Pipe Coater Group Names First Woman President At 45th Annual Meeting

June 2009 Vol. 236 No. 6

Lew Bullion, Senior Editor, Pipeline & Gas Journal

The National Association of Pipe Coating Applicators (NAPCA) elected the first female president in its history during its 45th annual convention held in April at the Westin La Paloma in Tucson, AZ.

During the four-day gathering, the group also singled out an industry veteran, Gregory N. Miller, for special recognition with its Hall Of Fame award and launched a change in organizational direction. Leaders said they expect the group to become more technically focused in its programming, more international in its outlook and more aggressive in seeking to work with and influence other industry associations and government agencies.

NAPCA is an association that, among other things, provides a forum for owners and operators of fixed pipe-coating facilities, manufacturers and suppliers of pipe coating materials and equipment, manufacturers of line pipe, providers of trucking and other transportation, consulting firms, independent inspection firms and stocking pipe distributors to network, share efficiencies, and address issues and problems facing their industries.

The convention’s schedule of events offers a combination of informative business meetings and recreational events. The business sessions included presentations by Allan Bradley of Questar Pipeline Company, John P. LaFontaine and Michael B. Surkein of ExxonMobil Development Company, Dr. Donald McNeeley of Chicago Tube & Iron, and Tony Silvestri of Williams Exploration Company.

The new slate of officers is led by Merry Brumbaugh, Vice President of Tubular Products at L.B. Foster Co., Pittsburgh, PA. She was elected 36th NAPCA president. Other new officers are Vice President Brendan Ryan, Vice President and General Manager-U.S.A. for Bredero Shaw, Houston; and Secretary/Treasurer Ryan Norris, Inside Sales Manager for Dura-Bond Coating, Inc., Export, PA. Merritt B. Chastain, III holds the position of NAPCA Managing Director and General Counsel and Jill Buja entered her first year as the Executive Secretary. Chastain also is the association’s General Counsel.

Hall Of Fame Honoree

Another highlight of the closing banquet was the announcement of the Hall of Fame honoree. The award is given only to those who have contributed greatly to the plant-applied pipe coating industry and to the association. The honoree may be a member or non-member, living or deceased. Annually, members may nominate individuals for this honor. Then, a select committee, consisting of the board of trustees, associate member chairman, managing director and all living recipients of the award, elects recipients of the Hall of Fame award, if any, by secret ballot.

The recipient for 2009 is Gregory N. Miller, CEO and managing director of Pipeline Inspection Co., Ltd. (the “SPY”). The award was presented by Managing Director Merritt B. Chastain, III, with the assistance of Miller’s mother, Beverly Wren, who has been a constant supporter of the association.

Greg Miller

Gregory N. Miller of Pipeline Inspection Co., left, was honored in April with the Hall of Fame award by the National Association of Pipe Coating Applicators. He is shown at left accepting the emblematic plaque from, center, his mother Beverly Wren who is a long-time association supporter (as was her husband George Wren, founder of Pipeline Inspection and also a recipient of the NAPCA Hall of Fame award) and Merritt B. Chastain, III, NAPCA Managing Director.

NAPCA says SPY has been deeply involved in the association since its inception and Miller became active in the group in the early 1970s, serving at one time as chairman of the associate members. Under his leadership SPY has continued as one of NAPCA’s largest convention sponsors from the early days to the present.

Miller was cited for his role as an “all-around great ambassador for NAPCA.” He is well known throughout the pipeline construction industry and is deeply involved in the activities of the Pipe Line Contractors Association, Distribution Contractors Association, Pipe Line Contractors of Canada and the International Pipe Line and Offshore Contractors Association.