ISA Interchange

Welcome to the official blog of the International Society of Automation (ISA).

This blog covers numerous topics on industrial automation such as operations & management, continuous & batch processing, connectivity, manufacturing & machine control, and Industry 4.0.

The material and information contained on this website is for general information purposes only. ISA blog posts may be authored by ISA staff and guest authors from the automation community. Views and opinions expressed by a guest author are solely their own, and do not necessarily represent those of ISA. Posts made by guest authors have been subject to peer review.

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Patience for Success

“Success is simple. Do what's right, the right way, at the right time.” – Arnold H. Glasow

Arnold H. Glasow was a famous businessman from the US, who lived between 1905 and 1998. He ran his business for over 60 years and published his first book, Glasow’s Gloombusters, at age 92. Talk about patience!

As we come to the end of another year, we begin our plans for the next. The 2022 Executive Board, led by President Carlos Mandolesi, has been meeting in a series of virtual executive summits. In these summits, the board has been reviewing what has been achieved, and discusses what the Society should focus on next. Our strategic objectives continue to be focused on industry reach and awareness, membership programs, technical education and certification, and leadership and business skills development.

The Society recently sold its headquarters at TW Alexander Drive, where it has been based since 1980. The new headquarters is nearby; a modern facility sized to current needs. The relocation will be completed soon and is expected to be operational in early 2022.

ISA HQMary Ramsey, our Executive Director for the past three years, is retiring at the end of this year. Mary successfully navigated through many challenges over her tenure, including adjusting to a global pandemic, and has set the Society on a positive course. The Executive Board tasked a diverse group of eight members who collectively spent 200 hours over the course of four months searching and recommending a new Executive Director.

We welcomed Claire Ramspeck as our new Executive Director on 1 November. Claire has over 25 years of experience in associations such as the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). I believe her background in standards will help take the Society to new heights.

I know from talking to members that many want to see ISA do more and do it with more haste. This is understandable. I want you all to know that the Executive Board is listening and is working diligently to achieve all our collective aims. Let me highlight a couple of what I believe are major accomplishments over this last year.

Amidst all this change at ISA, I have been closing out my year as President by attending many virtual District meetings. I have talked about our strategy and what we have been able to achieve together, such as:

  • Successful virtual events with increased participation from outside North America. Our most recent virtual event, which took place in the Malaysia time zone, had over 700 registrants.
  • Increased demand for online learning. Making material available online and in modules allows people to consume the content at their own pace, wherever they are. Online exams allow people to complete the certification process in their home or at work. I believe this will increase the reach of our training and certification programs.
  • New training programs and certificates launched, with more coming soon. The Automation Project Management Specialist Certificate was launched recently. The first module in the program is available free to all members. I completed the course myself and passed the exam. Even if you are not managing automation projects, I believe the knowledge will be valuable to you.
  • Connect Live sessions with Society Officers, Young Professionals, and Divisions. In this virtual world, we have been able to continue networking with Connect Live. The Society Officers host sessions every two months where members can discuss any topic on their minds. The Young Professionals host discussions on human skills and have produced a fantastic series of fireside chats with former presidents. Divisions also use Connect Live to host real-time technical discussions.

All that said, the Board is committed to moving the Society forward. We consider Arnold Glasow’s guidance: Success is simple. Do what's right, the right way, at the right time. As we reach the end of 2021, please bear with us as we transition to the Society’s new headquarters with our new Executive Director and Executive Board.

As always, feel free to contact me if you have any thoughts or comments. What new opportunities do you see for ISA?

Let us all be patient as we continue to build a better world through automation.

Steve Mustard
Steve Mustard
Steve Mustard is an independent automation consultant and a subject matter expert of the International Society of Automation (ISA). Backed by more than 30 years of engineering experience, Mustard specializes in the development and management of real-time embedded equipment and automation systems. He serves as president of National Automation, Inc., and served as the 2021 president of ISA. Mustard is a licensed Professional Engineer in Texas and Kansas, a UK registered Chartered Engineer, a European registered Eur Ing, an ISA Certified Automation Professional (CAP), a certified Global Industrial Cybersecurity Professional (GICSP), and a Certified Mission Critical Professional. He also is a Fellow in the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), a Senior Member of ISA, a member of the Safety and Security Committee of the Water Environment Federation (WEF), and a member of the American Water Works Association (AWWA).

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