“The BCxA is the original association that is completely committed to whole building commissioning. As a young, growing organization, it has a solid foundation of leadership in place that is necessary to drive and grow interest in the field of commissioning, as well as provide a high level of representation to a diverse membership base.”
—Craig Hawkins, Sr. Commissioning Engineer, McKinstry, BCxA Platinum Sponsor
History of the BCxA
The BCxA is leading the way to better buildings and building operations. Formed in 1998 to advance the education and application of commissioning practices and educating the market about commissioning, the BCxA has grown from a core group of committed building performance researchers to more than 1,200 active members. BCxA members represent all aspects of the commercial building industry, along with allied professionals and building owners.
The idea for a professional association of building commissioning providers was first explored by attendees at the National Conference on Building Commissioning decades ago. Although many agreed on the general goals and objectives for such an association, no immediate action was taken to form one.
The BCxA was formed by a group of building commissioning providers in the Pacific Northwest. Organized efforts to advance building commissioning in that region began to take shape in 1996 at an informal caucus before the Second Northwest Conference on Building Commissioning. That caucus led to the formation of the Northwest Building Commissioning Collaborative in 1997. Key players in the NWBCC included the regional commissioning firms, Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance and its members, Portland Energy Conservation, Inc (PECI), utilities, and state and local government agencies. Much of the initial core funding was generously provided by the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance.
The BCxA–Northwest was incorporated in the State of Washington in May 1998. For the first year, the association was managed by John Doyle and a year later, by John Heinz, both of whom were industry leaders. In April 1999, the BCxA–Northwest became the Building Commissioning Association, which has since grown to an international professional organization representing the interests of the building commissioning industry.
During its formative years, the organization created and launched a specialized five-day training program for building commissioning professionals, adopted a series of “essential attributes” of commissioning, published a newsletter for members and interested parties, began market transformation projects in the Northwest and New York State, established a governance system, developed a website, and began a process for the development of a certification program, a key element of its vision. In 2001, the association entered into an agreement with an association management firm based in Edmonds, Washington, to administer the program and provide executive counsel to the Board.
Since that time the BCxA developed a strategic plan and strategic governance process with an international board of directors and active committees. We reshaped the organization from company-based to individual-based membership; expanded the five-day seminar offering; created strategic alliances with related organizations; established a chapter system; piloted an accelerated internship program in the Northwest; completed a market transformation project in New York State; improved BCxA’s electronic communications capabilities; and, importantly, created a meaningful certification program.
The BCxA is dedicated to developing a common industry-wide understanding of what constitutes effective building commissioning. Its goal is to achieve high professional standards while allowing for diverse and creative approaches to building commissioning that benefit the profession and its clients. For this reason, the BCxA has historically focused on identifying critical commissioning attributes and elements, rather than attempting to dictate a rigid commissioning process.
The Building Commissioning Association currently has approximately 1,200 members and ten active chapters committed to advancing building commissioning practices, growing BCxA visibility in the commissioning community, and fulfilling building owners’ expectations.