One of the oldest technical committees at ASTM International is Committee C15 on Manufactured Units. Committee C15 was organized in 1937, and has published standards, guides, and research documents for architects, masons and testing labs to ensure the public that masonry is safe, resilient, and economical for over seven decades. At the Committee’s 75th anniversary dinner held in December 2012, James Thomas, ASTM International’s president, praised C15 members for the committee’s legacy of bringing important and useful standards to the construction industry.

For many masonry professionals, ASTM is viewed as a rule book, consulted only when a difficulty is discovered on a job site or in a job specification. From one perspective, this suggests that C15 documents are well respected, and provide a sense of fairness in the masonry construction process. On the other hand, many masonry professionals may not understand that ASTM committee involvement is more than the rules.

Recognizing the importance of educating professionals, government officials, and the public on the importance of its work, ASTM International has launched a new branding program. “Helping Our World Work Better” is now ASTM’s central theme. Kathie Morgan, ASTM’s Executive Director, addressed this new initiative at last month’s committee meetings. She stated that more than 12,000 ASTM standards are in use around the world, and that standards impact every aspect of our professional and personal lives. “ASTM standards enhance performance and help everyone have confidence in the things they buy and use,” said Morgan.

Morgan also announced to the breakfast crowd that ASTM will be unveiling a host of new membership initiatives. At the June meeting, ASTM provided a new mobile app. Attendees were able to create personalized schedules, locate meeting rooms, and download discount coupons for local restaurants. ASTM staffers plan to unveil a stronger search engine for standards and document research, and there are immediate plans to update committee pages to provide more information.

Morgan, who is in line to become ASTM’s next President in the next year, proposed a strong, vibrant, and customer focused plan. Morgan will need a strong support team to help ASTM grow. So it’s no surprise to the members of Committee C15 that the ASTM Nominating Committee has proposed James Tann to serve on the Executive Board.

Tann has been very active in not only Committee C15, but also Committee C12 on Mortars and Grouts for Masonry Units. In the last few years, both committees have been active launching revising several product standards that will help the masonry industry to return to its position as a sustainability building system. Tann’s presence on this key industry board is also beneficial for the image of the masonry industry.

Tann is excited about his nomination, and most importantly, Tann thanks Belden Brick for allowing him to take on this additional responsibility. Upon election, Tann will serve a three-year term.