We’re sad to announce the passing of our former Executive Board member Kevin Spring at age 83.

Kevin had a close association with HERA, first in the form of being an advocate for steel construction from a structural engineer’s perspective, and then in a governance role as a member of our Executive from 1994 to 2006.

This equates to 12 consecutive years of service on our board, and as if this wasn’t enough dedication to the industry, Kevin actively continued with his involvement until his death on the HERA Steel Research Panel.

In the 1980s, structural steel had zero market share in multi-storey buildings, with the material and the industry in a parlous state.

However, a small group of experienced, articulate and outgoing engineers, passionate about the future of structural steel in New Zealand, worked strenuously to change that. Kevin was one of the key people in that knowledgeable group, keen to share his knowledge.

In 1985 he and George Butcher published the key piece of the foundation from which the steel industry has expanded to its current dominant position in New Zealand.

This was a paper called Introduction and Philosophy, the first section of the output from the deliberations of the NZ National Society for Earthquake Engineering’s ‘Study Group for the Seismic Design of Steel Structures’.

The excellent performance of steel structures in Christchurch in the 2010/2011 earthquake series is testament to how good his understanding was back in 1985. The strong turnout for Kevin’s funeral was a testament to his standing in the industry and amongst friends and family.