Specifiers and Manufacturers Exchanging Knowledge

Select the country's top specifiers. Carefully mix with manufacturer's top technical representatives. Add a dash of high-powered education. Let simmer to promote ample networking.

What do you have?
The annual CSI Master Specifiers Retreat. CSI provided the catalyst and stepped aside. The Specifiers, Manufacturers, and Educators took over from there.

I want to personally thank our CSI staff for organizing a great event again. And thanks to CSI President, Greg Markling, and President-Elect, Casey Robb, for supporting the retreat. I was thrilled to be invited (from among all the many specifier applicants) to attend the event for the second year in a row. The ability to participate allows me to explore new products and products I don't know and to learn more in-depth detail about products I thought I did know.

Knowledge Exchanges
The meetings are a dialog - sharing information that may help one another. I got a valuable tip about an organization whose members may be the exact audience I am trying to reach. I never asked, but the product rep saw an opportunity to help because of his own experience. I suggested issues manufacturers should consider targeting when educating architects and specifiers because of our project experience. I suspect they did not expect the advice, but welcomed the input.

The Community
A total of 37 specifiers, 48 manufacturers, and 8 educators attended the retreat. You can see it is nearly one-on-one for the Specifiers and manufacturers - exactly the intent. The event is purposefully small and intimate. This makes for great personal conversations. People get to know people.  Relationships are forged. Friendships are renewed and made anew. As a result, now, I have an expanded group of colleagues to ask advice and a group of knowledgeable manufacturers able to provide technical support.

Check the Record
See what you missed. This year's attendees captured the highlights of the five education sessions and shared the content with the world. Twitter was abuzz during the education sessions generating meeting notes that I compiled to share with you.

Industry recognized experts presented every session. Each session provided valuable information that I intend to put into place immediately so our projects can take advantage of what the speakers were willing to share. Free advice to make our projects better - what could be better?

Day One Sessions

  • The Future of Architecture and Building Information by Doug Parker of Greenway Group
  • Specifying the Right Risk Management Requirements from the Surety's Perspective - by Mark Fitzgerald, Bette Botticello and Mark McCallum
  • NFPA 285 - Requirements for Fire-Tested Wall Assemblies by Raymond Bizal, Southwest Regional Director NFPA

Day Two Sessions

  • Building Enclosure Commissioning by Daniel Lemieux and Keith Nelson from Wiss Janey Elstner
  • Concrete Sub-Floor Moisture Control by Peter Craig

See the Twitter summary of the programs at

Day One Sessions
Day Two Sessions

Next Year's Event
CSI is accepting applications from manufacturers, now. To reserve your place, act soon, very soon!

CSI will announce when the specifier application process opens. Check the CSI website at www.csinet.org/msr and watch the CSI Weekly for the announcement. (Hint: The Weekly is distributed free. Just sign up)

Mark you calendar! Next year the retreat will be held January 20-22 2014 at Amelia Island, Florida. Reserve the dates. Submit your application. Attend when selected!

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