This past August, the IES National Conference was held in Portland, Oregon. The national conference serves as a gathering of the IES committees and as an opportunity to run the general business of the national organization. Workshops, tradeshows, informational talks, networking and awards ceremonies are all part of the conference. At this year's event, five members of the board of directors made their way to the conference to represent the Houston Chapter on committees, in the District Level Check-In, at the Leadership Forum, and at the Emerging Professional Workshop. All of those who attended had an extremely enjoyable time meeting lighting professionals from across the globe and learning what is to come in design and lighting best practices.
A one day event prior to the start of the main conference, two of our directors attended to gather ideas on how to continue our success as a chapter, but also ways to improve and provide better programs and opportunities to the Houston lighting community. Focused both on internal functioning and work engaging the community, many of the ideas are currently moving towards implementation.
District 4 Check-In
Serving as a meeting between the chapters in our district and the district and regional leadership, our president worked to discuss how our chapter is doing, our plans for the coming year, and to learn what is going on in the district at large. As part of the role of the district governance as the conduit between the local chapters and the national organization, plans for the discussed to allow for greater collaboration between the sections and the national organization that will help make some of the behind the scenes items easier and more efficient.
Emerging Professional Workshop
The EP Workshop was an opportunity to meet with young professionals starting out their careers across the country and have special talks and events geared to this part of life. As part of the program, the EP's were taken on tours of the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and the University of Oregon's Energy Studies of Buildings Laboratory; both of which served as an opportunity to see the work that people are doing both at the University and Governmental levels to test and apply lighting theories to make buildings, lighting and energy safer and more resource conscientious. To round out the workshop, networking and an inspirational round table focused on developing the EP involvement in local chapters took place. As part of that work, the local chapter has a renewed focus on engaging young professionals in the Houston region and providing both social and educational opportunities for them.
Paper Sessions and Workshops
Serving as the educational portion of the conference, numerous professionals provided presentations on their research in various areas of the lighting field. Topics ranged from the impact light plays on travel, the ability to generate accurate models for tree influence on lighting and shading calculations, and the antioxidant properties of produce grown under tuneable lighting. But overwhelmingly, two topics rose to the top in number of presentations...those being the role of lighting in healthcare and the Internet of Things (IOT). In regards to the health care aspect, circadian rhythm was the topic of choice as researchers and presenters worked to both dispel myths, but also show what impact lighting is playing on our lives. This looks to be a topic that will continue to gain prominence as a greater focus from researchers and the IES continues development throughout the coming years.
IES Awards Ceremony
Recognizing the leaders and best of the lighting design world, as well as players who have served the community with their expertise and guidance for years past, the Awards Ceremony was an evening to behold. The lighting designs that were recognized that evening can only be described as inspired, and hearing the stories behind the designs only served to reinforce their beauty.