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There is an enormous labor shortage in the skilled trades, and women have stepped up to assume many positions beyond office work alone. Throughout the Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration (HVACR) industry, women are proving to be excellent technicians, service managers, sales people, marketers and more. Networking, mentoring, and education The increasing role of women in the HVACR industry is reflected in the rapid growth of Women in HVACR, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the lives of its members by empowering women to succeed through networking, mentoring, and education. With a massive labor shortage, women make up a large untapped resource for a potential workforce to fill jobs Approximately 53% of the current skilled-trade workforce is 45 years or older. Estimates say that by 2022, 115,000 new jobs will be available. Currently only 4% of HVACR industry jobs are held by women, with only 1% of field technician jobs held by women. With a massive labor shortage, women make up a large untapped resource for a potential workforce to fill jobs. Members from virtually every sector of the HVACR field “Our organization has snowballed in growth, year over year, providing new avenues for networking, partnerships, collaboration and personal development,” says Danielle Putnam, 2019 Women in HVACR President. “For women excited about growing their careers in the HVACR industry, this organization supports each other and is unashamed to show vulnerability so we can better connect with each other to support and help.” The first international organization for women in the industry, Women in HVACR has 447 current members from virtually every sector of the HVACR field from technicians to contractors, distributors, wholesalers, manufacturers and more, at every level. The organization offers free student memberships as well. There are currently 79 participants in the mentorship program, and the Ambassador Program in 2019 has seven Ambassadors Mentorship programs Member benefits include scholarship opportunities, mentorship programs, a member-only online directory by state, and bi-weekly Zoom video conference calls. Additional benefits include regular updates on Facebook and LinkedIn, an annual conference, and quarterly newsletters. Members can serve as an ambassador for WHVACR and can participate in member-only discussions through HVAC-Talk (a knowledge sharing website), Service Roundtable (a site sharing contractor tips), and HARDI (an organization of distributors). The organization has awarded $19,000 in HVACR Scholarships since 2015. Sponsorship and membership have grown. There are currently 79 participants in the mentorship program, and the brand-new Ambassador Program in 2019 has seven Ambassadors and five scheduled events. Member Involvement “One of our key initiatives for 2019 is member involvement,” says Putnam. “We are focusing on this by setting strategic goals within each board committee to better engage our members. Women love to multi-task and get involved – it is our nature – so we want to make sure the communication channels are open wide and everyone clearly understands how vital they are to the networking, education and mentoring within our organization.” “Women in HVACR is a name that so many want to get behind and support, get involved and be a part of something,” says Putnam. “Member involvement is huge.” Given the interest generated during the panel discussion, Ruth King applied for status as a non-profit organization under the name Women in HVACR Women in HVACR The organization’s growth comes from humble beginnings. In 2002 during the AHR Expo in Chicago, Ruth King and Gwen Hoskins began a discussion about the increased number of women joining the HVACR industry and the need for a way to share knowledge and experience through networking while encouraging and supporting one another. This conversation between two women was the catalyst for the organization. From this simple discussion, a panel discussion was hosted by Comfortech entitled: Women in The Industry during the 2003 conference held in Dallas in conjunction with the Contracting Business Woman of the Year breakfast. The panel consisted of four women within the HVACR industry and was attended by approximately 40 people. From there, given the interest generated during the panel discussion, by the end of the year Ruth King had applied for status as a non-profit organization under the name Women in HVACR. As so it began. Advice To Women We have many male members, and even one male Mentor in our Mentorship program"Currently there are 70 or so sponsors of the organization at various levels. Top-tier Diamond Sponsors are PROPARTS HVAC Parts and Supplies, Ingersoll Rand, Trane, American Standard, York, Johnson Controls, Allied Air Enterprises, Magi-Pak, COSCO and Armstrong Air. One misconception about the Women in HVACR organization is that it is a women-only group. “Though we are a group whose mission is to support women in the HVACR industry, there is no requirement that you be a woman to fulfill this role,” says Karen DeSousa, Women in HVACR Vice President. “We have many male members, and even one male Mentor in our Mentorship program.” What’s the organization’s advice to women entering the HVACR field? “Don’t give up!” says DeSousa. “Though you will experience setbacks and hurdles in many forms, this industry is worth the long hours, sometimes difficult working conditions, endless need for continuing education and more.”
A notable New York City building owner is setting a high bar in energy efficiency and sustainability upgrades. Trane, global provider of indoor comfort solutions, and a brand of Ingersoll Rand, has recognized SL Green Realty Corp. with an Energy Efficiency Leader Award for demonstrating an outstanding commitment to best energy practices. SL Green engaged Trane to install two energy efficient centrifugal chillers and 1.37MW of thermal energy storage at its iconic 11 Madison Avenue building in New York City. This Trane Thermal Battery cooling system behaves like a battery, charging CALMAC thermal batteries when excess or inexpensive energy is available, and discharging when demand or price is high. Trane Thermal Battery cooling system During peak cooling season, the thermal batteries produce more than 500,000 pounds of ice each night During peak cooling season, the thermal batteries produce more than 500,000 pounds of ice each night. The ice then cools off the building during the day, significantly decreasing SL Green’s carbon footprint, energy consumption and operating costs. Through the ice battery installation, SL Green has lowered tenant energy cost by 10 percent, reduced energy and operating costs by more than US$ 730,000 annually and decreased carbon emissions by 1.4 million pounds – the equivalent of taking more than 130 cars off the road or planting 188 acres of trees. Energy Efficiency Leader Awards “The Energy Efficiency Leader Awards recognize businesses and institutions that demonstrate impactful contributions towards environmental sustainability,” said Donny Simmons, president, Trane Commercial HVAC, North America, Europe, Middle East and Africa. “SL Green is a perfect fit; the smart energy practices at 11 Madison Avenue prove business and environmental goals can work hand in hand for a more sustainable future.” The Thermal Battery system plays an integral role in helping SL Green reach its portfolio-wide sustainability goal of 30 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2025, along with its commitments to New York State and New York City energy mandates of reducing greenhouse gas emissions 80 percent by 2050. Energy efficient practices “SL Green capitalizes on every opportunity we have to reduce our carbon footprint because we have a responsibility to our tenants, our partners and New York City as a whole,” said Edward V. Piccinich, Chief Operating Officer, SL Green Realty Corp. “This innovation is a worthwhile investment, both operationally and financially. We’re honored to be recognized by Trane for leading the way.” SL Green’s and Trane’s commitments to sustainability extend beyond energy efficient practices; the companies share similar goals focused on enhancing quality of life and climate action: SL Green is committed to transforming the built office environments; to mitigate climate change and provide a high quality of life for all New Yorkers. The company’s vision has been manifested through the development of One Vanderbilt, a new, Class A office tower where all design, construction, and operational elements prioritize environmental stewardship and societal responsibility. Trane is meeting the challenge of climate change through bold 2030 Sustainability Commitments. Its Gigaton Challenge is designed to reduce the customer carbon footprint from buildings, homes and transportation by one gigaton1 CO2e, while leading by example in its own operations – achieving carbon neutral and net positive water operations
Ingersoll Rand, globally renowned provider of comfortable, sustainable and efficient environments, is slated to exhibit its latest advances in heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) from Trane, American Standard, Nexia and Ameristar, at the 2019 International Builders’ Show (IBS), slated to take place from February 19 - 21 2019 in Las Vegas (booth #N727 – North Hall). ‘Comfort Solutions for Every Home’ Ingersoll Rand will spotlight its commitment to providing ‘Comfort Solutions for Every Home’ Ingersoll Rand will spotlight its commitment to providing ‘Comfort Solutions for Every Home’ with a complete portfolio of heating, cooling and indoor air quality equipment and controls Trane’s virtual reality experience will allow booth visitors to design their perfect residential HVAC system. They can also learn about building science from the founder of the Building Science Corporation. In addition, Trane will highlight its partnership with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and the St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway. “We’re pleased to introduce our newest products from Trane, American Standard and Ameristar at IBS 2019,” said Melissa Foley, Director of strategic partnerships for Ingersoll Rand’s residential business, further adding “At this year’s exhibit, we encourage attendees to learn more about St. Jude Research Hospital, and join our commitment to helping children and families affected by cancer.” Indoor comfort solutions Ingersoll Rand will highlight three solutions categories̶, namely - Premium, Advantage and Standard, designed to offer homebuilders the products they need to meet clients’ comfort, energy and budget demands. The lineup to be exhibited at the 2019 IBS will include: Trane, global provider of indoor comfort solutions and services and a brand of Ingersoll Rand, will introduce an ultra-quiet, low-profile variable speed heat pump, humidity defending air handler and diagnostic capable thermostat. GMU/V Series Air Handler – A smaller unit for tighter applications, the new GMU/V series air handler is designed to conserve space with its flexible installation options that include mounting it on studs or over the hot water heater. XV19 Low-Profile Variable Speed Heat Pump — Low-profile, variable speed heat pump. Created to satisfy some of the strictest noise ordinances, this heat pump’s ultra-quiet operations allow it to be placed outside of the quietest spots of a home. Plus, its compact design allows it to sit as close as 6-inches from an exterior wall, providing an energy efficient choice for multi-family homes and areas with zero lot lines. Air Conditioners and furnaces On display at IBS will be the brand’s cutting edge furnace and top of the line air conditioner American Standard Heating & Air Conditioning has gained the trust of builders with award-winning products that are built to a higher standard. On display at IBS will be the brand’s cutting edge furnace and top of the line air conditioner. The AccuComfort Variable Speed Platinum 18 Air Conditioner – The multi-staged AccuComfort™ Variable Speed Platinum 18 Air Conditioning System offers maximum comfort and a high efficiency rating for the most discriminating home owners. Silver S8X1 Furnace - This single-stage S8X1 gas furnace is a great choice for those looking for solid heating option with an optimal installation experience. Standing at only 34-inch tall it offers four poises and is also available in two-stage version, the S8X2. Heat pumps and air handlers Ameristar is a brand built for cost-effective, efficient, and dependable cooling and heating performance, no matter what kind of home you own. Ameristar 14 Seer Heat Pump – Ameristar Heat Pumps offer the ideal combination of flexibility and affordability to meet needs for a reliable, affordable system for a new build or HVAC equipment replacement. 4-Way Air Handler - An air handler works year-round to condition and circulate warm or cool air in your home. With multiple installation configurations, Ameristar air handlers minimize the need for expensive customization or adaptation—ensuring a proper fit at an affordable price. Events at the Ingersoll Rand International Builder’s Show booth: Trane has teamed up with Mitsubishi Electric and Greenfiber to offer a 45-minute presentation Trane has teamed up with Mitsubishi Electric and Greenfiber to offer a 45-minute presentation and Q&A by the founding principal of the Building Science Corporation, Joseph Lstiburek. He will discuss high performance building practices and the challenges faced by builders on Wednesday, Feb. 20, at 10 a.m. in the Greenfiber Booth – P16 Outdoor. Joseph Lstiburek is the founding principal of Building Science Corporation. Dr. Lstiburek’s work ranges widely, from providing expert witness testimony to overseeing research and development projects, to writing for the ASHRAE Journal and buildingscience.com. Dr. Lstiburek’s commitment to advancing the building industry has had a lasting impact on building codes and practices throughout the world, particularly in the areas of air barriers, vapor barriers, and vented and unvented roof assemblies. Residential HVAC systems The Ingersoll Rand team also will feature a special in-booth tribute to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and encourage attendees to learn more about the St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway. Since 2014, Ingersoll Rand has donated $1.5 million in HVAC equipment and installations to builders creating homes Dream Home Giveaway program. Additionally, as a participant in St. Jude’s annual run/walk they have further committed to supporting families impacted by pediatric cancer. Lastly, Ingersoll Rand will offer attendees, a fun, interactive, virtual reality (VR) experience for attendees to race against time to build the ultimate Residential HVAC system with our hands-on game. Through the VR headset, participants will be transported to a home construction site, where they can put their skills to the test at selecting Trane HVAC equipment and accessories that will enhance comfort in the 3D home.