July Newsletter
Western Seminar, July 26,
Features Jim Demma
The Western Maryland Seminar will be held Friday, July 26 at Hagerstown Community College.  

Statutory Laws of Maryland Relating to Land Surveyors  

This seminar will be a discussion on the latest edition of Statutory Laws of Maryland Relating to Land Surveyors , more commonly referred to as the “Black Book.” It includes the latest collection of statutes and rules from the Annotated Code of Maryland and is a convenient legal starting point and reference work for all surveyors in the State of Maryland. The seminar will also include a review of the very latest appeals court cases on boundaries, easements and adverse possession; and a segment on ethics.

Presenter: James J. Demma, Professional Land. Surveyor, Esq., Miles & Stockbridge and Editor of Statutory Laws of Maryland Relating to Land Surveyors

This seminar may qualify to meet the requirements of COMAR for ethics, law, and standards of practice.

8 CPC/PDH will be awarded
Potomac and Chesapeake Chapter Baseball Event!
Come out and join your fellow surveyors on August 3rd for a night at the ball park in support of the Maryland Society of Surveyors Educational Trust and the Young Surveyors Chapter. This night is also the 5th Annual Touch A Truck event presented by Miss Utility! Over 35 utility and heavy vehicles will be on display beginning at 4:30 and kids will receive a free backpack courtesy of Miss Utility. (Limit 1 backpack per paid child ticket while supplies last.) There will also be a fireworks show following the game.

Click here to find out more about this event and purchase your ticket(s).
The MSS Fall Conference is only 3 months away. However, you can make your hotel reservations today at the Princess Royale Hotel. If you would like to become an exhibitor registration is open. We are pleased to announce we will have an golf outing on Wednesday, October 16 at the Ocean City Golf Club, and registration is open . If you would like to support MSS and this conference, there are many sponsorships available. Thank you to DiCarlo Precision Instruments Inc , and Keystone Precision Instruments who have already purchased a sponsorship.
Scholarships Awarded

Congratulations to the following Maryland Society of Surveyors Educational Trust Grant winners and The Fred and Mary Ward, and Draper and Dottie Sutcliffe Scholarship Winners.

  • Marc Alexander
  • James Bronico Jr.
  • Douglas Brown
  • Shane Busic
  • Kevin Cevallos
  • Joseph Duckworth
  • Bryson Fisher
  • John Knox
  • Devin Mallory
  • Kevin Norris
  • Garrett Schulte
  • Richard Simone
  • Harjas Singh
  • Kellee Smith
  • Matthew Tate
  • Robert Telschow
  • Lavoss Thomas
  • Jessica Warren
  • Eileen Yox
Spotlight: Tim Quinn
is a Professional Land Surveyor at Rodgers Consulting, Inc and is a past president of MSS, and recently stepped down after many years as Government Affairs Committee Chair.

When did you start surveying, and why?  
I began my surveying career in October of 1978. Like many other career surveyors, my entry into surveying was not planned or intentional; my career began out of necessity, or perhaps, by accident. After my discharge from the U.S. Coast Guard, I began attending the University of Maryland, living off the G.I. Bill, my meager savings, and my wife, Marian’s, modest salary. Marian soon decided to return to school to study architecture while maintaining her job on a part time basis. With our savings rapidly depleting, I realized it was time to get a job.

One day during a break between classes I was looking through the help wanted section of the Washington Post and saw a position for a rodman-chainman posted by Clark, Finefrock and Sackett (affectionately known as CFS). I had no idea what a rodman-chainman was so I moved on to the next add. On my way to College Park the next morning, I passed a survey crew working along Route 1 in Laurel. I slowed down with the hope of seeing what a rodman-chainman was, and noticed from the sign on the bright orange truck that it was a CFS field crew. On my way home that evening I passed a bright orange truck parked along a neighborhood street and it was also a CFS truck. I had some idea what land surveyors did, still had no idea what a rodman-chainman was, but I am a firm believer in fate. The following morning I arranged an interview with CFS, met with them that afternoon, and was offered a job. I was able to transfer to evening classes at the university, accepted the job, and started with CFS a week or so later.

My first exposure to land surveying was good. I enjoyed the outdoor work, I was learning a lot about math, reading plans, as well as the field techniques associated with topographic and boundary surveying and construction stakeout. The pay was not great, but it helped pay the bills. 
Describe one of your best experiences while surveying. 
My best experiences while surveying do not actually involve the practice of surveying. My best experiences relate to the people I have been associated with through surveying, many of which were made through my participation in the Maryland Society of Surveyors. I can honestly say that most of the people I call friends are people I have worked with or people I have met through my association with MSS. Land surveyors who want to better themselves, personally and professionally, need only experience the vision of James Shaw and Jeremy Burns, the wisdom of Steve Jones and Dave Weber, the energy of John Campbell and the determination and self-discipline of Ron Collier.

As far as my absolute best experience surveying, it also involves people, not surveying. I have always believed that our true value is measured by the effect we have on others. Receiving the phone call from a young person I have been mentoring to let me know they have passed their land surveying examination truly makes me feel relevant to the profession.

As far as the true surveying work goes, there were projects that were difficult, projects that were problematic and projects that I wished would go away, but the challenges associated with each project and the satisfaction of successfully completing each project made them all worthwhile. 
Describe one of your worst experiences while surveying.
Much like my best experiences while surveying, I cannot say that I had many bad experiences actually surveying. Early in life, I conditioned myself to not let outside forces influence my happiness. I always look for something positive in a negative experience. That being said, I have had some very uncomfortable, sometimes painful, experiences while surveying. Some of those experiences involved bees, some involved Ron Collier, and some involved Ron Collier and bees. For those who know Ron, he is a notorious practical joker. Back in the days of chains and plumb bobs, when Ron was at the instrument and I was on the front end of the chain, if Ron spotted a yellow jacket nest or hornet nest, he would guide me right to it. A surveyor dropping a plumb bob into a yellow jacket nest or walking head first into a hornet's nest must look hilarious from 100 feet away, not so pleasant for the guy with a beard full of yellow jackets or hornets. Obviously, Ron knows that I have been plotting my revenge for 35 years since he recently packed up and moved to North Carolina. I will find him, and my revenge will come at a time he least suspects.

Ron and I also had another terrible experience surveying in Rockville, but I cannot mention details because the Montgomery County Fire Department may still be looking for us.
What type of surveying makes up most of your work? 
For the last 31 years at Rodgers Consulting, Inc., my work has primarily been focused on entitlements for large private sector land development projects. As part of the entitlement process, our survey team’s work includes boundary surveys, ALTA/NSPS Land Title Surveys, topographic surveys, rezoning exhibits, and density studies. On the development side the team prepares subdivision plats and easements. We also do a limited amount of construction stakeout.

As I ease into retirement, I find myself spending more time mentoring new staff and performing quality control on our surveying deliverables. 
Who are some of the surveyors that influenced your knowledge in the profession (in school or on the job)? What was special about what you learned from them?  

During my first engagement at Clark, Finefrock and Sackett, computers were not widespread so most of the calculations and computations were performed in the field. I had the pleasure of working with a few “old school” surveyors Page See, Smokey Schooley and Bob Jorden. In addition to the basic surveying techniques of that era, they taught me how to read plans, how to perform those calculations and computations in the field, and why we were doing what we were doing.

My next engagement was at Johnson, McCordic and Thompson (then known as JMT and now known as Charles P. Johnson and Associates). At JMT, I had my first exposure to computing and computers. Jerry Bennet was the computing guru at JMT and he conducted Saturday training sessions on computing, subdivision geometry, balancing control networks, subdivision geometry, and any other skill that interested you. Had it not been for Jerry, I most likely would have remained in the field for a few years until I finished my education and then left surveying. 

At JMT, I first became acquainted with Ron Collier who at the time was working as a survey crew chief. Ron was passionate about land surveying, a passion that became contagious. In 1983 and 1984, I had to return to day classes at the University of Maryland so I was only working summers at JMT. One July evening I was planning my class schedule for the fall semester. Ron sat down and we had a long talk about surveying as a career. I decided to return to evening classes at the University of Maryland and rejoined JMT on a full time basis. Ron also urged me to enroll in the MSS survey program at the University of Maryland. One of the best moves I have made in my career. Through those MSS programs, I too developed a passion for the profession. If it were not for Ron, I would probably be a zoologist or chemist today.

Rodgers and Associates, Inc., (now known as Rodgers Consulting, Inc.) became the final resting place in my surveying career. Although I continued to enhance my knowledge of surveying, the education in business and leadership I received at Rodgers proved to be the most beneficial of my career. At Rodgers, I learned that becoming an expert in your chosen profession is a small part of being a true professional. You must also possess a strong set of professional and ethical values. Through my association with Kim Ripley and John Carman at Rodgers, I developed a value system that redefined my personality, made me a better surveyor, and led me to my leadership position within the organization.  
What advice would you give to new surveyors?  
 In addition to the advice my father gave me when I entered the workforce (work hard, keep your nose to the grindstone and make your boss look real good), I would offer the following values that helped me throughout my career:

·       Never put limitations on your knowledge and experience
·       Don’t limit your knowledge to surveying
·       Become an expert in anything - even if it doesn’t involve surveying
·       Spread you knowledge to everyone
·       Resist apathy – it can destroy you
·       Never refuse help to anyone - at some point you will need help
·       Always stand up for yourself, your profession and your values
·       Analyze your bad experiences and find a positive result
·       Don’t let anybody cause you to have a bad day
·       Don’t burn out - recognize the signs and slow down
·       Embrace change - it’s not going away
·       Be a source of motivation for others
·       Become a part of something bigger than yourself

When you are not surveying, what do you like to do?  
Surveying, the business of surveying and my work with MSS takes up most of my time, but the work is enjoyable and beneficial to me. When I do have free time I enjoy reading about the history of anything, fishing on the bay, long distance cycling, and keeping my 60 year old house from falling down around me. I also have a 12 year old boxer, Brutus, who never slows down. My current goal is to do whatever I can to keep Brutus active, healthy, and comfortable. 

How has surveying changed you? 
 Again, this comes back to the people I have been associated with in surveying, primarily my association with MSS. The long conversations I have had with James Shaw led me to look at what surveying could be, not what surveying is. Surveying has made me think differently, to consider theory as well as fact, to develop a strategy before leaping into a task. Good or bad, I am certainly more opinionated now than I was earlier in my career.   

Surveying has certainly changed me in many ways. My greatest hope is that, in some small way, I helped change surveying.
MSS General Membership & Crab Feast Recap

On Tuesday, July 16th, MSS held its annual crab feast at Nick's Fish House in Baltimore, MD. Fifty people joined in fellowship and enjoyed a delicious buffet of crabs, hambugers and sides. Thank you to Survey Supply, Inc. , A/I/Data, Inc , and Topcon Solutions Store for being our sponsors.
How to Locate Your CPC/PDH Certificates on the MSS Website
One of the services provided by MSS is that it keeps a record of attendance at conferences, and educational seminars personalized to you, the participating member. Each member has a profile on the MSS website where all educational credits are recorded. You can view/print your educational certificate at anytime. If, for instance, you have not kept copies of your educational certificates and you are one of the lucky 10% who are randomly audited at license renewal time, you can obtain the necessary paperwork by logging into your profile on the MSS website.

Another service MSS undertakes on behalf of its members is that the President-Elect, in the current case President-Elect Aaron Worley, attends each Maryland Board for Professional Surveyors meeting as a liason between the licensing board and MSS.      

Recently, the board spoke to Aaron to say that a licensee under random audit, turned in transcript records printed from the MSS records site which were incomplete. It is possible to print from more or less the wrong place and get a result which will not satisfy the board requirements.

After each conference, or seminar, attendees are sent an email which reiterates their sessions and gives instructions delineating the process for printing certificates which will satisfy the requirements for proof of compliance for license renewal.  These instructions most often fall by the wayside and are lost and forgotten by renewal time.

In order to serve the membership better, we are publishing the instructions for printing your certificates. Click here , and follow these step-by-step instructions on how to view/print a certificate from your profile on the MSS website.

We encourage you to call the MSS office at 800-303-6770 if you need assistance.
Upcoming Events

Location: Hagerstown Community College, Hagerstown, Maryland Time: 8:00 AM

Location: Prince George's Stadium, Maryland Time: 4:30 PM

Location: Princess Royale Hotel, Ocean City MD
The Maryland Society of Surveyors is pleased to offer important books that should be on the bookshelf of every prudent, professional surveyor.
Welcome New Member
David Nowicki Sr.
TUgis conference is only 23 days away. Come support your fellow MSS members. Register Today!
In Memory of
Our condolences to the family of Donald E. Worley, who passed away on June 21, 2019. Donald was the father of MSS President Elect Aaron Worley. He will be missed by his family and friends.

To read more about Don's life click here .
GPS on the Moon? NASA's working on it!
“NASA has been pushing high-altitude GPS technology for years,” said MMS system architect Luke Winternitz  in a NASA news release . “GPS around the Moon is the next frontier.”

Astronauts can’t just take their phones up there, of course. Our devices are calibrated for catching and calculating signals from satellites known to be in orbit above us and within a certain range of distances. The time for the signal to reach us from orbit is a fraction of a second, while on or near the Moon it would take perhaps a full second and a half. That may not sound like much, but it fundamentally affects how the receiving and processing systems have to be built.
Job Opportunities
Instrument Operator - Dewberry - Lanham, MD - Click Here
Survey Party Chief - Dewberry - Lanham, MD - Click Here
Survey Technician - Dewberry - Lanham, MD - Click Here
Survey CAD Technician - Ben Dyer Assoc - La Plata, MD - Click Here
Field Technician - EN Engineering - Baltimore, MD - Click Here
Field Party Chief - EN Engineering - Baltimore, MD - Click Here
Survey Crew Chief - En Engineering - Baltimore, MD - Click Here
Deputy Chief of Surveys - Howard County MD - Columbia, MD - Click Here
Survey Manager - Potomac Valley Surveys - Poolesville, MD - Click Here
Field Engineer - Ben Dyer Associates, Inc - Mitchellville, MD - Click Here
Survey Crew Chief - Weston & Sampson - Reading, MA - Click Here
Utility Locator - Weston & Sampson - Reading, MA - Click Here
VA PLS - Wallace Montgomery - Vienna, VA - Click Here
Instrument Operator - Wallace Montgomery - Hunt Valley, MD - Click Here
Survey Crew Chief - McAdams - Durham, NC - Click Here
Survey Techinican - Dewberry - Lanham, MD - Click Here
PLS Project Manager - First Capital Engineering, Inc. - York PA - Click Here
PLS - PELSA Company, Inc. - Newark, DE - Click Here
Sustaining Members
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