Masters of Code: John Hammons 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. John Hammons is the latest to join the elite group of Master Code Professionals. In this exclusive feature for the Building Safety Journal, we asked John to share his experience on obtaining the MCP designation, highlights of his professional career and any insights or advice he has concerning the industry.
John Hammons, CBO
Abbeville, Louisiana, United States
International Code Council member for 13 years
BSJ: What led you to pursue and obtain MCP certification?
Hammons: It is the highest level of certification in my field.
BSJ: How did you study and prepare for the many exams you took as a part of your MCP designation?
Hammons: I studied in large blocks of time, paying attention to information structure and available figures, tables and exceptions.
BSJ: What does achieving the prestigious MCP status mean to you?
Hammons: It is one indicator that I have taken my job seriously and have strived to be a good, reliable resource for the community in which I serve.
BSJ: How would you describe the value or benefits that have come with the recognition of your MCP status?
Hammons: So far, it hasn’t affected anyone externally, but I am proud of the effort, myself.
BSJ: What advice would you offer to those who are considering pursuing an MCP designation?
Hammons: Keep pushing and don’t give yourself an excuse to take a break or relax along the way. Stay at it.
BSJ: How long have you been in the industry?
Hammons: 13 years.
BSJ: What major changes have you seen?
Hammons: Too many to list! Building safety was not an especially popular area of interest in my state, but it has made great strides recently.
BSJ: What excites you about the future of your industry?
Hammons: It is a wide-open field. There aren’t that many people I’ve met that are truly good at assisting people in a positive way while maintaining professional standards.
BSJ: What is one piece of advice that you would give to those starting out in the industry?
Hammons: Same as getting the MCP. Keep moving, don’t get stagnant and be a good servant to those who ask for your help or are otherwise under your jurisdiction.
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?
Hammons: Building safety is what I do. Being the best that I can be, in all aspects, is the only way to do it. The Code Council is the resource I start with for any problem.
BSJ: Obtaining all those ICC certifications is quite an accomplishment. What are you going to do now that you have achieved this goal?
Hammons: Get them all.
BSJ: Thank you, John, 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 John 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.