Masters of Code: David Goodman achieves the gold standard of code certification
It’s considered the Ph.D. of building safety codes certification. The Master Code Professional (MCP) is the highest level of designation the International Code Council offers and is the “gold standard” for demonstrating proficiency in the code profession. The Code Council has certified thousands of individuals, but only a small select number have attained this high level of achievement: just over 900 MCP professionals worldwide. Their achievements are a benefit to the code enforcement profession as well as their communities.
To obtain this level of certification requires and demonstrates a commitment to the profession, diverse knowledge of codes and a high level of self-initiative. David Goodman, building plans examiner for the city of Phoenix in Arizona, is the latest to join the elite group of Master Code Professionals. In this exclusive feature for the Building Safety Journal, we asked David to share his experience on obtaining the MCP designation, highlights of his professional career and any insights or advice he has concerning the industry.
Building Plans Examiner
Planning & Development Department
International Code Council member for 17 years
Arizona Building Officials, Central Arizona Chapter
BSJ: What led you to pursue and obtain MCP certification?
Goodman: I obtained my first International Code Council certification on my own because it was not required for the job I had at the time. Over the course of my career, I obtained additional Code Council certifications. There came a point where I noticed that I was on a path to obtain the MCP certification and I was working for a company that encouraged it. It was at that time that I made it a personal goal to obtain the certificate for my own professional career development.
BSJ: How did you study and prepare for the many exams you took as a part of your MCP designation?
Goodman: Work experience and general knowledge of the construction industry are very helpful but knowing where to find information quickly in the referenced material was key for me. I read and studied all the referenced material until I felt comfortable taking the exam. Sometimes that took up to six months of preparation, so staying patient and not rushing into an exam was important for me.
BSJ: What does achieving the prestigious MCP status mean to you?
Goodman: There is a real feeling of personal satisfaction knowing that I challenged myself to reach a goal and that I did it. It is an honor for me to have achieved this status as a member of the building safety industry.
BSJ: How would you describe the value or benefits that have come with the recognition of your MCP status?
Goodman: The MCP certificate demonstrates that professional-level experience and knowledge has been obtained. It brings an enhanced level of professionalism and credibility to the city department. This achievement will benefit me long-term in my career as advancement opportunities become available.
BSJ: What advice would you offer to those who are considering pursuing an MCP designation?
Goodman: Take on one certification at a time and be patient. Be realistic knowing that it’s going to take time. Be diligent in setting small goals and challenge yourself to reach the big goal. If you have just a couple of exams left to get the certification, set out to get it. It is worth it!
BSJ: How long have you been in the industry?
Goodman: 32-plus years.
BSJ: What major changes have you seen?
Goodman: Technology and the increased use of computers have been a major change over my career. Combining the three model codes to form the Code Council family of codes was also a major change.
BSJ: What excites you about the future of your industry?
Goodman: Innovation and technology continue to amaze. The construction industry is continuously evolving and it is a challenge for the building codes to keep up. This keeps those of us in the building safety industry on a path moving forward, or being left behind. That is a challenge that should excite us all.
BSJ: What is one piece of advice that you would give to those starting out in the industry?
Goodman: Take the initiative to continue to learn from the building codes and set a personal path for progress. Let your supervisors know about your career desires and goals.
BSJ: Building safety is the focal point of our mission here at the Code Council. What is the importance of building safety to you? How has ICC helped you in your career and commitment to public safety?
Goodman: The public expects to be safe when they are in public places. That is where we come in as building safety professionals working behind the scenes to see that structures have a relative degree of safety for occupancy. That is a very important role that largely goes unnoticed. The Code Council is at the front lines of the building safety industry. My membership and association with the Code Council is the major influence in my personal commitment to public safety.
BSJ: Obtaining all those ICC certifications is quite an accomplishment. What are you going to do now that you have achieved this goal?
Goodman: Seeing my MCP certificate each day at work is a nice reminder of the commitment and responsibility I have as a building safety professional. I will continue to work in the industry that I am proud to be a part of.
BSJ: Thank you, David, and congratulations. You have definitely been an encouragement to us all in your pursuit of excellence.
To earn the Code Council’s elite MCP designation, a candidate must first pass 10 core Code Council exams plus a number of elective Code Council exams. Typical Master Code Professionals hold 17 or more Code Council certifications. The Master Code Professional designation requires certified individuals to complete an additional 60 hours of Continuing Education Units every three years to maintain active status.
“The Master Code Professional certification is the pinnacle of all Code Council certifications, representing a level of effort, knowledge, and dedication that elevates not only the individual achieving it but the code official profession as a whole,” said Code Council Chief Executive Officer Dominic Sims, CBO.
Master Code Professionals are typically responsible for all technical and management aspects of code enforcement with duties that range from the management of a code enforcement department to the supervision of inspectors and plan reviewers.
“Congratulations to David on achieving this important and significant accomplishment,” said Autumn Saylor, program services manager of the Code Council’s Assessment Center. “I challenge and encourage all code professionals to strive for this level of achievement, and I look forward to congratulating more Master Code Professionals in the future.”
To learn more about how you can join this elite group and let us help you open the door to increased professional challenges and career advancement, click here.