The Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute (CLSI), formerly known as NCCLS, is an institution familiar to all clinical laboratorians. We have all used NCCLS standards for everything from phlebotomy, to method validation, to the very format for writing laboratory procedures.
While most practicing laboratorians look at CLSI documents as the gospel or last word on specific laboratory standards, we also assume the standards are developed by world-renowned experts "out there." The reality is, CLSI is always looking for ordinary volunteers to help and be involved as the Institute goes through the deliberative process of developing guidelines then standards which become published documents on a myriad of issues.
Volunteering to work on a CLSI project alongside national and international experts is one way in which "ordinary" laboratorians can expand their network and leave their fingerprint on documents that become significant standards in the future. CLSI is looking for volunteers for a variety of projects right now. Check these out: Disaster Planning and Method Comparison or Specimen Labeling.