Inclusion at the 2020 SES Conference

In August 2020, the Society for Standards Professional, SES, held their 2020 annual conference. Women in Standards celebrated with our fellow standards industry friends and family at the 69th annual conference which was held virtually due to travel restrictions.

The theme of this years’ conference was the “The Value of Standardization and the Standards Professional” and the conference welcomed hundreds of attendees including international participants from around the globe. 

Women in Standards members were represented in four out of the six sessions offered at the Annual SES Conference and Women in Standards Board member Amy Lestition Burke presented the closing keynote! It was an amazing celebration of our organization’s support for standardization and ensuring a broad spectrum of participants supporting the development of standards. 

Image from 2020 SES conferenceMegan Hayes and Bryan Holland from NEMA kicked off the events with their discussion of “The Link Between Community Resiliency and Codes and Standards.” During their presentation, we celebrated our “Resilience Superheros” and gained insights on how standards and building and electrical codes can enhance and improve community resiliency and make the world a safer place. 

In Session 2 of the conference, Women in Standards Vice President Karen Reczek along with Erik Puskar and Lisa Spellman discussed “Why Competencies are Important for Today’s Standardization Professional.” In their discussion, Karen, Erik, and Lisa explored the competencies needed by organizations and how they can acquire them through hiring, on-boarding, and skill ups. They also highlighted the SES-Women in Standards joint-project to explore competencies in standards development. Click the flyer to learn more on this.

Word Cloud of Standards development interest categories“Attracting Under-represented Interest Categories – Stakeholder Participation in the Standards Development Process” was the theme of session 3 and was presented by Women in Standards Executive Officer and Board President, Karin Athanas.

In her presentation, Karin introduced the main learning points from the 2020 Women in Standards Survey on Inclusion in Standards and provided valuable suggestions and ideas for standards developers to reach new audiences and engage general interest and user interest categories. 

Karin also discussed initiatives underway within ISO, IEC, SES, SDOs, government agencies and the Women in Standards to address inclusion in standards and encouraged participants to engage and provide support and feedback on these initiatives. 

On day 2 of the conference, August 6, Women in Standards was excited to watch as Patricia Edwards, Molly Lynyak, Jessica Slomka, and Karyn Ferguson discussed “Consumers in Standards Development” with Priscilla Magee moderating.

Consumers are an often under-represented interest category and Patricia, Molly, Jessica, Karyn, and Priscilla provided thoughtful background on the issue, efforts to address it, and brainstorm ways to conduct effective outreach and improve long-term engagement with consumers.

Image of Amy Burke

In her Closing Keynote, Women in Standards Board Director, Amy Lestition Burke inspired attendees to reach out to the community with her presentation on “Member Engagement in a 2D World: Connections Beyond the Screen.”

Amy provided real world examples of the innovative approaches associations are taking to reach their members and encourage new participants to engage with the association. 

Conference attendees experienced this first hand as Amy engaged one-on-one with participants through the SES’ conference app and answered questions live during the presentation. 

Amy’s discussion of building the digital member experience and engaging 365 days a year was an excellent and electrifying close to a very positive and inclusive SES 2020 conference. 

The event will be held in Charleston, SC in August 2021, Women in Standards looks forward to seeing our members there and celebrating standards as a community. 

The Fun Doesn't Need to Stop Here...

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