Chapter 41 Timeline
The Founding Years
The idea to form an organization of right of way agents was first conceived by Frank C. Balfour and George Mitchell in 1933. The duo started the Southern California Right of Way Agents Association in 1934, which became the American Right of Way Association (AR/WA) in 1935. Bay Area Chapter 2 was added in 1938. Oregon Chapter 3, the first chapter outside of California, joined the organization in 1950. The first National Seminar was held in 1955 in Los Angeles, with 603 attendees representing 150 private and public organizations. In 1959 the Association welcomed its first chapter outside the United States, Ontario Chapter 29.
June 21, 1961
Iowa Joins the Movement
With a letter from Balfour to Emil John at the State Highway Commission in Ames, a movement to form a new chapter of AR/WA in Iowa began to take shape.
May 25, 1962
Iowa-Nebraska Chapter No. 41 was authorized by AR/WA's Board of Directors at the Annual National Seminar in Minneapolis. Later that same year some 200 letters were sent to prospective members, inviting them to become members of this new "baby chapter".
November 30, 1962
In a letter from Guy Gilchrist of Iowa Power and Light Company in Des Moines to D.H. McArthur of Northern Natural Gas Company in Omaha, it was reported that response to the membership invitations "does not seem encouraging". Seventeen months after Balfour's letter to John ignited the movement, only eighteen applications for membership had been received. That was fewer than half of the commitments needed to get the chapter off the ground.
February 1, 1963
William Davis air-mailed a letter from the Iowa State Highway Commission to AR/WA national headquarters in Los Angeles. This letter certified that applications for membership to the organization had been secured from sixty-seven individuals, each of whom “are interested in Right of Way work and are qualified under Section A-10, Article 1 of the By-laws of the American Right of Way Association”.
February 15, 1963
Nearly two years of planning and preparation were finally rewarded when Iowa-Nebraska Chapter No. 41 celebrated its official admittance to the AR/WA at the Charter Presentation Dinner at the Hotel Kirkwood in downtown Des Moines. 134 persons attended the gala, including 73 members, their guests, and several visiting "pilgrims" from Chapters 1, 5, 20, and 33. Frank Balfour presented the charter certificate. Emil John was sworn in as Chapter 41's first Chapter President by Gene Land, President of Universal Field Services and Regional Chairman for Region 3. Also sworn in at the event were Don Langenfeld (1st Vice-President), Lowell Burger (2nd Vice-President), Lawrence Quinn (3rd Vice-President), William Davis (Secretary-Treasurer), Neil Bohner (Assistant Secretary-Treasurer), Guy Gilchrist (Director), and Roy Fisher (Director).
April 19, 1963
Full Speed Ahead
The first regular chapter meeting of Chapter 41, an all-day affair including lunch, was held. It was preceded by a meeting of the Executive Committee on April 18.
Growth and Prosperity
Chapter 41 soared to 120 members in 1964. In 1975, Chapter 41 reached its peak of 126 members.
AR/WA members voted to change the name of the organization to International Right of Way Association (IRWA).
Where Dreams Come True
IRWA commemorated its 50th Anniversary. Chapter 41 members Lloyd McLaughlin, Alvin Kay, and Leonard Dierking composed a brief history of the chapter for publication in a special 50th Anniversary issue of Right of Way Magazine. The year-long celebration culminated in June at the International Seminar, held at the Disneyland Hotel in Anaheim, California.
Party on the Platte
Historical documents reveal that the vast majority of charter members were Iowans. However, the chapter’s decision to alternate early chapter meetings between Omaha and Des Moines helped grow interest among right of way professionals in Nebraska. In 1992, Platte River Chapter No. 78 was awarded its own charter. Chapter 78 has built an identity and outstanding legacy of its own since then. But the link between the two chapters remains strong.
March 14, 2013
Still Going Strong
Chapter 41 celebrated its 50th Anniversary during the Region 3 Spring Forum at Prairie Meadows Conference Center in Altoona. About 75 members, former members, and guests attended the event. A day-long presentation of Standards of Practice for the Right of Way Professional was followed by social hour and a grand banquet. Eleven former Chapter Presidents addressed the gathering, sharing their thoughts and memories of Chapter 41. More than $1,300 was raised at the event for the Right of Way International Education Foundation (RWIEF).
Chapter 41 Presidents
2016/17 - Brian Currie, SR/WA
2015/16 - Rita Rasmussen, SR/WA, R/W-NAC
2014/15 - Shelly Whiteing, SR/WA, R/W-RAC
2013/14 - Chad Johnson, SR/WA
2012/13 - Joe A. Anderson, SR/WA, R/W-AC
2011/12 - Tim Bunkers, SR/WA, R/W-NAC
2010/11 - Don Corrigan, SR/WA, R/W-RAC
2008/09 - James P. Diemer, SR/WA
2006/07 - Bernard B. Banker, SR/WA
2004/05 - Shelly Whiteing, SR/WA, R/W-RAC
2002/03 - Bernard B. Banker, SR/WA
2001 - Rita Rasmussen, SR/WA, R/W-NAC
2000 - Nancy Halvorson, SR/WA, R/W-RAC
1999 - Fred R. Cirksena, SR/WA
1998 - David L. Hingtgen
1997 - James P. Diemer, SR/WA
1996 - Susan Albright
1995 - Robert L. North
1994 - Jack C. Jensen, SR/WA
1993 - L. Robert Dahlgren, SR/WA
1992 - Gerald L. Kennedy, SR/WA
1991 - Lance E. Stumbo
1990 - Martin A. Zuehlke
1989 - Darwin C. Monson, SR/WA
1988 - Thomas D. Pillen
1987 - Richard L. Baze, SR/WA
1986 - William H. Lounsbury, Jr.
1985 - L. Robert Dahlgren, SR/WA
1984 - Glenn Graham
1983 - Jessie B. Kelley, SR/WA
1982 - Raymond H. Mehner, SR/WA
1981 - James E. Graham
1980 - Robert A. Nelson, SR/WA
1979 - Raymond A. Callahan, SR/WA
1978 - Alvin V. Kay, SR/WA
1977 - Howard I. Jensen, SR/WA
1976 - Donald D. Shirley, SR/WA
1975 - Robert L. Stumbo, SR/WA
1974 - Dean L. Halsey
1973 - Gordon A. Sweitzer
1972 - Jerome L. Wozny, SR/WA
1971 - James F. Crookman, SR/WA
1970 - William P. Davis, SR/WA
1969 - Thomas N. Wright, SR/WA
1968 - Leonard W. Dierking, SR/WA
1967 - Earl G. Kelley
1966 - Lawrence L. Quinn
1965 - Lowell J. Burger
1964 - Don Langenfeld
1963 - Emil V. John
Professional of the Year
2016 - Brian Currie, SR/WA
2015 - Sarah Cook, SR/WA
2014 - Dwayne Myers
2013 - Joe A. Anderson, SR/WA, R/W-AC *
2012 - Chad Johnson, SR/WA
2011 - David L. Hingtgen
2010 - Joe A. Anderson, SR/WA, R/W-AC
2009 - Linda Martens, R/W-RAC
2008 - Don Corrigan, SR/WA, R/W-RAC *
2007 - Shelly Whiteing, SR/WA, R/W-RAC
2006 - Bernard B. Banker, SR/WA *
2005 - Nancy Halvorson, SR/WA, R/W-RAC *
2004 - Dan Shiflett, SR/WA, R/W-NAC
2003 - James P. Diemer, SR/WA
2002 - Rita Rasmussen, SR/WA, R/W-NAC
2001 - Nancy Halvorson, SR/WA, R/W-RAC
1990 - L. Robert Dahlgren, SR/WA
1989 - Richard L. Baze, SR/WA
1988 - Jessie B. Kelley, SR/WA
1987 - Raymond A. Callahan, SR/WA
1986 - Glenn Graham
1985 - James E. Graham
1984 - Donald D. Shirley, SR/WA
1983 - Alvin V. Kay, SR/WA
1982 - Lloyd C. McLaughlin
1974 - Donald D. Shirley, SR/WA
* Region 3 Professional of the Year
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