Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning continues to be a growing field with a strong job outlook. According the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of HVACR mechanics and installers is projected to grow four percent from 2019 to 2029. However, women are largely underrepresented in this trade. In 2019, only 13 percent of active engineers were women. Spokespersons for Johnson Controls say the company is actively working to increase the number of women in HVAC careers, by educating and empowering women in the industry and working to expand gender diversity in the industry.
“At Johnson Controls, we believe increased diversity in our workforce makes us a stronger, more robust company. And we are living out this belief. We are investing in employee resource groups, such as our Women’s Global Network and Women in Ops group. Through these initiatives and many others, we are establishing diversity in leadership positions as the expected and normal way we do business. And it’s working. Women currently lead our two largest manufacturing plants and other diverse employees hold many other roles critical to our success. But we can’t rest. We are continually recruiting diverse candidates to fill positions at all levels throughout our organization,” said Joe Oliveri, vice president and general manager, Global Ducted Systems, Johnson Controls.
In honor of International Women’s Day, Johnson Controls is highlighting three women described as, "remarkable female HVAC professionals."
Amelia Bardwell is the plant manager at the Johnson Controls residential HVAC manufacturing facility in Wichita, KS. Throughout her entire professional career, Amelia Bardwell has been a force and a strong female leader within the manufacturing space with a deep passion for the industry. This is clear in her everyday management of the Wichita plant. From safety to product quality to manufacturing engineering, she remains fiercely committed to continuous improvement and outperforming operational metrics.
As a leader, Amelia follows two key principles. The first is being visible and accessible as a plant manager at all levels within the organization. She believes that at the end of the day, people run manufacturing, so human connection with her team is extremely important for the smooth operation of the plant. The second key principle is trust. She ensures her team knows that she trusts their ability to make decisions on behalf of the company when she’s not present. This gives employees autonomy and drives them to work harder.
Amelia Bardwell believes that at the end of the day, people run manufacturing, so human connection with her team is extremely important for the smooth operation of the plant.
“What sets Amelia apart is her ability to grow relationships and engage all levels of our organization, from the shop-floor to senior leaders,” said Mike Mattacola, senior director of operations, Chillers and Ducted Systems, Johnson Controls. “She has great people skills, listen well to the needs of the team and drives quick change. As a result, Amelia has had a big impact re-energizing our team in Wichita.”
In addition, she has recently joined Johnson Controls Women in Operations steering committee, which is an internal business resource group with a focus on attracting and retaining women within operations. She also volunteers as a mentor to a female engineer through the University of Oklahoma’s Jerry Holmes Leadership Program for Engineers and Scientists, which provides leadership education for students in the Gallogly College of Engineering. Through the program, Amelia helps her mentee grow her leadership skills, nurtures her professional development, and introduces her to all the opportunities that manufacturing can offer.
Victoria Davidyock, the director of portfolio marketing for the Ducted Systems division of Johnson Controls, has a degree in mechanical engineering. While she didn’t begin her career in HVAC, she felt she could make a difference in the field when the opportunity presented itself. Working for an HVAC manufacturer is what afforded Victoria the opportunity to earn her MBA. After receiving her degree, she was promoted from marketing engineer to product manager where she had influence over a complete line of products.
Victoria Davidyock's expertise in marketing is complemented by her engineering background that brings an added level of precision, authenticity and credibility to her work.
Theresa Gillette has been one of the most prolific inventors from the Ducted Systems group, with 10 new patent filings and seven grants during fiscal year 2020.
Theresa has been one of the most prolific inventors from the Ducted Systems group, with 10 new patent filings and seven grants during fiscal year 2020. She has been instrumental in developing control strategies for multiple new product introduction (NPI) projects related to zoning control solutions, thermostats, air conditioning, heat pumps, furnace and packaged unit control.
These smart controls help develop next-generation products that are energy efficient while meeting industry regulations and improving occupant comfort. Theresa’s innovative leadership has elevated our equipment and helped Johnson Controls distinguish its products from the competition. In February 2021, she will celebrate her 10-year anniversary with the company.