Northern Alberta Chapter History

Northern Alberta Chapter Historical Hightlights Researched and compiled by Ivan Hall, Chapter Historian 1995-2004

Northern Alberta Chapter arrived on the scene in March of 1956 in the midst of the fourth boom to hit the city in the century the gadget boom of post WWII. We were the fifth Canadian chapter to be chartered and the third in Western Canada behind Manitoba (1935) and British Columbia (1952). It is now one of 17 Canadian chapters; the latest being Vancouver Island Chapter, formed in 1985.

Since being chartered, our membership has grown from the original 20 charter members to an area membership in excess of 250; not including students. We have moved from the original Canadian Region 2 to International Region 11 (in 1967) and helped sponsor two new chapters (Calgary in 1957 and Vancouver Island in 1985).

Northern Alberta Chapter has, from inception, been active in sponsoring education and technical seminars in the HVAC field in our community. The Chapter produced a 16mm color movie in 1968, which included a tour of the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology and coverage of a member consultants trip on a fly-in project to the North. This activity extended to post secondary course content advisory committees, 2 ASHRAE Student Chapter sponsorships, scholarships and government code reviews. We have also promoted cooperation with other technical and professional associations in the area.

Socially, we hold annual golf tournaments and curling bonspiels as well as frequent Ladies Nights and barbecue socials. In recent years we've added a Christmas Charity Luncheon to our list of events as a way of further helping out in our community. In addition we NAC has been a strong supporter of the John Ross Bonspiel (instituted in 1960 by Regional Director John Ross) between the 5 Canadian Prairie chapters (we actually won twice).

Early in our history we were the first of all Region 2 chapters to meet our fundraising goal to support ASHRAE in the United Engineering Centre in New York. (ASHRAE had committed a goal of $250,000 to the centre in 1960). Since ASHRAE started emphasizing research in 1969, we have consistently supported ASHRAE Research. We've had chapter members on ASHRAE technical committees; notably Gerry Sadler TC4.04, Larry Kehoe TC8.07, Steve Bruskiwiech TC4.3 and Mike Smith TC9.7 . NAC has been fortunate to see these funds in action; the University of Alberta ( Dr. Dave Wilson) being recipient of several ASHRAE research projects. Our chapter has been no slouch in producing championship performance either.

We have produced one of only 3 Canadian Society Presidents (the late Don Holte), a Society Director (Percy Butler), a Regional Education Chairman (Darryl Boyce), and a Regional Refrigeration Chairman (Alex Paterson). We have hosted 5 Regional CRC Conferences since inception (1960, 1968, 1981, 1994, and 2008) and sponsored 2 student chapters (NAIT U. of A.).

We have been recognized for excellence by winning PAOE awards in 11 years; including one with citation. We won a Society Energy Award in 1985, a Region 11 energy award in 1984, Top Dog award for Research fundraising in 1981 and 88 and TOPS membership award in 1990, a regional history award, a regional programs award and several Full Circle and High Five awards.

The spirit continues today!