Women in HVACR
Shared Screenshot Women Hvacr 23a 63e7105992e3b

AHR 2023: Women in the HVACR Industry

Feb. 11, 2023
Adding more women to the HVACR industry will help alleviate the ongoing skilled labor challenge nationwide, noted an expert panel at AHR Expo.

The HVACR industry has a tremendous opportunity to recruit women into the industry. But the industry also needs to make adjustments so that women are more comfortable contributing their ideas, according to an expert panel of Women in HVACR members.

Speaking Feb. 8 at the 2023 AHR Expo in Atlanta. Erica Leanor (Goodleap), Laurelyn Arriaga (Women in HVACR board member) and Kristin Gallup (Carrier) explained that the organization is focused on providing HVACR women with networking, education and mentoring opportunities to advance their careers.

“The power of language has a large impact on how women are seen in the industry,” noted Leanor. “It takes seven seconds to make a first impression, and many women are labeled in those seven seconds.”

Labels such as "emotional," "bossy," or "weak" put women in a bad light. "Passionate," "intentional," "resourceful" and "strategic" are less derogatory ways to describe women.

“Mentorship from others in the HVAC industry allows women to understand that there are promotion and educational opportunities for them,” Leanor said. “Pay it forward!”

Gallup said that the industry has a “huge” opportunity to hire women. “Of the 12% of women in the HVACR industry, only 2% are in the field. Infiltrating high schools and trade schools to highlight the career potential of HVAC can help with our skilled labor shortage.”

She noted that the Women in HVACR’s Ambassador program helps in that respect by highlighting the lucrative career paths available in HVAC.

And Arriaga explained that “investing in yourself” by membership in a trade organization helps women grow in the industry and gives them a sense of belonging.


About the Author

Kelly L. Faloon | Contributing Writer/Editor

Kelly L. Faloon is a contributing editor and writer to HPAC Engineering, Contractor, and Contracting Business magazine. The former editor of Plumbing & Mechanical magazine, Faloon has more than 20 years experience in the plumbing and heating industry. She started a freelance writing and editing business in 2017, where she has a varied clientele.

Faloon spent 3 1/2 years at Supply House Times before joining the Plumbing & Mechanical staff in 2001. Previously, she spent nearly 10 years at CCH/Wolters Kluwer, a publishing firm specializing in business and tax law, where she wore many hats — proofreader, writer/editor for a daily tax publication, and Internal Revenue Code editor.

A native of Michigan’s northern Lower Peninsula, Faloon is a journalism graduate of Michigan State University. You can reach her at [email protected].