October 2008                                                                            The Official T.S.P.S. Chapter 5 Newsletter

Hot Off the Press….

The Bois d’Arc Post is the Official Chapter 5 Newsletter. This is your publication. It can never be any better than the flow of news you contribute. It is intended for Chapter 5 members and supporters to share ideas and information of interest, but it is also available to the general public. If you have any sort of information that would be of interest or beneficial to our members, please forward it so that we can include it in an upcoming edition. Contact Chapter 5 President Robert Cummings (214-478-6003) or Chris Freeman (972-226-8181) to discuss your Newsletter contribution. The Newsletter is maintained by Enterprise Operations, with maintenance funding provided by Lone Star Record & Abstract Services, Inc.

Thought for the Day….

Getting an idea should be like sitting down on a pin; it should make you jump up and do something.” – E.L. Simpson

Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.” -- Henry Cain

Remember what Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, as it is particularly applicable to Surveyors: “
Do not follow where the path may lead. Go, instead, where there is no path and leave a trail”.


Friendly Texas Advice…..

“He’s full of wind as a corn eatin’ horse.”

"You can't tell how deep a well is by measuring the length of the pump handle."


Chapter Election Results Are In…..Changing of the Guard
The ballots have been tallied and verified, and a new group of Chapter leaders are in place to take Chapter 5 forward. Hats off to Robert Schneeberg and his service to Chapter 5 and its members. Robert did an outstanding job as Chapter President. The year was highlighted by good solid meeting attendance, another great Golf Tournament under the direction of Sean Flaherty, great first year strides for the local SkillsUSA program at Duncanville High School, and record amounts of funds raised for various Chapter projects. Dallas is looked upon from Chapters and TSPS members across the State as a leader, and we did not disappoint.

The following members were formally installed as Officers at the Joint Meeting with Chapter 2 on September 9th at the Hard Eight BBQ Restaurant in Coppell, with incoming TSPS President Michael Parker performing the installation ceremony:

Chapter 5 Officers installed by Incoming TSPS President Michael Parker...

President – Bob Cummings, RPLS
1st VP – Wayne Terry, RPLS, LSLS
2nd VP – Raul Wong, RPLS
Secretary/Treasurer – John Pierce, RPLS
1 Year Director – Jason Jernigan, RPLS
1 Year Director – Tim Jackson, RPLS
2 Year Director – Scott Posey, RPLS
2 Year Director – Richard Ortiz

Robert Schneeberg, RPLS, will transition to Past President, and Chris Freeman, RPLS will continue to serve as Chapter Representative at the state Board Meetings.

Contact Info for Chapter 5 Officers 2008-2009: Click Here

Ten Questions with Bob Cummings…..

New Chapter 5 Bob Cummings gets the “Red Carpet Treatment” from his staff at Lamb Star following installation the night before.

1. How long have you been involved in the land surveying profession?
I started as a draftsman for a small survey firm in Plano in 1974.

2. What originally attracted you to the profession?
I enjoyed the diversity of the work and saw that I could create a career in surveying if I applied myself. The learning experiences and encouragement from “seminars” put on by people like John Pierce and Gary Gilley (yes, they were teaching us way back then, too) were instrumental in developing the skills and knowledge needed to pass the exams for registration.

3. What do you see as the greatest benefit to being a TSPS member?
I see benefits from the associations and interactions with my peers, sharing thoughts concerning the profession.

4. What is the biggest challenge facing the profession?
Finding ways to attract the right people to the profession and creating avenues for them to develop a career in surveying.

5. What is the biggest challenge for TSPS as an association?
See #4 above

6. How does your employer feel about your TSPS involvement?
I am grateful that Lamb-Star has given me full support in my TSPS and survey career endeavors. They have supported and participated in Chapter activities as well as entrusted me with the creation of the firm’s survey department.

7. What is your top priority for the Dallas Chapter?
My priority for the Chapter is to focus on determining how we can best serve our membership and their needs, while working to increase our Chapter’s presence at the state level.

8. How do we encourage the professional non-member to participate and join TSPS?
I believe we first have to find ways to just get them in the door. We need to continue the programs we have at the monthly meetings, and each of us has to get involved in bringing others to the meetings.

9. If you could change one thing about our association at the state level, what would it be, and why?
I have not been involved enough at the state level to answer this effectively. This is a good question for the future.

10. Do you foresee the day when surveyors won’t be necessary?
No. I believe that our profession will continue to provide a service to the public that perpetuates the history of the land and its uses.


Spotlight on…SKILLS USA Duncanville H.S. Survey Program

The students have returned and are anxious to move forward to learn more survey skills and increase their awareness of the future opportunities that may lie ahead. The professionals and firms of Chapter 5 need to actively support and nurture this program….there are so many ways how you can be part of the solution.

Try to be part of the solution by offering your time and knowledge to these very motivated students at Duncanville High School. To find out how you and/or your firm can assist in these efforts, contact John Pierce (jpierce@saminc.biz) or Bill Coleman (wcoleman@colemansurveying.com).

North Lake College Survey Classes…free books and calculators!!!
That’s right. Chapter 5 has made the decision to assist any student working for a TSPS member from either Chapter 5 or Chapter 2. The assistance will be in the form of providing the textbook and calculator for students in courses SRVY 1301, Introduction to Surveying and SRVY 1315, Surveying Calculations. To receive the scholarship monies, an application must be completed and submitted. Thank you Chapter 5 members, sponsors, and newsletter advertisers for making this service possible to assist the paraprofessionals who aspire to educate themselves. Contact John Pierce at 214-631-7888 for information or the scholarship application. Although too late for the current Fall semester, it’s not too early to start planning for the Spring 2009 semester next January. Also, several new course offerings are being prepared for the Spring semester!

In the Rearview Mirror…

n     August 19th Meeting at Cantina Laredo Restaurant had 55 attendees to hear Barton Burnett, Faculty Advisor to the Skills USA Survey Program at Duncanville High School, update us on the growing interest statewide in survey programs at the high school level.  Two of the Duncanville program students were also present to give their testimonials on the program, and to ask for continued assistance and guidance from Chapter 5.

A special presentation was made at the meeting.  John Clark of Geomatic Resources presented new survey equipment and software to John Pierce.  The donated items (data collectors, cables, software, and training) will be utilized in the various survey courses that are available at North Lake College.  Also contributing besides Geomatic Resources was Carlson Software and Carlson Desktop Solutions.  Assosciate Dean of Construction Management & Technology at North Lake College, Mike Cooley, was invited, but was unable to attend due to a conflict.

John Pierce (standing) receiving donated data collectors and software from John Clark, Rodney Walsh, and Donald Levy...

An additional donation was announced.  Justin Waldrip of ARS Engineers told attendees that his firm was donating 3 used Total Stations and 3 Data Collectors to TSPS Chapter 5.  In conjunction with that donation, valued at $2,500.00, Midwest Surveyors donated their services to calibrate the equipment ($1,200.00 value) so that it is functional and ready to go.  They also have agreed to donate 3 used tripods, prism poles, and prisms.  This donation will allow our Chapter to provide high school survey programs with nice equipment to learn and perform real field activities and procedures.  Thanks to all of you for helping Chapter 5 help others!

Midwest A&E employees Duane(l) and Charlie(r) presenting the calibrated Total Station donated by ARS Engineers with tripod and prism pole to Chapter 5 Rep. Chris Freeman

SurPac donations of $165 were collected at the meeting and forwarded to Anne Glasgow.

There were 8 attendees for the CST exam preparation held prior to the dinner meeting.  John Pierce conducted the session.

n     TSPS Strategic Planning was conducted in San Antonio on 8/22.  Chapter 5 members participating were incoming Director Richard Ortiz and Chapter Rep Chris Freeman.  Strategic Planning is held annually as a means to get TSPS members together from all across Texas to brainstorm and strategize for the year(s) ahead, setting Society goals, and mapping out strategies to accomplish Society goals.  Some of the focus at this year’s session included:  Membership, Education, and Skills USA.

n     September 9th Joint Meeting with Chapter 2 was held at the Hard Eight BBQ Restaurant in Coppell.  80+ attendees for the installation of Officers for each Chapter, with incoming state TSPS President Michael Parker doing the honors.  An informal evening, but special at the same time.

80+ members and guests from Chapters 2 & 5 at the Annual Joint Meeting


      A special presentation was conducted to recognize Garey Gilley for his   contribution to both Chapters’ scholarship funds from his donation this past April from proceeds from his Tarrant-Denton County Line seminar.

n     September 17th  Chapter 2 1st Annual Golf Tournament was a great success, with several Teams coming west from the Chapter 5 area.  A perfect day weather wise, although the Grounds Crew at the Trophy Club will need weeks to repair the stompin’ the course took from 80+ Surveyors.  Hats off to Rodney Walsh, Rhonna Stenger, etal for all their efforts.

n     Charlie Siever spent a couple of hours speaking to the 14 students in the Introduction to Surveying class at North Lake College, talking about equipment care and maintenance.  Always a worthwhile topic to people using survey equipment.  Thanks Charlie, we owe you a cold one. 

n     Chris Freeman was invited to give a presentation about surveying and career opportunities to a group of 20 students at North Lake College.  Chris spoke to the Introduction to Construction Technology class for 2 hours, showing the TSPS survey video, demonstrating a Total Station, and answering lots of questions.

Home Who We Are What We Do New Services Education-
(Skills USA)
Recognitions Virtual Office Tour TSPS Advertisement
Online Ordering Printable Order Form Online Deed Sketch Order Deed Sketch (Printable Request) Deeds & Plats Resource Links NCTRCA Certification HUB Certification

TSPS Affinity Partners

Proud members of the TLTA
 D-U-N-S  #


Certified Survey Technician exam prep classes continue...

Beginning with the May monthly meeting, the Dallas Chapter began offering Certified Survey Technician Level I and Level II examination prep sessions prior to every monthly meeting.  John Pierce leads this effort, to be held prior to regular monthly Chapter meetings at the Cantina Laredo Restaurant (southeast corner of Inwood Road/Lover’s Lane, next to the Inwood Theater) from 5-6pm.  This is an excellent opportunity for both office and field staff to familiarize themselves and prepare for the various Certification exams.  There is no cost to attend, and all are welcome to attend and participate.  Next scheduled session will be before the November 18th Chapter meeting at Cantina Laredo Restaurant.  For questions/info, contact John Pierce at 214-532-1667.

 TSPS State Nominations

Chapter 5 member Chris Freeman was recently nominated by the state Nominating Committee as a candidate for 2nd Vice President at the State level.  He currently serves as the Chapter 5 Rep at Board meetings, representing the interests of Chapter 5 and its members.  Be sure to consider Chris when you receive your ballot.  In addition, incoming TSPS President Michael Parker has asked Chris to Chair the Public Relations Committee.  Chris has served on the Committee the past 2 years.



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SIT & RPLS Exam Study Groups Submitted by Jason Jernigan, RPLS

The study groups to help SIT and RPLS candidates prepare to take their exams are now actively meeting.  The sessions are split up into two groups: those studying for the SIT and those studying for the RPLS.  The SIT group works problems from the NCEES practice exams, 1001 Solved Surveying Fundamentals Problems by Van Sickle, and the Land Surveyor Reference Manual by Harbin.  This group also reviews material for the business, grammar, and GIS questions on the SIT exam.  The RPLS group works the analytical and legal problems published on the TBPLS website and reviews anything else they can find to help prepare for the Texas specific exam.  Some of the books used to review for the RPLS exam include the Spry book, Decisions by Ken Gold, and Blacks Law Dictionary

The groups meet from 8 am to 12 noon on Saturdays at Halff Associates, Inc., 1201 North Bowser Road, Richardson, TX 75081.  There are usually 8-20 participants total.  There is no fee for coming to courses and breakfast is provided by Halff Associates.  Participants are asked to bring TBPLS approved calculators, pencils, paper, and relevant study material.  Everyone is welcome to bring questions for the group to work through. 

The first study group on August 23 went very well.  There were a total of 12 attendees evenly split between the two groups.  The RPLS group covered a summary of boundary law from the Harbin book and other sources.  They also reviewed how to manually inverse between coordinates, worked two basic analytical problems and discussed test taking techniques.  The SIT group worked through and discussed the AM portion of an NCEES review test.  The group has met several times since August, and the date for the next study group is October 4.  All meetings are FREE and will be from 8am-noon at Halff Associates, Inc., 1201 North Bowser Road, Richardson, TX 75081.  Contact Jason Jernigan at 214-346-6204 or jjernigan@halff.com for more information.

Bulletin Board Odds ‘n Ends….


Welcome New Members!


Joining TSPS and Chapter 5 in August were
Matt Gould, RPLS and Hyrme Roach.  Matt is the Survey Manager at the Frisco office of Cobb Fendley & Associates.  Hyrme is an employee at Owens Surveying in Greenville.  Hope to see ya’ll at upcoming Chapter 5 meetings and events.  Welcome to Chapter 5! 

October Library Display

Chapter 5 will return to the Nicholson Library in downtown Garland for a month long Survey display.  This will be the third display at the Library, which usually does not offer repeat displays.  Our success there and the interest by patrons makes us the exception.  If you’re in the neighborhood, drop by to check it out during the month of October.

NGS Calibration Baseline in Garland - Update!

Efforts are under way to establish an NGS Calibration Baseline, possibly in north Garland.  Chapter 5 members Wayne Terry and Glenn Breysacher have a potential site, and the City of Garland may lend support in construction of the monuments.  Wayne is coordinating with NGS on required procedures and equipment.  Chapter 5 ExCom has tentatively agreed to donate funds for materials.

Wayne and Glenn have scouted potential sites, and are awaiting approval from NGS.  Wayne has also inquired about including the TSPS logo on the monument disk, which also will need approval.  While no set timetable is in place, best guess/hope is to get approval for the establishment for early 2009.  We’ll keep you posted as news is available.                                            


Shake down the thunder…Anchors Away

Chapter 5 member Fred Bemenderfer recently returned from San Diego where he had traveled for his son Daniel’s graduation ceremony from the US Marine Corp’s Basic Training at Camp Pendleton.  Daniel is spending the next 6 weeks at Camp Lejuene, NC for Marine Combat Engineering Training.

Also, the son of Fred’s cousin, Thomas Bemenderfer, a senior walk-on offensive lineman at Notre Dame, was recently awarded a scholarship by the coaching staff for the second consecutive year.

Chapter 5 member John Melton relates that his son John is in the Navy and based out of San Diego.  John had the unique experience of being able to travel aboard his son’s ship from Pearl Harbor to San Diego.  During the voyage, John was able to mix and mingle with the hundreds of sailors and marines who dutifully serve our country, and even got the opportunity to participate in firing weapons.  As an added bonus, John was able to see his son receive a promotion. 

Boatswain’s Mate 3rd Class John Melton aboard the USS Comstock LSD 45

On the Horizon….

The next Chapter 5 meeting will be held Tuesday November 18th at the Cantina Laredo Restaurant on Lover’s Lane.  Guest Speaker will be State Senator John Carona.  Also, TSPS SurPac Chairman Bob Seipel will be attending to update members on the upcoming legislative session, and the importance of SurPac to our profession to protect and strengthen our interests.  Annual recognition awards will also be presented by Past President Robert Schneeberg.  Come join us, this will also be the first meeting with new President Bob Cummings.

Opportunities for You….

Chapter Committees

With new Chapter leaders comes the need for continued participation by Chapter members.  The strength of any volunteer organization is only as strong as the participation of its members.  Committees are always in need of people to lead and contribute.  There are typically 5 standing committees: Membership, Program, Public Relations & Education, Nominating, and Audit.  In addition, the President can assign a Special Committee if so desired.  If interested in being part of the solution and helping our Chapter and profession move forward, please contact any of the Chapter officers.

Career Day & School Presentations

Do you have kids in elementary, middle, or high school?  If yes, it’s a perfect opportunity to offer to present information about Surveying to students.  The Chapter can assist you with material if needed.  Or, if you need someone else to do a presentation to school or Scouting groups, contact Chris Freeman (972-226-8181) so he can arrange a speaker.  The presentations always are well received, and increase our visibility to the public and give kids alternative career possibilities.


Tech Tips………….by Charlie Siever of  MIDWEST A&E

Charlie’s gone racin’!  A monthly contributor, we gave Charlie a break this month.  He’ll be back in November.  He did mention that everyone needs to continue to take care with your equipment.  At times like these, everyone must make it a priority to minimize equipment issues.

Safety First…..Make it a Priority




October 23-27 --- TSPS Annual Convention: Cruise to Cozumel

November 18 --- Bob Seipel, TSPS SurPac Chairman & State Senator John Carona (Cantina Laredo Restaurant)

---next TBPLS Board Meeting to be held in Houston on Friday, October 17th.  The Board awards 4 CEU’s to attendees of their meetings. 

---next TSPS Board Meeting to be held in the Gulf of Mexico during the Cruise Convention in October.

Chapter 5 Meetings are held at:
Cantina LAREDO Restaurant
165 Inwood Village, Dallas, TX 75209
(Southeast Corner of Inwood & Lover’s Lane, next to Inwood Theater)
Phone: 214/350-5227 www.cantinalaredo.com
Social/Dinner Time: 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm (order from the menu)
Chapter Meeting: Business @ 7:00 pm, Program @ 7:30

Thanks to the following Full-Page Ad subscribers: Midwest A&E, Precise Land Records, Lone Star Record & Abstract, Geomatic Resources, WDS, GeoShack, and Dallas Aerial Surveys, Inc.

Be sure to support our friends at these firms, they support us!!

 2008 Newsletter Advertising…..Chapter 5 Executive Board Meeting members voted the following annual advertising rates for the 2008 calendar year:

   --Full Page $400.00 (11% reduction from 2007 rate)

   --Half Page $200.00

   --1/4 Page   $150.00

   --Business Card $75.00 (prorated rates available)

Archived News Letters:

Texas Society of Professional Surveyors
Dallas Chapter No. 5
P.O. Box 226933
Dallas, Texas 75222

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