ASA Norcal President’s Message for April 2011 – Robert P. Lentz III, ASA

Are You Ready?


This past week was one of historical significance, not only because of the tumultuous changes toward greater personal freedom in the Middle East, but also because of the earthquake and tsunami in Japan.  That earthquake, recorded at 8.9 on the Richter Scale, was reported as one of the five strongest in the world in the past hundred years.  The main island of Japan, Honshu, moved eight feet to the east in a matter of seconds.  The 30-foot tsunami that resulted added to the thousands of lives lost, as well as to the yen equivalent of hundreds of billions of dollars in property damage. 


There is a lesson for us in Northern California: Are we prepared?  Whether you have participated in the emergency drills, have adequate food, water and medical supplies, and have made appropriate plans to protect your family and property is certainly your choice as to how you make the best use of your time.


So why am I putting this into the NorCal President’s Message?  “Be Prepared” is much more than the motto of the Boy Scouts.  That same message is appropriate for us as professional appraisers in the ASA: Are we prepared? 


Like the tsunami that emanated from Japan and hit the coast of California yesterday, we are part of world events and a global economy.  Like it or not, how many of you are familiar with the changes in international accounting (the proposed IFRS standards that I discussed in my January 2011 President’s Message)?  Had you attended our Chapter Meeting on March 10th, you would have enjoyed a very provocative dialogue with Dr. Tom Rose, the Chief Risk Officer of Bridgeway Capital Advisors.  Unfortunately, many of you missed it.


On the national front, how many of you know about the changes regarding accreditation as a requirement for appraisals with possible IRS consequences?  This topic was discussed in my September Newsletter.


How many of you are familiar with the legislative changes taking place in California?  Our Chapter is actively participating in the American Society of Appraisers – California Chapters, known colloquially as “ASA-CA.”  Formally set up on March 9, 2011, our representation in this group is terrific: Ray Mattison (a member of both our Chapter and the Los Angeles Chapter) is the ASA-CA Chairman.  Jack Young, our Chapter Secretary, is the ASA-CA Treasurer.  And Greg Ansel, a valued Chapter member and our ASA Region 5 Governor, is the tie-breaking Director.  With $25 coming from each Chapter member’s annual national dues, we now should have the resources necessary to have a credible lobbying effort in Sacramento to look after our interests as ASA appraisers.  (This subject was addressed in my President’s Message just last month.)


I encourage each of you to make at least a modest investment of your time, and to take a more active role in your membership in the ASA and in our Chapter.  Human beings are not designed to be passive and inert.  Rather, we are designed to be active and engaged.  Our collective goal should be to enrich our personal experience as human beings, and to make a contribution to others in our community.  In our Chapter, we place a premium on face-to-face communication, and not coincidentally, have a good time.


Throughout our lives, we ultimately learn that there are two kinds of people: those who wake up and make things happen, and those who wake up and wonder what happened. 


What kind of person are you?  Are YOU ready?




We have extended the member review period for our revised Chapter Bylaws to the end of March.  If you have not already done so, please take a look at them:




and send your comments to any Chapter Officer or Director not later than Thursday, March 31.  Thank you!


I also encourage each of you to take a look at our Chapter Calendar at the conclusion of this Newsletter.  There are some very talented and hard-working people who are giving each of us the opportunity to continue our professional education and meet our CPE (“Continuing Professional Education”) requirements for reaccreditation, all right here in the Bay Area.  We can save you a lot of travel time and expense if you take a class or two right here in our own, earthquake-prone backyard.  But we cannot offer these programs without your enthusiastic and financial participation.


‘See you on Thursday, April 14th for the two estate attorneys’ presentation at L’Olivier on Davis Street in San Francisco.  You are also invited to the monthly Board Meeting that begins at 5:15 p.m., with the wine reception beginning at 6:15 p.m. and dinner at 7:00.  You’ll have a good time, and be on your way home by 9:00.


‘See you then!