PRESIDENT & CEO
Peter G. Merrill received a Bachelor of Science Degree with a major in accounting and minors in business administration and economics from the State University of New York at Albany. Upon graduation, he worked for the CPA firm of Peat, Marwick, Mitchell and Co. (now known as KPMG). During his years with the CPA firm he specialized in tax accounting and auditing. He also learned a great deal of financial information that relate to the construction industry including items such as cash flow and cash management, accounts receivable, inventory control, cost and depreciation methods of inventory control, job estimating, job costing, and other financial information relating to profit and loss statements and balance sheets.
Over the years, Mr. Merrill has taken many courses related to the construction industry and he has received several certifications in various specialized fields. He continues to attend seminars at various National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) conventions, meetings and related programs. He also attends seminars and educational programs of other organizations such as the New Mexico Home Builders Association, the Santa Fe Area Home Builders Association, the National Kitchen and Bath Association, the New Mexico Chapter of the National Kitchen and Bath Association, the American Institute of Architects, the Associated General Contractors Association of America, and other construction related associations.
He is an active member of the NAHB and continues to increase his construction related knowledge by serving as a member of the Construction Codes and Standards Committee and several related subcommittees such as the Green Building, Construction Standards, Building Codes, Energy and Conventional Construction Subcommittees. He also serves on the Residential Construction Performance Guidelines Work Group who is rewriting and updating the current issue of the guidelines. Mr. Merrill finds that by staying current on building codes, construction standards and performance guidelines, he can be a very effective and knowledgeable mediator and arbitrator.
Because of his background, his mediation experience and his mediation training, he was selected to attend the Advanced Mediation Training Intensive Program at the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution at the Pepperdine University School of Law located in Malibu, California. The Straus Institute is widely known as the best Dispute Resolution Graduate School program available in the United States. In addition, he was able to enhance his arbitration knowledge by attending the week long Arbitration Training Institute conducted by the American Bar Association at the Golden Gate University School of Law in San Francisco, California. Mr. Merrill continues to attend mediation and arbitration programs to keep him current on any legal or procedural changes related to the dispute resolution process, including advanced mediation training programs at the University of New Mexico School of Law.
INDUSTRY ACTIVITIES AND
Since 1971, Mr. Merrill has been involved in the construction industry as a builder, remodeler and designer. He specialized in kitchens and baths since 1981 when he became a Certified Kitchen Designer (CKD) through the Society of Certified Kitchen Designers of the National Kitchen and Bath Association. From 2002 through 2005, he served a three-year term as the construction industry representative on the Community Development Advisory Council to the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City representing the 10th Federal Reserve District. He also serves on the New Mexico State Fannie Mae Advisory Council.
In 1994 he served as the President of the Santa Fe Area Home Builders Association and in 2000, he served as the President of the New Mexico Home Builders Association (NMHBA). In 1999, he served as the chairman of the Remodelors Council of the Santa Fe Area Home Builders Association. Since 1998, he has been serving on the New Mexico State Construction Industry Commission Building Codes Review Committee. He was the only builder representative on the New Mexico State Fire Marshal’s International Fire Codes Review Committee in 2003 because of his construction background and his extensive fire training experience and expertise as he served as a Fire Chief from 1992 to 1995 and Fire Marshal from 1996 through 1999 in the Santa Fe area. He was recently appointed to a three-year term on the International Code Council Fire Code Review Committee for the years 2006 – 2009, representing the National Association of Home Builders. He has served many years on the New Mexico Home Builders Association International Residential Code Review Committee and he continues to serve on the NMHBA Codes Technical Advisory Committee.
Mr. Merrill has served several years as a National Director on the National Association of Home Builders Board of Directors. He regularly attends the annual International Builders Show and the annual Kitchen and Bath Industry Show to keep current on the new products that are used in the building and remodeling industry and to enhance his knowledge on new construction methods and procedures relative to the construction industry. He has been very involved on NAHB committees, subcommittees and working groups including the Standing Committee on Construction Codes and Standards, the Energy, Green Building, Building Codes, Construction Standards and the Conventional Construction subcommittees. He was recently appointed to serve on the prestigious Residential Construction Performance Guidelines (RCPG) work group who has the task of completely updating and rewriting the guidelines. A complete understanding of the RCPG can be very important for a mediator or arbitrator involved in construction disputes.
Mr. Merrill is a Past President of the New York Tri-State Chapter of the National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA). In 2003, he received a three-year appointment to the NKBA Builder/Remodeler Advisory Council. In 2004, he received a three-year appointment to the NKBA Legislative Committee. In April 2004, he was the first member to ever receive an “Honorary Life Membership” from the National Kitchen and Bath Association at the Kitchen and Bath Industry Show in Chicago.
Mr. Merrill has been an executive committee member for the past ten years and currently serves as the Vice President of the Santa Fe High School Building Trades Advisory Corporation that oversees the construction of a new house each year by the Santa Fe High School Building Trades Program.
INDUSTRY INVOLVEMENT AND NEUTRALITY
Mr. Merrill has been involved in construction mediations for several years. In January 2004 he decided to retire from the construction industry to devote his time and expertise to aid consumers and contractors in resolving construction disputes. His continued involvement with construction organizations keeps him current on building codes, general construction standards and residential construction performance guidelines. His active participation with Alternate Dispute Resolution organizations keeps him up to date on new developments and issues that affect the mediation and arbitration process. His ability to remain neutral is a direct result of his extensive alternate dispute resolution training and his years of mediation experience. His reputation for honesty and his integrity are well known throughout the construction industry.
Mr. Merrill is a member of the New Mexico Mediation Association, The National Association for Conflict Resolution and is an Associate Dispute Resolution Section Member of the American Bar Association. He also serves on the American Bar Association “Other Dispute Resolution Processes Committee” and is a member of the “Construction Industry Forum” of the American Bar Association. Mr. Merrill regularly attends meetings of the New Mexico Mediation Association and the American Bar Association and attends local meetings of the New Mexico Mediation Association and attends various alternate dispute resolution training programs, seminars and professional conferences to keep abreast of changing laws and regulations related to the Dispute Resolution profession and to enhance his ability to conduct successful mediations and arbitrations.
For several years, Mr. Merrill has served as the Santa Fe District Commissioner for the Boy Scouts of America. He remains a unit commissioner and currently serves on the Executive Board of the Great Southwest Council of the Boy Scouts of America. He is an Eagle Scout and is a Vigil member of the Order of the Arrow, the Boy Scout’s National Honor Society. In 2001 he received the Silver Beaver Award, which is the highest award that any adult can receive from the Boy Scouts of America Great Southwest Council.
In 1999, he officially resigned his position as Fire Marshal for the Agua Fria Fire and Rescue Volunteer Fire Department. He served as Fire Chief from 1992 to 1995 and Fire Marshal from 1996 to 1999, and he put in over 19 years altogether in various capacities for volunteer fire districts in New York and New Mexico. In 1994 he was awarded the first Fire Chief of the Year Award by the Santa Fe County Fire Marshal’s Association. He remains a member of the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and the International Fire Marshals Association.
INDUSTRY AWARDS & RECOGNITION
These are some of the awards that Mr. Merrill has received. Many were awarded to him several times over various years. This list does not include the many awards that he has received for his volunteer work in organizations such as the Fire Service, Boy Scouts of America, Industry-related associations, Chamber of Commerce, etc.
Peter Merrill was featured in an article of the October 1999 edition of Builder/Architect magazine. As the feature article for that issue, he was shown on the cover standing in front of a Santa Fe style home that he designed. At the time of this article, he was a builder/remodeler, and his company name was Design Services.
SPECIAL CONSTRUCTION-RELATED AWARDS:
NEW MEXICO HOME BUILDERS ASSOCIATION - HOUSING EXCELLENCE AWARDS:
SANTA FE AREA HOME BUILDERS ASSOCIATION - EXCELLENCE IN REMODELING AWARDS:
NATIONAL KITCHEN AND BATH ASSOCIATION
Association—Arbitration Training Institute
Golden Gate University School of Law
San Francisco, California
CDRS Dispute Resolution Training Institute
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Straus Institute for Dispute
Pepperdine University School of Law
University of New
Mexico School of Law
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Bachelor of Science Degree—Major
State University of New York at Albany
Albany, New York