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IGS-NA news

IGS-NA | April 1, 2018 | By:

The following are highlights of the many initiatives of IGS-NA over the last few months.

IGS-NA supports Geosynthetics 2019

The North American Chapter of the International Geosynthetics Society (IGS-NA) is proud to support the Geosynthetics 2019 conference, which is organized by the Geosynthetic Materials Association, to be held Feb. 10–13, 2019, at the Marriott Marquis in Houston, Texas. IGS-NA encourages its members and affiliates to attend the conference and participate in the trade show. For more information, visit

Educate the Educators a success

IGS-NA held a successful Educate the Educators (EtE) in Kingston, Ontario, Canada, in December 2017. EtE provided training and educational materials to 35 engineering professors from across the United States and Canada, enabling them to offer state-of-the-practice geosynthetics education to their students at their universities. This is IGS-NA’s second EtE event since relaunching the initiative in 2015. Special thanks to our Diamond Event Sponsors Cetco, GSE Environmental, Groupe Solmax and TenCate, and to our Sapphire Event Sponsors AGRU, HUESKER and Thrace-LINQ. IGS-NA thanks the 2015 EtE sponsors—the Geosynthetic Materials Association, Geosynthetics Institute, TenCate, Erosion Control Technology Council, Presto Geosystems, GSE Environmental, HUESKER, Thrace-LINQ and TRI Environmental; remaining funds from the 2015 event were used to support the 2017 event.

IGS-NA establishes service award

IGS-NA has established an Excellence in Service Award to recognize members who have shown outstanding leadership and dedication to the objectives of IGS-NA or the geosynthetics industry. Award recipients must be an IGS-NA member in good standing or have been an IGS-NA member at the time that the services to be recognized were performed. Recipients may be individuals (one or more than one), corporations or students.

Those considered for the award shall have excelled with regard to one or more of the following criteria:

  • Provided leadership in advancing geosynthetics education and research
  • Created opportunities to collect, evaluate and disseminate knowledge on all matters relevant to geosynthetics and their application
  • Organized technical conferences, seminars and workshops
  • Offered advanced training of current users of geosynthetics
  • Advanced the science and technology of geosynthetics and their applications
  • Trained future users of geosynthetics
  • Trained geosynthetic educators
  • Promoted geosynthetics as part of engineering curricula
  • Targeted impactful new members of IGS-NA
  • Improved communication with members of IGS-NA
  • Enhanced partnerships with associated organizations

Thus, with the establishment of this award, we have an opportunity to recognize a great number of deserving and outstanding members, peers and friends. IGS-NA members are encouraged to submit nominations for the award.

The first edition of the awards will be presented at the Geosynthetics 2019 conference in Houston, Texas. Please send your nominations by Oct. 1, 2018, to

IGS-NA webinars

In the last few months of 2017 and the first few months of 2018, IGS-NA held several technical webinars. In January 2018, Richard Thiel, P.E., of Thiel
Engineering presented “Pond Liner System Design and Operation.” In December 2017, Beth Wilbanks of TenCate Geosynthetics provided a technical understanding behind “Minimum Average Roll Values (MARV) in Geosynthetic Specifications.” In November 2017, Abigail Gilson, M.S., P.E., of TRI Environmental led our first webinar, which provided attendees with an “Overview of Electrical Leak Location (ELL) Methods and Their Applications.” IGS-NA would like to thank our presenters for their time and hard work.

IGS-NA will continue to provide webinars throughout 2018. Members receive one free webinar coupon upon paying annual dues. Membership registration/renewal can be done at If you would like to present a technical webinar on behalf of IGS-NA, please submit your proposal to a board member or to

Dr. R. Kerry Rowe appointed officer of the Order of Canada

Created in 1967, the Order of Canada recognizes outstanding achievement and dedication to the community and to Canada. Recipients are leaders in their field and have contributed greatly to the betterment of the nation and beyond.

The governor general of the Order of Canada Julie Payette inducted Dr. R. Kerry Rowe, P.Ing., a professor and the Canada Research Chair in geotechnical and geoenvironmental engineering at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, Canada, and a founding board member of IGS-NA, for his seminal contributions to the field of geoenvironmental engineering, notably for his pioneering research in waste barrier systems.


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