Changes Are on the Horizon for This Portable Restroom Trade Group

By the time you read this article, I will no longer be the staff leader at the Portable Sanitation Association International. 

The author C.S. Lewis once said, “It may be hard for an egg to turn into a bird: it would be a jolly sight harder for it to learn to fly while remaining an egg. We are like eggs at present. And you cannot go on indefinitely being just an ordinary, decent egg. We must be hatched or go bad.”

It is not an exaggeration to say that working in the portable sanitation industry has been the biggest surprise and greatest adventure of my life. When I became acquainted with the PSAI in the fall of 2013, I knew nothing of portable sanitation. At the time, the PSAI was at a turning point, and so was I. The board offered to hire me, and I agreed to be the new executive director — neither of us were sure where this decision would take us. In eight years, I have learned more than I could have imagined. 

“So,” you may be wondering, “Why are you gone? Why did you fly?” I stepped aside because the “egg” in this scenario isn’t me. It’s the PSAI. 

Over the past many months, the PSAI board and I have been engaging in our usual long-term visioning for the association and the influence we hope that it can have on ensuring that clean, safe sanitation is available for all through the success of strong member companies. This year, for the first time, we were at a place where the things we want and need to do to accomplish our mission required more skills and resources than I can offer. 

As I searched for ways to address that deficit, considering things like outsourcing, education, adding additional staff and so on, all the roads led back to one place. With me in the role of executive director, the options were far more limited than if I stepped aside and helped the board rethink how to use those resources to take the PSAI to the next level.

The board was gracious enough to allow me to be helpful in figuring out some of the next steps in taking the PSAI from an “ordinary, decent egg” into a majestic thing that can help portable sanitation rise to new levels of respect, influence and accomplishment. Whatever is in place as you read this has been carefully thought out with that goal in mind. 

I ask a favor of you. Please be patient with the process. Remember these things take time. It’s work to hatch an egg, and even then, a hatchling has to gain strength before it can fly. Over the next months and years, I have every confidence the PSAI will hatch new plans, grow and succeed beyond anything that could have happened if we hadn’t taken these actions at this point in time. 

As for me, I am off to join another association as its staff leader. I thank you for the help. I thank you for the reality checks. I thank you for the warmth, the humor and the friendships. Especially, I thank you for the privilege of spending these years learning from you.  


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