June 25, 2013
Mewis ready for ACEC chairmanship reins
(Source: Daily Commercial News, click for original article)
The incoming chair of the Association of Consulting Engineering Companies (ACEC)-Canada is gearing up to meet the challenge of organizing and launching a new initiative, as well as running his consulting company.
"As the new chair, it is important to know where you are going," said Jason Mewis.
"But, I also have to prepare my business to make sure it keeps running, as I get ready for the next year." One of the biggest issues for the ACEC moving forward is how do we do more to engage firms in the natural resource sector."
The founder and president of Saskatoon-based ENGCOMP Engineering & Computing Professionals Inc. will officially take over the ACEC chair at Summit 2013, held in Lake Louise, Alta. from June 20 to 22.
He said his main responsibility is to represent the full spectrum of consulting engineering companies in Canada.
However, this year, the ACEC wants to develop a stronger relationship between the mining industry and engineering consultants, which involves the identification of opportunities for collaboration.
"We are just getting started with a strategy and recently held a meeting with the Mining Association of Canada," said Mewis.
"I want to meet with other members of their board and start a conversation on some of the common issues we can work on."
Before becoming the chair of the ACEC, Mewis was an active member the Consulting Engineers of Saskatchewan (CES) for seven years and served on its board of directors.
As a result, he represented the CES at the national level for four years.
As a director for ACEC Canada, Mewis has also held the position of treasurer and vice-chair.
He understands how important it is for smaller jurisdictions, such as Saskatchewan, to have representation on the executive team at the national level.
"There is no doubt that things operate differently in the various provinces and even between western and eastern Canada," he said.
"But, there is commonality across the country and internationally in the consulting engineering business. Some of the issues facing our members are the same everywhere, with regional differences in particular economies."
ENGCOMP currently employs about 45 people and has provided service to processing facilities in heavy industry and the mining sector since 2004.
The company has expertise in structural engineering for industrial, commercial and residential projects, and specializes in risk analysis, cost estimating, planning and computer task automation.
"The biggest element of challenge to taking on this role is the time impact and being engaged in more travel and work," said Mewis.
"I have prepared the leadership and management in the firm to take on the work load and understand the structure to run the company. Other leaders in the business need to take on more responsibility, in order to free up the time for me to take on this position."
He expects a secondary benefit from this new time-management strategy.
"When I come back from this role, the company will run itself and allow me to be more of a strategic leader, which involves building relationships, business development, developing the strategic direction of the company and looking at new ways to do business," said Mewis, who has more than 17 years of experience as a structural engineer and project manager.
He has presented at many seminars and conferences across North America on the subject of project risk and is a recognized expert in this area.
He and his wife Tara have four children: Cole, Drew, Max and Bree.
In his spare time he enjoys golf, basketball, tennis and baseball and has coached his son's basketball team for the last 10 years.
When not playing sports, he enjoys time with his family in the outdoors camping, fishing, hunting, biking and canoeing.
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