SAMPE sees daylight on its fiscal, leadership and operational fronts.
``We are strong, and we are well-positioned for growth as we enter our 60th year,'' Thomas Haulik, international president, said in his state-of-the-society report May 12. The Society for the Advancement of Material and Process Engineering ``fills a need. Individuals in advanced materials and processes need to get together and share.''
SAMPE anticipates having an executive director on board in the October-December timeframe. ``We will be stepping up the search in the coming months'' and targeting candidates with strong association management backgrounds, Haulik said. The previous director, Daun White, left in October.
On the financial front, SAMPE secured a long-term lease for an additional tenant in its Covina, Calif., building. ``That will bring in additional income of $18,000 a year,'' Haulik said at the SAMPE symposium, held May 11-15 in Long Beach. ``Our building is fully occupied with no near-term physical plant concerns.''
SAMPE acquired the two-story, 14,000-square-foot building in 1993, and its international business office occupies more than one-half of the space.
Also, the 11 paid staff members ``have improved tools,'' Haulik said.
A SAMPE backer, Northern Fiber Glass Sales Inc. of Hampton, N.H., supplied the services of an information-technology engineer for a week and donated some equipment to improve and reconfigure the computer hardware and software. The e-mail system was upgraded, and multiple dedicated phone lines became unnecessary.
Haulik reactivated SAMPE's long-range planning committee, which will look at needs up to five years in advance.
Those needs could include analyzing approaches to composites trade shows in Europe and the United States.
The annual JEC show in Paris crosses all disciplines of polymer composites, while the U.S. market has been divided, with SAMPE handling high-cost solutions, and other groups using lower-cost approaches.
Haulik acknowledged that SAMPE officials have held preliminary discussions about collocating events, possibly beginning in 2006, with the Composites Fabricators Association, soon to be the American Composites Manufacturers Association. Collocation could involve the International BoatBuilders' Exhibition & Conference sponsored by Professional BoatBuilder magazine and the National Marine Manufacturers Association.
``We need to change with the times [and] leverage things we do well,'' Haulik said.
That change includes a new effort to post abstracts and sell technical papers via the Web. Without any marketing support, the new program sold 43 papers for $975 over nine months.
The education and scientific society has almost 4,000 members. Over two years, North American membership has decreased by about 10 percent, but significant membership gains have been logged in Europe and Japan. As a whole, membership is stable, Haulik said.
As part of the event, SAMPE's Los Angeles chapter published a 160-page book celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Wright Brothers' first flight.
George Epstein and M. William Heimerdinger co-edited the tribute book, which reviews the early years, coming of age and numerous material developments of aviation and aerospace.
The materials include adhesives, polymer composites, coatings, honeycombs, metals and sealants.