now serves as Treasure for AIAPA. New this year is the office of Associate Director. Thanks to Tim Mahoney, Assoc. AIA for taking on this position and helping to encourage our young associate members to become more involved with AIA.

And now I have this opportunity to communicate with you through this new newsletter thanks to Chris Campbell. We’ve gone through many newsletter editors over the years and I know personally what a challenge it is to produce. Our new version which you read today is in response to the changing demographics of our membership. Thanks to the Internet, we can instantly communicate with our membership while eliminating the delay and costs of hardcopy printing. For those members who desire, a printed copy will be faxed / mailed at your discretion.

Stewart Gouck, AIA was unanimously elected Past President and is teaching me everything I need to know to run a successful Design Awards celebration. We hope to see you all at the Baum School of Arts on December 8 th !

Looking back, Allied Member Night was again a successful event in which we recognized our industry members and gained knowledge in their products and services. This event was only one of many (Synergy…Muhlenberg Tour…NCC presentation…Kutztown legal issues…the Libeskind DVD…CADD software…LEED issues) that we must thank Ron Shaffer, AIA for coordinating. Good luck Ron as next years President!

Lastly, much of my early success with AIA I attribute to Past-Past-President, John Watkins, AIA. His passion and energy were infectious; thank you John for taking me under your wing and for sharing your vision, integrity and enthusiasm for AIA.

And though my term as President is in its twilight months I hope to be elected Past-President and continue to serve the Chapter in that capacity along with my legislative activities.

Thank you all and continued success to the AIA Eastern Pennsylvania Chapter in the future!


Jim Spinola, AIA, CSI