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Word from the Chairman
In Appreciation

As my year as chairman draws to a close, I stand in awe. I am in awe of all of ASTM’s members who make this Society the living organism that it is. I am in awe of the work you accomplish in committee and the dedication you show to the continued improvement of the lives of our fellow citizens through the development of consensus standards. Finally, I am in awe of the staff, their professionalism, and their pride in the organization.

As chairman I have visited and conferred with most of our committees. I felt welcome in every room I visited, even though I was usually interrupting a very full agenda. Thank you. I shared with you my thoughts on the direction the Society is taking in the world of standards development. We discussed, sometimes at length, the leadership role of ASTM in the development of standards for the global market place. You responded enthusiastically and positively to the ideas put forth.

In my meetings with you, I placed great emphasis on the international positioning of the Society. This involved discussing several aspects of our international concerns and efforts. For example, one of the reasons I met with many committees was to follow up on a letter that I sent to each executive subcommittee in January, asking you to think carefully about the use of ASTM standards as the source documents for ISO standards. I’m grateful for the insightful discussions that followed from that letter. With professionals from more than 100 countries participating in ASTM’s consensus standards process, our standards being used around the world, and ASTM managing more than 200 TAGS for ISO committees, it is well for all who participate, whether domiciled in the United States or abroad, to recognize and consider ASTM’s strategic place in the world standards community.

After the April Board meeting, I was happy to be able to report to you at the Committee Weeks that the ASTM Board of Directors voted to refine our organization’s identity with the new logo and tagline “ASTM International: Standards Worldwide.” I believe this change reflects your thoughts as you expressed them to me about ASTM’s standing in the world. This change is much more than a gesture. It is a recognition of the role the Society plays in the worldwide fraternity of standards development organizations. [Look for information on the official launch of this new identity in the January issue of SN.]

On the operations level, this was a fantastic year for the Society. This was the year that our considerable investments in electronic publishing and information technology bore fruit. All of the volumes of the Annual Book of ASTM Standards have now been converted to HTML, allowing electronic revision as well as considerably reducing the production costs of the books. This was also the year in which sales of the Book of Standards on CD-ROM has continued to increase.

Electronic balloting became a reality this year. As of the May Committee Week, every committee and subcommittee ballot could be distributed electronically. An increasing number of committees are taking advantage of this time-saving way to manage ballots.

I want to congratulate the staff that has pulled these and other operations-level initiatives together during my year as chairman. Well done.

So, as the saying goes, “Camelot” ends. I want to wish you the very best for the forthcoming holiday season. I need to express my sincere appreciation to all the members and staff of ASTM who have wished me well during the year and who have made this year easy for me. You are the reason that ASTM continues to provide meaningful standards that address the concerns of today’s marketplace, protect the environment and the public health, and improve the quality of all our lives. Thank you.

Donald E. Marlowe
Chairman of the ASTM Board of Directors

Copyright 2001, ASTM

Donald E. Marlowe

Chairman of the ASTM Board of Directors