Author(s): James Pauley. Published on July 1, 2016.

Progress Report

Taking stock one year after adopting our "information and knowledge" mission

BY JIM PAULEY

PROGRESS! A year ago, we began a new journey when we shifted from being seen as a codes and standards organization to an information and knowledge organization. We’ve made tremendous progress, and this is a good place to consider how far we’ve come.

To create a deeper engagement with all of you, we created two new sets of NFPA staff positions. Our new segment directors are focused on understanding what you do, how you do it, and how we can help make your job easier. Our new technical leads serve as dedicated NFPA resources in specific areas and will work closely with segment directors and other technical staff members to identify relevant information and knowledge for you.

We are engaged in a much deeper way with the first-responder community. Last fall we held our inaugural Responder Forum, an annual event designed to connect the fire service to emerging technologies, research, and standards development. We also elevated our commitment to the enforcement community by hosting our Smart Enforcement Workshop. This first-of-its-kind event allowed enforcers to share their experiences using data to enhance inspection and enforcement programs, identify gaps, and plan future initiatives to support this critical community function.

We continued to build our online community on NFPA Xchange—we now have more than 14,000 users on the site, with the number growing rapidly. It is the place for professionals in the fire and electrical communities to gather to discuss key topics with peers.

Last month we held our annual Conference & Expo in Las Vegas, an information-filled week with great speakers, tremendous education sessions, and a set of exhibitors that is second to none. The conference included the introduction of Crosby, our new data analytics server. Named for Everett U. Crosby, the first secretary of NFPA and the first person to champion data collection related to fire and loss, Crosby is an extremely powerful tool that will help us launch data initiatives all over the world. The conference was also the rollout for the new redesigned nfpa.org. It is bold, modern, uncluttered, and leads you to the information and knowledge you rely on. Upgrades include a new “my profile” feature, which will provide you with a clean, quick snapshot of your membership and profile information, resources you have purchased, committees you are on, and other ways you are involved.

Many exciting things are happening at NFPA. If you are hearing about these for the first time, I encourage you to consider coming to next year’s annual conference in Boston, where you can see our progress firsthand and share in a valuable week of information, knowledge, and networking. Stay safe!

JAMES PAULEY, NFPA President