Soaring spirits

Feature Story

Inclement weather can’t dampen the atmosphere at 53rd NAOHSM Convention & Trade Show

By Chris Traczek

Bruce Marshall, director of education for Emerson-Swan, presents the NAOHSM Manufacturer of the Year Award to John Hazen White, Jr., CEO of Taco, Inc., Cranston, R.I.

Randy Coulter, general manager of Industrial and Aviation Filters, Pickering, Ontario, Canada, discusses product selection with a booth visitor from Springfield, Mass.

Peter Rafle, right, executive vice president of Monitor Products, Inc., and Fumio Miyamoto, center, president of the company, discuss their product lines with a show attendee. The product at the right is their FCS boiler.

Joe Walsh, national sales manager of Oventrop USA, East Granby, Conn., demonstrates a pipe-coupling tool for those interested at his booth.

The weather cleared sufficiently on Day 2 of the Trade Show for attendees to head outside to take in the many and varied exhibits next to the Connecticut Expo facility. This was the second time NAOHSM has held its biggest show in Hartford, Conn.

Jim Colwell, national sales manager for Diversified Heat Transfer, Ridgewood, N.Y., points out features on his new line of indirect water heaters.

Paul Dodge, left, president of Fuel Treatment Specialists, Middletown, Conn., has information on his product, easily viewed on placards.

Despite being dogged for a day by torrential rains that saw visitors arrive at the Connecticut Expo Center in pairs, there was no dampening the spirits of the attendees or exhibitors as the National Association of Oil Heating Service Magazines held its 53rd Annual Convention & Trade Show in Hartford, Conn., from May 14-18.

The week in Hartford featured its usual blend of educational, business and networking opportunities. Three days of seminars touched on a wide variety of topics from tank installations to bioheat panel discussions and hydronics to new technologies. The trade show featured two days, nine hours and over 300 exhibitors, leading to packed aisles at the Connecticut Expo Center. The outdoor exhibits were swamped by the heavy rains on the first day, but as the weather modified on Day 2, the grounds around the Expo Center were abuzz with activity. And NAOHSM did its usual bang-up job of offering opportunities for show attendees to come together in their off hours for a little bonhomie.

This year, that included a Pep Rally in the Park, that, despite some chilly conditions, drew a hardy crowd to Bushnell Park in downtown Hartford. That was followed by a come-one, come-all ‘All-Star Product Review” at the lavish, new Marriott Hotel in downtown.

Of course, the highlight of any NAOHSM Show is the Awards Banquet. Held in the ballroom at the Marriott, this year’s featured its annual homage to the oilheating industry’s top performers, as well as those who may win these prestigious awards in the future.

This year’s Manufacturer of the Year award went to Taco, Inc., Cranston, R.I. John White, Jr. president of Taco, accepted the award and gave an impassioned speech touching on the contributions through the years of Taco’s employees, who have made the company what it is through 86 years of being owned and operated by the same family.

Melba Saddler, national sales manager for FPPF Chemical Company, Inc., Buffalo, N.Y., offers product information to a booth visitor.

Marlen Greiner, marketing assistant, left, and Bill Spohn, national sales and marketing manager, Testo, Inc., Flanders, N.J., right, present a Testo Combustion Analyzer to one of the winners of the NAOHSM 2006 Installation Contest.

The very modern and visible Buderus Hydronic Systems booth was a focal point for many visitors at the Hartford NAOHSM event. Allison Sklarz, marketing manager, is at right of their cutaway appliance.

John Bunting, president, Onwatch Electronics, New Boston, N.H., promotes his Quicklook 72 to interested booth visitors.

Keith Hnatow, product manager at Quincy Hydronics Technology, Biasi Boilers, Portsmouth, N.H., points out information on a sell sheet.

Scott Whitten, left, and his son, of Whitten Enterprises, Orange, Mass., discuss the show with Judy Garber, executive director of the National Association of Oil Heating Service Managers.

Javier Hernandez, Northeast regional manager for OnSpot of North America, Stratford, Conn., demonstrates his firm’s line of automatic tire chains.

This year ‘s Associate of the Year is Steve Rinaldo. Over the past 30 years, he has held almost every office within his chapter. Rinaldo is employed by Automatic Heating Supply, Yonkers, N.Y., and is chairman of the scholarship committee and serves as the liaison between his chapter and their adopted trade schools. Recently, he worked with a local union to establish an oil technician’s trade school.

The Instructor of the Year is Thomas Sabia, who has been employed by the Yonkers Public School system to teach HVAC at Saunders Trade and Technical High School since 1993. He began his career as an oilheat technician for a local oil company. At night he attended NYC Technical College and received a degree for HVAC engineering. He became a member of the Westchester Chapter and before long, equipment and support for the school’s heating lab were in place.

The Service Manager of the Year award went to Southeast Massachusetts Chapter member Frank Lamparelli, Jr. Lamparelli’s family has been in the oilheating business for generations. His grandfather began an oil-and-ice business in 1929. He has been very active with both technical high schools and community colleges in his area and been instrumental in getting equipment and materials into the labs of these schools, as well as getting industry professionals to deliver seminars. He is the vice president of the Southeast Mass. Chapter.

The coveted Hugh McKee award went to Michael Finney of the New Hampshire-Vermont Chapter. He has been a member of this chapter since 1980 and served as secretary for the past 15 years. In that role, he makes sure that speakers are arranged for chapter meetings. Finney was also instrumental in getting the Greater Seacoast Chapter into NAOHSM.

The next generation of award-winners was also honored as this year’s seven recipients of $2,000 Dave Nelsen Scholarships were revealed.

Shawn Wasielewski, Easton, Pa., currently attends Pennsylvania College of Technology, Williamsport, Pa.; Korbin Martz, Millersburg, Pa., will attend York Technical Institute in York, Pa., this fall; Robert Arnold, Lincoln, Maine, began his work history in 1979 with Lincoln Pulp and Paper and has changed careers while attending Northern Maine Community College, Presque Isle, Maine; Bryan Cole, Caribou, Maine, is a senior at Northern Maine Community College; Visar Djongalic, Yonkers, N.Y., is a student at Saunders Technical School; Daniel Auciello, Jr, Holtsville, N.Y., is in his sixth semester at SUNY Maritime College and is the son of NAOHSM member, Dan Auciello; and Mark Hunsicker, Lansdale, Pa., will also be attending Pennsylvania College of Technology in the fall.

Another highlight of the Awards Banquet was the presentation of the second annual Oil Heat Cares Cup, which goes to the chapter that took on the most unique project in the past year through the Oil Heat Cares charitable organization. This year’s winner was the Garden State Chapter, which tackled a project by providing a Union County family with a new oilheating system.

The chapter did most of the leg work by getting donations for the needed equipment. Twin Roth Tanks were installed, along with a Weil-McLain steam boiler, while many fittings and supplies were donated by Weil-McLain and Ridgewood Supply Company. The only thing OHC had to provide was the cost of the permit. Due to the generosity of the manufacturers, wholesalers and the local oil companies, including Wooley Fuel, Petro of Clark and Mitchell Supreme Fuel Company, which donated the first load of fuel oil to the family, this project has helped this family out with their future heating bills.

The family has 11 children and one of them is sick with leukemia. The family had been without heat after being shut off by their local utility two years ago and they had been keeping their home ‘warm” by using electric space heaters.

Oil Heat Cares also got a boost when the first ‘Care to Ride” fund-raiser to benefit the charity was held. Despite less-than-ideal a total of over 100 bicycle riders and walkers, all of whom raised pledge money to participate, took to the streets of Hartford. The result, combined with the contributions of many corporate sponsors, was over $57,000 raised for Oil Heat Cares, well over the hoped-for $20,000 when this project was first broached last spring.

The NAOHSM Convention & Trade Show returns to the Keystone State next year at its usual stomping grounds at the Hershey Lodge and Convention Center in Hershey, Pa. The show has been scheduled for May 18-24, 2007.

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