Congress designed for you

Martin J. Manning, P.E.
APWA President

It is increasingly difficult to survive in the challenging field of public works with outmoded skills or with new but untested knowledge. However, there is a viable answer.

Whether you're just beginning your public works career, nearing the end of it, or are somewhere in the middle, the 2003 APWA International Public Works Congress and Exposition in San Diego, August 24-27, is designed for you. It's geared to enhance your professional development—and that's the key to a successful career.

You can get all the breaks by being in the right place at the right time, but you won't be ready to perform satisfactorily if you haven't done your homework. Look ahead and prepare for your next promotion or position while you are performing in your present one. You owe it to yourself and you'll be more valuable to your employer as well.

The ideas you take home and implement from just one visit could and should pay your Congress cost many times over. Even informal conversations with your peers can generate solutions to your troublesome problems. There's no need to reinvent the wheel when you can meet the inventor at Congress.

Given its location near several major population centers on the west coast, Congress in San Diego is also a terrific opportunity for supervisors to let staff from their agencies do a one-day trip. Congress is great for those of us who are able to go for four days, but it is also a wonderful experience for non-supervisors who can walk the exhibit floor for only $30 per day. What an incredible way to reward your employees by allowing them to be a part of the Best Show in Public Works.

The leaders of the public works field will be in San Diego, August 24-27. Come join them and enhance your professional development.

A year to remember
It has been a glorious opportunity of mine this past year to have met and to have visited with public works people all over this continent. I am convinced that the people in public works are the greatest folks on earth.

A tremendous thank-you goes to all of those chapters and members who allowed me to visit. I had a terrific year meeting members all across the United States and Canada, and only regret that I couldn't personally visit all 67 chapters.

Among the many highlights of this past year as your president has been to see the membership pass the 27,000 mark for the first time in the history of the association. Of course, we need to continue the work on growing our membership. It is only through your efforts and leadership that we as a public works community will continue to grow and thrive as we face the challenges of the next year. Be sure to ask your colleagues if they are members of APWA. If they aren't, tell them about all of the benefits of membership and encourage them to join us as we work in the public interest.

Having a full-time job as a Public Works Director and being APWA President was only possible because of help from a lot of people. I'd like to thank my superb staff in Clark County, who stepped up and did the extra work necessary to allow me to be away.

I also want to thank the APWA staff for a job well done. These very talented, dedicated individuals work very hard to serve our members, and they have been a tremendous resource to me in fulfilling my duties as your president.

Finally, I would like to thank the many volunteers of APWA, the unpaid heroes who give of their time to the benefit of all in the field of public works.

Thanks to all who have helped make this a wonderful year that I will never forget.