BOSTON — The Board of Directors for Women in HVACR held the 16th Annual Conference of WHVACR.

Over 200 engaged WHVACR members and sponsors came together to celebrate scholarship winners, the sharing of trends and ideas, success stories, and networking with the theme “Connect. Cultivate. Grow.”

The event featured 11 speakers, including keynotes Roseann Sdoia Materia, a Boston Marathon bomber survivor and amputee; and Dr. Lois Frankel, psychologist, author, and motivational speaker.

Danielle Putnam, president of the Board of Directors for WHVACR and president of The New Flat Rate, opened the conference by welcoming all attendees and thanking the sponsors for making it all possible.

Following the message came the announcement and appointment of Karen Lamy DeSousa as incoming 2020 Women in HVACR board president.

“We are so fortunate to have had Danielle lead our efforts in WHVACR,” said DeSousa.

“Danielle served with great knowledge, dedication and grace. Because of her leadership, we have clear direction on how to continue our mission to grow membership, award valuable scholarships, and appoint more ambassadors and mentors.”

“I will know exactly where to pick up in my work as board president to grow the organization and bring recognition to women’s contributions in this industry,” she continued. “On behalf of all us, we thank you, Danielle.”

Scholarship winners accepted their $2,000 awards at a formal dinner at the first day of conference. The seven scholarship winners included Amanda Crafts, Emily Gavrilenko, Rebecca Gregg, Kailey Hardy, Morgan Lee, Janet Gibbons, and Briana Prouse.

“HVACR has provided me with confidence that I am good at something,” said technician Rebecca Gregg.

“I am interested in the design process of HVACR and seeing my ideas come to life in the real world,” said Industrial Engineering student Emily Gavrilenko.

Breakout and working sessions, networking, the technicians’ panel, and more inspiring speakers kept attendees engaged throughout the two-day event. Sponsors showcased their products in the common area.