The American Boiler Manufacturers Association (ABMA) is 120 years old this year, and we couldn't be prouder.

At a time when so much of the world is obsessed with youth and preoccupied with “what's next,” publicly celebrating such a milestone birthday may not be advisable. But ABMA has never been healthier fiscally, just as it has never been more agile or more attractive to companies that understand the value of associating with others in the same business and tapping into the wisdom and expertise a group like ABMA collects.

ABMA membership is growing, services are expanding, and meeting and conference attendance is increasing — all within a concentrated, do-more-with-less framework supported by the lowest dues structure of any manufacturing trade association in the country.

One hundred twenty years ago, key boiler-industry leaders — who, in many cases, happened to be competitors — came together to form ABMA, the sole purpose of which was to resolve serious safety issues threatening not only the well-being of the public in general, but the viability of the industry as a whole. The initial goals of ABMA were met — in fact, exceeded — early on. Although safety remains a concern for every boiler and combustion-equipment manufacturer, industry priorities have expanded over the years to include myriad complex considerations impacting boiler design, fabrication, installation, operation, and maintenance — not the least of which is environmental sensitivity.

Fuel-flexible at a time of fuel volatility, efficient at a time of cost-consciousness, economic over long life spans, and ultimately recyclable, boiler-generated steam and hot water remains the most efficient method of heat transfer for many, if not most, commercial, institutional, industrial, and power-generating applications.

The American boiler-manufacturing industry endures — more relevant in 2008 than it was even at the height of the Industrial Revolution. Coupling constantly evolving, state-of-the-art technology with innovative applications, a lean, competitive, and time-tested industry is able to utilize over a century of expertise to accommodate better than ever before a diverse marketplace with complex needs and high expectations.

For 120 years, ABMA has upheld a tradition of excellence and service. It is with great pride that ABMA celebrates its past and great excitement that it anticipates both its future and the future of the industry it supports.