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ASHRAE Sister Chapters Reach across Regions, World

By: Mary Kate McGowan, Associate Editor, News

From eSociety, March 2018

Located in different countries on different continents, two ASHRAE chapters are working together to improve chapter operations.

The ASHRAE Dayton Chapter in Ohio was founded in 1950, and the ASHRAE Ireland Chapter was elevated from a section to a chapter in June 2017.

Evan Nutt, Member ASHRAE, who serves as Dayton’s Chapter Technology Transfer Chair, developed the idea of his chapter becoming “sister chapters” with the Ireland chapter. Nutt said the partnership was inspired by ASHRAE President Bjarne Olesen’s theme, “Extending Our Community.”

Chapters are also awarded Presidential Award of Excellence (PAOE) points for collaborating with a chapter outside the country and other activities, said Nutt.

The partnership is in its early stages and still developing.

Donal Finn, Member ASHRAE, who is the president of the ASHRAE Ireland Chapter, joined the Dayton Board of Governors’ meeting in February, and the chapter leaders are working to schedule the next meeting.

As part of Region XIV, which was created last summer, the ASHRAE Ireland Chapter is adjusting to additional responsibilities and opportunities of being an ASHRAE chapter, Finn said.

“I found a lot of the challenges and opportunities that they, the Dayton chapter, have to deal with are the same issues that face us in Ireland,” Finn said. “More critically what I think has been most helpful to us is to see the range of activities that Dayton are involved in...and to get an understanding of financial context in which they operate.”

Rob Mauro, Associate Member ASHRAE, who is the president of the Dayton chapter, said he hopes the sister chapter partnership can “help (Ireland) develop a format that will allow them to be successful.”

“We just want to be a sounding board for them and help them. We’ve run through a number of challenges with our chapter. There’s a good possibility if they run into a challenge, we’ve probably seen it, addressed it and solved it,” he said.

On the heels of the creation of the new region and new chapters such as the Ireland chapter, Mauro said he thinks it is fascinating that ASHRAE is more global now.

“Ireland has, even though they’re in a different country, the same interests and the same motivations that we do over here. To be able to collaborate with them and to really interact with them I think is essential,” he said.

With the growth of the Society throughout the world, Finn said it is helpful that older chapters are willing to help members belonging to newer ones.

“It gives the opportunity to share ideas from one region to another region...and to develop synergies in some ways particularly in terms of chapter operations, chapter ideas and chapter programs,” he said.