SPED PPD Advisory Committee members are exclusively drawn from pipers certified to Professional Piping Designer (PPD) Level IV. The charter of this committee is to review the PPD program content and advise SPED as to content, direction and qualifications. Members of this committee will be given extraordinary access to PPD notes, questions, glossaries and other material used in PPD training and assessment. They will be asked for feedback, comment, contributed material and other guidance for the PPD Certification program.





The SPED PPD Certification program has developed since 2003 into a robust program that has certified over 450 piping designers and engineers worldwide. The program adds about 150 pipers per year.


Level I emphasizes piping layout. Level III emphasizes equipment placement, spacing and orientation. Levels I and III require an exam be passed. The test banks for Levels I and III have about 450 and 1000 questions, respectively.


Levels II, III and IV require 4, 8 and 20 years of approved experience.


Despite this success, questions frequently arise:


Are the questions and content correct? For example, API standards recently called for straight runs before pump suction nozzles and the test bank did not reflect this until 2009.


Are 100 questions sufficient to test for 20 topics? Would 150 or 200 be better?


Should tests be developed for Level II and IV? Level II is supposed to reflect awareness of task information requirements and project procedures. Level IV is competence to estimate and execute full-scope piping projects.


Should the PPD program be specialized? Some would prefer specialized testing for land plants, offshore, power plants, waste water, etc.


Can we show more installed examples? With today’s level of security, it is impossible to tour modern plants, snapping pictures.


What are the most missed skills in pipers? Over the years, SPED has added content to address known workforce weaknesses.


The PPD Advisory Council should help address these questions.


Who can belong: The members of the PPDAC are to be exclusively drawn from PPD Level IV Certified pipers.


Proposed benefits to participants: PPDAC members will be given access to notes, glossaries and selected test banks for review purposes. A blog will be set up for PPDAC exclusive use.


Member Responsibilities: PPDAC members will be asked to review and comment on PPD Certification program content and contribute helpful information to enhance the program. SPED agrees to be selective and respectful of member’s time.


SPED has certified over 450 piping designers and engineers, worldwide. The program adds about 150 pipers per year. Level I emphasizes piping layout. Level III emphasizes equipment placement, spacing and orientation. Levels I and III require an exam be passed. Levels II, III and IV require 4, 8 and 12 years of approved experience. The test banks for Levels I and III have about 450 and 1000 questions, respectively.

PPD Advisory Committee Members - April 01, 2013

The PPDAC Currently has 15 Members




Lynn Bishop

lynnbishop 2

Over 15 years of Piping Design, Equipment layout, Checking & Drafting of Petro-Chemical Plants, Refineries, Gas Plants, Compressor Stations, Oil & Gas Pipelines, LNG, FPSOs, offshore/onshore, grass roots, capital & revamp Projects. Experienced in Front End Engineering Design & development & Checking. Experienced in construction support, Able to read & produce Civil/Structural Drawings. Experienced with in-plant ability to tie down existing locations & elevations of piping & equipment, & preliminary layout design. (Experienced with DuPont Projects) (SPED Certification PPD Level IV)

Paul Bowers


SPED International Director and SPED website Webmaster/Developer/Server Admin/MoodleMangler, Paul Bowers PPD IV has 30+ years experience in the piping design business. He has designed process plants in multiple areas including petrochem, pulp and paper, cryogenics, heavy oil, industrial gases and mining. Paul founded PipingDesignCentral in1998 and co-authored 'The Planning Guide to Piping Design' with Richard Beale and Peter Smith in 2010.

Ron Burrow


Over 38 years in the piping design industry. Experience in upsteam, downstream, pipelines, risers, pipe-racks, modular concepts, etc., as well as different phases of engineering to include: feed (front end engineering development), and detail design, construction/fabrication, and installation/ commissioning/ turnover. These diverse types of projects required considerable interfacing with all other disciplines involved - allowing me to learn a 'wealth' of information concerning process, operations, electrical, instrumentation, maintenance, structural steel, construction/ fabrication/ installation. Ron is currently serving on SPED Board of Directors.

Anton Dooley

anton dooley

20 years of process piping design experience in many industry sectors, including oil & gas, pharmaceuticals, fine chemicals, semi-conductor, mining, food & beverage, energy and renewable resources. Based in Ireland, he has worked in a number of countries including The UK, mainland Europe and Australia. For the past 9 years he has run pipingdesigners.com, a website dedicated to providing information to piping designers around the world. He has held many roles in his career including, Piping Dept. Manager, Lead Piping Designer, Layout Engineer and Plant coordinator, on projects from Concept to Feed to Detailed Design through to construction and commissioning. Anton was certified as a SPED Professional Piping Designer Level IV in 2009.

Bill Dornfeld

Bill Dornfield

Thirty-three years as a Piper. Received an Associate Degree in Drafting Technology, Del Mar College, Corpus Christi, TX. Sr. Piping Designer with extensive experience in offshore platforms, drilling rigs, plastic, chemical, pipeline, natural gas plants, LNG, refinery, pharmaceutical, and HVAC facilities. Experienced as lead, checker, designer, drafter, construction liaison, estimator, and hydrotest & line punch-out inspector.

Martin Fournier

martin fournier

Over twenty-five years of piping design experience, including field engineering, detailed fabrication design, Piping and Plant Layout, 3D modeling, extensive experience in detailed design and drafting of heat exchangers, pressure vessels, columns, skid mounted units, experience in pre-FEED, FEED and detailed engineering of SAGD, on shore, off shore oil and gas projects and design discipline coordination. A proficient user of 3D design software with the ability to take on leadership roles on projects.PPD Level IV in 2008

John Gay

john gay

Over 37 years in Piping Designer with expertise in Refining, Petrochemical & Offshore projects; design philosophy based on presentation, safety, construction & maintenance; focused on minimizing downtime and long-term maintenance/repair costs. Active member and instructor for the Society of Piping Engineers & Designers (SPED), Houston, TX. Courses taught include: Process Plant Layout; Pipe Rack Design; Structures; Tank Farms; et al. Author of numerous articles on Piping Design and Plant Layout. Board of Directors for the Society of Piping Engineers and Designers, 2005 - 2009. PPD Level IV in 2003

Lee Jewell

Lee Jewell

Lee Jewell has over 35 years experience in process and utility piping design and plant layout for the refinery, chemical, agri-chemical, petrochemical, and food-grade industries. Lee is experienced in specialty piping systems such as high temperature/pressure piping, Dowtherm piping, lined piping, jacketed piping, and glass piping systems. Lee is currently serving as Chief of Plant Design responsible for panning, directing, and administering project assignments, ensuring quality of work, productivity, and cost efficiency. Lee btained his PPD Level IV certification in 2011 and a member of the SPED Mid-West chapter.

Greg Kemp

greg kemp photo

Greg Kemp is a Senior Piping Designer with over twenty years experience on project conversion from conception to detailed design packages. Greg rose from a fitter for the Boilermaker’s Union to developing piping designs for oil shale, biofuels, power, petrochemical and many other projects from design through construction. Greg received his PPD Level IV certification in 2010

Lee Morgan

lee morgan

Lee Morgan is a Senior Piping Designer with ten years vessel design experience and fifteen years fabrication experience. Lee's responsibilities included developing scope, creating bid packages, and to coordinating with the client approval committee and fabricators to approve the fabrication or modifications of ASME Section VIII pressure vessel design projects, following equipment design from bid cycle thru project installation. He has taken care of civil/structural design while at the COP site, designing repairs to and extensions of various pipe racks, platforms and supports. He is also the site safety coordinator and the first responder for his current site. Lee was certified at PPD Level IV in 2010..

Steve Slimmon

steve slimmon

Steve Slimmon has 15 years of experience in piping design in the oil, gas, and petrochemical industries. His experience in design includes light oil, heavy oil, upstream facilities, downstream facilities and petrochemical refineries in North America and Saudi Arabia. He has designed a large variety of equipment and related piping in all phases of engineering from FEED to plant start-up. He has worked on all facets of projects including estimates, material take-offs, P&ID’s, valve counts, design, vendor squad checks, isometric production, design reviews with clients, etc. His knowledge of PDS, AutoPlant (Rebis), Microstation, Procad and Autocad enables him to design in any format. PPD Level IV SPED 2011.

Jerry Tunis


Jerry Tunis is a senior, hands-on piping & mechanical designer with18 years experience in petrochemical environment. He has worked in design, layout and update process and utility piping systems, metering skids, pilot plant skids, compressor stations, and natural gas lift stations for petroleum, chemical plant & pipeline modifications, expansions and upgrades. His work products include plot plans, general arrangements, equipment layouts, complex pipe way layouts, details, Plan & Elevation drawings (ortho & isometric), P&ID’s, PFD’s involving field verification, updating P&ID’s, drawings schematics and bills of material. His responsibilities span client, contractor, and inter-discipline coordination, FEED, bid preparation; clearance studies assisted impact analysis studies; substantial field measure work. Jerry achieved PPD Level IV in 2010..

Manolo Valle

manolo valle

H. Manolo Valle has twenty years, plus experience in the petrochemical, petroleum, polymer and food industries. Responsibilities have included conceptual plant layout, mechanical flow diagram development from process sketches plus sizing utility lines, developed cost and manhour estimates. Supervised the piping developing from design to fabrication and to erection/construction on both new construction and retrofit projects.

Jim Weeks

jim weeks

Over 25 years experience in the Petroleum/Petrochemical and Offshore Industries. Experience in virtually all aspects of the industry, including chemical & petrochemical plants, gas processing facilities, drill ships & offshore rigs. Extensive field experience related to design, layout, checking, material take-off and system walk downs. Coursework from San Diego State, San Jacinto Jr. College and the University of Houston.

Ron Waldon

Ron Waldon is a past SPED President and is currently the PPDAC Chairman. Mr. Waldon has over 50 years of experience in Chemical, Petrochemical, Refineries, Foods and Pharmaceuticals, Water and Wastewater and Nuclear industries. He has served as Piping Manager for two Large Engineering Companies and has served as piping Lead on numerous piping projects including an $80M Coker renovation project and a $200M Power Plant Project. Ron has designed Utility Systems, High Purity Piping Systems, glass Piping systems, Dowtherm Systems, and Cryogenic Piping Systems to name a few.


Published 02 August 2010Updated  23 November 2021.