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Jim Docherty

Our birthday Standards Heroes have been nominated by their peers to represent all our contributors - individuals we consider to be the real heroes of standards, in Australia and internationally. We thank those who contribute their knowledge and expertise, service, and time to Standards Australia for the benefit of the Australian community.  

Jim Docherty has dedicated 30 years to standards development, both nationally and internationally.  

How did you become involved in standards development? 

In 1991 I was promoted to General Manager CASCO and my Managing Director asked me to take his position on a Standards Australia committee and joined MN1-4 Sampling of Coal.  

What role have standards played in your career?   

A major one. In 1992 I became chairman of the coal sampling committee a position I held for more than ten years until it was consolidated into MN2 Coal Preparation. I represented Australia as Head of Delegation for ISO TC27 SC4, SC3 and Coal Preparation for more than twenty years. In 2013 I was awarded an Outstanding Service Award from Standards Australia.

What is a project you’ve been particularly proud to have helped deliver? 

ISO 21398, Guide to the Inspection of Mechanical Sampling Plants was a project. It was my suggestion that I wished to develop a Guide while chairman of MN 1-4.  I became a working group convenor in Australian Standards and published it in the nineties. In early 2000 I became a working group convenor in ISO and published it as ISO 21398 and in 2007 I then revised it again and published it in 2019.  

It’s followed me for more than 20 years. I presented a paper on it at the World Sampling Conference in Newcastle.

Outside of standards development, what have been some highlights of your career? 

Becoming Managing Director of CASCO in 2003.

Losing 15 kg in the past year and riding 120km per week on my bike plus golf three times a week. Life is good.

What do you think the future of standardisation looks like? 

It’s difficult to attract new blood to Standards work even though it can be very rewarding. We all have busy lives now and are getting older so I believe there is a need to attract new people through programs like NEXTgen.  

Is there anything you’d like to say or mention about Standards Australia’s centenary year? 

I would like to thank Standards Australia for encouraging me in the field of standards development. I have found it very rewarding, and it has become a passion in my life which I did not expect ever to be when I first joined.

After more than 30 years doing standards work, I am still involved in creating new standards like HB 196 Sampling in Coal Preparation Plants and am now taking into ISO as ISO 4077 and it’s at the FDIS stage and should be published later this year.