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Past Presidential Thoughts: It Will Be Good For You!

SMPS Boston is celebrating our 35th anniversary in 2016-2017, so we’ve invited a slew of past presidents to reflect on their experiences with the chapter. This edition comes from Aurora Cammarata, VP of Business Development and Marketing with Timberline Construction, and SMPS Boston president for the 1997-1998 program year.

It will be good for you!

I can still hear his words ringing in my ears! “This will be good for you. You are the only one in our company that does what you do, you need a support group to learn from and connect with. This will be good for you.”

And he was right, that Bill Vanderweil. It was good for me and it was good for all the firms I have worked for since and all the terrific marketing professionals that have worked with me over the years. Many years now.

SMPS became the place where I learned my ‘craft’ from those that came before me. I learned about process, technique, and technology. I learned something about engineering, design and construction. And I also learned how to collaborate, communicate and stand my ground when needed. Then I gave lessons about how to do all those things to others. And I grew professionally and personally in all that I did for and with SMPS.

I also set professional goals – I admired those that came before me, learned from them, sought out their advice and eventually walked in their footsteps working on committees, on the Board of Directors and eventually becoming President of the Boston Chapter. And when they moved on, I tried to be as good an example as they were to me, the new role model, teaching and advising those coming up, lend a helping hand and paying it forward. For doing so, they honored me with the Marketing Executive of the Year Award – still a very, very proud professional moment for me after all these years.

“My” Board of Directors was the best (aren’t they all?)! We started up the regional conference, we tried our hand at planning a golf event, and we began the program that was the precursor to today’s SMPS Boot Camp. We even figured out that this email thing was going to be big and we should probably stop mailing out our paper program announcements and figure out how to get them into people’s inboxes. A very astute and hard working group! It was my pleasure to be their chapter president.

Much has changed but much has stayed the same. Many AEC marketing professionals are still the only ones in their firms that do what they do amongst architects, engineers, builders and consultants. In SMPS Boston, they still find a place to learn their craft, get advice, share resources, and develop and grow both personally and professionally. And they still develop friendships that last a lifetime.

More than 20 years ago, I can still hear myself saying to Chris Keeley at Bowdoin Construction, “This SMPS President thing will be good for you. You should take it on. You will be good at it and you will have fun doing it.” Funny enough, he told me just the other day he remembers that moment well too. And he also said, by the way, it was good for him.

Aurora Cammarata


Aurora Cammarata is Vice President, Business Development and Marketing with Timberline Construction Corporation. As a member of Timberline's senior management team, she is influential in the implementation of the company's overall business strategies as well as its business development, marketing and communications initiatives.

One response to “Past Presidential Thoughts: It Will Be Good For You!”

  1. Avatar karen_e says:

    Great post, Aurora. We give a little to SMPS and we get so much back.

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