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The American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) has announced that Christopher Cantrell will join the society in the newly created position of senior managing director of standards and engineering services, effective Oct. 17. In this new role, Cantrell will oversee all aspects of ASME’s standards development, conformity assessment, and standards research operations. Cantrell joins ASME from the state of Nebraska where he held the position of chief boiler inspector for 15 years, and as both the state fire marshal and chief boiler inspector for the past four years.
“Chris brings to ASME deep experience as a state chief, as chair of the Board of Trustees of the National Board of Boiler and Pressure Vessel Inspectors, as an inspector for Hartford Steam Boiler, our largest authorized inspection agency, and as an ASME committee volunteer,” said ASME CEO Jeff Patterson. “Just as important, while in state government, Chris led in the introduction of digital platforms that have enabled his teams to work more efficiently. His familiarity with our volunteers and staff, our standards development and conformity assessment processes, and the systems that support them, plus his accomplishments in organizational transformation, make him the ideal executive to lead our standards and engineering services team into the future.”
“I am honored to have been selected by ASME to take on this new and important role,” Cantrell said. “For over 140 years, ASME has been the worldwide leader in promoting engineering as a profession and in codes and standards development. Under the leadership of CEO Tom Costabile and Chief Operating Officer Jeff Patterson, the society continues to grow and thrive in today’s rapidly changing business and regulatory environment. I am eager to get to work and to be a part of the ASME team.”
Cantrell began his work with pressure equipment in his teens, working summers at his father’s oil well pressure testing company. After high school, he transitioned to an operational role when he enlisted in the U.S. Navy and spent six years as a naval nuclear propulsion plant operator. When his service was complete in 1998, he began his inspection career with Hartford Steam Boiler as an authorized inspector, authorized inspector supervisor, authorized nuclear inspector, and authorized nuclear in-service inspector, and eventually traveled the U.S. performing inspection work for steam generator replacements and pressurizer weld overlays.
In 2007, he began working with the state of Nebraska as chief boiler inspector. During his time in this role, he served on the ASME Section XI standards committee for three years, was elected four times to the Board of Trustees of the National Board of Boiler and Pressure Vessel Inspectors, and eventually became the chair. In 2018, while requesting to retain the chief boiler inspector position, Cantrell was appointed by Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts to also serve as the state fire marshal, a cabinet-level position.