RadonReporter-Autumn 2019

The radon reporter / Autumn 2019 3 Your Voice is Heard by Your Board! By Dallas Jones, Executive Director, AARST The efforts of your association have paid off over the last decade with continued industry growth in the face of competition by other industries that would like radon to just “go away,” and indifference by a federal agency that has, since 2011 tried each year to eliminate all EPA funding and programs for radon in the United States. Despite this opposition, AARST has each year saved the radon program and delivered $56 million in SIRG funding over the last seven years. In doing so, AARST has become the prominent voice of increasing awareness in Congress and at the state level of the need for stronger radon policies to protect consumers and increase radon risk reduction. AARST has also advanced radon professionalism and practices with 12 national standards. Better policies yield more business for radon professionals - and that’s a good thing for protecting Americans and saving lives from the horrors of radon-induced lung cancer. As we strive to raise results to the next level, it is essential to take a step back and look at key opportunities for improvements for AARST. Association policies are determined by volunteer board members who serve with loyalty to the membership and have a duty to protect your interests. I want to thank all the AARST members who have suggested recommendations and critiques for improving the association, and I note that the Board and staff are listening and taking appropriate action. New Chapter Formation: For the past couple of years, both the Board and the staff have been gathering information from our chapter leaders to determine how AARST national may be more supportive at the state level. During this time, we put a halt to establishing new chapters until a plan could be finalized that best addresses needs and objectives. After a lot of discussions and research, that plan is nearly complete and AARST hopes to establish three to five new chapters in the coming year and restructure a couple of struggling existing chapters. Hats-off to everyone who contributed to the endeavor! Elections Process: The annual board elections are unnecessarily long. This year the ballot opened on July 19th and closed on September 9th. Our Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for nominating and elections are outdated, written nearly twenty years ago. When it was written many years ago, we all voted by snail mail and at the time, that was perhaps justified. Now the ballot is electronic and takes all of five minutes. We will be reviewing and updating the SOP. Board Candidates: This year, four officer positions were filled by candidates who ran unopposed. Yes, we celebrate renewed commitment by volunteers – but competitive elections are healthy. Typically, officer candidates come from the pool of present or past Board Members. AARST needs to groom, recruit and nominate more candidates including the next generation of AARST leaders. We need doers, not placeholders. Start thinking: do you want to grow into a leadership role? The Nominating Committee, chaired by Chad Robinson, will start its work in early 2020. Ethics: While the NRPP has a robust ethics statement and complaint evaluation process, the AARST Ethics Statement is incomplete, in my opinion, and the evaluation process is pretty much undefined. Complaints about unethical oral or written messages by members or vendors, including untruthful, inflammatory or otherwise unprofessional statements directed toward or about an individual member, advertiser, the Board, or staff, will be addressed in updates to the policy. The AARST Board will be reviewing and likely revising our ethics statement and policy. All these efforts are meant to bring your association into the 21st Century. AARST Board members work hard on your behalf, and updating policies and procedures is a necessary and ongoing process. Board members are responsive to your needs. As your Executive Director, I am proud to say that your AARST Board does a great job, exercises duty and care on your behalf, always respects law and procedure, and is constantly looking to the future. Thanks to them and many other AARST volunteers, this is an excellent association with unlimited potential. Working Together, Saving Lives. AARST Board members work hard on your behalf, and updating policies and procedures is a necessary and ongoing process.