From left, Tim Whiteman (IPAF managing director), Steve Couling (outgoing IPAF president), and Andy

From left, Tim Whiteman (IPAF managing director), Steve Couling (outgoing IPAF president), and Andy Studdert (IPAF President). Mr Couling will remain on IPAF's Council.

Andy Studdert, CEO of NES Rentals, has been voted in as IPAF’s new president at the organisation’s AGM in Washington D.C. Mr Studdert takes over from Steve Couling, managing director of UK-based IAPS group, who has completed his two year term.

After paying tribute to Mr Couling's "remarkable and inspiring leadership and vision", Mr Studdert told the AGM that it was a great honour to be the president and that he would focus on two clear priorities: expanding IPAF's eLearning programme and helping the organisation embrace change.

The eLearning activities, which were trialed in Norrth America last year, had the potential to be "transformational for the organisation - you will see a continued focus on that", he said.

Mr Studdert said IPAF had to learn to embrace change, both in its internal culture and in how it delivers services to its members and the wider industry.

He said the industry needed to adapt to changes in technology, giving as an example the recommendation for operators to inspect batteries every day. "Do we need to open the battery tops every day, exposing the operator to gas and acid? How many of you inspected your car battery this morning, or this month?"

Mr Studdert joined NES – one of the largest aerial platform rental companies in North America – in June 2004 and is chief executive officer and chairman of the board.

Before joinging NES, he was chief operating officer of United Airlines for three years and prior to that was senior vice president, fleet operations at the airline.

The IPAF AGM was held in advance of the IPAF Summit conference and the IAPA awards dinner in the evening. More than 285 delegates are signed up for the event.

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