Coming in the Fall BULLETIN
David Douin: Effecting Change Through Lasting Achievements
The forthcoming fall 2019 BULLETIN cover story features David A. Douin’s personal and professional journey to becoming the National Board’s seventh executive director and highlights the accomplishments he has made on behalf of the organization during his 11 years of service. Douin announced his retirement earlier this summer and will step down from his post at the end of this year.
Douin shares humorous recollections from his past and reveals the post-career activities he will pursue. He comments on the key initiatives he presided over during his tenure as executive director, and candidly shares his hopes for the organization’s future. Following is an excerpt from the article:
In the long stretch between earning his commission in 1982, and becoming executive director in January 2009, Douin’s roles as Illinois chief and active National Board member helped him accumulate the confidence and leadership experience that would pave the way for his successful bid as executive director.
Six years after joining the state of Illinois as an inspector, in 1988, Douin was promoted to assistant director of boiler and pressure vessel safety. Two years later he was promoted to director and became a National Board member. While chief, Douin worked to improve the state’s boiler safety program working hand-in-hand with the Illinois Boiler Board. Together they successfully updated the boiler rules, adopted all National Board programs, and secured salary increases for staff.
“The program was successful because I gained the trust of the Illinois Boiler Board and had the support of senior management – which is key to having a successful program and being a successful chief. You must have management buy-in,” Douin says.
By the early 1990s, Douin was quickly becoming an active National Board member serving on various National Board and ASME committees. Then, in 1997, he was elected second vice chairman on the Board of Trustees and served a three-year term. In October 2000, Don Tanner stepped down as chairman to pursue the executive director position. The members then elected Douin to fill the vacancy, and he served as chairman until 2008.
It was during his time as Board of Trustees chairman when Dave had a “lightbulb moment” regarding the possibility of one day becoming executive director. “I was in San Diego out on Point Loma having breakfast with Don Tanner at his favorite diner. I asked him, ‘Who do you think will take over when you finally decide to retire?’ And he said, ‘Why, you ought to, Davie.’ ”
Four years after that conversation, Tanner passed away while recovering from surgery, a week before his retirement. Douin was now at another turn in his career.
The fall issue will mail out in late October. Subscriptions to the BULLETIN are free. Click here to subscribe, and click here to access BULLETIN archives.