August, 2009
Inspection News and Views from the American Society of Home Inspectors

From the Speaker: If it Ain't Broke, Don't Fix it


This is a saying all of us have heard and used: “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Well, this may be true, but it’s not reality.

I’m the speaker for the Council of Representatives, which came about way back in 1994 when the ASHI Board of Directors numbered 50-plus and was
accomplishing little, if anything. Of course, in 1994 things weren’t as complex as they are today. Back then, we sent letters through the mail system. Yes, snail mail!

Today, we send and receive information almost instantaneously. We use cell phones, text messages, e-mails, Web sites, Webex® and more to communicate. ASHI uses blast e-mails, e-newsletters including “First Thing” and “The Inspector,” blogs, Zoomerang surveys and our own online Reporter and Web site. We are constantly in upgrade mode. We are fixing what isn’t broken. We stay on top or become dinosaurs. We must feed, retrieve and exchange vital information within our organization. It is not just a benefit; it’s a necessity.

Back in 1994, the council was created with several objectives. One was to play a role in the election of our Board members. In addition, the council was conceived as a working tool, as an entity to gather information from the Board to pass down to the various levels of our membership and, in turn, bring forth from the membership information for presentation to our Board.

The function of the council as an information-exchange body may have become somewhat moot given the present information highways we all travel. So, does this mean the council is obsolete? I say, no. The many council members work within the boundaries of their chapters. They are leaders who fulfill their chapters’ needs by gathering chapter-related information and
formally and informally present the chapter’s needs. They may use the ASHI discussion forums. They may present these needs through the group leaders and speaker to take to the ASHI Board and committees. The needs may not be earthshaking but, nevertheless, are important. 

Recently, the ASHI Board pursued a review of the governance principles as set forth in 1994. This was a prudent, responsible move. A governance task force was created, made up of Board members and council representatives. Their task was simply to review the set standards of 1994 to the current needs. The functions of council operation were viewed. The end results were to be a report of guidance.

The council welcomes and sincerely thanks the governance task force for the overwhelming task it undertook. The council understands the need to enact the principles of present-day for the simple reason: What’s best. We all must pursue our assigned responsibilities on behalf of the members. It is not a matter of being broken. It is a matter what is best.
To discuss this and other current issues, please join in on the ASHI discussion forum.

CoR Speaker and Group Leader Contact Info

Howard Pegelow, Speaker

Bob Walstead, Alt Speaker, Mountain – Group Leader

Lisa Alajajian-Giroux, New England/Canada Group Leader

Jerry Santangini, New York/New Jersey Group Leader

Mark Londner, Mid-Atlantic – Group Leader

Bob Peterson, Midwest – Group Leader

Keven Kossler, South Atlantic – Group Leader

Larry Cerro, Gulf – Group Leader

Randy Sipe, South Midwest – Group Leader

John Biegalski, North Central – Group Leader