Hemphill Makes NASTT To ISTT Transition

By Jeff Griffin, Senior Editor | August 2008 Vol. 63 No. 8
Changing of the guard: John Hemphill (left) and John Castle both recently retired as executive directors of NASTT and ISTT, resp

As executive director of the North American Society for Trenchless Technology, John Hemphill played a significant role in programs that have educated members of the trenchless industry and general public about the benefits of trenchless construction.

While at NASTT, Hemphill coordinated the Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD) Consortium's development and publication of HDD Good Practices guidelines. Also during his tenure, the society's educational programs were significantly expanded, membership increased, the annual No Dig Show grew in size and scope, and good practices guidelines were developed for other trenchless procedures.

To many, Hemphill's announcement last year that he planned to retire may have been a surprise, followed by news of his appointment as executive director of the International Society for Trenchless Technology (ISTT).

"I felt like the time was right to step down at NASTT," said Hemphill. "We had accomplished a lot, and it seemed that it would be good to bring in new leadership with new views and ideas."

Hemphill planned to remain in Virginia, relax and take his time to consider what he wanted to do next. He agreed to stay on at NASTT while his replacement was found and to assist with the transition.


Then he learned that ISTT's executive secretary, John Castle, also was retiring, and ISTT was searching for an executive to manage that organization. He applied for the ISTT position, and was selected for the job.

"It seemed to be a natural progression," Hemphill said. "I saw an opportunity to remain in the trenchless industry and have the opportunity to address new challenges."

NASTT hired Michael Willmets as its new executive director, and Hemphill stayed on for NASTT's educational programs at the 2008 UCT show and 2008 No Dig show. Hemphill's last day at NASTT was May 31; his first day at ISTT was June 1, and he was on the job preparing for the opening International No dig 2008 Conference and Exhibition in Moscow, Russia.

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