From the President

January 2, 2019

Dear MSPE Members:

It’s been a very busy 2018 for MSPE.  The two biggest changes are that we sold our building at 215 Walnut and we transitioned from having an executive director to using FrontlineCo as our association manager.  Our past president, Robert Wheeler, did an excellent job steering the MSPE ship through these difficult waters.  Ultimately, these two changes should serve as significant moments in the history of MSPE.  I trust that they will allow us to stabilize our annual budget and provide even more time and attention to our membership.  I can assure you that the Board of Directors gave their hearts to each of these issues and we think we are in a very solid position as a society moving forward.

Here are some updates on a few key issues to consider early in 2019:

  • NSPE Strategic Planning: Our National society has embarked on a new strategic plan.  Their national leadership team is reaching out to members across the country in this effort to ask what members would like to see from NSPE.  So far, they have come up with 5 pillars they wish to focus on in this effort.  They are:
    • Shaping Public Policy
    • Educating for the Future
    • Communication
    • Diversity
    • Competent Engineering Team
  • Upcoming MSPE Conference: We have set the date and location for our state conference.  The event will be held at the downtown Lansing Radisson on Thursday and Friday, May 2nd and 3rd.  We are still working on the line up, and we hope to have topics that will stimulate our membership and take full advantage of our location in Michigan’s “Capitol City”.
  • Fellows Nominations (State and National): Now is the time to start thinking about nominating Fellows at the state and national levels. State Fellows must have 20 years of professional service, experience serving at the state level, and a track record of integrity and service at the local level.  A more comprehensive outline can be found at:  https://www.michiganspe.org/mspe-fellow/.  NSPE Fellow nominations require more extensive experience at the national level and a formal application along with references at a variety of levels.  Information on National Fellowship can be found at https://www.nspe.org/membership/about-nspe/leadership/fellow-membership-grade.  If you know a member that is worthy of either of these honors please take a moment to look at the nomination materials and consider taking on this task as a way to say “thank you” for their service to our profession.
  • Making An Impact: I was recently at the Renucci House in Grand Rapids helping my son’s baseball team serve a meal to the many temporarily displaced families at Spectrum Hospital.  The Renucci House provides an affordable and comfortable way for families from out of town to stay close with their loved ones when they find themselves with an unforeseen medical stay.  My 16-year-old daughter spent the first 3 months of her life at this hospital and we have become very close with other families that have been able to take advantage of this outstanding service.  As I looked around the building I was surprised to see numerous pieces of art from Joseph Appelt, P.E.  It was one of those moments when you catch your mind running through numerous memories to put the puzzle together for you.  I remembered meeting Mr. Appelt in the early 2000’s.  I was working on a project in his neighborhood.  He made it a point to let me know that he was a former “Engineer of the Year”.  He did not make this point with any arrogance.  Rather, it was with great honor that he wanted me to know that he was an engineer and very proud of his profession.  I asked around about Joe several times in the years to follow.  But at this moment, as I looked upon all his artwork in the Renucci House, I finally put the pieces together to understand his life of giving.  I did a little research and found that he did a substantial amount of fundraising to help with this great west Michigan amenity.  I think that showing off his paintings was like the cherry on top for Joe.  Not really showing off at all but being immensely proud of the impact he has had on our profession and our community.  He set the bar very high for all of us.
  • State Committees and Chapter Board Members: It has become incredibly clear to me in my last 3 ½ years on the MSPE Board that the countless engineers that volunteer at the state and chapter levels are what make this organization so great.  Even when things might get a little rocky at the state level these professionals continue to represent engineers at all levels and do the good work of both NSPE and MSPE.  Thank you for all that you do!
    I’m proud to be representing you as we continue to chart our new course and I’m looking forward to a great 2019 for the Michigan Society of Professional Engineers.

Thank you for your service to our profession.

Scott Conners P.E.
President 2018-2019
Michigan Society of Professional Engineers
P.O. Box 160
Parma, MI  49269