February 2017 Print

President's Report

Greetings and welcome to the Michigan Association of Hazardous Materials Professionals (MI-AHMP).  I would like to extend a warm welcome to all current members of MI-AHMP and to those of you who are reading this and considering becoming a member. It is my honor to serve MI-AHMP as President for 2017.  I have been a member of MI-AHMP for about 8 years now, having served last year as Vice-President and the previous two years prior to that as a Director.  I am looking forward to a productive year for MI-AHMP and hope that you will join me in rededicating yourself to this chapter.  

The theme for MI-AHMP this year is “Get Involved”.  I anticipate a successful year ahead based on three principles.

We will build on the success of previous years

The MI-AHMP chapter has a new and improved website that is a tremendous improvement on our old website.  A special thank you is due to Tom Peters for all of his efforts on our new website, which is more modern-looking and has increased functionality.  For instance, we now have an online MI-AHMP store and we are also able to pay chapter dues online.

Our CHMM review course in 2016 included 13 paid participants, which is more participants at a single MI-AHMP review course than any in recent memory.  The review course was so successful that we are considering holding a second review course in 2017 and have already received inquiries.

Behind the scenes at the national level, our very own John McDonald worked tirelessly as the treasurer of the Alliance of Hazardous Materials Professionals during their transition to a new management company.  John deserves a debt of gratitude not just from our chapter but from all chapters for his effort.

We will aim for greater involvement from the membership

MI-AHMP is an organization where the more you put in, the more you get out.  As a member of MI-AHMP, this is your organization.  The more you participate, the more you will feel ownership of the organization.

How can you get involved?  Attending our events is a great start.  But there is more to MI-AHMP.

Would you like to help make our annual conference a success?  You could introduce a speaker or collect tickets or hand out gifts or take pictures.  Let us know how you would like to help.  Any assistance, big or small, will make a difference.  Please contact Preston Smith to get involved (prestonjsmith@sbcglobal.net).

Would you like to participate in a CHMM review course?  Approximately 30 topics are presented during our review course.  With so many topics, there is bound to be at least one that you could present.  Training slides are already available, and modules are generally less than one hour to present. All you need to do is volunteer.  Please contact Julie Manley to get involved (juliemanley@guidinggreen.com).

Do you have something to share on our website?  An item of interest?  A job opening?  Would you like to be on the member spotlight?  Let us know if you would like to get involved (http://mi-ahmp.org/contact.php).

There are many other things you can do.  Help us plan or execute an event.  Participate as a judge at the Flint Science Fair.  Give the Executive Board feedback on surveys or just drop us a line with suggestions or ideas.  Please contact me to get involved (Stephen.Gorham@aecom.com).

We are celebrating 30 years as an organization

Did you know that MI-AHMP is 30 years old?  Although our official affiliation with AHMP is not quite that old, our organization was founded in 1987.  To me, this signifies that our chapter has something to offer and that we represent something important.  If it’s your first time eating at a particular restaurant, wouldn’t it give you confidence in the place to see it say “Since 1987” on the sign out front?  The same applies to our organization.  

In closing, with us building on the success of previous years, aiming for greater involvement from the membership, and celebrating 30 years as an organization, I ask you to reflect on all you have done at MI-AHMP.  Think of the friendships you have made and those that you have strengthened.  Think of the events you’ve attended and what you have learned over the years.  We are looking to incorporate our 30 year milestone and your experiences into our annual conference this year.  I hope you will take this call to get involved to heart and see you at the conference!

Kind regards,

Stephen Gorham, CHMM, P.E.

President of MI-AHMP 2017


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Environmental Quotes Worth Noting!

Over the long haul of life on this planet,

it is the ecologists,

and not the bookkeepers of business,

who are the ultimate accountants.

Stewart Udall


Only after the last tree has been cut down.

Only after the last river has been poisoned.

Only after the last fish has been caught.

Only then will you find,

that money cannot be eaten.

Cree Indian Prophecy


We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors; we borrow it from our children.

Chief Seattle

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MI-AHMP Member Spotlight

MI-AHMP member spotlight – Tim Rienks

Tim Rienks lives in Southeast Michigan with his wife and two children.  Tim enjoys playing golf and watching his oldest child play youth basketball.  He earned a Bachelor of Science Natural Resources degree from the University of Michigan (Go Blue!), which has served him well in the environmental and hazardous materials industries.

Tim has spent the last three years as a Safety Supervisor working directly for General Motors (GM).  Prior to that, he spent eleven years on the environmental side of things working directly for GM.  Previously, he supported GM as a contract employee and worked as an environmental consultant. 

Like many of us, Tim likes the diversity of experiences working in the hazardous materials field and he has had several memorable moments while doing so.  Several that stand out include getting lost in the cedar woods of the UP while doing a habitat survey, having a hand soil corer nearly disappear below the ground at a former pulp and paper fill area, and trudging through thick Spring mud to access groundwater wells on a farm.  His most memorable experience has to be sampling groundwater wells in northern Michigan until the wee hours of the morning under a crisp and clear winter sky.

Tim advises people new to the industry to take the time to learn state and Federal environmental and safety regulations.  In addition, those who are going to work in manufacturing should access manufacturing engineering curriculum to learn the language of production.

Tim is very passionate about providing children with special needs the opportunity for full inclusion in our society, particularly in education settings.  He urges you to contact him @ tim.rienks@comcast.net if you or someone you know has questions about working with their local school district or if you are looking for access to resources, assistance, or more information.

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EHMM Review Course

EHMM Review Course

EHMM Review Course

Dates: November 7-9, 2017

Location: Arch Environmental, 37720 Interchange Drive, Farmington Hills, MI

The fee of $595 includes a binder containing the presentation slides, as well as light breakfast, lunch and snacks. 

The Essentials of Hazardous Materials Management review course provides the environmental professional with the knowledge to comply with health, safety, and environmental guidelines. Environmental programs are vital to our public health and safety. Within that field, the management of hazardous materials requires proven and unquestionable skills and competence. Course completion will prepare participants to sit for the CHMM exam. The Certified Hazardous Materials Manager (CHMM) Exam is administered by the Institute of Hazardous Materials Management. For more information, please visit www.ihmm.org. Registration and exam fees for the CHMM exam are not included in the course fee.

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