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News of the ASTM Board
News of the ASTM Board

ASTM International’s board of directors last met Oct. 28-29, 2003, at ASTM Headquarters in West Conshohocken, Pa. The following is a summary of reports made and actions taken by the board at those meetings.

For further details on any of the following topics, contact ASTM President James A. Thomas, ASTM, 100 Barr Harbor Dr., PO Box C700, West Conshohocken, PA 19428-2959 (phone: 610/832-9598).

2004 Finance and Audit Committee Chairman

The 2004 Chairman of the Board Arthur Schwope announced that the executive committee approved Gregory Saunders as the 2004 chairman of the Finance and Audit Committee. Saunders succeeds Helene Hardy-Pierce, who served in that position in 2003. Saunders, director of the U.S. Department of Defense Standardization Program Office, served on the ASTM board from 2001 to 2003.

Corporate Communications Report

Corporate Communications Director Barbara Schindler reported that ASTM staff is undertaking a redesign of the ASTM Web site. The new pages are appearing on the site in phases and the redesign should be complete in the spring of 2004. In addition to the redesign, Schindler reported on the development of a new Newsroom on the ASTM Web site, which will house the Society’s news releases and provide public information about ASTM.

Corporate Communications is also updating its media monitoring capabilities, that is, the methods it uses to track stories mentioning ASTM in various print media.

Traditional printed clippings — the only option available until recently — do not monitor electronic coverage, so Corporate Communications will now add an electronic clipping service that will scan the Internet daily for ASTM stories.

Membership

Membership Manager Ellie Barkley reported that ASTM’s Membership department has created promotional campaigns to attract new professionals to one of the four types of ASTM membership, and a retention plan to ensure ASTM members are satisfied with and maintain their memberships in the Society.

In the past year, several ASTM technical committees have launched promotional campaigns to increase participation in their standards development activities. In addition, ASTM launched a campaign to encourage professionals to become informational members of the Society; as a result of this campaign, several hundred new informational members joined. ASTM’s new Student Membership category, launched in 2003, has seen significant success, with over 500 new students signed on as of the board meeting in October. (As of press time, the number of student members is now up to 1,128.)

Technical Committee Operations

Regulations Revision
The board voted to approve revisions to Section 12.4 of the Regulations Governing ASTM Technical Committees as recommended by the ASTM Committee on Technical Committee Operations (COTCO). The revision replaces the sequential balloting of main committee and Society negative votes with concurrent balloting.

Technical Committee Disbanding and Formation
The board voted to approve the disbandment of Committee F35 on Compatibility of Machine Tool Components with Industrial Lubricants, due to lack of participation and standards development activity.

The board voted to approve the formation of the new ASTM Committee E54 on Homeland Security Applications. The new committee was organized at the request of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and key representatives of the security industry. See the feature section of this issue for details on E54’s planned standards development activities.

Request for Society Recognition of Committee Award
The board approved a request from Committee E10 on Nuclear Technology and Applications to grant Society recognition to the Peter D. Hedgecock Award. This award was established in 1995 by the committee to honor its members for outstanding contributions and long-term service to committee activities.

ASTM Outreach Initiatives

Washington Report
ASTM Director of External Relations Teresa Cendrowska reported on the Society’s work with the U.S. federal government.

• ASTM has participated in several activities connected with the U.S. Department of Commerce’s eight-point standards initiative:

  • Developing a global standards activity assessment — ASTM responded to the DOC’s request for industry input on the most pressing standards issues for various sectors by gathering input from several of its technical committees.
  • Devising effective training and outreach programs for foreign commercial service officers — ASTM has offered its assistance in development and review of the Department of Commerce training program.
  • Appointment of a liaison to the International Trade Administration — ASTM Vice President of Global Cooperation Kitty Kono and Cendrowska met with Heidi Hijikata, who has been named the International Trade Administration’s standards liaison.
  • Industry-specific roundtables — In June 2003, ASTM Committee D02 chairman Jim Bover, of ExxonMobil, Annandale, N.J., presented on behalf of ASTM at the energy industry roundtable conducted by Commerce. At the roundtable held in October 2003 for standards developing organizations, ASTM President Thomas was one of 11 SDO representatives to give short presentations on issues facing standards developers today.

• ASTM is cooperating with the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s efforts to update 18 ASTM standards cited by the administration. This is the first in a series of updates that OSHA is undertaking.
• ASTM met with several stakeholders in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Environmental Technologies Verification program to provide an overview of ASTM and its procedures and begin discussions on whether ASTM might provide a forum for converting the documents developed by the ETV group to full consensus standards.
• ASTM representatives met with the standards attachés newly
assigned by the Department of Commerce to the U.S. Embassy in Mexico City and the U.S. Mission to the European Union. ASTM anticipates working with these and other attachés in its global outreach.
• The Standards Development Organization Advancement Act of 2002, which would provide a new degree of limited relief to standards developing organizations under existing antitrust laws, has, after its approval by the U.S. House of Representatives, been forwarded to the Senate Committee on the Judiciary for consideration and approval.

Global Update

ASTM Vice President of Global Cooperation Kitty Kono reported on several of ASTM’s global outreach initiatives.

• Since the previous board meeting in April 2003, Kono reported that additional memorandums of understanding had been signed with standards developing organizations in Dominica, Morocco, Panama, Peru, South Africa, Sri Lanka, the Philippines, and Turkey.
• An Open House for Asia Pacific Standards Leaders was held at ASTM Headquarters in September 2003. The program was sponsored by ASTM, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, and Underwriters Laboratories, in cooperation with the American National Standards Institute and the National Institute of Standards and Technology.
• In August 2003, ASTM hosted a second technology transfer program in Mexico City, Mexico, this time for the Mexican housing construction sector. The program provided the Mexican technical and scientific community an opportunity to learn about the technology transfer made possible through participation in the development of ASTM standards.
• Thomas and Cendrowska participated in several programs promoting standardization in Chile, Colombia, Peru, and Trinidad and Tobago.
• Cendrowska and ASTM Vice President of Corporate Development Drew Azzara represented ASTM at two National Institute of Standards and Technology Standards in Trade programs, providing presentations on the use of ASTM standards in building codes for a Latin American audience, and ASTM standards in pressure equipment, piping, cranes, and elevators for a Chinese audience.
• Kono is representing ASTM on a working group coordinated by the China Office of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration, which is exploring the concept of creating a U.S. Standards and Conformity Assessment Office in Beijing, China, in 2005.
• ASTM was represented by staff members at recent meetings of the Pan American Standards Organization (COPANT) in Jamaica and the Pacific Area Standards Congress (PASC) in Vietnam.
• ASTM’s International Consultant Helen Delaney spoke at a four-day workshop on the coordination of standards and conformity assessment activities in southeastern Europe. The program, held in Geneva, Switzerland, for officials of the Stability Pact nations, was sponsored by the U.S. Commercial Law Development Program.
• ASTM is serving as a “non-negotiating cooperative group” on trade capacity in support of the Central American Free Trade Agreement. The non-negotiating status enables ASTM to meet with representatives of the five member countries’ Ministries of Economy or External Commerce to discuss standards issues and find common ground for collaboration.

Many of these initiatives have been reported on in greater detail in previous issues of SN. To learn more, go to www.astm.org and perform a keyword search to find a specific story, or contact Editor in Chief Maryann Gorman (phone: 610/832-9606). //

Copyright 2004, ASTM International