It is with great pleasure that I welcome you to the American Automatic Control Council (AACC). There is no better time than today to be involved in the design, analysis, and implementation of control systems. Almost all new devices and systems are ‘smart’—e.g. smart cars, smart grids, smart appliances—and researchers and practitioners of control systems are essential to the rapid development of these complex intelligent designs. Advancements in microelectronics, telecommunications, and control systems have driven smart devices and systems to become pervasive in all aspects of our lives. Robots are no longer constrained to manufacturing lines; we now have robots that do basic household chores and exoskeletons that aid firemen and surgeons. Drones are no longer restricted to military warfare and surveillance; we now use drones for recreation, to monitor crop damage, and soon to deliver your next internet purchase. Thermostats are not just switches; they are now intelligent and can ‘learn’ occupant behavior and equipment response capabilities to operate the integrated system in the most optimal manner. The fact that you are reading this message indicates that you are a member in some aspect of the control community, and you will be called upon to help develop more sophisticated systems of the future to help mankind.