Indianapolis Chapter CSI Newsletter

February 2014

winners circle skyline

The snow is going away!  It's a heat wave!  The weather outside isn't the only thing warming up, the Indianapolis Chapter CSI's calendar is heating up as well.  Again, this month we are at the Marten House on the NW side of town.  Aside from a little rain, looks like this month will be easier to navigate.

Please let us know if you have any ideas for future newsletters.
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 Indianapolis Chapter CSI Newsletter Editor

Upcoming Events
Programs Committee

Indianapolis Chapter CSI February Meeting - Panel Discussion on Energy Modeling

Thursday February 20, 2014 from 5:30 PM to 9:00 PM EST

Our distinguished panel will discuss current issues in energy modeling and offer their perspective on how best to use energy modeling to drive outcomes for the owner.

Marten House Hotel and Lilly Conference Center


2014 Standing Reservation List

Wednesday December 31, 2014 from 12:00 AM to 1:00 AM EST

Riverwalk Banquet Center 

View from the Tower
Ed Brown CSI, CCCA
new info    




Here we are in February and we are still trying to dig out from the snow. I can't wait for spring.  Also, as I prepare my letter, Valentine's Day is fast approaching and I have absolutely no plans for it...yet. Anyway, for this month's photo, I wanted to feature my son and myself at our first monster truck show. As you can see, we're wearing earplugs because it was extremely loud at Lucas Oil Stadium. 


Last month's chapter meeting was on the Deep Rock Tunnel Project. I would like to thank Tim Shutters and John Morgan, both with Citizens Energy Group, for a great presentation. It was very informative and we learned quite a bit about the project.


This month's chapter meeting will once again be held at the Martin House Hotel and Conference Center, at 1801 W. 86th St. This month's meeting will feature a panel discussion on energy modeling: current issues and best practices. The panel will be moderated by Dr. Thanos Tzemplikos, Associate Professor at Purdue University. Participating on the panel will be Dan Overbey of  Browning Day Mullins Dierdorf, Eric Broemel of Schmidt Associates, and Amanda Doenges, Campus Engineer at Butler University.


On a sad note, on January 29, we lost another member of the chapter. Max Hartzler was a long time member and a past president. He was 86 years old. He was a spec writer for a number of firms, including HNTB and Odle, McQuire & Shook. He was president of the Indianapolis CSI chapter during the fiscal year 1984-85. He was known as a knowledgeable and even-tempered man who was involved with many projects throughout Indiana. His funeral was held on February 8 in Shelbyville, IN. Our chapter was well represented with many past presidents in attendance. He will truly be missed by everyone. Our deepest condolences go out to the Hartzler family. 


There are various events coming up in the next couple of months. One of these events are chapter elections. We will be holding chapter elections in March for board of director positions that will soon become vacant. At this month's chapter meeting, I will be opening the floor for nominees. If anyone is interested in running for the board, please contact myself or President-elect David Young. Keep in mind that if you are elected, you will be expected to serve a three-year term on the board. Ballots will be available beginning in March. If you have a desire to get involved in the ins and outs of the chapter and help it grow, I urge any of you to run. 


As a reminder, CSI Academies will be held here in Indianapolis, March 27-29. There will be educational opportunities that will follow three tracks: specifications, construction administration, and product representation. The early-bird registration is approaching fast and you can register on the institute's website, Also, discounts are being offered for Indianapolis members.  Planning is underway for the 2014 CSI Great Lakes Region Conference that is also being held here in Indianapolis, July 31-August 2. Check the region website for updates. Also, if you have not done so, be sure to cast your vote for CSI region and Institute officers. Each member should have received ballot instructions, via email, from the Institute.


Since I am on the subject of elections, I was approached with a question a couple of days ago that gave me pause to think and reflect. What is the emotional value of joining CSI? At the start of the year, I mentioned that the theme of the year is the value of membership. I did not stop to consider the emotional value as well. I am sure that each member would have their own answer to that question. Personally, I think there is great emotional value in knowing that you can trust each member with whatever issue you may have in your working career. Whether it is about a particular product or a detail, I can trust that I can get a truthful answer from any CSI member. In addition, I am glad to be part of a chapter where members care about how the chapter grows. I enjoy seeing members step up for various positions and responsibilities, especially new members. Personally, it is not just about networking, it is being part of an organization where ones skill and knowledge can be a benefit to another.


That is all that I have for this month. I would like to conclude with the president's question of the month. For those who have not read past president's letters, each month I ask readers a question about myself as a way of getting to know their president. The first person to email the correct answer to gets a door prize at the chapter meeting. I give away pretty good door prizes. It is multiple choice and it's one guess per email address. Also, you must be present at the meeting to win.

This month's question:

Out of the four fruits listed below, which one do I hate the most?

  • Kiwi
  • Pineapple
  • Strawberries
  • Cherries
Thank you for taking the time to read this and I hope to see you at the chapter meeting.  



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Edmund Brown, CSI, CCCA, Assoc AIA

2013-2014 Indianapolis Chapter CSI President  
YouTube Channel  
Visual Education


The Indianapolis Chapter CSI has entered into a new phase of the digital communication era, and now has a dedicated YouTube Channel for the benefit of our membership.

Please look forward to upcoming updates.

Foundation Scholarship   
Now Accepting Applications


The Indianapolis Chapter CSI Education Foundation has opened registration for the 2014 Memorial Trust Scholarship in the Memory of John C. Fleck
Applications are due February 28th via the email address provided.
Please pass this link along to any students that might be eligible for the scholarship (review the application for requirements).

Certification Quiz
Jack Morgan - Quizmaster 



1. Resource materials should be:


a. permanently retained and accessible.

b. filed for safe keeping until the end of the Correction Period.

c. given to the Contractor with the release of Retainage.


2. The Contract clauses that establish payment responsibilities are found in:


a. General Conditions

b. Division 01 General Requirements

c. Payment Bond

d. Addenda


3. The following are all advantages gained by using standard agreement forms EXCEPT:


a. Parties' familiarity with the forms

b. Uniformity of terminology

c. Legal precedents interpreting the documents

d. Accommodate choice from a wide variety of standard contract conditions

e. Recognized customs resulting from longtime use


4. Which of the following are best designated on the drawings?


   1. Specific requirements

   2. Location

   3. Quality of materials

   4. Dimension and size

   5. Shape and form


a. 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5

b. 2, 4, and 5

c. 2, 3, 4, and 5

d. 1 and 3

e. 3, 4, and 5


5. True or False: The OmniClass construction specification system is based on the International Organizations for Standards (ISO).


a. True

b. False


Anwers located at the end of this newsletter....

Table Tops

Jeremy Hoffman

Indianapolis Chapter CSI


The Indianapolis Chapter of CSI is accepting reservations for Table Tops for upcoming Chapter meetings.  The list of programs for upcoming Chapter meetings is published in this newsletter, the web site, or contact Program chairman Andy McIntyre, so if you would like to target a particular meeting, make sure to get your reservation in early.  We do have a limit of four spaces available for Table Tops in a standard meeting room and 10 if we have a double room.


Table Tops are an opportunity to promote your company, products, or services to all attendees of our regular chapter meeting during the social hour.  There is a maximum of 20 minutes for Table Top presentation at a regular Chapter meeting.  You have the floor for maximum of five minutes during the dinner to communicate to the entire group if there are four presenters. If there is a greater demand, the 20 minutes will be divided by the number of presenters and rounded down to the nearest 30 seconds.


The Table Top presentations are FREE, one time, to new members, and cost current Indianapolis Chapter members only $75.  Non-members get the same opportunity for $125.  A 30 by 60 table with a cover and skit will be included.  All proceeds go to support the Chapter.


Another opportunity for a Table Top is during an Education Seminar.  The cost is if you combine it with the Chapter meeting and Education Seminar the cost would be $100 for current members and $150 for non-members.


If you would like to schedule a Table Top for a future meeting or seminar, contact:


Jeremy Hoffman - CREW Technical Services  or (317) 713-7777

Make sure to put 'Table Top Request' in the subject line  

Great Lakes Region President Report



There are many GLR activities happening in late winter, spring, and summer of 2014:

  • On line CSI Elections are Continuing - CSI Elections are underway. Remember, the Great Lakes Region has a very strong list of candidates for Region offices - Philip Babinec - Cincinnati (President-Elect), Donald Bauman - Detroit and Jeffery Clark - Louisville (Vice President),and Henry Hondorp - Grand Rapidsand Bob Schrock - Cincinnati (Treasurer). Review the biography of each candidate for each position and make your decisions. Additionally, Great Lakes Region Leaders - Lane Beougher   (President-Elect) and Gary Beimers (Vice President) are running for Institute offices. Every Great Lakes Region member has many reasons to vote this year. The ballots are all electronic, no paper ballots. Instructions from Institute have been sent to each member. Vote NOW!
  • CSI Academies - The Academies will be held in Indianapolis, March 27-29, 2014. In depth educational opportunities are organized in three tracks, Specifications, Construction Management, and Product Representation by experts across the country - some of which are local. Indianapolis Chapter members receive a discount for registration. The final registration deadline is rapidly approaching. For more information go to  
  • 2014 Region Conference - Save the date for the Region Conference in Indianapolis occurring July 31, August 1, and August 2, 2014. The Conference activities will be held at the NCAA Headquarters in downtown Indianapolis. Planning is well underway with many educational, social, and networking opportunities. Attending a Regional Conference is beneficial for leadership training as well as good fun. Check the Region Website for updates.
  • Award Nominations - With the new year, it is time to start thinking of those in the Chapter and Region that you feel are deserving to be recognized with awards. Many of the awards need recommendations which take time to collect. The due date is May 2, 2014. You can receive more information at Involved/Honors-Awards/2014- Honors Awards Guide. (PDF)
  • Certification Exams - Registration is now open on the Institute Website for the Spring Certification Exams. The Construction Document Technologist (CDT)is the first step leading to a Certificate showing your competency of handling construction documents. Other Certification Exams follow in three areas of expertise (CCS, CCCA, and CCPR). Final Registration ends February 28, 2014. This is your opportunity to set yourself apart from your peers. The Indianapolis Chapter has review classes the five Saturdays in late February and March. Information is available at
  • Call for Volunteers - CSI Institute is looking for those that would like to serve on various Institute Committees. This is a chance to expand your exposure and experience by joining the various committees of CSI. Look in for information about each of CSI's various committees. Additionally, if you are interested in getting more involved in the Region, we would welcome you. Contact President-Elect, Ivette Bruns for more information.


I am looking forward to warmer weather ahead and the many opportunities that CSI and The Great Lakes Region offer. Many thanks for all of your efforts to better the Great Lakes Region, CSI.



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Chapter Photos
Throwback Thursday
This month, we are going to utilize an Instagram favorite of all the young hipsters.  Being that Thursdays are CSI's #TBT (Throwback Thursday)
We will be back to our regularly scheduled photographic documentation next month!picasa icon  

Curmudgeon's Corner
Sheldon Wolfe, RA, FCSI, CCS, CCCA, CSC

A couple of years ago I wrote a tongue-in-cheek article titled "3 reasons to not get certified" ( My intent, obviously, was to explain in what I considered a humorous way why a person should get certified. One or two of the given reasons for not getting certified might apply to a very few people, but those looking for a real reason to avoid certification would not find it in that article. 

I'd like to revisit the subject, this time from a more practical perspective. To put it bluntly, I want you to be certified. Of course, if I never see you it won't make much difference, but if we're going to work together, I'd like to have some confidence that you know what you're doing. Regardless of whether or not you are certified, it will take time to establish the level of trust that allows both of us to rely on the other.

If you are certified in your field, I know immediately that you care enough about what you do to take the time to provide evidence of your knowledge by studying for and passing the examinations needed for your certification. There are reasons for not being certified, the most valid being that you are new to this part of your career, and you don't have the experience required to sit for the exam. I'm sure I don't have to explain why someone with demonstrated experience will earn my confidence more quickly than someone still learning a trade.

What is it that makes certification important? Why is it valuable? Nearly anyone can, through working with others, through trial and error, and through the School of Hard Knocks, become quite competent. But wouldn't it be smarter to acquire much of the same knowledge through study? Although experience may be the best teacher, that teacher doesn't always get it right. Experience might teach you that some things work, but those things might not comply with applicable codes and standards, and might even be illegal.

Knowledge you may have gained through only experience cannot be verified unless we work together and you have the opportunity to demonstrate what you know. Certification, on the other hand, comes by proving to a governing organization that you know your stuff. It is based on relevant codes and standards, and it is objective.

I'll grant that certification does not guarantee that a person will perform in an acceptable manner, but it provides a level of confidence that will make it easier for someone else to work with you, and shorten the time it takes to build an important personal relationship.

It's important to understand that I am not being unreasonable. In fact, I expect from you only what my clients expect from me as an architect. They will not hire an almost-a-professional. They will hire only licensed architects and engineers. You might argue that my client has no choice, as only licensed architects and engineers can provide professional services, and you would be right. In practice, because certification is not required of everyone, I often do work with people who are not certified, but given the choice, as there usually is, I will choose first to work with the certified person.

You might ask what sort of certification I expect. That depends on what you do; not all occupations have certification programs. Regardless of what product or service you offer in the construction industry, though, you can take part in CSI's certification program ( The entry level credential offered by CSI is the CDT (Construction Documents Technologist). To pass the exam, you must have a good understanding of the AIA general conditions of the contract, of the relationships between documents, and of how the entities involved in construction should interact. I consider this essential, and when meeting new product representatives, the first thing I do is look for CDT on their business cards. If it's there, they have immediate credibility. If it's not there, I will explain what it means and why it will be important for them when dealing with other specifiers.

Beyond that, CSI's advanced certifications show a greater commitment to providing superior service. The CCPR (Certified Construction Product Representative) demonstrates that a person knows even more about the roles and responsibilities of manufacturer, supplier, and other members of the construction team. The CCS (Certified Construction Specifier) is not limited to specifiers, but should be considered for all members who themselves write specifications, such as hardware representatives.

Certification will help you in your career. I have heard of specifiers who claim they won't speak to anyone who doesn't have CSI or CDT on their business card, but I won't go that far. With that approach - arbitrarily ignoring most of the people and materials in construction - I could not effectively do my job. More important, I would not be serving my clients as I should.

I have to admit that encouraging you to get certified is selfish. I want you to enjoy the benefits, but like Tom Cruise begged Cuba Gooding, in Jerry Maguire (, I need you to help me do my job, and I want you to be as good as you can in helping me. One might say that specifiers have a simple job: to know everything. I cannot do that, nor can any specifier. So please, give us a hand!

2014, Sheldon Wolfe, RA, FCSI, CCS, CCCA, CSC

Agree? Disagree? Leave your comments at  and  .



Board of Directors' Minutes

Online Archive 


Minutes of the Indianapolis Chapter CSI Board of Directors can be read here.  Please contact the president with any comments or questions.
Standing Reservations 
Meeting Arrangements Committee
For those of you who know you will be attending each chapter meeting and don't want to mess with making sure they have a spot each month, the Chapter offers to its members in good standing the Standing Reservation List.
Please review the terms of this program at the following link.
ANSWERS:  1. - a; 2. - a; 3. - d; 4.  b; 5. - a
In This Issue
Table Tops



February 20, 2014

The Marten House Hotel and Lilly Conference Center
Members - Free
Guests - $20
Retired - $10