Welcome to The New York City Chapter of NYSSPE
A message from Chapter President Luke Martinek, P.E.:
Greetings friends and colleagues,
Welcome to the New York Chapter of the New York State Society of Professional Engineers (NYSSPE).
I’ve been asked what our society represents – both by those who want to know how we’re different from other groups and by those who wonder why societies like these even exist. My answer is simple: our purpose is to maintain the integrity and importance of the professional engineer’s license.
For those who like a quick dip into history, the National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE) was established in 1934 to realize a simple but vital goal, to “…create an inclusive, nontechnical organization dedicated to the interests of licensed professional engineers, regardless of practice area, that would protect engineers (and the public) from unqualified practitioners, build public recognition for the profession, and stand against unethical practices and inadequate compensation.”
I was recently contacted by a person who’d visited our website and wanted advice from a professional engineer in an area that I’m not experienced in. Thanks to this society, I was able to connect them to one of our colleagues who knows the topic well, thanks to his three decades of experience. This is more than just a story about why networking works – it also serves as a reminder of the first two fundamental cannons of the code of ethics for engineers:
- Hold paramount the safety, health, and welfare of the public.
- Perform services only in the areas of their competence.
In a time where the importance of truly learned and practiced expertise is all too often disregarded for speed or reduced cost, these cannons – and societies like ours – are more important than ever. Thank you for your shared commitment to conducting ourselves honorably, responsibly, ethically, and lawfully and for enhancing the honor, reputation, and usefulness of our profession.
Luke Martinek, PE
Diego Alaimo PE
Ivan Ramirez PE
Erich Arcement, PE
Alfred Brand PE
What our members say:
I have been a member of the NYSSPE’s New York City Chapter for more than 12 years.
My sincere thanks and appreciation to all the members of the NYSSPE for supporting me
during my service as the President during the last two years, and also as Senior Vice President for one year. The informative lectures and scholarship events have made my experience very enjoyable and rewarding.”
In 1975 I joined the Board about a year after I became a member, serving in nearly office except treasurer. Currently I have been Chapter Secretary for over 20 years. It has been an interesting and rewarding experience especially meeting those young people we annually aid with our scholar awards.
The New York City Chapter of the NYSSPE has allowed me to extend my network in the construction industry and help the NYC Community. I have met several Professional Engineers, Construction Managers, and Directors of Public Agencies in the Dinner Events. I feel that I learned a lot from their experiences. Volunteering in the Mathcounts Competition was also a very rewarding experience to me. The passion of the students during the competition reminded me why I became an Engineer and inspired me to become a better one
NSPE has provided me with invaluable service and social opportunities that no engineer should miss. I am delighted to be involved with an organization so dedicated to our profession, and I have enjoyed sharing learning experiences with peers at a local, state and regional level.
For 33 years I have had the pleasure of interacting with engineers of all disciplines, both in New York City and around the State. I have benefited from the company of many individuals who I would not have met in a technical setting within my Civil Engineering field. I have learned from them and I am a better person because of those relationships. Our Society’s mission of furthering the Engineering Profession through information, lectures, student awards and student Mathcounts competitions have been personally rewarding and, I hope, have contributed to the overall greater good
We are sad to announce the passing of our Chapter member and past president Howard Blitman PE, F.NSPE, at the age of 94.
Howard was a member of NYSSPE for nearly 60 years. He served as our Chapter President in 1974-75 and as President of NYSSPE in 1978-79. He then went on to become National President of NSPE in 2002-03.
Howard was one of the NYSSPE members who organized PIE, the Practicing Institute of Engineering, over 40 years ago. PIE was formed in anticipation of the State instituting continuing professional training requirements for engineering, which NY and many other states now have.
Howard was born in 1926. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in civil engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He served in both World War II and the Korean War. After holding several post-war engineering positions, he joined the Blitman Construction Corporation, which had been founded by his father. He spent his career there, becoming President in 1970. He was licensed to practice engineering as a professional engineer in New York, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, and South Carolina. He had broad interests and also held a Master of Arts degree in political science and government.
Howard was a good friend of our Chapter. He was a New York Chapter Board member continuously until 2017. He particularly enjoyed attending our December holiday meetings which, prior to recent years, were purely social dinners with many spouses in attendance.
Howard leaves his wife, Maureen Blitman, three children and eight grandchildren. Our Chapter sends its deepest condolences to Howard’s family, friends and colleagues. He will be missed by our organization and our profession.
We learned recently that our valued member Ed Finfer, PE, passed away last year at the age of 91. Ed joined our society in 1958. He spent his career working for the New York City Department of Environmental Protection. Ed was a regular attendee at our monthly Chapter meetings up until the last few years.
Ed’s interest outside of work was travel. He traveled worldwide using only public transportation. I remember sitting at meetings with him where he would describe traveling in Asian countries using only local bus and rail transportation. He had an amazing adventuresome spirit which, on the surface, was incongruous with his small physical stature and mild manner.
I cherish my memories of my conversations with Ed, which enhanced our New York Chapter NYSSPE experience.
Encouraging students to study engineering is a primary mission of the New York City Chapter of the New York State Society of Professional Engineers (NYSSPE). To fulfil our mission we maintain a Scholar Awards program which is comprised of two different awards.
This year’s 2020 Society of Engineering and Architectural Professionals (SEAP) Award recipients are Joy Herrera of the Bronx High School of Science ($2000) and Cara Mulrooney of Loyola School ($2000). The 2020 New York Chapter of NYSSPE Scholar Award recipients are Shreya Paul of Stuyvesant High School ($2000) and William Joseph Gushee of Xavier High School ($2000).
The Society of Engineering and Architectural Professionals (SEAP) Award comes from an independent fund for education purposes which is held by the Foundation for Engineering Education (FEE) and administered by the New York Chapter of NYSSPE. The SEAP award is open to a student who lives in or attends a school in any Borough of New York City. This year two students were granted SEAP awards in the amount of $2000 each.
The second scholarship award, known as the New York Chapter Scholar Award, is a cash award funded from the chapter’s treasury. The chapter award is given to a student who either lives in or attends a school in Manhattan.
At the beginning of each calendar year the New York Chapter reaches out to a large number of public and private high schools to solicit applications from students who intend to study engineering in college. Submittals include information on the student’s academic record, an essay from the student describing their goals for the future and, if possible, a letter of recommendation from a teacher or counselor. The submittals are reviewed and evaluated by our
The Secretary notified the Board of the passing of his friend Frank Diaz-Balart, PE. Frank was President of the Chapter from 1997 to 1999 and served as an Officer and Board member for many years. He retired from the Port Authority of NY & NJ and moved to Florida to be closer to family.