Women in HVACR announces 2008 officers, board

CLEVELAND -- Women in HVACR, the organization committed to educating, networking and mentoring women in all facets of the HVACR industry, has announced its 2008 board of directors. The 10 women bring a combined experience from all facets of the HVACR industry.

Taking the helm for 2008 as president is Karen Riffice of Soderlund Brothers Inc. from Oaklawn, Ill. With more than 30 years of experience in the contracting side of the industry, Riffice sees her presidency as the perfect opportunity to give back to the field who has given her so much. One of her goals as president is for the group to increase its outreach into schools to raise awareness about careers in the HVAC industry. She also wants the organization to continue facilitating networking between members, whether it's in person or over the phone.

“If you have a question or concern about your business or career, chances are there are members who can help,” Riffice said.

As past president, Gwen Hostnik, group marketing director/conference manager for CONTRACTOR's sister publication Contracting Business magazine & HVAC Comfortech in Cleveland, is actively involved with continuing the advancement of the organization.

In terms of what's ahead for the organization, Hostnik stated, “In addition to the continued focus on the education and programming, the Women in HVACR board will be concentrating on mentoring and outreach programs, as well as working on the development of regional chapters.”

Officers for 2008 include Riffice; Vice President Barbara Keil, Keil Heating & Air Conditioning, Riverdale, N.J.; Secretary Kimberly O'Neal, Heating, Air-conditioning & Refrigeration Distributors International, Columbus, Ohio; Treasurer Kathy McCauley, McCauley Mechanical Construction Inc., Bridgeview, Ill.; and Past President Hostnik.

Board members include Adrienne Breedlove, Mechanical Contractors Association of America, Rockville, Md.; Nita Brooks, International Service Leadership Inc., Nashville, Tenn.;
Ruth Ann Davis, Williams Furnace, Frisco, Texas, Valerie Stakes, Multilingual Training Solutions, Cleveland Heights, Ohio; and Tammy Smith, Halco Plumbing & Heating, Phelps, N.Y.

Founded in 2003, Women in HVACR is an organization of more than 300 female and male members from all aspects of the industry, including commercial and residential contracting, manufacturing, distribution, consultants, trainers, students, associations, and publishing.

Additional information is available at www.womeninhvacr.org.