SSPC and NACE: By the Numbers


As SSPC: The Society for Protective Coatings and NACE International have opened discussions regarding possible “synergistic opportunities” between the two organizations (announced in a March 18 press release), PaintSquare Daily News is taking a closer look at each organization’s history, structure and offerings for the protective coatings and corrosion control industries.


SSPC is a non-profit organization focused on protecting and preserving concrete, steel and other industrial and marine structures through the use of protective coatings.

Founded in 1950 as the Steel Structures Painting Council, the Society changed its name to SSPC: The Society for Protective Coatings in 1997 to better reflect the expanding nature of coatings technology and construction materials, including concrete substrates.

SSPC provides standards, technical publications, training and certification courses, and painting contractor certification programs, with a focus on surface preparation, coating selection, coating application and environmental, health and safety issues that affect the protective coatings industry.

With over 11,000 individual members and almost 1,000 organizational members, SSPC’s membership includes contractors, facility owners, manufacturers and other parties concerned with protective coatings from around the world. SSPC’s worldwide headquarters in Pittsburgh hosts more than 40 full-time staff, and active SSPC chapters operate in 15 different countries.

NACE International develops corrosion prevention and control standards, certification and education for engineers and other corrosion mitigation professionals. It was established in 1943 as the National Association of Corrosion Engineers, founded by 11 corrosion engineers from the pipeline industry who were originally part of a regional group formed in the 1930s to study cathodic protection.

By the end of the 1940s, NACE had more than 1,700 members and began broadening its scope beyond cathodic protection and pipelines to include oil and gas production, chemical processing and refining, as well as other methods of corrosion control such as protective coatings and linings, chemical treatment and materials selection and design.

Renamed NACE International in 1993, NACE has a total of almost 36,000 members from 130 countries, with four areas and 80 sections in North America, and four international areas with 62 sections.

Headquartered in Houston, NACE also has staff offices in San Diego, California; Shanghai, China; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Al-Khobar, Saudi Arabia; and Sao Paulo, Brazil.


Bill Worms is SSPC’s executive director, responsible for all of the Society’s day-to-day operations. SSPC’s Board of Governors includes 13 elected members representing different areas of the coatings community. The SSPC board officers are:

  • Garry Manous, Atsalis Brothers Painting, President;
  • Joe Walker, Elcometer Inc., President-Elect;
  • Joyce Wright, Huntington Ingalls Industries-Newport News Shipbuilding, Vice President; and
  • Brian Skerry, The Sherwin-Williams Co., Immediate Past President.

NACE is headed by CEO Bob Chalker, who came to the organization in 2010. Its Board of Directors officers are:

  • Terry Greenfield, CONSULEX, President;
  • Tim Bieri, BP Exploration (Alaska), Vice President;
  • Russell Norris, The Sherwin-Williams Co., Treasurer; and
  • Jeffrey L. Didas, Matcor Inc., Past President.

In addition to the officers, the NACE board includes eight area directors, four activity directors and one at-large director.

Training and Certification

SSPC offers 50 different training programs covering a wide range of coatings-based curriculum. Its highest level of certification, the Protective Coatings Specialist, recognizes in-depth knowledge of all of the principles and practices related to protective coatings, while its Protective Coatings Inspector and Master Coatings Inspector programs are also offered and specified in several countries worldwide.

Courtesy of NACE

NACE International develops corrosion prevention and control standards, certification and education for engineers and other corrosion mitigation professionals.

NACE also provides training courses covering coating application and inspection, cathodic protection, pipeline, refineries, corrosion management and more. NACE’s Coating Inspector Program has been its flagship training program for over 30 years, with three different levels of certification.

Along with classroom and on-the-job training options, both organizations also present webinars and offer online courses year-round.


SSPC and NACE each publish industry standards, including joint surface preparation standards for abrasive blast-cleaning and waterjetting. SSPC’s publishing portfolio also includes technical guides, compilation and visual reference guides. NACE offers several printed textbooks and eBooks on a number of corrosion-control topics.

In addition, both associations publish print periodicals for their members.

The Journal of Protective Coatings & Linings, the official voice of SSPC, has been published for 35 years. With an average monthly circulation of almost 12,000, JPCL delivers information on new technology and good practices in the use of high performance anti-corrosion coatings and linings.

NACE publishes CoatingsPro and Materials Performance magazines, as well as its annual CORROSION Journal, a compilation of papers from its annual CORROSION conference.


Each association hosts an annual conference and other events throughout the year.

SSPC’s annual Coatings+ conference and exhibition, the only annual trade show dedicated 100% to protective coatings, convenes in January or February of each year. The 2019 Coatings+ show, held Feb. 11-14 in Orlando, drew more than 2,500 attendees and over 150 exhibiting companies. Coatings+ 2020 will head west Feb. 2-6 next year to Long Beach, California.

Later this year, SSPC will oversee the DoD-Allied Nations Technical Corrosion Conference 2019 Aug. 12-15 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

NACE’s annual CORROSION conference is held each spring to gather the entire corrosion control community. CORROSION 2019 was held March 24-28 in Nashville, and its 2020 show will take place in March 15-19 in Houston, Texas. NACE also holds area conferences, as well as workshops and meetings based on special topics.


Tagged categories: Asia Pacific; Associations; EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa); Good Technical Practice; Latin America; Mergers; NACE; North America; SSPC; Z-Continents

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