Sales Workshop at GeoAmericas 2016

Instructor: GARY ROSS
Oldcastle APG
Wednesday, 13 April 2016 – 10:15 am – 1:15pm
“Smart Prospecting, Simplified”

When planning your staff travel, please consider which members would benefit from this complimentary, 3-hour sales workshop held immediately after the close of the exhibition.

GeoAmericas 2016 is proud to present a bonus session for exhibitors! Attend a 3-hour sales workshop led by Gary Ross, to be held immediately after the close of the exhibit hall.

ross-gary_Head137x168Gary Ross is the Director of Sales Training & Coaching and is a Motivational Speaker for Oldcastle APG. He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Human Resource Management from Palm Beach Atlantic University, and earned his certificate in Supervisory Development from the University of Notre Dame.

Prior to his role as Director of Sales Training & Coaching, Gary was the Vice President of Sales & Marketing for Coastal, an Oldcastle Company based in Florida. He has over 38 years of sales experience including 13 years in Sales Management.

Gary resides in West Palm Beach, Florida with his wife, Daryl.

The Sales Workshop – “Smart Prospecting, Simplified” will focus on:

  1. Developing a better message to get your prospect to call you back and schedule an appointment
  2. The importance of being relentless in your follow up
  3. The idea to Probe more, pitch less
  4. The value of making one more sales call and who you should target

Full information on GeoAmericas 2016, including registration, venue, and social/networking opportunities can be found at


Full information on GeoAmericas 2016, including registration, venue, and social/networking opportunities can be found at

GeoAmericas 2016 Extends Early Registration to January 29

geoamericas2016_logo_withtag_lg_4cHUESKER_Canal3_Mining2_550wWe open the week with an unexpected gift: The early registration discount for GeoAmericas 2016 has been extended to January 29. The conference, which is the 3rd Pan-American Conference on Geosynthetics, will be held 10 – 13 April 2016 at the Loews Miami Beach Hotel in Miami.


Highlights for the event include:

  • 13 short courses
  • 49 technical sessions, each of which averages 6 papers per 90-minute session
  • Special sessions on mining, transportation engineering, coastal protection, installation, construction quality assurance, world case studies, soil reinforcement, barrier systems, and much more
  • Young Professionals Program
  • Keynote lectures from Dr. Robert Koerner, P.E. (Geosynthetic Institute); Dale Morris, Senior Economic Advisor at the Royal Netherlands Embassy in Washington, DC, and Nathalie Olijslager-Jaarsma, Consul General of the Kingdom of the Netherlands (Miami); and Mercer Lecturer Dr. Jorge Zornberg, P.E. (Immediate Past President, IGS).

Additionally, the conference will feature a large range of meetings from essential organizations in the geotechnical engineering field. They include the International Geosynthetics Society (IGS) Council, the Geosynthetic Institute (GSI), the International Association of Geosynthetic Installers (IAGI), the Fabricated Geomembrane Institute (FGI), the Geosynthetic Materials Association (GMA), the Erosion Control Technology Council (ECTC), the International Erosion Control Association (IECA) Ibero-American Chapter, and the Federation of International Geo-Engineering Societies (FedIGS).


All activities for GeoAmericas 2016 will take place on Miami’s historic South Beach at the five-star Loews Miami Beach Hotel. The 790-room venue is just 20 minutes from Miami International Airport and 35 minutes from Fort Lauderdale International Airport. The Loews offers direct beach access and concierge service in multiple languages.

More than 60% of the room block has been reserved. Organizers encourage all bookings to take place online. The BOOK TODAY link on the GeoAmericas 2016 venue page should be used in order to get the special conference rate.


A few sponsorship and advertising opportunities are available. For questions regarding sponsorship and advertising opportunities with GeoAmericas 2016 or its publishing partner (Geosynthetica), contact André Lacerda,, +1 561 570 1061.


Visit for the latest conference information.

Mining Engineering at GeoAmericas 2016

223_igs-winner-solmaxThe 3rd Pan-American Conference on Geosynthetics (GeoAmericas 2016) will be held 10 – 13 April 2016 in Miami at the Loews Miami Beach Hotel. This quadrennial regional conference from the International Geosynthetics Society (IGS) features 3.5 days of high-quality geotechnical and civil engineering short courses, technical sessions, panel discussions, training lectures, keynote addresses, and networking in the international exhibit hall.

Mining is one of the conference’s cornerstone topics.

Geosynthetic materials are essential to the economical and environmental performance of mining operations. Geosynthetic technologies can be used to enhance infrastructure and improve processes. They provide more productive and robust facilities with higher yields.

Geogrids efficiently improve the integrity of unpaved access roads to prevent costly failures under heavy loads and in poor weather.

Geomembranes increase the yield and flow from heap leach pads and liquor trenches.

Geotextiles, geocomposite drainage materials, geosynthetic clay liners, and other geosynthetics perform vital functions, enhance drainage and venting, improve the stability of berms around tailings, etc.

Attendees of GeoAmericas will learn why soil reinforcement is more important than ever to the success of mining and how geosynthetic liners and covers have dramatically and beneficially changed the economics and performance of heap leaching for gold, copper, uranium, and other materials. With multiple courses and sessions to draw upon, GeoAmericas gives participants ready-to-use strategies and access to geosynthetic designers, suppliers, and installers from throughout the Americas.

Mark Smith, Denys Parra, Abigail-BeckHighlights for mining professionals include:

  • A full-day short course on “Advances in Geosynthetics for Heap Leaching,” taught by mine designer and owner Mark Smith, M.Sc., P.E., D.GE (RRD International); Denys Parra, M.Sc., P.E. (Anddes Associados), and Abigail Beck, M.Sc., P.E. (TRI Environmental). This full day course will provide attendees with design insights that will allow them to effectviely understand and incorporate important new technologies in their projects.
  • 12+ presentations across two mining and energy technical sessions
  • Training lectures on barrier system performance; embankments on soft soils; and geosynthetic clay liner (GCL) performance
  • Robert KoernerKeynote lecture by Dr. Robert Koerner on “Lifetime Predictions of Exposed Geotextiles and Geomembranes”
  • Affiliated technical sessions focused on soil reinforcement and ground improvement (37 presentations), barrier design (19), testing of geosynthetic materials (17), drainage and filtration (15), and sustainability (7)
  • A sold out international exhibit hall with Pan-American manufacturers and service providers who supply to mining projectsfrom northern Canada to the southern tip of Chile


Full information on GeoAmericas 2016, including registration, venue, and social/networking opportunities can be found at

Coastal Protection Engineering at GeoAmericas 2016

20101stplacewinnerThe 3rd Pan-American Conference on Geosynthetics (GeoAmericas 2016) will be held 10 – 13 April 2016 in Miami at the Loews Miami Beach Hotel. This quadrennial regional conference from the International Geosynthetics Society (IGS) features 3.5 days of high-quality geotechnical and civil engineering short courses, technical sessions, panel discussions, training lectures, keynote addresses, and networking in a sold out international exhibit hall.

Geosynthetic materials are used extensively in coastal protection projects. The modern geotextiles industry, in fact, emerged in the 1950s in response to flooding in the Netherlands and tropical storm damage in the United States. Since then, a large industry and innovative coastal designs have come along. Geosynthetic tubes and containers provide dewatering and solids separation for large-scale dredging operations and the construction of artificial islands. They build up dune systems for hurricane defense and create artificial reefs. Geotextiles and affiliated gabion systems provide shoreline stabilization and erosion control. Geosynthetic bags provide scour protection for shorelines, infrastructure (e.g., ports), and even off-shore wind turbines. Geosynthetics reinforce levees, enhance the sustainability of waterfront construction, and provide highly effective, economical solutions to long-term coastal engineering goals.

Dale Morris and Nathalie Olijslager-JaarsmaGeoAmericas 2016 features multiple opportunities for coastal protection professionals. Just some of the technical offerings well suited to engineers working in coastal protection include:

  • Keynote address discussing the history and future of climate change and coastal protection engineering from Dale Morris, Senior Economic Advisor at the Royal Netherlands Embassy in Washington, DC, and Nathalie Olijslager-Jaarsma, Consul General of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Miami
  • 11 presentations across two coastal protection sessions, including beach stabilization in Mexico, geotextile tube design, artificial reef performance, marine sediment management projects, geocontainers in Peru, dams using geosynthetic tubes, and much more.
  • Robert KoernerTraining lectures on embankments on soft soils
  • Half-day short course and a panel discussion on proper specification of geosynthetic materials
  • Keynote lecture by Dr. Robert Koerner on “Lifetime Predictions of Exposed Geotextiles and Geomembranes”
  • Affiliated technical sessions focused on soil reinforcement and ground improvement (37 presentations), testing of geosynthetic materials (17), drainage and filtration (15), and sustainability (7)
  • International exhibit hall manufacturers and service providers who supply to coastal projection projects from northern Canada to the southern tip of South America.

Full information on GeoAmericas 2016, including registration, venue, and social/networking opportunities can be found at


GeoAmericas 2016 Features GeoPrediction Competition

Geoamericas2016_GeoPrediction_Wall_450wThe Young Professionals Program at GeoAmericas 2016 has announced its GeoPrediction Competition. This team-based event will focus on predicting the face displacement of an MSE wall constructed with poorly draining backfill. The objective of the GeoPrediction Competition is to develop an accurate prediction of the behavior of a geotechnical system involving geosynthetics, given detailed information regarding subsurface, boundary, and initial conditions, as well as the geotechnical, structural, and hydraulic loading.

The use of any available geotechnical software and empirical correlations is allowed, as is the development of a simple, accurate computer code for making this prediction.

Questions are welcomed. Email

Eligibility, deadline, and the MSE problem description follows.


geoamericas2016_logo_withtag_lg_4cEligibility: A Geosynthetics Prediction Team will consist of one or two younger members. There is no limit on the number of teams from a given institution or company.

Submittal: Each Geosynthetics Prediction Team will submit a Geosynthetics Prediction Report containing, a minimum, the following information:

  • The Report shall be no more than three (3) pages long (not including any references and cover page). One inch margins, single spacing, and 12 point Times New Roman font are required.
  • The Report shall contain the methods (assumptions, correlations, analytical procedures, numerical procedures, computer software, etc.) that the team employed to develop their Geosynthetics Prediction. All methods must be properly referenced.
  • The Report must include a plot of the face displacement as a function of height.
  • The cover page (in addition to the 3 pages for the report) must include the name of the institution or company, names of the team members, email addresses, and the name and contact information of any supervisor or faculty advisor who assisted in developing the team’s code and prediction.
  • A reference list must follow the report.
  • Submit the Report by 6:00pm (CST) on 4 March 2016 by email to: Sender will receive confirmation of receipt by email. Late submissions may not be accepted.

Judging: The submitted Geosynthetics Prediction reports will be judged and ranked by a panel of geotechnical engineers. The judging will be based on the criteria listed below.

  • Format, length, grammar, English usage (15%)
  • Clarity of technical presentation (15%)
  • Logical and concise use of appropriate geotechnical methods and principles in developing Geosynthetics Prediction (25%)
  • Accuracy of the Geosynthetics Prediction (45%)

Announcement: The top three reports will be ranked by the panel and will be presented with awards during the IGS awards ceremony at GeoAmericas 2016.

Questions: Send any questions to

Geoamericas2016_GeoPrediction_450wPROBLEM DESCRIPTION & AVAILABLE DATA

A geotextile-reinforced prototype mechanically-stabilized earth (MSE) wall was constructed using wrap-around facing with a width of 4m, a height of 4m and a length of 4m. The wall was built with 10 geotextile layers evenly spaced at 0.40m vertically. The reinforcement length was equal to 3.0m. The MSE wall was constructed atop a firm foundation that can be assumed to be rigid with first geotextile layer placed at the ground level. In the design, the reduction factors against creep, durability and installation damage were taken as 1.0. The wrap-around system was assembled using metallic supports and wood boards, for a final angle of 78o from horizontal, resulting in a face slope of 5V:1H. The geotextile material used in the wall was a short-fiber needle-punched polyester non-woven geotextile with the following characteristics:

  • Mass per unit area: 204.40 g/m2
  • Thickness: 1.26 mm
  • Ultimate tensile load: 8.5 kN/m
  • Ultimate tensile elongation: 90 %
  • Elasticity modulus: 13 kN/m

Backfill soil consisted of a fine to medium well-graded sand which was compacted using a vibratory plate hammer. The grain size distribution of backfill soil is presented in Figure 1. The maximum and minimum void ratios, emax and emin were 0.70 and 0.46. The backfill soil was compacted to a target relative density of 80% which corresponds to a void ratio of 0.51 and dry unit weight of 17.7 kN/m3. The backfill was placed in the field at a gravimetric water content of 5.0%. The soil has a drained friction angle of 33°.

Estimate the deflections of the wall face as a function of wall height due to the wall’s self-weight immediately after construction.


VISIT THE GEOAMERICAS 2016 WEBSITE for more information on the Young Professionals Program, the International Geosynthetics Society (IGS), short courses, and much more.

GeoAmericas 2016 Registration Opens

geoamericas2016_logo_withtag_lg_4cGeoAmericas 2016, the 3rd Pan-American Conference on Geosynthetics, has been years in the making. After successful iterations in Mexico (2008) and Peru (2012), the Americas-uniting geotechnical conference returns. Organizers have announced the opening of the GeoAmericas 2016 registration.


The event has already sold out the exhibit hall and the organizers have added extra rooms to the pre-conference room block to handle the early surge of bookings for exhibitors, attendees, and industry organizations intending to arrive early for meetings and personal time in Miami.


The official hotel is the Loews Miami Beach Hotel and Resort All conference activities will take place at the Loews.

Attendees and exhibitors should be award of hotel room-booking scams that target conference goers. Please book your accommodations directly online–the Loews link on the previous line takes you directly to the special rate code–or call the hotel directly.


  • 13 short courses, including English and Spanish-language offerings. Topics include heap leach design, geosynthetic-reinforced soil in bridge construction, CQA, geomembranes in oil and gas operations, and more. Short courses are held on April 10 (Sunday) and will be followed by the official opening of the conference with a keynote address and an exhibit hall reception. Learn more about the short courses.
  • 49 technical sessions, including training lectures from renowned experts; paper-driven technical sessions; and panel discussions on field-shaping topics (e.g., growth of geosynthetics in Latin America, predicting end of geomembrane service life)
  • Special technical sessions will include coastal protection, sustainability, Best Journal Papers, and Student Awards
  • Keynote Lectures from Dr. Robert Koerner, P.E. (Geosynthetic Institute); Dale Morris, Sr. Economic Adviser from the Royal Netherlands Embassy in Washington DC and Nathalie Olijslager-Jaarsma, Kingdom of the Netherlands Consul General (Miami); and the Mercer Lecture with Dr. Jorge Zornberg, P.E. (IGS Immediate Past President, University of Texas at Austin)
  • Industry meetings involving International Geosynthetics Society (IGS) Technical Committees, FedIGS, GMA, GSI, FGI, IAGI, and ECTC.
  • Opportunities for young engineers, including the IGS Young Members  program with a pre-conference GeoPrediction competition, a digital scavenger hunt during the conference, a panel discussion with industry leaders, and a beach volleyball social event.
  • Social programming and companion program including Exhibit Hall Opening Reception (Sunday evening, April 10), beach volleyball (Monday evening, April 11), and Havana Nights social event (Tuesday evening, April 12). Additional companion program events include an Everglades Adventure, an Art Deco District Walk, and a trip to the Villa Vizcaya.



  • HUESKER (Platinum)
  • Solmax (Platinum)
  • TMP (Gold)
  • Tencate (Silver)
  • TRI Environmental (Silver)

In addition to the support for the conference, sponsors are also contributing to a unique construction project in Charlier, Haiti.


Hotel Booking Scams: Warning Issued by GeoAmericas 2016

GeoAmericas2016_LowesHotel_450wMany conferences are targeted by hotel booking scams and room resellers who are not associated with the event. These non-sanctioned buyers convince potential attendees that rooms are selling out and that they hold the last few available rooms.  They sell rooms at rates well-above the conference rate and often tack on hidden fees and expensive cancellation policies. Conference organizers and host hotels watch for these scams. Once problems are discovered, warnings are sent out.

GeoAmericas 2016, the 3rd Pan-American Conference on Geosynthetics, alerted exhibitors yesterday that at least two known groups, unaffiliated with GeoAmericas, are targeting event exhibitors right now.

All exhibitor and sponsor companies, exhibitor personnel, and attendees are reminded that there are only two ways to officially book rooms for GeoAmericas 2016:

The Loews Miami Beach Hotel is the official hotel for GeoAmericas 2016. It is the site for all conference activities. Hotel Rooms are available now. While some of the pre-conference and post-conference nights are filling quickly, hundreds of rooms are still available during the event.


  • The Loews and GeoAmericas do NOT call exhibitors (or attendees) for the purpose of booking sleeping rooms.  NO service providers are sanctioned to either.
  • Do NOT give out your credit card number to any caller claiming to be holding rooms for you at GeoAmericas 2016.
  • Do NOT accept a caller claiming that the Loews is sold out. PLEASE KNOW that rooms are available at the Loews. Rooms have even been added.

GeoAmericas 2016 Exhibition & Sponsorship Open!

geoamericas2016_logo_withtag_lg_4cGeoAmericas2016_LowesHotel_450wThe GeoAmericas 2016 Organizing Committee and its host chapter, the North American Geosynthetics Society, invite you to join us at 2016’s most vibrant geosynthetics event!

  • 95 Booth Spaces
  • Multiple Sponsorship Options
  • Location Central to the Americas
  • 50 90-Minute Sessions
  • 56 hours of Short Course Programming
  • Much more…


Reserve Your Space

GeoAmericas 2016 is the 3rd Pan-American Conference on Geosynthetics. Professionals from throughout the Americas will gather in Miami for technology transfer, networking, and project planning in key sectors such as mining, water resources, roadway infrastructure, waste management, and environmental protection.

The pre-sale period for booths and sponsorships has concluded, so booth and sponsorship positions are now open for reservation by the larger geotechnical engineering community. We invite you to review the Exhibition and Sponsorship Brochure (PDF) and online reservation information.

Strengthen Your Business

International Geosynthetics Society (IGS) Corporate Members enjoy a substantial discount on booths. Non-members can capitalize too. Join the IGS and immediately enjoy a number of high-level benefits on GeoAmericas conference participation, as well as benefit from membership before and after the event.

We welcome your questions, we encourage your interaction, and we look forward to working with you to make this an outstanding event and a key part of your near- and long-term business development.

See you in Miami!

John Henderson, Exhibits & Sponsorship Co-Chair
Peter Passarelli, Exhibits & Sponsorship Co-Chair


For Questions or More Information Please Contact
Becky Slaybaugh, Executive Admin |
Elizabeth Peggs, Co-Secretary General |
TEL: +1.561.768.9487
(-5 GMT)


GeoAmericas 2016 Opens Booth and Sponsorship Pre-Sale


Corporate members of the International Geosynthetics Society (IGS) have an exclusive 21-day window in which to file exhibit hall booth and conference sponsorship requests for GeoAmericas 2016. The quadrennial event, which is the 3rd Pan-American Conference on Geosynthetics, will be held 10 – 13 April 2016 in Miami. The deadline for IGS Corporate Members to make their pre-sale selections is May 14.


After the deadline passes, sales for booths and sponsorships will be extended to the full geotechnical community.

IGS Corporate Members are strongly encouraged to make sure their teams have the exhibitor and sponsorship brochure. The offer has been issued to all IGS Corporate Members, but the main contact for the IGS might not be the office responsible for booking space at an event in the Americas.

Download the brochure with the link above and share with your team.


The sustainability mission of GeoAmericas 2016 has received great support already, with a number of companies contributing ideas based on their event experience for how to improve the conference experience and sustainability performance.

Electronic sharing of information will be emphasized, with tools such as an event web app to aid in connecting attendees and companies and giving exhibitors a convenient way to share information without attendees needing to lug 25 lbs of paper home with them.

The lanyards for the event—a sponsored item—will not be the traditional corporate branded item. Rather, GeoAmericas 2016 will put lanyard sponsorship on the badges and instead of a traditional lanyard will use the sponsorship money to acquire handmade necklaces from a small business in Haiti. These necklaces will subsequently be able to be reused or gifted by attendees.

Haiti is integrally tied to the event. A school and orphanage construction project is being partially funded directly by the three tiers of major sponsorships (Silver, Gold, and Platinum). Geosynthetics are being used in the work in Charlier, Haiti, and sponsor companies will be invited to join the crew on site as well as have promotional access to the video of the work that will be shot.

Additional exhibit and sponsorship notes that will interest participating companies:

  • There will be a sponsored cocktail reception in the exhibit hall on the opening night
  • Coffee breaks will be held in the exhibit hall
  • A closing day breakfast will be held in the exhibit hall
  • A room key card sponsorship is available

Download the exhibitor and sponsorship pre-sale brochure to find out the full range of advertising, exhibit booth, and sponsorship opportunities.

NOTE: Non-IGS Corporate Members should view this brochure too. You might still file your requests (or join IGS immediately and secure benefits such as 20% break on booth costs). By the IGS bylaws, preference is given in this exclusive sale window to IGS Corporate Members; but as of May 15, it will be open. The Pre-Sale brochure include a box to check for not being a corporate member.



Significant interest in booth and sponsorship selection was reported by the conference organizers in the week leading up to the release of the pre-sale brochure.

Also, the abstracts submission period closed April 10 with hundreds of submissions and contributions from more than 40 countries.

A date to mark on the calendar is May 15. General attendee registration and non-IGS member booth and sponsorship purchases will be available from then on.


2015 Student Paper Award Winner

2015 NAGS Student Paper Winner

Daniel Jones, Department of Civil Engineering, Queen’s University

The 2015 Student Paper Award, sponsored by the North American Geosynthetics Society (NAGS), was presented to Daniel Jones from Queen’s University, Canada, at Geosynthetics 2015 in Portland, Oregon. Jones was presented with a USD $500 award and will also receive an invitation to present his winning paper in a special session at GeoAmericas 2016, the 3rd Pan-American Conference on Geosynthetics (10 – 13 April 2016, Miami, Florida).

The GeoAmericas invite will include a free full registration to the event plus a USD $1000 stipend towards travel expenses.

The paper was titled “Hydration of Geosynthetic Clay Liners in Antarctica.” Jones co-authored the work with Dr. R. Kerry Rowe (Department of Civil Engineering, Queen’s University) and Dr. Rebecca McWatters (Australian Antarctic Division, Department of the Environment, Austrlian Government), the latter of whom was honored with a NAGS Student Paper Award in 2009.

Jones presented the paper in Portland, in line with the rules of the NAGS Student Paper competition.

Selection of the winning paper is based on both the written paper and its oral presentation at a conference chosen by NAGS.

NAGS is not the only International Geosynthetics Society (IGS) chapter conducting a student paper competition. Each IGS chapter in the Americas is holding one, and the winner of each chapter competition will be invited to present at GeoAmericas 2016. They too will be offered a free full registration to GeoAmericas and USD $1000 travel stipend.

GeoAmericas 2016 ( is being hosted by the North American Geosynthetics Society. This marks the first time the Pan-American Conference on Geosynthetics will be held in the United States.