Dear IIMS Member I hope you and your families are keeping well during these testing times that we are facing the world over.

They say there’s never a perfect time to say goodbye, nor is there a perfect time to hand over the ‘gong’, especially in the middle of a storm which is playing havoc in our lives on two fronts – our, health and the economy. On the brighter side, we have positive news coming your way as Geoff Waddington takes over this column as your incoming President. Geoff is not only an optimist but has a lot of experience and knowledge to share. I have known him for many years as a friend first, and also as an IIMS board member. I assure you he is a people’s man and very approachable

This is my last column as I near the end of my two years as President. The time has flown, so let me ponder on some of the more testing moments and positive experiences. It was 6 years ago when my name was put forward for the Deputy Vice President’s role, bringing on a younger generation with new ideas. Hopefully, I have fulfilled some of that expectation, particularly with taking IIMS forward digitally. Since then we have made noticeable progress, driven mainly by Mike and his team at our Portchester HQ. The ongoing webinar series initiated by the team, the 24 hour online Marine Surveying Fest and the eCMID accreditation programs are some of the ways we have established

a digitally strong professional foothold. Also the CPD app and the initiative for making a simple website for every small surveying firm going about his surveying work at a small fee. It is amazing value and more should consider it. Long may the IIMS move digitally forward!

The experience of adapting and understanding priorities teaches one patience, at least it certainly has for me. I say this knowing that there is a wise bunch of senior surveyors around the table during board meetings, who take pride in giving their time and expertise for the good cause of uplifting our surveying profession. I have had the privilege of sharing many a long day gaining knowledge and learning from two of my many mentors on the IIMS board. Special mention must be made to one of these, namely our past president Captain Allen Brink, who has so often guided me and been steadfast in his straight-talking advice. I remain thankful to these wise men.

The UAE branch and committee have carried the President’s badge with as much pride as I have during these past two years. During the very first meeting, I was given a token of appreciation by the UAE branch committee after taking over as IIMS President. Nothing made me feel more honored than being appreciated by peers. 

We as the UAE branch were successful in keeping the traditions of our biennial conference on course and in doing so celebrated last November our 10th year as a branch, being the longest standing branch of IIMS thus far. We are grateful for all the support that as a branch we have received during those 10 years from local and international sponsors and members.

Finally, before passing on the baton, I have planned a get together by webinar to speak with the Regional Directors, Branch Chairmen, and in-country representatives who bear the torch for the IIMS in their respective regions and countries. We need more to come forward, but we surely need to hear first from the ones who have already volunteered for many years. The IIMS will continue to grow over the coming years and my parting vision is to see branches and in-country representatives on every coastline, convincing the communities who hire surveyors that there is now an organisation that follows the high professional standards that have been established in the surveying profession. As part of this, we look forward to the surveyor’s voluntary accreditation program that’s due to be rolled out soon.

Here’s wishing you all safety first and happy professional surveying. Like they aptly say from the country I come from “JAI HO”(or in English “let victory prevail” over COVID-19) 

 

Capt. Zarir Soli Irani,

President, IIMS
International Institute of Marine Surveying

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