Tim Ward, who recently retired from his position as Division Manager and Building Official for the city of Oak Ridge, Tennessee, was presented the Bobby J. Fowler Award during the Annual Banquet of the 2011 ICC Annual Conference in Phoenix.
The Fowler Award is the most prestigious award presented by the Code Council and honors the memory of the first chairman of the ICC Board of Directors.
“It has been my privilege to know Tim for many years,” said outgoing Board of Directors President Jimmy Brothers. “He is certainly a role model for all of us.”
Alan Boswell, Chief Building Official for the city of Tuscaloosa, Alabama, was presented the Gerald H. Jones Code Official of the Year Award during Wednesday’s Awards Luncheon at the 2011 ICC Annual Conference in Phoenix.
The Code Official of the Year Award is presented to an individual whose contribution to the code enforcement profession is meritorious. The individual must demonstrate professional abilities and be recognized as an example for all members of the code enforcement profession.
“While Alan’s day-to-day leadership in building safety is worthy of recognition in itself, he was nominated for the manner in which he managed the response to an EF-4, fatal tornado that struck Tuscaloosa,” Awards Committee Chairman Gregori Anderson said. “Directing his staff and pulling together hundreds of professional volunteers during the tornado’s aftermath, Alan’s leadership was described as exceptional, despite facing a monumental, and hopefully, once-in-a-lifetime experience.”
“We’ve had a real tough year back in my jurisdiction, and I know a lot of other jurisdictions have also,” Boswell said. “I know what you’re going through and my heart goes out to you. The task has only begun, but we will come back; we will be better, bigger and stronger.
“We’re not only in the code enforcement business, we’re in the people business,” Boswell continued. “I learned a long time ago, if we learn to listen to the people around us, and the people that we work for—our citizens, the public—they will tell us how they want us to do business with them. And when we do that, we’ll all be successful. I am very honored and humbled to receive this award.”
Boswell, who holds 26 ICC Certifications, has served the last four years as a Board Director for ICC Region IX and currently serves on the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs Board for Energy and Resident Codes. Most recently, Boswell was selected to serve on the Code Council’s Building Officials Membership Council Governing Committee.
Boswell has served the Code Officials Association of Alabama the last five years as Secretary/Treasurer, Vice President and currently as the President. He has received the President’s Award for his dedication and support to the Chapter in 2006 and 2007.
Ken Kraus, retired Inspector for the city of Los Angeles Fire Department, was presented the International Code Council Fire Service Award during the Awards Luncheon at the 2011 ICC Annual Conference in Phoenix.
The Fire Service Award is bestowed to an individual for service, professional abilities and leadership that are exemplary in the development of the International Fire Code, and one who has served as an example to all fire prevention and fire protection professionals.
“If you attend ICC code development hearings, you have probably seen Ken,” Awards Committee Chairman Gregori Anderson said. “He is involved in the code development process and is known for being able to bring people together and motivate them toward consensus.”
“Kraus recalled his early interactions with the Code Council, commuting round-trip to code development hearings in Costa Mesa, California, in 1999 and an encounter with ICC Board of Directors President Bill Dupler at his first Annual Conference in Detroit in 2005.
“I’m at the Ford Museum and I’m walking around like I have no idea what I’m doing there, which was true,” Kraus explained. “A gentleman walked up to me and said, is this your first time? I obviously looked like it. And he said, what do you know about the ICC, and I said not much. He then spent 15-20 minutes telling me about how the Board worked, how the bylaws worked, how to affect a code a code change, and I said, Geez, thanks a bunch. He sticks out his hand and introduced himself. The guy had a baseball cap on. That was Bill Dupler.”
Kraus began his fire service career in 1973 as a resident volunteer with the city of Davis, California. While attending Humboldt State University in 1974, he joined the Arcata, California, Volunteer Fire Department. Los Angeles hired him as a firefighter in 1978, and since 1984, he has served in the Fire Marshal’s Office for the Los Angeles Fire Department.
An active supporter of the adoption of the I-Codes in California, Kraus also was involved in the investigation of the US Air 737 crash at LAX in 1992 when he evaluated the flammability characteristics of interior cabin materials, fire protection in central telephone offices, Urban Wildlife Interface mitigation, and strategic/contingency planning for the 2000 Democratic National Convention.
Tony Falcone, who has made building safety his profession for more than 25 years working for jurisdictions and in the private sector, was presented the Code Council’s Community Service Award during Wednesday’s Awards Luncheon at the 2011 ICC Annual Conference in Phoenix. Ron Nickson, Vice President of Building Codes for the National Multi-Housing Council, was the recipient of the ICC Affiliate Award.
The Community Service Award recognizes meritorious service that promotes public health, safety and welfare above and beyond the normal expectations. Falcone was recognized for his development of an elementary school outreach program.
“Tony has visited with more than 2,400 first, second, third, fourth and fifth-grade students to teach them about the important role building safety professionals play in saving lives,” Awards Committee Chairman Gregori Anderson said. “The presentation creates a positive image of building safety professionals. The program receives rave reviews from teachers and parents. Parents especially seem to appreciate the knowledge, reminders and assistance the junior inspectors bring home.”
“This honor is about the children,” Falcone said. “What’s interesting is when you ask our elementary school kids what a policeman does or what a fireman does, they’re really sharp ad they’re quick with they’re answers. But when you ask them about a building inspector or building professional, it’s like looking at a deer in the headlights.
“That’s when I really know that this is something we need to focus on,” Falcone continued. “I think we do need to put some energy toward our public outreach and our kids. Imagine a new generation growing up knowing that we truly are quiet heroes out there, protecting their lives every day.”
The ICC Affiliate Award is presented to a building industry professional who consistently demonstrates the qualities of integrity, professionalism and dedication through service to the profession, and whose personal standards represent the spirit of public service to the development of codes and standards in the interest of public safety.
During his more than 30 years in the industry, Nickson has served on several technical standards writing committees, and organizes the annual Bob Fowler Motorcycle Ride, which marked its eighth anniversary this year and donated all proceeds to the ICC Foundation’s Code of Honor Scholarship Program.
“In my job I work with several code development organizations, and some of the other organizations are a little frustrating in a sense because, if you’re not a member of a committee you have a difficult time finding out what’s going on,” Nickson said. “That’s not true with the ICC process. Any person that wants to submit a code change, any person that wants to can get a copy of all those comments and proposals, and any person that wants can come and testify for and against that code change can do so.
“But the most important part of the entire process is the final vote that’s taken by the Code Official. That doesn’t happen anywhere else,” Nickson continued. “That’s the guy that’s in the field that has to live with what happens and what goes into the code.”
The Virginia Plumbing and Mechanical Inspectors Association (VPMIA) was the recipient of the 2011 Chapter of the Year Award during Wednesday’s Awards Luncheon at the 2011 ICC Annual Conference in Phoenix. Chapter Merit Awards were presented to the Code Administrators Association of Kentucky (CAAK) and the Northwest Building Officials and Code Administrators (NBOCA) in Illinois.
To earn the Chapter of the Year honor, a Chapter must demonstrate a high degree of professionalism in promoting the vision, mission and goals of the Code Council. The Chapter distinguishes itself through the development and implementation of programs designed to increase the professionalism of its members and code officials everywhere, and participate in local, state, regional or national activities to increase the public awareness of safety in the built environment.
“Since its inception in 1962, VPMIA has been very active in code development and other professional activities,” Awards Committee Chairman Gregori Anderson said. “The Chapter holds instructional meetings where attendees can earn CEUs, and participates in Virginia’s state code academy, providing instructors and curriculum development, and teaching more than 30 classes.”
“The Chapter of the Award is only accomplished through the hard work of your members,” said VPMIA President Bane Compton. “I hope by winning this award it will inspire the future member of our organization to make the same accomplishment.”
Merit Awards were presented to Chapters that distinguish themselves through activities that demonstrate the goals and objectives of the association.
CAAK was honored for its passion about education and its work with regional Chapters to accomplish its goals and objectives, and those of ICC. To support the education of its members and their families, the Code Administrators Association of Kentucky, which is an umbrella chapter for three local ICC Chapters, underwrites scholarships, including a scholarship that allows one of its members to be a first-time ICC Annual Conference attendee.
NBOCA was honored for its willingness to take on initiatives to support its members who have lost their jobs as a result of the economy. The Chapter reimburses unemployed members for the cost to renew ICC certifications. It offers funding for education that leads to new certifications, and provides reimbursement for courses taken to maintain certifications. For several years the Chapter has emphasized the need for certification by rewarding three of its members who pass the most certification tests in a year.
Newly elected ICC Board Vice President Ron Piester moderated a panel Wednesday on the subject of "Collaborative Construction in an Era of Sustainability and Risk: Maximizing the Code Official-Design Professional Relationship."
"We are going to be discussing the dynamic that is evolving in terms of sustainable construction between the design community and the regulatory community," Piester said.
Piester is the Building Codes Director for the State of New York, but he is also an architect by trade. He described his position with the state as one of oversight of enforcement of the state building code, and as such his role in the discussion was to represent the regulatory position.
The three panelists for this discussion were Don Brown, FAIA, principal and owner of Brown Chambless Architects; Mary Jane Grisby, FASID, RID, LEED AP, ID+C and President of Adesso Design Inc.; and Ron Jones, co-founder and president of Green Builder Inc.
ICC’s Director of Sustainability Programs Dave Walls and Executive Director for Training and Certification and David Dufresne were also on hand. Piester described both of them as critical and integral to the Code Council’s development of services and benefits that address issues of sustainability for the Code Council’s Members and the industry.
Brown gave a brief introduction to narrow down what could be an overwhelming topic for an hour-and-a-half long program. Topics to address included the cost impact of green building, the risks of not building green and risks that can arise from litigation (i.e., regulatory non-compliance and unexpected results from materials and methods used).
“What we talked about a year ago when we decide to do this piece,” said Brown, “ is to repeat the theme, ‘We are all in this together’…. We have some challenges on the horizon. This is not easy. But if we keep working at it we'll get it correct."
"This is not intended to be a panel of folks talking," Piester said. "This is meant to be a conversation." True to that goal, Piester threw out questions that got the discussion going between the panelists and the audience members -- which consisted of a large number of code officials.
There was discussion about what green building means.
"In some ways, green building to me is a tourniquet,” said Jones. “It's to help us stop the bleeding, because we have not been responsible in our approach to the relationship between the built environment and the natural environment."
Jones also said there are many definitions for or shades of green that can vary according to geography, culture and climate, a complexity which Piester acknowledged could be a challenge from a regulatory perspective.
There was discussion about regulating green in an environment where it’s not politically popular, (though several attendees raised their hands when Piester asked if green building standards or regulations were being considered in their jurisdictions); the migration from certification and ratings systems for sustainable building to a more regulatory structure, and the real costs of building unsustainably, one being potential health hazards from built structures.
“Most of the time it’s not going to cost anymore money when it comes to indoor air quality, said Grisby. “In young children, asthma has increased 30 percent in the last 30 years. I think it’s up to the designer to understand that these things just need to be specified (to the client).”
At the end of the discussion, Piester cautioned that the discussion should not end here.
“My challenge is, don’t let this happen to you,” Piester said. “Be part of the discussion. Be part of the solution. ICC is an association that is dedicated to your interests. Challenge us. Tell us how we need to help you. If you can do that, we can be a better association for you.”