Latest Publications

Sharing the “Value” of ASA to Estate Planners


ASA branded exhibit materials, including table cover and pop-up banner displays.

ASA recently participated in the 11th Annual Jerry A. Kasner Estate Planning Symposium held September 17-18, 2015 in Santa Clara, CA.

The event featured sessions on the most current information regarding the tax, legal and financial issues concerning estate planning and trust and estate administration like: employee benefits, grantor intent & fiduciary flexibility, ethics, advance health care directives, trusts, tax administration & procedural rules, trustees, base & nature of assets, latest tax updates, settlors & beneficiaries, client dilemmas and more.

ASA joined the more than 50 major banks, financial institutions, law firms and related media partners who participated in the event as exhibitors/sponsors.

An evening networking reception was also included in the program’s line up.


Exhibit location provided easy access to attendees.

Representing the Society was Campbell, CA based James O. Brown, ASA, who is a business consulting partner with Perisho Tombor Brown and chair of ASA’s Business Valuation Discipline Marketing Subcommittee.

Mr. Brown managed ASA’s booth, answered questions, distributed hand outs and branded giveaways and promoted the benefits of hiring designated members to the attending estate planning attorneys, accountants, certified life underwriters, bank trust and investment officers, financial advisers and wealth planning professionals.

When asked about his experience, Jim responded by saying, “meeting face-to-face with professionals is priceless. Not only do you have a chance to leave a positive impression, but also an opportunity to create a potential referral source.”



Hartsburg Appointed Editor of the MT&S Journal


Brad Hartsburg, ASA, CPPA, CSA.

Brad Hartsburg, ASA, CPPA, CSA has been appointed editor of the MT&S Journal. Mr. Hartsburg is a machinery & technical specialties appraiser and president of Calgary, Alberta based Fortress Machinery Appraisals & Consulting Inc. which serves predominantly the west and other areas of Canada, including the Yukon and Northwest Territories.

Brad is an Accredited Senior Appraiser (ASA) with the American Society of Appraisers, as well as CPPA, a Canadian Personal Property Appraiser with the Canadian Personal Property Appraisers Group, and CSA, a Certified Senior Appraiser with the Equipment Appraisers Association of North America with 40 years of industry experience. He specializes in appraisals of heavy equipment; heavy trucks and trailering equipment in all industries for specific purposes of asset based lending, insurance purposes, International Financial Reporting Standards as well as mergers and acquisitions. He has 24 years of Caterpillar dealer experience as Used Equipment Manager, Customer Service Manager, Product Support Salesperson, General Line Equipment Salesperson and Interprovincial Journeyman Heavy Duty Mechanic and was the General Manager of an industrial auction company as well as a heavy truck and diesel engine consultant for the Ford Motor Company and grew up in the family heavy truck and trailer business. He belongs to local industry associations such as the Alberta Road Builders and Heavy Construction Association, BBB and others. He has been a designated member for the past 12 years and an active volunteer leader in the Society’s MTS Discipline Committee and Vancouver Chapter Membership Chairman, which has now become part of ASA’s Virtual Chapter. View bio here.

The MT&S Journal is a publication of the Machinery and Technical Specialties Discipline Committee of ASA. The journal is written both for the appraiser who values equipment on a regular basis, and for those who may have a professional interest in the subject.

The journal will be participating as a media partner/sponsor for the upcoming ASA 2015 International Appraisers Conference to be held October 18-21, 2015 in Las Vegas, NV at the Mirage Hotel & Casino and for the ASA-MTS hosted 5th Annual Equipment Valuation Conference to be held June 7-8, 2016 in Cleveland, OH at the Metropolitan at The 9.

Information about subscriptions, advertising and article submissions is available online or by calling (800) 272-8258 or +1 (703) 478-2228.


ASA Represented at IAAO 2015


L to R: Mike Pratt, ASA; Rob Schlegel, ASA (past international president), and Ronald E. Prat, ASA.

Mike Pratt, ASA and Ronald Prat, ASA represented ASA at the 81st Annual Conference on Assessment Administration hosted by the International Association of Assessing Officers (IAAO). This three-day conference was held in Indianapolis, Indiana from September 13-16, 2015 and brought together over 1,000 administrators and decisions makers from all over the world. This conference focuses on property assessment administration, education, and research on property tax policies. This conference also offered attendees a wide range of educational sessions, networking, exhibits and events.


L to R: Ronald E. Prat, ASA and Mike Pratt, ASA at the ASA booth at IAAO.

ASA’s booth at IAAO generated a tremendous amount of traffic and interest in ASA’s Ad Valorem/Mass Appraisal specialty designations. Mike and Ron networked with attendees, gave way ASA handouts/brochures and promotional items, and informed attendees about the Society’s Real Property Discipline’s educational and accreditation programs. One of their main goals for attending was to increase exposure and clarification about the Society’s Ad Valorem/Mass Appraisal designation and the reciprocity with other private professional organizations in an effort to bolster membership and designations overall. The importance of ASA’s presence at this conference solidifies the Society’s continued commitment to the advancement of assessment administration and education worldwide. There was also a tremendous amount of interest in ASA’s Machinery & Technical Specialties (MTS) and Personal Property (PP) disciplines, because of the tangible aspects surrounding both disciplines and ASA’s membership in general and how valuable the Society’s designation program adds to the credibility that comes with being an ASA.


L to R: Mike Pratt, ASA and Ron Worth, CAE (IAAO Executive Director)

“ASA recognizes the important goal and challenges facing assessment administrators around the globe and we are committed to helping you find viable solutions to valuation problems,” said Ronald E. Prat, ASA.

Mike Pratt, ASA stated that, “The Society’s designation program was very well received by assessors, especially the ad valorem/mass appraisal, MTS and PP designations. It was a great opportunity for ASA to attend and spread the word about ASA’s values, goals, membership, designation and education.”


2015 Leadership Orientation at ASA Headquarters

ASA’s Annual Leadership Training Orientation was held on Tuesday, September 1, 2015 at the American Society of Appraisers’ headquarters in Reston, VA.

2015-08-31 21.12.46_blog

Attendees during orientation at ASA Headquarters.

Leadership training was a full day of welcoming and introductions. Discussion included the board’s roles and responsibilities, parliamentary procedures, strategic plan, legal duties of officers and directors, and the role of ASA headquarters departments. This training is done to help incoming leaders understand what to expect and insights the ASA board, discipline leadership and headquarters.

Chris Rosenthal, CPA/ABV/CFF, ASA, AEP, the new Business Valuation Governor and PAC Chair quoted, “It was a great day. An in person orientation meeting like yesterday is really the only way to quickly get your hands around the day to day operations of the organization. Jim and his team have created a customer service focused organization that we should all be proud of. It was great to meet most of the staff and hear directly from them the role that they play. It was also good for me as a new Governor to meet in person my fellow governors and gain clarity on our role within the organization.”

2015-09-01 03.10.02_BLOG

William A. Johnston, ASA – Chair, BV; Sharon Desfor, ASA – Int’l Secretary/Treasurer and William P. Wilson III, FASA – Chair – RP.

“Four and a half years ago, I first became a Governor of the ASA. Three and a half years ago, Jim Hirt became our CEO. I must say that the policy Jim instituted – of offering the new governors, committee chairs, and officers an orientation to ASA leadership – has been the best of ideas. Instead of muddling through and trying to learn on the job, Jim brings us all together in one room with our staff members, legal counsel, and a not-for-profit advisor. We learn our duties and the priorities of our office, along with ASA governance structure and the legalities of being a Delaware corporation with a Federal 501(c)6 status. We’re given the tools to balance the needs of our discipline or region against the needs of the Society. Hats off and my personal thanks to Jim for thinking of this and making it happen,” said Sharon A. Desfor, ASA, Treasurer.

Those in attendance included, Linda B. Trugman, ASA – President; Sharon A. Desfor, ASA – Secretary/Treasurer; Mary B. Reich, ASA, MGA – GJ Gov.; David Crick, ASA – MTS Gov.; William P. Wilson, FASA – RP Discipline Chair; Michael T. Orman, ASA – RP Gov.; R. Chris Rosenthal, ASA – BV Gov.; William A. Johnston, ASA – BV Discipline Chair; Edith Yeomans, FASA – PP Discipline Chair and Richard Hause, ASA – Parliamentarian.

Guest presenters included Richard F. Dorman, CAE, Stephen M. Schaefer, Esq. and ASA headquarters staff.

View photos from Leadership Orientation here.


ARM Panel Interview

*|MC:SUBJECT|*Editors Note: The American Society of Appraisers is the acknowledged leader in appraisal review and management (ARM). Three-quarters of a century in appraisal education count when you want the finest service in ARM.

ASA sat down with Karin Lusnic, ASA , Roger P. Durkin, FASA and Robert Podwalny, FASA  for a little Q&A to learn more about the Appraisal Review and Management discipline at ASA.

Q: How has the appraisal review and management specialty changed over the past five years?

KL: As a practitioner in Slovene appraisal environment (part of EU) I can say that we noticed an increased interest for professional appraisal reviews in past 2-3 years, driven mostly by banks and auditors (especially on real estate segment). Rather than relying on in house reviews, users of valuation reports are now more often requesting assistance of professional reviews. On the other hand request for structured professional reviews in court cases or in other transactions are at this point still low.

In part, the increased interest for appraisal review (in our case) can also be attributed to new local (Slovene) appraisal review standard (effective as at beginning of 2014) that puts appraisers under similar set of requirements as USPAP 3.

RD: Appraisal Review has moved away from & Management. There is a fast growing appraisal review practice. Dodd Frank Statute mandated that all appraisals for bank be reviewed meaning a USPAP Standard 3 Review.

RP: ARM was originally formed to find a way for executives and owners of large appraisal companies to become members of the ASA. These were individuals who did not actually do appraisal but managed the appraisal activities of their respective companies. Later when ASA merged with a governmental appraisal society, it was a way to recognize and bring in those members into ASA. More recently, as an outfall of the financial institutions near total collapse for the second time in less than 25 years, the governmental regulators recognized that part of the problem was due to faulty appraisals, and recognized that there were no regulatory national appraisal standards for appraisers. Thus, the Appraisal Foundation came into being. This was the initial step that lead to the recognition that not only were standards necessary but there was a need for reviewers of appraisals as well. The Dodd-Frank Bill was passed to help avert problems in the future. One of the provisions was that stated that appraisals performed for federally insured financial institutions, required an independent process of hiring appraisers and having the appraisals reviewed.

Q: What new trends do you see impacting those who specialize in this area?

KL: It can be argued that appraisal review in our environment is at a “start-up” phase and could potentially be impacted the most by banks (based on European Banking regulation requirements). At this stage it is difficult to speculate how the profession will be impacted. I believe however that this could lead to increased interest in appraisal review education on the side of banks and to potential formation of ARM specialized companies in the long run. The next new trend is probably litigation.

RD: The latest trend is litigation. Appraisers seldom were sued. Today, appraisers are regularly sued for negligence, gross negligence, etc. Appraisers should be aware that the appraisal report affects someone’s wealth and as such makes the appraiser more and more vulnerable to criticism and damage suits.

RP: Over the last several years, I have seen a number of companies spring up offering appraisal review services. I believe ASA was the first to recognize the need. Roger Durkin, FASA, became Chair of the Committee and the committee was reorganized and through his efforts a new set of courses were developed. We have seen over 150 people go through the classes and the ARM designated appraisers grow from the low 30’s to where we are now ~65+. In discussions that I have had with the OCC and various financial institutions, they all indicated that as the Dodd-Frank Bill is fully implemented, this will require many appraisal reviewers for not only real property but for personal property and business valuations in the next few years.

Q: Why should appraisers from other specialties consider educating themselves on related issues?

RD: All disciplines would benefit from the ARM courses, particular the practice sessions that teach how to “objectively” critique another appraiser’s work. Too many appraisers apply their own view on whether another appraisal report is proper. This leads to subjective and sometime liable… for which the appraisal can be sued.

RP: First and foremost are that so many appraisal reports leave a lot to be desired because so many appraisers do not know how to write an appraisal report in the first place. The individuals, who are self-employed or leave a big company to go out on their own, then have to learn how to write the report. Unfortunately, many of the classes offered in report writing fall short and or are preaching dogma. Dogma is what has been passed down over time by practicing appraisers over generations.

To become a reviewer of appraisals, one must be able to know what an appraisal is and understand the standards the appraisal reports are measured against. It is important to teach the reviewer to maintain objectivity and keep the “I” or “We” out of the review. It is also important to only focus on the work product and not start criticizing the individual.

KL: On this point I fully agree with what RD and RP have already said above. I can only add that reviewing an appraisal is much more challenging compared to conducting a valuation report. One must be aware of technical issues such as valuation theory, has to know the standards,…etc, however also be aware of the ethics.

Q: What is the greatest potential growth for ARM?

KL: Being from Slovene (Europe) environment I can only comment on potential for ARM development in our region. In my opinion the potential is there, however it will at a first stage require better understanding of valuation review (what they can get out of it) by users.

RD: The greatest potential for ARM growth has been and is now bringing into ASA a portion of the nearly 100,000 State Certified Real Estate Appraisers. Review is big business in the market for federally related appraisals.

RP: I see the potential for growth in the ARM discipline to continue as it has over the last few years and eventually become the premier discipline within ASA. I see a potential of over 100,000 potential individuals taking the ARM Classes. This would include the State certified licensed appraisers who do not already a member of any professional society. I also see that the loan and credit officers of financial institutions would also benefit as well as the IRS appraisal review agents as well.

Q: Does ARM represent a global opportunity for ASA?

KL: I would say yes. To my understanding ARM courses by ASA are already taught internationally, so there is a need for that. It however needs to be understood that development of valuation profession or valuation profession organizations (VPOs) in Europe varies a lot from country to country and from discipline to discipline. You have countries with very developed valuation profession and structured set of standards on one hand, while on the other hand you would have countries where valuation policies are only being put in place. This of course results in different educational requirements in different potential for appraisal review growth.

RD: Yes and no. I taught a review course for the Slovenian Appraisers a few months ago. Their standard of practice is the principles based International Valuation Standards. Slovenia is the only country in the world that has adopted IVS as the law. In the U.S. real estate state certified appraiser have statutory USPAP. IVS is principles based standards and therefore open to wide interpretation. Some like that idea because there are no ‘rules’. However, when the regulators turn on you, the situation would be far better if there were clear ‘rules’ instead of principles. Remember Barbarossa speaking to Sparrow in the Pirates of the Caribbean… He said, ‘the pirate code is not rules you see, they’re more like guidelines.”

RP: It is a definite yes. This is demonstrated by having already members of ASA with a designation in ARM in other countries. As a matter of fact, the ARM Discipline for the first time is putting on a full series of educational programs at the upcoming ASA International Conference. Some of our presenters are individuals who hold an ARM designation and are from Russia and Slovenia. The presenters in the ARM educational sessions are individuals who hold high positions in these international arenas and have a wealth of insight as to the potential growth of the ARM discipline globally. The global attention of ARM is in part driven by the proposed convergence between the Appraisal Foundation and the International Valuation Standards Committee. Both groups have recognized the need for qualified reviewers and common standards.

Q: Can you give us some background information on the pre conference courses ARM204 and ARM207 that are being offered prior to ASA’s 2015 International Appraisers Conference in Las Vegas?

KL: I sat in on the ARM 207 course that was offered in Slovenia. It is a well-designed 2 day course that provides a basic full overview of what appraisers need to know when doing appraisal review.

RD: ARM204 is tentatively scheduled for the October 15-18, before the conference starts ARM207 is a 2-day course that we also put on in Slovenia. In addition, I am doing an hour on Tuesday related to the Court/Litigation and Appraisal Review.

RP: The ARM 204 class is one of the two POV classes (the other ARM201) that are required to be taken by already designated appraisers to get a second designation for appraisal review in their discipline. The Board of Governors passed a special provision to assist individuals who are or want to be reviewers in their discipline only.

The ARM 207 is a special introductory 2 day course that was designed to provide an overview of what the ARM discipline is about. It covers its history and the events that have occurred that has created the need for the ARM designation. It also provides a detailed overview that covers briefly the four POV courses explaining what the participants will gain from them as well as what the anticipated future of appraisal review will hold.

Q: What is special about the ARM offerings being presented during the Monday through Wednesday sessions at the 2015 International Conference this year in Las Vegas?

RP: First, this is the first time the ARM discipline has put together a separate program for the entire conference. During the planning sessions, we strove to get the most high profile individuals to be speakers, from all over the world who are in high positions in their respective corporations and have valuable information to share with appraisers about issues affecting their work in appraising and appraisal review. We have succeeded in achieving that goal. Not only are our speakers well known and respected globally but they are in strategic positions to bring important up to date issues affecting the appraisal profession from a domestic as well as international perspective. I urge all attending the conference not to miss this opportunity to gain valuable insight into the valuation issues and challenges. This is especially true with the convergence of GAAP and the International Accounting Standards and the convergence of the USPAP and IVSC standards as well. This is the new frontier!


KLusnic_Karinarin Lusnic, ASA is a licensed business valuation appraiser, holding Accredited Senior Appraiser (American Society of Appraisers), ARM and Slovene Business Valuation appraiser designations. She is a member of Appraisal committee at the Slovene Institute of Auditors, member of Advisory Forum Group at IVSC and member of marketing committee at IIBV.

Durkin_Roger75x100BWRoger P. Durkin, FASA is a Boston attorney and appraiser. His law firm defends appraisers before the state license board.



Robert (Bob) Podwalny, FASA is the current Chair of ARM Committee, past chair of MTS Committee, Past Governor, Past Education Committee Chair, Vice Chair BOE for ARM &MTS, A fellow of ASA, Past Executive VP Union Bank Commercial Leasing, Sr.VP Bank of America Leasing, POV Course developer for ARM & MTS and Sr. instructor Contributing author to all three editions of Valuing M&E.


Editors Note: Thank you Karin, Roger and Bob for taking the time to discuss ASA’s ARM discipline with us.

For the first time, ASA’s ARM committee is offering a full schedule of educational sessions for the 2015 International Appraisers Conference. These sessions are incredibly valuable for ARM appraisers but also to appraisers of other disciplines. To view the full conference ARM schedule, click here.

To learn more about ASA’s ARM offerings, visit our website here.



Spotlight on ASA’s New Introduction to Archaeogemology Webinar

Editor’s Note: The American Society of Appraisers will air a live online webinar called Introduction to Archaeogemology on Friday, September 11, 2015 from 1:00pm – 3:00pm ET. Below, for those new to this topic, let’s take a closer look to learn more it. Following that is a Q&A with instructor Dr. Cigdem Lule, FGA, GG (GIA). 


Gold sheets and semi-precious stones from a pit grave at Kamini on Naxos. Late Bronze Age, 1200 – 1100 BC. Photo credit: Zde

Q: What is archaeogemology?
Archaeogemology is a combination of gemology, archaeology and geology to identify ancient gems and determine their geographical and mineralogical origins. Gemologist can identify gems, but archaeologists want to know the origins of the gem and how it got here. Archaeogemology can help find gem origins.

Q: How is archaeogemology practiced?
Archaeogemologists research how gems were interpreted and traded by ancient civilizations from a mineralogist point of view. Often, researchers from different disciplines will cooperate in order to gain a fuller understanding of the ancient societies through their use of gems.

Q: Why should appraisers, jewelers, gemologists or other professionals involved in the appraisal of gems & jewelry attend this webinar?
Attendees of the live webinar will learn how to recognize the importance of multidisciplinary research of gems, assess basic features in gems that are associated with certain eras and cultures in human history, communicate more in depth information about not only of jewelry but also of gems with clients, and develop a better understanding of how gems and minerals have been used in different eras.


Dr. Cigdem Lule, PhD, FGA, GG (GIA)

Q: Who will be the presenter?
The developer and presenter of this live webinar, Dr. Cigdem Lule, FGA, GG (GIA) is a renowned research gemologist and mineralogist who has dedicated a large part of her professional career to the identification of gem findings from archaeological sites.

Dr. Lüle earned her PhD. in Mineralogy at Hacettepe University in Turkey. Her interest in mineralogy evolved to focus on gem and ornamental minerals. In 1997, she was awarded the British Council of Turkey Scholarship to study gemology at the prestigious Gemmological Association of Great Britain in London. In 2000, she was granted the Chevening Scholarship for PhD. research at the Ashmolean Museum of Oxford and the Natural History Museum of London, UK by the British Council of Turkey. Dr. Lüle relocated to Great Britain in 2001 where she established residence for the next 10 years. In 2005, she earned a graduate gemologist diploma from the Gemological Institute of America.

Dr. Lüle was employed as an instructor at the London Campus of the GIA from 2004 until 2010. In 2010, Dr. Lüle relocated to the USA and joined the staff of Gemworld International Inc., in March 2011 as Special Projects. Today, Dr. Lüle is also the technical advisor of the new World of Color, color communication system and the contributing editor of the GemGuide’s Gem Market News.

Q: You’re a long time research gemologist and mineralogist. How did you get involved in this area of interest?
I studied gemology while I was an MSc. student in mineralogy in late 1990’s. During my gemology diploma course in London, I attended a conference where mainly ancient and historical gems discussed. I was fascinated by the subject yet surprised that there was a disconnect between mineralogical research and archaeological findings of gems. Upon my return to my home country, Turkey, I discussed the subject with my professors at both mineralogy and archaeology departments. I was delighted by the reaction of the archaeologists. They would welcome the non-destructive identification techniques of gemology while a mineralogist can shed light in the geological origin of the gem artifacts. This is particularly important because most people think that archaeogemology is all about identifying ancient gems. I believe that a multidisciplinary subject should be able to offer more than that.


Antique Sri Lankan Sapphire. The unusual cutting style is dated around 15th century. Photo courtesy of Stuart Robertson.

Q: What new trends do you see impacting those who specialize in this area?
I’m not sure about the word “trend” but my hope is to bring more awareness in the diversity of gems used in ancient civilizations and their geographical origin. This point should be recognized by the museums all over the world to start with. Eventually, researchers need to move away from relying on ancient texts and start working with more advanced techniques of mineralogy to understand the gems that are used in the ancient world. I also believe that this kind of collaboration will help to establish a better nomenclature of gemology.

Q: What can attendees of the webinar expect to take away from this webinar?
I hope to provide an additional perspective on how to utilize gemology in investigation of ancient gems. Today’s gemologists is under false impression that only our modern world can understand gems in detail. I will demonstrate the well informed approach of ancients to gems and how they utilized them with examples.

Editors Note: To register or for more information visit ASA Online.


Chicago ASA Volunteers at ICAP August Seminar


Barton DeLacy, ASA; Joe Calvanico, ASA and Art Pincomb, ASA (L-R) represented the Chicago Chapter of ASA at ICAP Seminar. Also present but not pictured were Steven LaMantia, ASA and Patricia H. Atwood, ASA.

ASA Chicago volunteers enjoyed educational programs and camaraderie while representing ASA at the annual Seminar of ICAP (Illinois Coalition of Appraisal Professionals) on August 10, 2015, in Lisle, IL. Attended by approximately 300 mostly real property appraisers, the ICAP educational offerings ranged from the use of statistics to drones to appraisal software and also included up-to-the minute legal, legislative and regulatory updates. Chicago Chapter members present were Barton DeLacy, ASA; Joe Calvanico, ASA; Art Pincomb, ASA; Steven LaMantia, ASA and Patricia H. Atwood, ASA.

The all day event featured an in-depth statistics case study and an analysis of the application of drones to the appraisal industry. Attendees were offered a choice of workshops presented by Narrative 1, ACI and Total software. The Seminar concluded with speakers, who addressed recent legal cases related to appraisers and current legislative and regulatory issues.

ASA is a sponsor of ICAP, which works to promote the appraisal profession and its image to the general public and to users of appraisal services. ICAP initiates discussion and analysis of issues affecting professional appraisers and monitors political action with the intent to influence legislation, regulation and public opinion toward the appraisal profession.


Farewell to a Friend: Remembering Park R. Johnson

Johnson_ParkASA lost a dedicated volunteer and dear friend on Wednesday July 15, 2015. Park R. Johnson was a designated Machinery & Technical Specialties member from the greater Chicago area. Throughout Park’s 13 years of membership he held multiple leadership positions, including: president of the Chicago chapter, editor of The M&TS Journal, and member at-large for the Machinery & Technical Specialties discipline.

Beyond his service to ASA, Park was principal of Arbor Advisory Group, Inc.—a valuation and consulting firm. He held previous positions at Deloitte, Hilco and MFS-WorldCom and was a graduate of Georgetown University – The McDonough School of Business. Park’s unique experience and expertise in the valuation of machinery & equipment and inventory led to his speaking and writing on the subject, as well as acting as an expert witness. Park was also a loving husband and father.

Johnson_ParkIn remembering their dear friend, fellow members commented on their respect for Park’s knowledge/grasp of complex standards and relying on him as a “sounding board” or “sanity check.”

Chicago Chapter president, Jordan L. Donsky, ASA, in a fitting tribute said it best, saying “I will miss my friend Park. I will miss running into him at our events, his smile and the caring way he had about him, always taking time to say hello to people and just take a few minutes.”

Remembrances may be submitted to the Deerfield Education Foundation, 517 Deerfield Road, Deerfield, IL 60015.

View obituary for Park R. Johnson here.



MTS202AS Aircraft Valuation Class Special Event

Amelia Rose Earhart

Amelia Rose Earhart

ASA, in coordination with Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, is set to offer MTS202AS – Machinery and Equipment Valuation Methodology (Aviation Specific) October 5-8, 2015 in Daytona Beach, FL.

This course is specific to aircraft appraisal. Topics covered include: issues of price versus value, indirect costs, use of development of indexes, recommended rounding of figures, types of value and supporting conclusions for various purposes. In addition, George Kleros, Senior Vice President of Jet Support Services, Inc. will be making a presentation as part of the class agenda for ME202AS in October in Daytona Beach.

Bonus to Course Registrants: Embry-Riddle will be hosting a special event, “Following the Legacy with Amelia Rose Earhart” to be held Tuesday, October 6 at 7:00pm.

Photo by Amelia Rose Earhart

Photo by Amelia Rose Earhart

Amelia Rose Earhart was named in honor of Amelia Earhart, one of the most famous female aviators, and continues Amelia’s pioneering ways. Amelia Rose has dedicated her work to helping young women learn to fly through scholarships and educational STEM opportunities as president of the Fly with Amelia Foundation. She will discuss her efforts to raise the profile of women in aviation through her foundation and her honorary 24,300 nautical mile flight around the globe. A question and answer session will follow.

The ASA aircraft specific classes which are being held at Embry–Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, Florida nad in Farnborough, England are jointly sponsored by Embry–Riddle Aeronautical University, Jet Support Services Inc. (JSSI) and ASA.

To learn more about this special event click here and to register for MTS202AS visit ASA Online or call (800) 272-8258.



embryriddle  jssi



ASA Wisconsin Chapter Website Spotlight

Editors Note: The Wisconsin Chapter of the American Society of Appraisers brings together appraisers across disciplines from all across Wisconsin. The spotlight today is on ASA’s Wisconsin Chapter’s website. The website is the works of Theresa Zeidler-Shonat, ASA and President of the Wisconsin Chapter. To learn more about the Wisconsin Chapter and their website we sat down with Theresa for a little Q&A.

Theresa Zeidler-Shonat, ASA and President of ASA's Wisconsin Chapter.

Theresa Zeidler-Shonat, ASA and President of ASA’s Wisconsin Chapter.

Q: We’d like to commend the ASA’s Wisconsin Chapter on the design of your website. What was your vision for the website?
A: The vision for the website was multi-faceted, and it was designed to accomplish multiple goals. It is more and more true that people do research online before making decisions about hiring an appraiser – or, for that matter, spending money on anything. It is, therefore, crucial to not only have an online presence, but have a presence that reflects the caliber of service you provide. The Wisconsin Chapter has some excellent appraisers, and we wanted our website to communicate that excellence. To that end, it is working well, as we have received inquiries requesting help finding a local appraiser, and inquiries from people who are interested in joining the ASA.

Our other primary goal was related to facilitating chapter communication. We wanted to make it easy for our members to find information about the chapter – be it meeting dates and times, officer contact information, past meeting minutes, or slide decks from presentations at chapter meetings.

Related to that goal, we wanted to make it easy for people to RSVP for meetings, so we’ve included online registration and online payments as part of the website. This both simplifies the RSVP process for chapter members and reduces the administrative time officers spend managing and coordinating chapter meetings.

ASA's Wisconsin Chapter's website home page.

ASA’s Wisconsin Chapter’s website home page.

Q: What challenges did you face in bringing your vision to life on a website?
A: We set ourselves a few targets as part of the decision-making process: we wanted to contain costs of both the design and ongoing maintenance of the website, we wanted to have a website user interface that was easy and intuitive, so that updating the website could be done by pretty much any member of the chapter who was interested in taking on the responsibility down the road, and we wanted to make sure that maintaining the website didn’t become a full-time job in and of itself.

To that end, I looked at a number of webhosting services, and particularly ones that also offered site design services or templates. I then did an informal poll of a few people I know whose actual full-time job involves at least some webmaster duties, and considered their recommendations for a website platform. Ultimately, I ended up selecting WordPress as the right platform for our website. I was surprised to learn how many companies use WordPress for all or part of their websites – companies like The New York Times, CNN, People Magazine, LinkedIn, Groupe Vivendi… the list goes on and on. You can find it here, if you are interested.

We used a WordPress template for the site design, and we used WordPress to obtain our domain name – which, by the way, cost all of $26 for a year’s registration and domain mapping. That, plus the cost of a few stock photo licenses, was the total cost of our website. While we could have spent more by using a premium template, or registering multiple domain names, we chose to keep costs low – and we believe the website is very effective. Updating the website is simple – it uses WordPress’ dashboard, so if you can update a blog, you can update the website, and you can grant administrative access to as many, or as few, people as you would like.

The whole process was surprisingly easy and quick – it took approximately one afternoon to get from “we’re a go, let’s build a website!” to the point at which the website was up and running. I was familiar with WordPress, and have a personal interest in website design, which may have sped things up, but even if you were completely unfamiliar with WordPress, it’s so intuitive that the process would be relatively quick.

Beyond the “how do I build the foundation/where do I begin?” questions, we also looked at what the best way to manage online RSVPs. There are a number of free and low-cost services that do this. The one we chose, Eventbrite, doesn’t charge a fee for free events, but does impose a surcharge for collecting online payments. Payments are automatically deposited directly into our Chapter’s bank a few days after the meeting. It’s efficient, convenient, and easy. Researching online RSVP options took a few hours and a bit of discussion (convenience vs. lower fees was one of the discussion points), but once set up, it requires about 30 minutes of administrative time per meeting. In comparison to the amount of time it takes to manually manage RSVPs for meetings and take cash or checks to the bank, and hand-writing receipts (which is what we had been doing) it is an enormous time-saver.

Q: Can you explain the different efforts taken to market ASA’s Wisconsin Chapter appraisers to the people of Wisconsin?
A: This is a good question, and it is something that we are very much in the infancy of considering. Historically, the Wisconsin Chapter relied on its individual members to discuss the ASA in their own communications with their clients and prospective clients – and this is still a fabulous way to market. People like to do business with people the like, and they (usually) like people who talk to them. However, we know that demographic preferences are shifting – people always have the internet at their fingertips and an online presence is crucial.

Beyond that, people don’t want you to tell them how good you are, they want you to show them, to provide a demonstration of what you know. This is part the reason that the slide decks from our meetings are available on our website to anyone who goes looking for them, not hidden behind a members-only wall – it’s content marketing!

We also have a small-but-growing social media presence.

Q: Are there any other ways to interact with ASA Wisconsin Appraisers?
A: As I just noted, we have a social media presence. You can find us on Facebook and we have a LinkedIn group. We also have some content shared on SlideShare. We are considering a Twitter presence, but doing Twitter “right” requires a time commitment. Twitter is most effective as a marketing tool if it is used frequently. Once you in the habit of using Twitter frequently, you don’t want to just post marketing content on Twitter – you look like spam if you do that. Remember that Twitter is “social” media –you get the highest engagement/usefulness/return on your time and effort if 2/3 of your posts are actual interactions with people or human interest updates, and only 1/3 of your posts are marketing updates.

You can also look for our members on the “Find an Appraiser” page of the ASA’s website and reach out directly.

Editors Note: Thank you Theresa for taking the time to speak with us. We applaud ASA’s Wisconsin Chapter’s website on their clean, straightforward, easy to navigate and professional representation of their chapter and the Society. We hope this will inspire other chapters to actively engage with one another and their community!