HPAC Magazine

Sunny optimism prevails at HRAI annual meeting

November 7, 2018 | By HPAC Magazine

It was fitting that the Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Institute celebrated its 50th annual meeting and conference at a tropical location. Attendees enjoyed an invigorating program, along with the amenities and warm temperatures at the Paradisus resort in Playa del Carmen, Mexico.

Opening night on October 14 featured the 2017/2018 Year in Review and a view of the future from HRAI’s new president and CEO Sandy MacCleod.

The addition of CEO to the leadership title is just one change implemented by MacCleod since he joined HRAI in June 2018.

HRAI Awards: top from left, HRAI Merit Award recipient Dave McPherson (l) of Rheem Canada accepts his award from Bruce Passmore; David Derksen (r) of Tech-Air Ltd. accepts the President’s Recognition Award, from Sandy MacCleod. (Absent, Life Member Award recipients Ron Robinson, Atlas Care and David Morden, Morden Sales & Marketing; and President’s Recognition Award winner Mark Szpytma of Master Group.

In an organizational shift, he has created two director roles: director, operations and services, held by Frank Diecidue and director, member engagement, held by Loretta Zita. Martin Luymes, who was director of programs and relations, assumed the role of vice president, government stakeholder relations.

In his financial report Diecidue attributed HRAI’s healthy financial position in 2017-2018 to increased education revenues as a result of its partnership with the Ontario Geothermal Association. In Ontario the demise of GreenON, which was spurring much of that growth, has created some instability in the marketplace.

Warren Heeley (l) accepts a plaque in recognition of his contribution to RMC from Sandy MacCleod.

To ensure HRAI’s continued success and growth MacCleod intends to implement a multi-year strategy for the national organization with multiple reviews. “I believe this is the way to go,” said MacCleod.

A plan to bring the Day on the Hill model to the provincial government has already seen progress with a “Day at Queen’s Park” with the new Conservative government in Ontario on October 30.

Greg Scrivener, who provided an update on the use of flammable A2L refrigerants in North America, with Marie Li-Ying of Honeywell Limited.

Observations, barbs and predictions on the political scene were offered up by guest speaker Huw Williams of Impact Canada. His closing advice was that “whatever happens on climate change, HRAI needs to be at the table-if you are not at the table you are on the menu.”

Thomas Mueller of Green Building Council, Cold Dynamics founder Greg Scrivener, internet security expert Chris Mathers and Corey Diamond from Efficiency Canada were also on the program.

HRAI will hold it 2019 annual meeting and conference August 25-27 in Niagara Falls, ON at the Sheraton on the Falls Hotel.


David Weishuhn, incoming HRAI chair and 2017-2018 chair of HRAI’s Contractors Division, announced the recognition awards for outstanding leadership within the division and the HVAC/R contractor community on October 14.

Peter Steffes, formerly of Ideal Heating and Cooling in Windsor, ON received the Craig McCarty Memorial Award in appreciation of his long-standing dedication to HRAI’s Contractors Division and the HVAC/R industry. Steffes has been on the Contractors board of directors since 2004. From 2012-2013 he was vice-chair of the division and was chair of the Contractors Division from 2013-2015, becoming chair of the HRAI Board of Directions in 2015.

The Gearld Inch Award for Chapter Leadership recognizes the special efforts of volunteers who have been instrumental in keeping HRAI affiliated chapters and local/regional groups viable and meaningful to members. Peter Inch of Roy Inch & Sons Service Experts in London, ON received the award for his work with the HRAI London chapter.

The passing of the gavel-Bruce Passmore, outgoing chair (l) with incoming chair Dave Weishuhn.

2018-2019 HRAI Board of Directors

Chair: David Weishuhn, Blue Flame Heating and Air Conditioning

Past chair: Bruce Passmore, EMCO HVAC

Vice chair of HRAI and Manufacturers Division chair: Dennis Kozina, Emerson Climate Technologies Canada

Secretary-treasurer of HRAI and Wholesalers Division chair: Richard Gosselin, TML Supply

Contractors Division chair: Rob Flipse, Gordon Latham Limited

Manufacturers Division vice chair: Scott McDonald, Johnson Controls L.P.

Wholesalers Division vice chair: Ray Newstead, Refrigerative Supply

President and CEO: Sandy MacLeod








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