About Us

Known today as the Central Oklahoma Chapter of ASHRAE, the Chapter was originally chartered by Frank Loeffler, Sr. on October 4, 1935 as the “Oklahoma Chapter of the American Society of Heating and Ventilating Engineers” (ASHVE) which was based on the original name for ASHRAE when it was founded in 1895. ASHVE, as a national Society, changed their name to ASHAE in 1954, and then to ASHRAE in 1959 when ASHAE merged with the American Society of Refrigerating Engineers (ASRE).

The Oklahoma Chapter was rechartered in 1965 as the Central Oklahoma Chapter of ASHRAE to help distinguish it from the Northeastern Oklahoma Chapter which serves Tulsa, Oklahoma and surrounding area. The Northeastern Oklahoma Chapter was actually chartered back in 1948, but it took 17 years for the Oklahoma Chapter name overlap to be rectified. When the Oklahoma Chapter was originally chartered, we were the 20th chapter of ASHVE, and were the first chapter in the southwest, now known as Region VIII.

In 1954, when the Society was divided into regions, our chapter agreed to act as the guinea pig and host a trial regional meeting (the type of meeting that today is called the Chapters Regional Conference, or CRC). The meeting was held at the Skirvin hotel on April 14-16, 1955 and attendance numbered 240 from 18 states including the District of Columbia and Canada. Representatives attended from more than half of the Society’s chapters. In hosting this meeting in Oklahoma City, we started a new concept in Society operations.

In 1959-60 we were the first chapter reach its quota in funding the United Engineering Center building at 345 E. 47th Street in New York City, the new home for ASHRAE Society at the time.

In 1967-68, chapter member William J. Collins, Jr. originated the Region VIII Golden Gavel Award, an award that has meant so much to the growth of Region VIII. Ours was the first chapter to win the Golden Gavel. In 1972-73 Society President Frank Bridgers was so impressed with the Golden Gavel concept and its success that he instituted a similar award for the Society, known as the Presidential Award of Excellence (PAOE). Our chapter has earned the PAOE every year since the award’s inception.

In October, 1972, Ms. Carolyn Rae Crawford joined our chapter, the first women member of the Central Oklahoma Chapter, and in 1984 she became our first woman Chapter President. We are working to confirm this, but she may have been the first woman Chapter President in Society history.

In 1975-76, chapter member William J. Collins, Jr. served as Society President. The Central Oklahoma Chapter of ASHRAE is tradition-rich. Our members have left lasting impressions that cannot be replaced.