My father had a degree in engineering. So did my grandfather and my uncle. None of them spent more than a few years working in the field, though. My grandfather put his training to work insuring large municipal projects until the Great Depression put an end to that. My uncle worked on a project to support a nuclear power plant that lead to the development on an industrial printer. He spent the rest of his career selling those.

As for my father, he went on to law school and became a patent attorney. I guess my job today is kind of like his. I also spend my days reading the technical works of practicing engineers.

I was born in 1970 and was therefore told to follow my bliss. That led me to major in English at Albion College in Michigan. Graduating and finding few openings for corporate poet laureate, I went into journalism. I worked at a few places, including the chain of newspapers in Western Michigan that also employed my predecessor, Herb Woerpel.

We were there at different times, and our paths didn’t cross until 2018. Not here at BNP Media, but in a fantasy football league put together by a common friend. When we first met in person, I surprised him by mentioning it. That’s when I started at The ACHR News. I was joining the magazine after spending two decades covering auto finance and retail.

I learned about the world of HVAC at the News. It doesn’t get the attention of the general interest press the way automotive does. Even during the pandemic, when IAQ became a topic of conversation, there were plenty of stories about the soaring prices for new and used cars. People seem to take breathing and comfort for granted.

That’s too bad. In many ways, HVAC, including commercial HVAC, has played a bigger part of forming our modern life than most people believe. I wrote about one way that was true in this piece about the minimum wage.

Speaking of both, my next stop was at our magazine covering the restoration business. Now I’m here. I’ve joined the rest of my family by working at a job that I would call “engineering-adjacent.”

So what can you expect from me going forward? Well, my first goal is to be a good steward. Herb left me a ship in top shape. We have plenty of great contributors covering the entire industry.

Or so I think. I don’t do your job.  Maybe there is something we’re missing, something that’s vital for you to better perform at work. Maybe it’s just something related to the industry that you find interesting.

I’m going to be hitting the road in the next couple of months, so maybe I’ll run into you at some of these events. Let’s get together for some hors d'oeuvres. You can tell me what interests you and I can pick your brain about what’s going on in the industry. I look forward to it.