May 2018

Thanks to You NACE Made Strides in Our Strategic Plan
During My Term As President 


By  Brian Keierleber, PE

       Buchanan County, Iowa

 

Another year has come and gone and so has another NACE President. I sincerely owe everyone big thanks for the opportunity to serve as your NACE President.

It was a huge honor and privilege. Every day is a learning opportunity, and the past year presented me some wonderful opportunities to educate myself. The variety of systems across the nation is tremendous. I have always been a believer that the closer the government is to the people, the more efficient it operates. Not that I want to adopt the system in Wisconsin, but there is a lot to be said for the counties maintaining their entire system including the Interstate.

The one common theme I experienced was the exceptional professionalism and competence in every state. I sincerely hope I was able to leave some knowledge behind on NACE and maybe even a little on bridges. Every place I went I learned, and this helps make me a better County Engineer because of the knowledge gained from you.

We continued to make advances on the goals in our NACE Strategic Plan. While in Oregon their desire to form an Unpaved Roads Committee was clearly heard. Our initial meeting in the Wisconsin Dells had a large turnout to discuss the goals and mission of this Committee. This is good news to me personally as in Iowa about 80% of my roads are unpaved. We have a lot to learn about more efficient ways to maintain them. The leaders in this are North Dakota and South Dakota. I suspect that the old adage of “necessity is the mother of invention” has come to play there earlier than some other areas. I’m currently trying some base stabilization methods and more economical thin surface treatments.

Also in implementing the Strategic Plan, we have significantly gained in membership numbers. This is important because all organizations must bring in younger members and those new to the profession to get them involved. In addition, we have much better financial stability now than in the past. These are accomplished not by my actions or leadership, but due to you and all our members working together.

Our relations with the FHWA, NLTAPA, NACo, APWA, and AASHTO continue to grow with no reason to suspect them to slow down. Also NACE continues to make great strides in developing Local Road Safety Plans and bringing awareness plus funding to the Local System.

We welcome Kevan Stone as our new Executive Director and say thanks to Brian Roberts. We wish him well in his new endeavors. Under Brian’s leadership great advances were made in many areas. I know these will continue under Kevan’s leadership, especially in the areas of legislation.

Lastly, I owe special gratitude to the Wisconsin County Highway Association (WCHA) for the wonderful job they did in our NACE Annual Conference. As I take on the role as the Past President, I will ride off into the sunset. I promise not go quietly—that would be out of character for me.

I look forward to seeing each of you in Wichita next year. Thanks again for the opportunity, it was a true pleasure.

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