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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Active in Education

June has been a busy month for ISA educational offerings! Between a North Texas Chapter-sponsored Advanced Report Writing course, the Appraisal of Japanese Prints course, and the Core Course in Appraisal Studies, more than 40 members enhanced their professional knowledge by taking part in these learning activities. The Japanese Prints course attendees participated in a field trip to Chicago’s Floating World Gallery, where they gained insight and perspective from a professional in the field, and Core Course attendees enjoyed a reception hosted by President Judith Martin at her local shop in Wheaton, IL.

ISA would like to recognize those who participated in this month of educational offerings:

Advanced Report Writing
Ellen Amirkham, ISA CAPP – Dallas, TX
Pamela Cole-Witt, ISA AM – Fort Worth, TX
Elizabeth Douglas, ISA CAPP – Austin, TX
Terri Ellis, ISA CAPP – Fort Worth, TX
Jerry Forrest, ISA CAPP – Dallas, TX
Dana Franklin, ISA AM – Irving, TX
Judy Godfrey, ISA AM – Abilene, TX
Scott Hale, ISA AM – Santa Fe, NM
Kim Kolker, ISA AM – Dallas, TX
Marigold Lamb, ISA AM – Rockwell, TX
Carol Matesic, ISA AM – Dallas, TX
Meredith Meuwly – Dallas, TX
Diane Pease, ISA AM – Fort Worth, TX
Lorrie Semler – Dallas, TX

Appraisal of Japanese Prints
Jeff Baker, ISA AM – Bexley, OH
Shirley Baumann, ISA AM – Madison, WI
Robert Hittel, ISA AM – Fort Lauderdale, FL
Ted Krajnik, ISA AM – Glenview, IL
Susan Lahey – Toronto, ON
Suzy McGrane-Hop, ISA CAPP – Cedar Rapids, IA
Kim Morrison – Hinsdale, IL
Catherine Sankey, ISA CAPP – Auburn, NY
Susan Sinclair – Nashville, TN
Susan Tarman, ISA – Santa Fe, NM

Core Course in Appraisal Studies
John Abajian – New Orleans, LA
Jack Bacon – Reno, NV
Jennifer Bird – Coral Gables, FL
Michelle Castro – New Orleans, LA
Holly Hackwith – Omaha, NE
Lorie Hart – Solon, OH
Chelsea Kozachenko – Fort Worth, TX
Lauren Laughry – Dallas, TX
Lisa Lowy – Solon, OH
Rosalind Lyness – Oshkosh, WI
Bill Mercer – Pueblo, CO
Margaret Nicolson – New Orleans, LA
Shell Payton – Montgomery, AL
Edan Sassoon – Beverly Hills, CA
Jeani Shankle – Raleigh, NC
Caroline Shuford – Dallas, TX
Marcus Wardell – Oakland, CA
Rosalie Wardell – Headlsburg, CA
Ruth Winston, ISA AM – New Orleans, LA

These individuals have taken a crucial step in maintaining and furthering their membership with ISA, congratulations!

If you are interested in learning more about the 2011 ISA course offerings, click here to view our course brochure. Please contact Michelle Stearns, Education & Credentialing Coordinator with any questions regarding ISA Education at

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Taking the ISA Advanced Report Writing course

I recently took the new ISA Advanced Report Writing course that was developed and taught by our Director of Education, Leon Castner ISA CAPP.  He was assisted very capably by Scott Hale, ISA AM. I highly recommend this course to all appraisers, especially those who have been practicing for many years since they first took the core course, even having taken the required requalification classes on schedule. One of the most important aspects of the new course is the review of everyone's appraisals, done anonymously by other members of the class as an exercise.  This is daunting:  it can be scary and humbling to have another appraiser look at your work, but think how important this is!  Wouldn't you rather have one of your peers give you honest feedback than have it picked over by an opposing attorney in a courtroom?  It was a great chance to have fresh (and understanding) eyes look at your appraisal and give you a chance to make the necessary updates to your report writing techniques.

Using the basics of journalism as related to report writing, Leon went through our ISA report formats, encouraging everyone to remember to present all the relevant facts of who, what, where, when, why and how, all in the first paragraph of the report.  Scope of work was discussed, and we practiced and discussed different ways to present these facts.
Another part of the class, presented by Scott Hale, dealt with the actual writing of the report.  Scott, an English major, has been a professor at the University of Oklahoma teaching technical writing, and had very good tips on how to make our appraisals better.  Spell check is just not enough!  We also went over the new parts of the Core Course manual, and had a short update of USPAP.  All in all, this is an important new course to add to our educational curriculum, and I would encourage everyone who can squeeze it in your schedule to do so.  It will definitely give you that extra incentive you need to bring your appraisals to a higher level. 

Terri Ellis, ISA CAPP

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Getting involved with an ISA Chapter

In a recent ISA Now blog, Sally Ambrose asked the question, “How do I get involved with ISA?”, and answered, join a local ISA chapter and volunteer to serve on a committee.” Soon, another question was asked at ISA headquarters, “How do I get involved with a chapter?”

For most members of a large organization, the local chapter is the face of their group, and usually the place where the closest friendships are made. As appraisers, our business is primarily a solitary endeavor. The local chapter provides the opportunity to spend time with and learn from other appraisers. What should also be stressed is that members of the chapters can acquire the necessary CEUs, or “Continuing Education Units” that are part of maintaining a professional standing.

A chapter meeting contributes one CEU for every hour of documented professional activity or program. This can be as simple as a presentation by an authority or professional service commonly used by appraisers, i.e. Art Insurance brokerage, or Identification and valuation of different carved bone and ivory, to a planned outing to a conservation shop or museum for hands on professional demonstration. More PDCs, or “Professional Development Credits” are earned by those members who spend hours of their time organizing and producing these meetings.

The meetings can be scheduled as often as desired, with a minimum of four per year. Their venue can be a convenient restaurant or alternating member’s homes. The chapter must adhere to the structure defined by the ISA Chapters Manual, which is easily downloaded from the ISA website.

This past year, the formation and exuberance of the Tennessee Chapter, spearheaded by Carol Wamble was a major factor in the success of the 2011 Conference in Nashville, Tennessee. The previous year, the Canadian Chapter developed the great 2010 Conference in Toronto. So many appraisers enjoyed and learned so much about their profession by small groups of dedicated ISA chapter members.

The ISA chapter network is open to anyone who wants to join, and members are always encouraged to start or re-invigorate a chapter if a minimum of five members agree to do so. The information chart of the chapters and the Chapter Manual can be downloaded from the ISA website. I am happy to answer any questions via my email at

Aloysia Hamalainen ISA CAPP
Chapter Networking chair

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Course and Manual Announcements

ISA has recently produced a newly revised version of the Core Course manual, the most complete and thorough revision to be done in many years. The manual comes in two volumes: the main Core Course in Appraisal Studies manual and an Appraisal Resource Guide. These are now available for purchase; pricing for the manuals is listed below:

Core Course in Appraisal Studies
ID# 10544453
Price: $45 (10% discount!)

Appraisal Resource Guide
ID# 10036157
Price: $29.75 (15% discount!)

The manuals are currently available only in print format and are accessible only through the links above. If you participated in a Requalification or Core Course during 2010 or the beginning of 2011 and would like to order these manuals, please contact ISA Headquarters at 312.981.6778 for special instructions.

7 Hour USPAP Announcement!

Registration is open for ISA’s first offerings of the 7 Hour USPAP course!

The 7 Hour (Personal Property) USPAP course is being offered June 25 and September 10, 2011 at the Northern Illinois University - Naperville Campus in Naperville, IL. Gayle Skluzacek will be teaching this course, she is an AQB Certified USPAP instructor. To register for this course please visit the ISA website or click here. If you have any questions about this or other upcoming ISA course offerings please contact ISA Headquarters at 312.981.6778.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

New Membership Applicants

ISA is pleased to announce our 18 new membership applicants for the second quarter of 2011. Please join us in welcoming these applicants to the Society.
John Abajian – New Orleans, LA
Gus Bynum – Georgetown, KY
Michelle Castro – New Orleans, LA
Jerry Copeland – Memphis, TN
Emily Gaul – Evanston, IL
Holly Hackwith – Omaha, NE
Lorie Hart – Solon, OH
Chelsea Kozachenko – Fort Worth, TX
Lisa Lowy – Solon, OH
G. Baxter Mathews – Winter Park, FL
Bill Mercer – Pueblo, CO
Margaret Nicolson – New Orleans, LA
Shell Payton – Montgomery, AL
Edan Sassoon – Beverly Hills, CA
Jeani Shankle – Raleigh, NC
Deric Torres – Oakland, CA
Marcus Wardell – Oakland, CA
Rosalie Wardell – Healdsburg, CA

Congratulations on taking this important step in furthering your professional career and welcome to ISA!

If you would like to recommend someone for membership, please forward their contact information to Sara Porter: