Rosa Cheney, who succeeded Zack Deas as QCC Chair, spoke with Quality Times about the opportunities for the Quality Certification Program (QCP) presented by her appointment to the AWI Board of Directors. As of Jan. 1, she also succeeds Randy Estabrook as ex-officio AWI board member. It is the first time in AWI history that an active member of the design community has been honored with the opportunity. While serving AWI’s mission, Ms. Cheney’s primary duty is representation of the Quality Certification Program.
QT: From your perspective, what opportunities do you see ahead for safeguarding QCP’s mission and goals, as well as promoting more widespread acceptance of QCP among woodworkers?
RC: My primary goal is to help provide a unified strategic vision for QCP and AWI as they tackle changes to policy to address the new ANSI/AWI Standards. With recognition as the compliance organization for the architectural woodworking industry, QCP has the experience necessary for AWI to build upon as it rolls out its inspection program to ensure compliance with the tested Duty Levels in the new ANSI/ AWI 0641-2019—Architectural Wood Casework Standard. I see a huge benefit for AWI to tapping into QCP’s knowledge base on the inspection process, with the aim of minimizing disruption to the manufacturer’s workflow. QCP has developed remote inspection processes as well as education for woodworkers on the inspection process and the AWI Standards.
I see QCP’s role expanding to take on the additional inspection responsibilities resulting from the new ANSI/AWI Standards. And as the new standards expose more woodworkers to QCP’s inspection process, I believe woodworkers will see the added value that QCP brings to their own QA/QC processes. The new ANSI/AWI Casework Standard will allow manufacturers to use their own joinery and detailing so long as it has been tested to the standard, thus eliminating what was a previous hurdle for some manufacturers in satisfying QCP requirements. I am optimistic that the ranks of QCP Licensees will increase as a result of the continued ANSI/AWI Standards roll-out, and I think that will be a benefit to the design community in seeing which woodworkers are consistently delivering quality woodworking.
QT: As a professional in the design/build community, you are in a unique position to share insights from a “customer’s” perspective to the woodworking industry. Do you see any benefits that the woodwork industry may gain from your perspectives?
RC: I have been involved in strategic planning for both organizations, which was a learning experience for me into what woodworkers face on a day-to-day basis. I tried to bring an equal understanding of the how the design community works and what their day-to-day issues are. The woodworking industry can benefit by understanding the motivations and viewpoints of the design community and their clients, which are different than those of the woodworker and general contractor.
Architects are the epitome of “a jack of all trades, but master of none.” We know a little about everything that goes into a building’s construction, but we will never be experts in every single trade. We are not experts in woodworking; AWI members are. Woodworkers and QCP licensees can develop relationships with the design community through education efforts about AWI Standards, and then leverage those relationships to improve their competitiveness.
QT: How does diversity come into play as you represent QCP on the AWI Board of Directors?
RC: Having different voices at the AWI table opens the door to new perspectives, approaches, and innovation. In some ways, that’s what the new ANSI/AWI Standards do now, too. Previously, there was one way to build casework that complied with the AWI Standards, and that way was great, but it did not allow for manufacturers to innovate and there was no way to measure structural performance.
The new suite of ANSI/AWI Standards provide for measurable performance. The design community is accustomed to measurability in other trades. I believe the design community will welcome the new AWI Standards.
Rosa Cheney is the owner of Rosa D Cheney AIA, PLLC, a firm devoted to providing technical architectural consulting services for architects and building owners. She is a licensed architect in Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania, and the District of Columbia; a LEED®-accredited professional; a member of the American Institute of Architects; and a Certified Construction Specifier (CCS) with the Construction Specifications Institute. The firm’s services primarily include the preparation of construction specifications, sustainability and LEED® consulting services, as well as quality assurance reviews of construction documents for coordination, code compliance and constructability. Ms. Cheney began a three-year term on the Quality Certification Corporation (QCC) Board of Directors in January 2018 after election in the fall of 2017. She has participated in strategic planning for both QCC and AWI.