Professor John M. Hanson, USA
At the closing of the Permanent Committee meeting in Innsbruck, September 15, 1997, the new President of IABSE, Klaus Ostenfeld, conferred Honorary Membership on outgoing President, Prof. John M. Hanson. Mr Ostenfeld noted that, after the revision of the By-Laws in 1990, Prof. Hanson was the first non-Swiss president in the nearly 70 year history of IABSE. This was an important step in maintaining IABSE's international character.
Prof. Hanson's term in office witnessed a number of changes and innovations in how the Association conducts its affairs, among them:
• Formulation of a revised Long Range Plan with the goal to be "the premiere organisation in the world on structural engineering," and the creation of three committees on Ethics, Membership and Public Affairs.
• Introduction of the differentiated membership fee scheme, which has opened up IABSE membership to engineers from economically disadvantaged countries, and which encourages younger members to join and retired members to stay on board (a scheme that has proven its effect by increased membership in all regions of the world).
• Enhanced communication within the Association through the "President's Corner" in Structural Engineering International.
• Introduction of the President-Elect system, which facilitates a smooth transition from one president to the next and maximum of continuity, without loosing momentum.
• Transfer of some aspects of US association culture to IABSE, bringing a new dimension to our association.
Prof. Hanson's list of accomplishments by no means ends here, and many ideas that were initiated during his term in office will see their realisation in coming years.
In concluding his expression of appreciation, Klaus Ostenfeld, the new President of IABSE presented Prof. Hanson with the Honorary Membership of IABSE, in recognition of his "years of generous and distinguished service to the Association, in particular as President from 1993 to 1997."