September 9, 2015 Chapter Meeting & Presentation

SAVE Cascadia Chapter 2015/2016 Board Year
Date: September 9, 2015
Location: Stanley & Seafort’s Restaurant, 115 E. 34th Street, Tacoma, WA 98404
Chapter Meeting Attendees: Blane Long (Board President) – HDR
Steven W. Thompson (Board V.P.) – The Boeing Company
Teresa Platin (Board Secretary) – HDR
Laurie Dennis – RHA
Thomasa W. Hume – WSDOT
Paul Fuchs* – The Boeing Company
Ken Smith – HDR
Brewce Larkin* – Parker Hannifin Corporation
Andrea Ball
Hank Ball
Bill Hickey – Jacobs
Marlo Stebner – Boeing
*First time Cascadia Chapter Dinner Meeting Participant

Chapter Meeting (7:00 – 7:30 pm)

See list of attendees above. Two first time participants in the Chapter dinner meetings were present.
Treasurer’s Report
Treasurer John Langer was unable to attend the Chapter Meeting, but provided a status on available funds. We currently have $6,199.99 in the bank.

First time participants in this chapter meeting and our speaker will have their meals paid for by the Chapter tonight.

Using our New Technology

Starting next month we will be broadcasting our general chapter meetings and monthly presentations live on the web. The September meeting was in intended to be a trial run (viewed by the President from with the meeting room); however, the laptop battery was dead, and the backup laptop did not have full functionality for the webcast. There will be another trial run performed by the Board prior to the October meeting.
Vice President Steven Thompson set-up a Meeting Burner account to accommodate 10 virtual participants at a time for free (with no expiration date). Adding live viewers will result in a service charge. Our upcoming meeting invitations should have instructions and a notice that this will also work for smart phones. Virtual viewers should be asked to RSVP for the dial-in by registering ahead of time, as well as responding to Secretary Teresa Platin’s invitation. Registration will allow remote participants to get one of the 10 spots (first come, first served).
Blane will not be able to attend the October Meeting, so Steven Thompson will run the meeting and Blane will call in.

Save Virtual Meeting

SAVE International would like us to host a virtual meeting in October (date TBD) at noon time (EST) for an hour or hour and half.
SAVE will coordinate with the technology. At this point, SAVE is looking for your commitment to host, meaning getting a good keynote speaker. SAVE will also market the Cascadia Chapter to everyone that we are the host for that month (stand-alone presentation).
The speaker will likely determine which day the meeting is held, as long as the time is noon (EST). Teresa will send out an opportunity notice to the Chapter membership to see if anyone has a topic (and date preference if they offer to speak). The e-mail will mention the fact that presenters gain “Share VE” points towards certification.
Upcoming Meeting Locations for the 2015/2016 Program Year
2015-2016 SAVE Cascadia Chapter Schedule (Locations may change if geographic interest is less than expected). Chapter Members are encouraged to provide venue suggestions. Dinner meeting locations that offer a private or semi-private space free of cost are preferred. In that case, members purchase dinner and drinks from the establishment. We are also considering workplace conference rooms and bringing food in.

  •  September 9 – Tacoma – meeting was held and well attended.
  •  October 14 – Seattle – Contact Paul Fuchs to see if interested; Steven offered to find a speaker if needed (but let him know soon).
  •  November 11 – Renton
  •  December 9 – Holiday party location TBD, date may vary
  •  January 13 – Olympia
  •  February 10 – Seattle
  •  March 9 – Everett (Steven mentioned that Matt O’Brien of Boeing can help us find a location)
  •  April 14 (Thurs) – Joint Meeting with AACE (Location TBD)
  •  May 11 – Vancouver, WA
  • June – during the June 5-7 Value Summit in Niagara Falls, ON, Canada

Last June’s SAVE Value Summit

Blane asked for opinions about the Value Summit from those present at the September Meeting.

  •  Laurie Dennis – overall positive, nice venue, good speakers.
  •  Steve Thompson – nice venue, nice resort, but would have preferred longer conference with more pre-screening of the conference sessions.
  •  Teresa Platin – overall positive, networking very good as a first time attendee, nice hotel/location/food. Particularly liked the Six-Sigma pre-workshop, but found the technical presentations (conference sessions) to be less robust than expected.
  •  Tomi Hume – would have preferred a more centrally located conference and more learning and networking opportunities.
  •  Paul Fuchs – particularly enjoyed the day-long FAST session. New to organization, so not ready to comment on other specific content, but was very impressed to see how much the field is valued and appreciated.
  •  Blane Long – fantastic venue. Really enjoyed San Diego. Found the communication to attendees to be poor. Our Chapter had 3 delegates (including Blane as President), and we were not told ahead of time where to go and when for the meeting. Consequently, our group missed an opportunity to represent our Chapter. Also recommends better vetting of the conference content. What was advertised in the program didn’t always match up with the actual content.

While some liked the opportunity to attend pre-conferences on Sunday, there was at least one opinion offered against Sunday training.
Laurie noted that SAVE did not sponsor the Mod II training this time. SVS organized and held the training on their own.

AACE Seattle Section Joint Meeting
Our April 14 Meeting will be a joint meeting hosted by AACE Seattle Section.

They would like to have a value engineering topic discussed or presented. AACE will also have a topic such as risk, earned value, 5th & Union development and sustainability, etc. They would like to know if we would be interested in any of these topics.

General Comments
The group discussed the fact that the VE community would be well served to broaden its perspective. VE originated in manufacturing, but has become very civil engineering focused. The opinion was shared that the more they know about Six-Sigma, the more valuable professionals are in the industry.

Presentation (7:30 – 8:30 pm)

Presentation Topic: Upcoming Changes from the SAVE Certification Board  

by Laurie Dennis, PE, CVS-Life, FSAVE, Executive Director of the SAVE Certification Board (and Past Cascadia Chapter Board Member)

The SAVE Certification Board is planning many changes in the coming year including some related to moving toward ANSI accreditation. The September Dinner Meeting topic was of great interest to anyone with an AVS or CVS certification, or anyone wanting to learn more about these certifications. Laurie’s presentation of the upcoming SAVE certification changes was informal, allowing for an excellent dialogue among meeting participants. While we don’t usually provide detailed presentation notes in the Chapter Meeting minutes, a few important points are noted below since there is not a formal presentation to post along with these notes.
• SAVE anticipated making changes sooner, but is now delaying until key decisions are made in April 2016.
• Drivers for changes in the certification rules:
­ Many agencies see AVS certification as indication of qualification to LEAD value studies, especially outside the United States.
­ SAVE has been getting complaints of and is concerned about poor Function Analysis quality. Laurie reminded the group that studies that are not lead or overseen by CVS’s do not qualify.
­ The Value Management Practitioner (VMP) certification category has been under-used. Currently there are 4, with one known to be working toward CVS. In the past, with no AVS category, more people went from VMP to CVS.
• As the Board has grappled with solutions, one was to eliminate the AVS title, but they have received a lot of push-back, particularly internationally. They are also considering a 2-step process of either AVS to CVS (with no VMP, and possibly changed AVS standards) or VMP to CVS. VMP currently is designed for qualified practitioners who are unable to conduct enough value studies to achieve or maintain a CVS certification, but are qualified to lead studies independently. The Board may look at keeping the AVS certification, but requiring more than Mod I training and passing the test to obtain it. Perhaps a certain number of studies will need to be conducted first.
• Comments and questions were posed by Chapter Members and discussed as a group or answered by Laurie. Out of practicality, the discussion is not provided here, but the questions and comments are.
­ AVS lead job qualifies if Fn Analysis performed and there is a Job Plan, AND the study is performed under the guidance of a CVS. SAVE Board is concerned about AVSs leading VE studies straight out of Mod I.
o WSDOT is on the “ground floor” promoting VE and leads 90% of their studies with AVSs. It is not their policy to hire CVSs for every study, so this will be a disincentive to conducting VE if the studies don’t “count”.
o Boeing performs their Lean+ studies internally with someone certified by Boeing. How will changes avoid starving the outside industry?
o How will this affect people who like being an AVS?
o How would changes address CVSs who aren’t doing everything THEY should be doing?
­ Are some of the agencies complaining about poor quality VE studies the same ones driving 1-day studies?
­ ANSI doesn’t allow for “Life” certifications – you must demonstrate that you are staying current in the practice. There might be a “CVS-Master” certification instead, which is different from CVS. It might involve more mentoring, but the idea would be to have a distinction from the criteria met by CVS.
­ Might the Board consider different options, like if an AVS waits more than 6 years to move on to CVS, they’d have to take the AVS part of the test again?
­ Could the Board institute a waiting period between testing for the AVS certification and actually receiving it? Require a certain amount of time to pass so it’s not so easy to become AVS?
­ Could the Board require that AVSs get annual memberships, but do not recertify?
­ What do 2009 or earlier AVS’s have to do to recertify? The guidelines are clear for 2010+, but 2009 just expires in 2017.
­ Will the Board be “grandfathering in” current AVSs and not adversely impacting them by new rules? That could be a more palatable way to make the changes for those who have put a lot of time and energy into their current credentials.
­ Boeing’s internal certification was difficult that it was a big deterrent to building the profession. When Steve revamped the program, he made it more attainable; however, he’s raised the “high end” of achieving “Fellow”.  This allows those interested in finding out more about the profession and opportunities to get engaged and be part of workshops, but if they find that it’s not for them, they haven’t invested to much time.
• If people are concerned about what they’re hearing about possible certification changes, they should contact Laurie Dennis, and she can pass the comments along to the Board. Decisions have not been made or finalized yet.


Meeting Minutes and Presentation April 8, 2015

SAVE Cascadia Chapter 2014/2015 Board Year: April 8, 2015
Board and Chapter Meeting

Date: April 8, 2015
Location: Vince’s Italian Restaurant and Pizzeria, Renton Washington
Board Meeting Attendees:
Blane Long (Board President) HDR
Steven W. Thompson (Board VP) The Boeing Company
John Langer, (Board Treasurer) John Langer Consulting
Teresa Platin (Board Secretary) HDR
Michael Schneider (Board Member) Commonwealth Development
Additional Attendees for Chapter Meeting:
Ann Jamison HNTB
Eric Trimble Value Management Strategies
Tomi Hume WSDOT

Board Meeting (5:10 – 6:00 pm)

See list of Board Meeting participants above.

New Technical Equipment

Following up on our conversation from previous months, John Langer, purchased audio/visual (AV) equipment for use during Board events. John noted that he has only a raincheck for the new projector (at a considerable savings) – the new projector still isn’t in. The Board thanked John for making the purchases for the Chapter.
It was agreed that the Secretary is the repository for all of the equipment (laptop computer, web cam, projector, and screen). Steven offered to help transport equipment if needed, and it was agreed that Board members can make arrangements to get the equipment from Teresa before a meeting if she is unable to attend, or there are other circumstances making this desirable.
Between the April Meeting and the first meeting of the new Board Year in September, the Board agreed to learn how to use the webcam and to be ready to beta-test it in September. The laptop has Windows 8.1 and the home/student version of Microsoft Office. That should be sufficient to run the webcam.
Steven agreed to draft a policy for the use of the equipment before the September Meeting. If Teresa has notes from previous discussion about the equipment policy, she will e-mail them to Steven. One of the equipment issues we discussed during this (April) Board Meeting related to the use of the equipment outside of Chapter meetings. AV Equipment is for SAVE and SAVE-type presentations. Members may use this equipment only to promote the profession, not for personal or business use. There should be a limit on how many days a member may “check-out” the equipment.

Treasurer’s Report

Treasurer John Langer reported that after the equipment purchases, the Cascadia Chapter treasury is $6,375. The $600 reimbursement for local members arrived from National.

The new method of making purchases and asking National for reimbursement appears to be working; however, National reimburses our state chapter quarterly, but our webmaster (Two Rebels) has been sending monthly invoices.

Web Site

We are pleased with the work Two Rebels is doing for us with the website. Network Solutions is the name of the site provider we used in the past. If we wish to continue having Network Solutions host the site, we will need to pay the $499 invoice (for 5 more years) in mid-May. The Board discussed having Two Rebels host, and decided we should ask them for a proposal to host our website. John made a motion to request a website hosting proposal from Two Rebels, and Teresa seconded it.

SAVE Summit

Several Cascadia Chapter members and at least 3 of the Board Members are planning to attend the SAVE Value Summit in San Diego (June 7th – 9th). Blane, Teresa, and Steven agreed to serve as delegates if there is a vote at the National meeting. Teresa will send out a query to the Chapter membership to see how many plan to go to the Summit. If possible, we will convene the June Chapter Meeting on the grounds of the Summit. A 1-hour meeting (pre-breakfast or post-day of presentations) will be planned.

There were no essay submittals for the Cascadia Chapter’s offer to pay dues to attend the conference. This contest was open to engineering students and Chapter members with an AVS certification. With no applicants, the money was not awarded and remains in the treasury for other uses.

The group discussed whether we want to sponsor anything at the Value Summit. We did this when the annual meeting was held in Portland (within our Chapter Boundaries); however, the group did not make a motion to sponsor anything at the San Diego Summit. There was some interest in sponsoring something more local, such as the following ideas:
• WSDOT recently received a grant to teach a Mod II class. Perhaps we could identify a Mod II class in Portland or elsewhere and pay for some of    the attendance cost. 3 days of training = 24 hours (could be approximately $5k in regular labor hours for attendee).
• Mod I (5 days) and Mod II (3 days) are hard to get started because it is such a large time commitment, but if we were to provide a discount or offset some costs, that might be an incentive.
• Defray some of the Membership cost to be part of SAVE, Int. Not sure how that would work, because we get a credit back from SAVE for each member.
• A 1-day training topic: VE; Lean; Cost-Risk Assessment. Can sometimes be hard to do the advertising and get people to show up.
• Team with other groups to sponsor something of interest.

The Board will discuss this again at future meetings, and it was suggested that we review Steven’s bulleted list of potential Chapter improvements.

Nominations for Board Positions

Both Don Owings and Mark Gabel were elected last fall to complete the terms of Board members who departed before their terms concluded this spring. Teresa sent out a call for nominations and reported that she had received 4 or 5 nominations for the 2 positions. She will confirm the nominee’s interest and requests short biographies from them, and then she will create a new Survey Monkey for the election. The survey will be launched shortly, with the voting closing on the Friday before our May meeting. After the election results are determined and shared with the Board, the Board will assign the officer positions, with the following in mind:
• Board Terms are for 3 years.
• Board Positions are for 1 year.
• There is no term limit. (Steven will verify this last statement and see if after 2 consecutive terms an officer must take a term off. If so, we will discuss the implications of this rule).
• The Member-at-Large position is for someone outside of the Puget Sound/Everett to Olympia corridor.

Preparation for Next Board Year

A week or two before the September 9, 2015 Chapter Meeting, the Board agreed to get together one evening or on a Saturday afternoon to prepare for the new Board Year. Among others, topics may include the following:
• What benefit does being a member of SAVE bring (points for certification, knowledge sharing, networking, etc.)?
• What symposiums and other professional societies should we as a Chapter and as individual members get involved in? Submit presentations? (CRAB annual conference, APWA conference, TIB, manufacturing [Steve to look into options])
• Are there any conferences in our region that would be good opportunities for sponsorship, presenters, booths?
• What other locations in the Cascadia Chapter boundaries might we hold dinner meetings? Dan Owings, Ashley Carson (VMS), Rob Stewart (VMS), and Samih Shilbayeh WSDOT might have ideas about Vancouver, WA/Portland area. Tomi Hume and Blane Long might have Olympia suggestions.
• How do we encourage more attendance at the Holiday event? Clients, etc.?

Chapter Meeting (6:20 – 6:45 pm)


See list of participants, in addition to the Board Meeting participants, above.

Treasurer’s Report

Treasurer John Langer reported that the Cascadia Chapter account balance was $6,375. We discussed the following ideas to promote VE related activities locally using some of this money.
• Mod I, II, deferred cost
• Help offset some of the costs for SAVE Value Summit
• Pay to present at other societies/conferences

No decisions were reached. The Board was in favor of discussing Chapter-funded ways to promote VE again at future meetings.

Upcoming SAVE Value Summit, Other Meetings/Presentations, and Awards

Teresa, Steve, Blane (and possibly other Board Members) will be attending the Value Summit in June, and will represent the Chapter as delegates. Ann Jamison, Rahul Nagalkar, and Rob Stewart will be attending. Each will be a presenter. Other Chapter Members are also likely to attend.

Who will be submitting a paper and/or presenting at the AASHTO Conference in Washington D.C. this fall? Tomi is submitting a paper, and Ken Smith is co-authoring a paper with WSDOT. It would be good to post a note about this on the Chapter website. Teresa to contact Blane or Tomi to get information.

We may want to have the SAVE Summit presenters share what they are planning to talk about at our May Vancouver meeting as practice. Eric Trimble offered to see if VMS presenter(s) would like to do this.

There will be a SAVE Canada Meeting in November or December. The group wasn’t sure where it would be held, but at least one person offered the opinion that it would be good to attend if relatively close.

Ann Jamison shared the fact that HNTB submitted two award nominations to AASHTO: Sound Transit, Lynnwood Link Concept Design VE; Sound Transit VE Program. HNTB also submitted a SAVE award nomination for the latter.


Teresa noted that the Cascadia Chapter would be holding a brief Chapter Meeting at the Value Summit in San Diego (details to follow).

The group was asked if we should continue the Holiday Party tradition in December/January. Those at the meeting who had attended the January 2015 event agreed that it was a good get together that should be continued. We’d like to see more people attend, though. People should be encouraged to bring clients. The Board agreed to discuss this again when we get together as a Board in August.

Future meeting sites for the 2015/2016 Board Year might include the following: Vince’s (this April Meeting location), something by the airport, Tacoma, Renton/Southcenter, South Sound (Lacey), Portland/Vancouver again in the spring.

Presentation (6:45 – approximately 8:00 pm)

HDR CRA Presentation

Cost Risk Assessment – Building Success and Avoiding Surprises, by Blane Long, CVS®, CCT of HDR in Olympia

Blane’s presentation began with the observation that Cost Risk Assessments are vital risk management. All projects should have them. Base cost review is one of the most important tasks, but schedule review may be even more important, as delay can be the biggest cost to a project. Blane continued to talk about the important decision support of Cost Risk Assessment, allowing clients to make good, informed decisions. He reviewed specific tools and techniques.


Board Minutes and Chapter Meeting Minutes from May 2014

Attendees of 5/14/14 Meeting:
Michael Schneider
John Langer
Steven Thompson
Anna Bremmer
Teresa Platin
Steven Paget (Board Meeting only)

Michael called the meeting to order.

Board discussion included the status of nominations for new officers and board members. Anna will work with Rahul and Teresa. We are late but our goal will be to complete the process by September. An email will be prepared by Anna soliciting members interested in serving. This will be followed by balloting and election using Survey Monkey or equivalent.

John reported that he and Michael are signatories on our US Bank account for Chapter finances.

John reported our bank balance at $7,910.03.

At the Chapter meeting, nominating and Officer/Board positions were further discussed.

The next meeting will be at the SAVE Conference. Anna is coordinating the meeting.


A Value Proposition – Accessibility is Sustainable

Let’s face it. The bottom line is that at best we are all only temporarily able-bodied. Injury, age, and other conditions render us disabled for at least some time in our lives. Designing for accessibility equips us to be able to function at all times and creates the opportunity to live in the same place for most of our lives – one measure of sustainability.

The presentation focused on accessibility issues in the built environment and how national and local regulations are designed to ensure access for all without discrimination due to disability. Discussion included the concept of “Universal Design” which refers to broad-spectrum ideas meant to produce buildings, products and environments that are inherently accessible to older people, people without disabilities, and people with disabilities.

The presenter was Michael B. Schneider, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP who is a Senior Consultant with Endelman & Associates, PLLC, an ADA and FHA Compliance consulting enterprise serving clients on projects throughout the country with design phase evaluations and construction phase surveys for compliance with accessibility regulations. Clients for whom he has provided consulting services include AvalonBay, Equity Residential, Holland Partners, Inland Construction, Wood Partners, Mill Creek Residential Trust, CE John, Fore Property, GGLO, Hewitt, KGA Architects, GBD Architects, REI, Marriott, Sheraton, and BlackRock. He is also the founding Principal of Commonwealth Development, a design, construction, and real estate development advisory providing consulting services including value engineering, constructibility reviews, property condition assessments, and sustainability consulting.

TheValueProposition-PracticalFHA-ADA-CodeAccessibility-Pt1Presentation PDFs are attached.

Board Minutes and Chapter Meeting Minutes from February 2014

Board Meeting
February 12, 2014
Blane Long, Vice President
John Langer, Treasurer
Michael Schneider, Secretary
Anna Bremmer
Steven Paget


Board elections are required. The President must appoint a nominating committee. The committee can be board or non-board members. Nominations for officers and board members are in March, elections are in April, and installations are in June. Anna Bremmer and Teresa Platin have expressed willingness to serve on the nominating committee. Michael Schneider will notify Rahul Nagalkars, President.

Concerning chapter nominations for SAVE awards such as Rising Star, individual members should feel free to nominate members of their choosing based on criteria and details posted on SAVE International’s Website.

Future meetings with other professional societies were recommended. John Langer will follow up with PMI and Teresa Platin will follow up with AWRA.

Chapter meeting presentations coming up will be organized by John Langer on March 12 and Blane Long on April 9.

Concerning meeting venues, the chapter will pay any additional costs for minimums, room charges, and equipment charges.

Current value of our checking account is $ 7,610.52.

The board meeting adjourned for the general meeting.

Chapter Meeting Minutes
February 12, 2014
Blane Long
John Langer
Michael Schneider
Anna Bremmer
Steven Paget
Teresa Platin
Jeff McAuliffe (Speaker)

Following dinner, Jeff McAuliffe provided a presentation and led discussions with Steven Paget on LEAN and Value Analysis. PDFs of the PPT Presentation is posted here.Lean & VA Presentation 2.12.14