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Promoting and Celebrating Engineering in Rochester 

Serving the Rochester Community for over 120 years!     

October 2017

11-Oct-2017 7:16 PM | Greg Gdowski, PhD (Administrator)

Continuing with the historical sampling of the earlier writings on behalf of the Rochester Engineering Society, the years following "The Great War", into and through the “Great Depression”, continued to be a time of reaching out for the maturing Society, both locally and nationally.  The meeting minutes describe a series of technical discussions and presentations intended to broaden the technical horizons of the membership (especially the CE's, ME's and EE's).  The RES affiliated itself with a number of National technical societies, adopted local Affiliated Societies, frequently held joint meetings with them and continued taking action on a growing list of public matters. Certain issues of standardization, some crucial to public safety, became the responsibility of the RES and its affiliates. In the pervasive economic downturn of the “Great Depression”, the magazine offered classified advertising for unemployed engineers, technicians and draftsmen and took other steps to try to deal with the crisis. Still, it continued its effort to shape the function, purpose and infrastructure of the City of Rochester, and beyond. Soon, war would again affect the Society, taking away many of its leaders while providing opportunities for others to step forward to fill these vacancies.  In an effort to provide even greater perspective on the happenings and concerns of the day, a synopsis, featuring selected items from "The Rochester Engineer" has become an integral part of this series. The Second World War and the Korean Conflict are now history. These experiences have changed the face and, no doubt, the future of the community. The Rochester municipal leadership and the industrial community have become immersed in the cold-war, growth economy.

September 7, 1966 (Board of Directors Meeting, University Club) The Board approved applications from the Rochester Chapter of the American Institute of Industrial Engineers and from the Rochester Section of the American Welding Society for Affiliation with the RES. Chair of the Evening Programs Committee, John Wheeler, reported that several plant visits were being arranged for the 1966-67 year. Reporting for the RES Luncheons Committee, Dr. Kirkpatrick announced that all of the RES luncheons, for the balance of 1966, had been scheduled. On behalf of the recently- created Engineers’ Center Committee, Alexander M. Beebee Jr. reported on an overture from RIT for obtaining a barn on the RIT Henrietta property and for the sharing dining room, classroom and parking facilities, and the potential of this for an “RES Engineers’ Center.” He indicated that three sub-committees were at work in surveying interest among local engineering and technical organizations, studying facilities requirements to meet their needs and assessing means of meeting the financial requirements of such a facility.

“The Rochester Engineer” (September 1966)
The popular and successful RES Evening Seminar Series, along with the instructors, was announced, including “Matrix Methods for Engineering Analysis” (K.J. Saczalski, RIT), “Efficient Reading” (Dr. A.B. Herr, RIT), “Written Communications for Engineers” (E.L. Francis, General Dynamics/Electronics) and, “Critical Path Planning” (John M. Zabkar, General Dynamics/Electronics). This month’s segment of “Our Affiliates,” a series of articles describing the RES Affiliates, highlighted the Rochester Section of the American Society of Civil Engineers. Established in 1923, and comprising eight counties, the Rochester Section became an Affiliate of the RES in 1926. It was announced that RES Luncheon Series would be resumed on a weekly schedule; now on Wednesdays, to avoid conflicts with several other organizations. The first two programs would include “The Story of Pollution Control,” by William Steinfeldt, 23rd Ward Supervisor and “The Strasenburgh Planetarium,” by Ian McClennan, Director. RES Past-President, Dr. John W. (Jack) Graham, announced that he would be leaving the U of R to become the 11th President of Clarkson College of Technology, effective immediately. Editor’s note: Dr. Graham’s formal inauguration would be scheduled for Clarkson College’s Commencement Weekend, June 2-4, 1967, when he would present, (later-to-become  RES Past-President), Lee Loomis with his B.S. in mechanical engineering.

October 5, 1966 (Board of Directors Meeting - U of R Faculty Club) The Board approved an application from the Rochester Chapter for Metals to become an Affiliate of the RES. The Engineers’ Week Committee reported that Walt Disney had declined their invitation to become the keynote speaker at the upcoming, 1967 dinner, so they were now open to suggestions for alternatives. The Board approved an increase to seven cents per issue to Affiliate members, to offset the cost of switching to Third-Class mailing of the magazine. The Budget and Finance Committee reported that it was planning to develop a long-range plan for solving the RES’ financial problems. Meanwhile, the Board granted the Treasurer permission to borrow an additional $2,000 to cover current operating expenses.

“The Rochester Engineer” (October 1966)
In additional to previously mentioned programs on Pollution Control and the Planetarium, it was announced that the RES Luncheon Series topics and speakers would include “The Growing Foreign Automobile Industry” (Charles C. Park – Gleason Works), “Cornell Aeronautical Laboratory” (Harold S. Tolley – PR Manager), and, “Design & Engineering Features of the Xerox Tower” (Paul H. Van Wert – Xerox, Corporate Facilities Planning). The two-part October RES evening program was announced as “Electrical Sealed Heaters” and “Prediction of Glass Properties by Computer,” and would include a tour of the Pfaudler Technical Center. This month’s featured RES Affiliate was the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). Established in 1889 as the American Institute of Electrical Engineers, it began as a society and technology dominated by telegraphy engineers. By 1911, the pioneers of wireless telephony, then called “radio,” spun off and formed the separate Institute of Radio Engineers (IRE). Having each grown into technically diverse organizations, often with dual members, in 1962 these two institutes merged to form a single group with multiple foci, the IEEE.

Subsequent articles in this series will describe the RES' continuing outreach to other technical societies as it considered its role in this and the larger community, along with more of the activities of the RES as it moved to be of greater service to its membership, especially those suffering from current economic crises, and adopted a greater role in shaping the future of the City and its environs. Noted also, will be the contributions made by RES members in the struggle to meet the challenges coming out of World War II, as well as a hoped-for period of post-war growth and prosperity. These articles will also feature an impressive array of RES activities in support of post-war re-emergence of Rochester area industry.

We welcome your questions and comments on this series.

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