The President’s Corner
June, 2017

Howdy and Greetings from Italy! As I sit down to draft this message, I’m in Lerici, Italy on the Italian Rivera, and the former home to poets Shelley and Byron, I’m waiting on inspiration from these two… After all, Shelley was a boatman, at least on his last day when he fell, or was pushed, from a boat and drowned. I’m headed home tomorrow after 2 weeks here. I’ve seen all types of vessels pass through the busy harbor at La Spezia; a dingy regatta for children, a 5-masted sailing ship, the 77-meter luxury charter yacht SAMAR (complete with helicopter), not to mention the largest container and cruise ships in the world. This variety of craft reminds me of the amazing diversity of vessels that NAMSGlobal surveyors deal with every day and the knowledge and skill our members posses to do so. Each of these vessel types have their own construction methods and standards to which they were built and must be maintained. In some cases, the vessels must remain up to date with the latest technology; while some only have to be maintained to the standards in force on the date they were built. We, as surveyors, must maintain our understanding of the rules and standards (continuing education and recertification) and know when to apply the appropriate standard in our survey and reporting process.
Planning for the 2018 NAMS National Conference is well underway. During the 2017 Conference members expressed a desire for the 2018 conference to be held on the Gulf Coast. Houston, New Orleans, and Tampa were mentioned. As of this writing, we are focusing on Mobile, a venue easily accessible to a large number of our members and other surveyors from the East Gulf and South Atlantic regions while also being accessible by air from major air gateways. One of the topics to be addressed during the conference will be “How to accurately apply CFR and ABYC Compliance Guidelines and making it crystal clear in your report, which standards apply WHEN!” This topic is current and relevant to our yacht and small craft members. Of course, we will also have presentations for the hull and machinery and cargo surveyor disciplines as well as a unique opportunity to network with fellow surveyors.
The NAMSGlobal 2017 Membership Book will be available shortly. You will receive a separate email announcement with instructions to be able to download a copy direct to your computer or order a traditional paper copy.

Remember, each time you sign a letter, report, or email and include the “NAMS-CMS” moniker, you are representing the professionalism that is NAMSGlobal.
Learn Something and Share Your Knowledge Everyday!


Applicant List

Applicant Applying for Region Sponsored by
Kamal Kamarudin CMS International Steve Weiss
Richard Falcinelli CMS New York Steve Weiss
Joseph Grenier Associate New England Jonathan Klopmann
Byron Polly Associate Western Canada Dick Frenzel
Sarah White CMS Western Canada Dick Frenzel
David Comeaux Associate East Gulf James Stansbury III
Mitchel Jones Associate – upgrade East Gulf James Stansbury III
Daniel Cole Associate – upgrade South Atlantic Dick Frenzel
James Maupin Associate North Pacific Richard Blomquist
Kuhrt Wieneke CMS North Pacific Richard Blomquist
Christopher LaBure CMS – upgrade East Gulf Chris LaBure
Scott Bourgeois CMS East Gulf Gary Rankin
Jeremy Carson CMS East Gulf Norman Dufour

Upcoming Educational Opportunities

Lloyd’s Maritime Academy provides world leading academic and professional development courses that will give you the skills, knowledge and tools you need to assist your career progression and put you ahead of the competition.  Cost-effective, efficient and flexible distance learning delivery means you can fit your studies around your work and home commitments.

Certificate in Marine Consultancy
Eight module distance learning course offered by Lloyds Maritime Academy.
Go to:

Certificate in Marine Warranty Surveying
Six module distance learning course offered by Lloyds Maritime Academy.
Go to:
To browse the entire portfolio – including technical, legal, management, finance and logistics programmes – visit the website or download our prospectus. Contact Katrina Bowns, Education Consultant, Lloyd’s Maritime Academy


Students have two options: attend the classroom in person or remotely. You can attend from anywhere in the U.S. We provide you with a link to videoconference into the classroom. Turn on your computer, dial your phone (or turn on your computer speakers) and attend. This includes video and audio capability using Microsoft Live Meeting! You can see, hear, and ask questions of the instructor either via the phone or by text. Education credits are available for in-class attendees (brokers and agents only). Registration is at  Courtesy AIMU Weekly Bulletin.


Heavy units such as steel coils or granite blocks require extra care when being loaded in containers. Detailed calculations of transport strains and effects on the container are necessary to ensure the safe transportation of heavy cargo.
In this webinar Christian Bohlken, Master Mariner and Marine Surveyor at Battermann & Tillery will discuss preparatory measures and procedures to allow for the secure stowage and transport of single heavy units. Parameters for the load distribution, setting up of appropriate layers of bedding, and the provision of suitable skids are suitable methods to prevent damage to the cargo throughout the journey. These and many other recommendations will be discussed in this one-hour session, which will be followed by a Q&A with the presenter. This webinar is free of charge.
Speaker: Christian Bohlken, Master Mariner and Marine Surveyor at Battermann & Tillery
Date: 20. June 2017
First timeslot: 9:00 – 10:00 CEST – Click HERE to register
Second timeslot: 16:00-17:00 CEST – Click HERE to register

NAMSWorthy Articles Of Interest

The Waterways Journal Inland Marine Expo (IMX) award was given in recognition of individuals who spent their career making significant contributions to the industry by helping to make it the most cost-efficient, safe and environmentally friendly mode of transportation for many cargoes.  One of our own, Ed Shearer, was the recipient this year. Link:  Courtesy The Waterways Journal and Inland Marine Expo.

The article can also be found in the WorkBoat archives, march 20167, Pages 36-37.
Courtesy David Krapf
Editor in Chief
[email protected]

Authorities are planning to investigate the cause of a fire that broke out in the bow of a 13,800 twenty-foot equivalent unit (TEU) ship operated by Mediterranean Shipping Co. Tuesday, underlining the safety hazards of mega-ships. The MSC Daniela was heading from Singapore to Port Said, at the northern end of the Suez Canal, when the fire broke out at about 1030 h local time on Tuesday, MSC said in a statement. It occurred off the coast of Sri Lanka, about five days out of Port Said, according to AIS Live, a sister division of within IHS Markit. The fire was extinguished at 0630 h local time on Wednesday, the carrier said. “Once the ship is considered safe, an investigation into the cause of the fire will be formally initiated,” the carrier said. The incident highlights the inherent dangers of larger ships, and the potential for accidents. Analysts say that bigger ships mean larger safety risks in part because large volume of cargo on board puts added stress on the ships. In addition, the potential loss of cargo when accidents hit such large ships magnifies the losses, analysts say. The potential cost of a 19,000-TEU ship that is lost could top $1 billion compared with the $300 million to $400 million in claims that followed the sinking of the 8,000-TEU container ship MOL Comfort in 2013, Captain Andrew Kinsey, senior marine risk consultant at Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty, said last year. The MOL Comfort broke up on June 17, 2013 en route from Singapore to Jeddah, an accident that a Japanese government probe concluded was due to sea loads exceeding the ultimate strength of the ship’s hull girders. In July the International Maritime Organization’s Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) amendment took effect, requiring that the weight of all containers be reported to the carrier in order to prevent accidents at sea and in port caused by overloaded containers. MSC said the “extent of the damage and cargo losses” from the fire on the MSC Daniela will not be known “until the vessel has safely berthed and has undergone a thorough inspection.” After the fire broke out, MSC representatives in coordination with local and national authorities “undertook a concerted effort to extinguish the fire,” with tugboats, a specialized fire-fighting vessel, and a helicopter all helping out. Published reports said the ships were attended by the Sri Lankan and Indian navies. (Journal of Commerce, 4/5/2017) Courtesy AIMU Weekly Bulletin.

USCG – The Coast Guard has issued Marine Safety Alert 06-17 that addresses fuel spray fire prevention, risks and consequences onboard commercial vessels.

April 25, 2017 Written by Tava Foret, TVIB

On 02/24/2017 the U. S. Coast Guard issued guidance for credentialing officers of towing vessels. They are pointing mariners back to Navigation and Vessel Inspection Circular (NVIC) 03-16 which provides the guidelines. The NVIC contains FAQs and information related to the transition of the Towing Officer Assessment Record (TOAR) from NVIC 04-10 to the information in NVIC 03-16.

Click here to review the USCG guidance published on 02/24/2017.

Click here to download NVIC 03-16 Guidelines for Credentialing Officers of Towing Vessels.
Courtesy TVIB (Towing Vessels Inspection Bureau)  (


The following is the text of a news release from the U.S. Coast Guard:
(WASHINGTON) — The U.S. Coast Guard Navigation Center on Tuesday announced a voluntary online service that enables mariners to verify compliance with automatic identification system (AIS) carriage requirements.
The Vessel Identification Verification Service (VIVS) is a new Web-based, self-help service that allows ship agents, owners and operators to search their respective vessel or fleets to determine if they are in compliance with static automatic identification system data mandates.
Through VIVS, users can search by vessel name and call sign, vessel type, a maritime mobile service identity number, and vessel length and beam.  VIVS is accessed at the following link:  Quick link:   Vessel Identification Verification Service
“This effort has the potential to significantly increase safety levels on U.S. navigable waterways with only a modest investment necessary to coordinate the wealth of information that is available,” said Lt. Cmdr. Marlon L. Heron from the Navigation Center’s E-Tracking Branch.
Automatic identification systems are required on most commercial vessels traveling through U.S. navigable waterways. AIS is a navigation safety communications system that reduces the risk of collisions while enhancing mariner situational awareness.
The Coast Guard encourages all mariners to use AIS to gain access to the ever-increasing amount of marine safety information available through AIS transmissions.  Courtesy Professional Mariner Magazine.

While huge strides continue to be made in improving marine safety, human error remains, by far, the most important factor in marine liability claims and losses, according to Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty (AGCS) in its Global Claims Review: Liability in Focus.
Human error has long been regarded as a major cause of incidents in the shipping sector. It is estimated that between 75% to 96% of marine accidents can be attributed to human error. Such incidents also rank as the top cause of liability loss, driven by the high costs that can be associated with the impact of a major event, such as: Wreck removal (which is becoming more complex and expensive, primarily due to larger ships and environmental concerns), passenger and crew liabilities and pollution and litigation costs. The Costa Concordia and MV Rena groundings are two well documented incidents caused by human error which have resulted in significant liability losses over the past five years.
Other major causes of liability loss identified in the report include: crew injuries, subsequent loss of income and expenses such as medical costs; damages to cargo while engaged in handling activities; leaks at port terminals resulting in environmental damages; vessel collisions leading to pollution spills; and accidental damage to key infrastructure, such as natural gas pipes, for example.  The AGCS Global Claims Review analyses over 100,000 corporate liability insurance claims (including 14,828 claims from the marine sector) from more than 100 countries, with a total value of €8.85bn (US$9.3bn), paid by AGCS, and other insurers, between 2011 and 2016. Over 80% of losses arise from ten causes. (Maritime Journal, 4/10/2017) Courtesy AIMU Weekly Bulletin.

At the recent AIMU Marine Insurance Issues Seminar, NTSB Board Member Dr. Bella Dinh-Zarr reminded attendees of resources and information available on the NTSB website.  Of special interest are the marine accident investigation reports.

Also of interest is the NTSB’s “Most Wanted List” of advocacy priorities to reduce transportation accidents.  5 of the 10 priorities apply to Marine:

1.    Reduce Fatigue-Related Accidents
2.    Expand Recorder Use to Enhance Safety
3.    Require Medical Fitness
4.    Eliminate Distractions
5.    End Alcohol and Other Drug Impairment in Transportation  Courtesy AIMU Weekly bulletin

INCOTERMS were first published by the International Chamber of Commerce in 1933 and serve as the common language delineating roles and responsibilities of parties (seller and buyer) involved in international trade. From an insurance standpoint, the key elements of the terms of sale are: when does risk transfer form seller to buyer and which party is responsible for paying freight costs and providing insurance.

There are 11 terms divided into 2 major categories- those that can be used for any mode of transport and the other that are only to be employed when shipping by ocean or inland waterway.  A further distillation vis-à-vis commonality can be made by their first letter:

“C” terms require seller to pay for the shipping
“D” terms limit seller’s responsibility to a specific point
“E” terms state that the seller’s responsibility ceases once the goods leave their premises
“F” terms place the cost of shipping to the buyer

The ICC is looking to update these global standards with the review process just underway. IUMI (International Union of Marine Insurers), among others, has been asked to review and comment on the existing rules. The current, 2010 edition of the rules is available from the ICC Business Bookstore.   Courtesy Chubb Marine Underwriters’ Loss Control NewsBlog

CargoNet recorded 358 supply chain risk incidents across the United States and Canada during the first quarter of 2017. Of those incidents, 58 percent involved theft of a trucking vehicle, while 54 percent involved theft of cargo and 7 percent were classified as fraud, CargoNet said. A total of 192 cargo theft incidents were recorded, with an average loss value of approximately $149,522. California had the most cargo thefts during the quarter with 51 reported theft incidents. Although Texas usually comes in second, Ontario took the spot, which saw a 262 percent year-over-year increase in reported cargo thefts. Reported crime in the province exploded in the fourth quarter of 2016 and seems to have continued into the first quarter of 2017, CargoNet explained. Most theft reports in the province came from the Greater Toronto area. Overall, reported cargo thefts across the U.S. and Canada during the quarter typically occurred in secured yards, followed by warehouse locations and parking lots. In terms of product type, food and beverages were the most commonly stolen items during the quarter, accounting for 31 percent of all reported cargo thefts, followed by household items at 15 percent. (American Shipper, 4/19/2017) AIMU Weekly Bulletin.

The UK P & I Club, working in conjunction with TMC Marine and Jensen Associates, marine consultancy and survey companies, has published a booklet entitled: “The Top 25 Causes of Container Claims, A loss prevention checklist for container operators.”

It lists 4 separate categories of incidents that occur to containerized cargo:
–    Damage to containers and potentially the cargo within the units
–    Damage to cargo only
–    Water damage
–    Temperature damage

Additionally, each of the four is accompanied by discussion on the specific damage experienced, the causes of the damage; documents required to determine the cause as well investigate/prove the loss and, we believe most importantly, loss prevention advice.

This useful 23-page reference document can be downloaded at:

Courtesy Chubb Marine Underwriters’ Loss Control NewsBlog

The parents of 15-year-old Carmen Johnson, who tragically died from electric shock drowning (ESD) while swimming near her family’s Alabama lake house last April, are speaking out about the rarely reported phenomenon after it took the lives of two more local women this past weekend. The two women, 34-year-old Shelly Darling and 41-year-old Elizabeth Whipple, went missing after sunbathing on Lake Tuscaloosa. Their bodies were retrieved from the lake early Saturday morning. Preliminary autopsies for the two victims show the cause of death as electrocution, the Tuscaloosa County Homicide Unit told CBS affiliate WIAT on Wednesday. “I’ve been around water all my life and I never thought that electricity in a huge body of water like that could do what it did,” Carmen’s father, Jimmy Johnson, 49, told CBS News. “It is something that even people like me now after all these years never had any idea that this even happened.”

Every day, about 10 people in the U.S. die from accidental drowning, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But electric shock drownings are difficult to track. It’s known as a “silent killer.” Even a low level of electric current in the water can be extremely hazardous or fatal to a swimmer – especially in freshwater, where experts say the voltage will “take a shortcut” through the human body. “There is no visible warning or way to tell if water surrounding a boat, marina or dock is energized or within seconds will become energized with fatal levels of electricity,” the non-profit Electric Shock Drowning Prevention Association reports. Johnson believes that if his family had been educated about electric shock drownings this might never have happened.

Now he’s sharing Carmen’s story as a warning to others, along with tips to help prevent similar tragedies from occurring. His safety tips include: Use a plastic ladder, rather than a metal one, so it won’t help transfer electricity into the water. If you start to feel a tingle in the water, swim away from the dock, which is where most electrical issues occur. Check all of the wiring around your dock, including your ground fault circuit breaker. Purchase a Dock Lifeguard, a device that detects electricity on your dock and in the water around your dock. “It’s every homeowner’s responsibility to make sure water is safe around their dock before they start swimming,” Johnson said. “People think ‘Oh, this is a freak accident. It’s not going to happen to me.’ And here we are now – 3 dead in a year.” (CBS News, 4/19/2017) AIMU Weekly Bulletin.

Lloyd’s of London underwriters are not obligated to indemnify a marina operator, five of whose docks were damaged in a storm, because of a flood exclusion in its policy, says a federal appeals court, in affirming a lower court ruling. On the night April 30, 2011, a storm generated strong winds and left 7 inches of rain in the Little Maumelle River basin, according to Friday’s ruling by the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans in Hudson Enterprises Inc., doing business as River Valley Marina v. Certain Underwriters at Lloyd’s London Insurance Cos. et al. The River Valley Marina, owned by Little Rock, Arkansas-based Hudson Enterprises, which was on the river’s north bank, lost five of its eight docks to the storm, with the surviving three docks located upstream from those that were swept away, according to the ruling. The marina’s insurance policy covered “direct physical loss or damage to” its docks. It included an exclusion, however, for losses arising from “flood, surface water, waves, tides, tidal waves, of any body of water or their spray, all whether driven by wind or not,” according to the ruling. Lloyd’s denied coverage, and Hudson Enterprises filed suit.  The U.S. District Court in Little Rock granted Lloyd’s summary judgment after concluding the docks were lost to flood, and the marina appealed. A three-judge appeals court panel upheld the lower court ruling. Among Hudson’s arguments was that strong winds were the sole cause of its damages because they caused a utility pole to crash into its docks. Lloyd’s civil engineering expert concluded, however, that “the utility pole had not fallen down as a result of wind because it would have taken wind gusts of more than 200 miles per hour to knock down a utility pole of that size,” said the ruling. “The expert also concluded that even if the wind had caused the pole to fall, the impact could not have caused the structural damage to the docks,” said the ruling, in affirming the lower court decision. (Business Insurance, 4/28/2017)  AIMU Weekly Bulletin.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) posted the report of its investigation of the 8 July 2015 equipment failure on the bulk carrier Asia Zircon II while discharging cargo in Galveston. One of the ship’s cranes was hoisting a wind turbine tower section out of the hold when the lifting wire parted. The tower section fell back into the hold, damaging cargo. Two of the five longshoremen inside the hold suffered non-life-threatening injuries. Damages were estimated to exceed $1.5 million. The probable cause was inadequate lubrication due to ineffective maintenance, resulting in excessive wear of the wire rope. MAB 17-10 (4/20/17) [].

Courtesy: Bryant’s Maritime Blog.  [email protected]

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) posted the report of its investigation of the 12 March 2016 sinking of the towing vessel Specialist on the Hudson River, with three crew fatalities. Specialist was southbound, towing a tower crane barge with two other towboats. It struck a construction barge that was spudded down alongside a concrete pier at the new Tappan Zee Bridge construction site. The probable cause of the casualty was inadequate manning, resulting in fatigued crewmembers navigating three tugboats with obstructed visibility due to the size of the crane on the barge they were towing and the location of the tugboats alongside the barge. MAB 17-14 (5/23/17) [].  Courtesy: Bryant’s Maritime Blog.  [email protected]

It appears that masters of cargo vessels will need a crystal ball on board from now on, thanks to a recent ruling by the Dutch Court of Appeal.
The case before the court, involving the transport of steel plates and coils from China to the Netherlands, aimed to establish whether the shipowner was liable for cargo damage sustained during the voyage.
This would seem a straightforward matter. Under the Hague-Visby Rules, the master declares the condition of the cargo at the point of loading, and if this has deteriorated by the time the goods reach the receiver, then there must have been damage in transit and the receiver can claim against the shipping company.
However, the shipowner argued in the Dutch case that the nature of the voyage the receiver had agreed to meant that some deterioration of the cargo was inevitable. Taking place in winter, the voyage had involved the vessel sailing from a cold China, through the warm Singapore straits near the equator and on to a very cold Europe.
This cut no ice with the Court of Appeal, which held that the receiver could not be expected to have any knowledge regarding the carriage of steel, and could only base its expectations of the cargo’s condition on the master’s description. The court further ruled that the solution to this problem was for the master to describe the cargo as it would probably appear at the end of the voyage, rather than in the state witnessed at the point of loading.
Claims executive Alex Gray, who handles insurance claims for the UK P&I Club and UK Defence Club, drew this case to the attention of the wider industry last month. He commented: It would seem that masters of ships must also be masters of the unknown. And he raised a number of pertinent questions, including:
How is the master supposed to predict the effects that the voyage will have on the cargo?
What level of knowledge is the master deemed to have about each and every cargo he or she is due to carry?
How does this decision interact with the obligations under the Hague-Visby Rules? Which one prevails?
The owners in the steel shipping case are expected to appeal, but as things stand, Mr. Gray advises masters and owners to speak to their insurer if in doubt about how to proceed.

Courtesy FLASHLIGHT, e-newsletter circulated to more than 5,000 people involved in marine surveying around the world.  It is a collation of articles relevant to our profession from various publications and contributions from readers. Letters, opinions and articles are welcomed.  Contact [email protected]

The European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) released its Annual Overview of Marine Casualties and Incidents for 2016. It reported 3,296 events, 91 of which were termed “very serious.” Some of the results are as follows:

  • 45% of 1,700 incidents involved cargo vessels followed by passenger ships
  • 36 ships were lost
  • The five major causes related to- loss of control, contact/allusion, damage to ship or equipment, grounding and stranding and collision. In all, navigational errors accounted for half of the losses.
  • The geographical areas affected were the Atlantic Coast, North Sea and the English Channel

The study covers 2015 but also provides statistics compiled for the five years 2011-2015. During that span there were 12,591 casualties reported with 19% classified as serious and 3.3% very serious. Another interesting “fact” is that 2,399 vessels were involved in more than one incident. You can access to the 129-page documents at:   Courtesy Chubb Marine Underwriters’ Loss Control NewsBlog

As the industry prepares for Memorial Day weekend, the unofficial start of boating season, NMMA reports that the $36 billion U.S. boating industry is seeing some of its highest sales in nearly a decade. According to new data from the 2016 Recreational Boating Statistical Abstract, unit sales of new powerboats increased six percent in 2016, reaching 247,800 boats sold, and are expected to increase an additional six percent in 2017 – a trajectory NMMA anticipates to continue through 2018. “Economic factors, including an improving housing market, higher employment, strong consumer confidence, and growing disposable income, are creating a golden age for the country’s recreational boating industry,” notes Thom Dammrich, president of NMMA. “Summer is a busy selling season for our industry, and we expect steady growth to continue across most boat categories through 2017 – and into 2018 – to keep up with the acceleration in demand for new boats.”
Demand continues to grow across nearly all powerboat segments. Outboard boat sales, which represent 85 percent of new traditional powerboats sold, and include pontoons, aluminum and fiberglass fishing boats, as well as small fiberglass cruising boats, were up 6.1 percent in 2016 to 160,900 units. Sales of new ski and wakeboard boats, used for popular watersports such as wakesurfing and wakeboarding, saw a double-digit increase, up 11.5 percent to 8,700 boats. New personal watercraft sales, often considered a gateway to boat ownership, rose 7.3 percent to 59,000 craft, and jet boats, smaller fiberglass boats that use jet engine technology to propel the boat, saw a sales increase of 8.7 percent to 5,000 boats. Sales of yachts (33’ and higher) saw gains of 3.5 percent, reaching a seven-year high of 1,715 units in 2016. “One of the standout areas of growth in 2016 was among yachts – a category that has been slower to rebound as high net worth individuals looked to remain more liquid post-recession,” notes Dammrich. “Additional trends driving economic growth for the industry include the creation of more affordable, versatile boats manufactured to appeal to a new generation of boaters, more intuitive marine technology making it easier to get on the water and operate a boat, and an emphasis on shared experiences with the introduction of more boat rental and shared boat ownership apps as well as boat clubs that offer access to boats as part of a membership fee.” (NMMA Press Release, 5/23/2017) Courtesy AIMU Weekly Bulletin.

Poem of the month

Courtesy Ted Crosby, NAMS-CMS (retired)


The tub that I sing is an unlovely thing.
With her stern where her ‘midships should be.
She fingers her nose at the sky as she goes
With her quarter all smothered a’lee.
She’s peculiar designed, for her house is behind,
Like a fat woman sitting well aft,
But she navigates mud as no other rig could,
This sturdy amphibian craft.
Let those who lampoon her laugh at the steam schooner
With deckload as high as her stack,
But seamen who love her will tell you this of her:
She most always gets there and back.

By James A. Quinby
The Street And The Sea

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