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Radiant Floor Heating

The Complete History 

The Industries Highest Honor

Gil Carlson (1922 - 1994), one of the founding fathers of hydronic heating was a remarkable man who understood fluid dynamics like no other. He spent most of his career at Bell & Gossett and retired there as Director of Technical Services.

As of 2004, Gils 'stuff' has been used to teach over 175,000 designers.




2010/2012 Recipient : Ken Webster



Robert Bean (l) and Dan Holohan (r) with Gil's Wheel at ISH America


Special Recognition

Jim OlsztynskiThanks to the efforts of Award Winning Journalist and Consulting Editor, Jim Olsztynski the Carlson-Holohan Industry Award of Excellence will be carried forward by the BNP Media Group.


Interesting Facts:

When past and present keepers of the award gather around the wheel people want their picture taken with it....so the picture taking has become a fund raiser at industry events.

Airline personnel across America have learnt about the award when asking the holder, "just exactly where would you like to put the artifact for the flight?" (It won't fit under the seats or overhead bins).

Ordinary citizens, especially in social situations like bars and restaurants are curious about the award and always leave educated about hydronic heating systems.

The guardian of the Wheel is unusually blessed with an increase in speaking engagements and business contracts.


Words from Dave Yates from the 2012 ceremony



The B&G System Syzer is used worldwide by hundreds of thousands of engineers and trades people. Shown above is the mass produced handheld version - Gil Carlson created the original version that this tool is based upon.

Naturally the modern version is available free of charge as a software tool from the Bell & Gossett site.

  

Carlson-Holohan Industry Award of Excellence

John Siegenthaler, P.E. of Appropriate Designs and Author of Modern Hydronics newest recipient of the 2014-2016 Carlson-Holohan Industry Award of Excellence.


Jan. 26th, 2013: Gilbert Carlson honoured with the ASHRAE Pioneers of Industry Award

Some have compared the Carlson-Holohan Industry Award of Excellence to the NHLs' Stanley Cup though its more like a combination of the Hart Memorial Trophy awarded to the player judged to be the most valuable to his team and the Lady Byng Memorial Trophy to the player exhibiting sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct combined with a high standard of playing ability. It is industry recognition for what an individual has done for the game of steam and hydronics.

Criteria for nomination:

  • current or past record for raising funds for industry causes

  • proven volunteer activities in association and committee work

  • demonstrated leadership in industry as an educator and mentor

  • nominee must be over the age of 40

  • a citizen of the United States or Canada           

  Email your nomination for 2016-2018 Awards

Conditions with the award:
The recipient is the sole guardian of Gil's original wheel…it is never to be sold, traded, loaned or owned by any one individual or company. The recipient is required to carry the award to each seminar or public speaking engagement he or she delivers and is required to tell the story of Gils Wheel. During the two-year guardianship period (beginning the first of January and ending the last day of December in the second year) the recipient must search for a suitable candidate to carry on the story and with consultation of past recipients select a new keeper. Each new holder must make some investment to protect the originality, and physical condition of the wheel so that its life journey will be preserved for all generations to see.

2006/2008 Recipient, Dave Yates (R)  with Dan Holohan (L) at NAOSHM.

Dave Yates  (L) with award sponsor, BNP Media representative, George Zebrowski (R).

2006/2008 Recipient Dave Yates (R) with Dan Holohan (L), NAOSHM 06 2006/2008 Recipient Dave Yates (L) with BNP Media's George Zebrowski (R)

2008/2010 Recipient
Mark Eatherton, Wetstock 08,
BNP press release

Mark Eatherton (R) Instructor, Writer, Solar Decathlon Mentor, Volunteer, Technician Extraordinaire with 2006/2008 Recipient Dave Yates (L)

Inage courtesy of Jean Eslick Image courtesy of Kerry Turner
2010/2012 Recipient: Ken Webster, director of sales and marketing for Viessmann-Canada, presenting the award to Webster is Jean Eslick, Regional Sales Manager including Eastern Canada for BNP Media Co.’s family of plumbing books. Ceremony held at CMX.CIPHEX 2010. See BNP Media Press Release 2010/2012 Recipient: Ken Webster (R) with Robert Bean presenting on behalf of the past recipients.
2012/2014 Recipient, John Barba (C) with Dan Holohan (L), Mark Eatherton, Dave Yates and Robert Bean (R). Ceremony held at AHR 2012 BNP Media Press Release
2014/2016 Recipient John Siegenthaler (c) with Dan Holohan (l) and reading proclamation is John Barba (r) 2014/2016 Recipient John Siegenthaler (c) with Dan Holohan (l) and Robert Bean (r)
2014/2016 Recipient, John Siegenthaler (holding Award), from left to right, Robert Bean, Dan Holohan, John Siegenthaler, Dave Yates, Mark Eatherton and John Barba (missing is Ken Webster). Ceremony held at AHR 2014

2014-2016 Award: "Through the review and sponsorship from BNP Media, the nominations committee and industry supporters…this year’s recipient meets and exceeds all of the criteria necessary to become the awards newest guardian. John Siegenthaler, P.E. has opened up the world of engineering modern hydronic systems like no other. His educational materials stand as the benchmark in training for designers at all skill levels. A leader and  active contributor to industry association events and programs, John’s reputation attracts all who are committed to learning and supporting worthy industry causes. In recognition of his contributions to the world of keeping the human race healthy, well and comfortable through selfless giving of his time and talents, teaching and mentoring to raise the benchmark of professionalism and in raising awareness and funds for industry causes, the legacy of Gil Carlson and Dan Holohan forever hereby includes, Mr. John Siegenthaler"


Additional stories about Gil Carlson:
History By: Ron Spencer, First published in NEWSLETTER of the NORTHEASTERN OKLAHOMA CHAPTER of the AMERICAN SOCIETY of HEATING, REFRIGERATING and AIR-CONDITIONING ENGINEERS, INC.

While at lunch with Jack Tumilty, we were reminiscing about some of the impact various individuals have had on our Society and our industry. Pete Wingate came to mind during this conversation which led to the abbreviated, Bell & Gossett “Little Red School House” seminars he had arranged in Tulsa. These lasted for one day, but when Gil Carlson was the speaker, we felt we had experienced a semester of Fluid Flow courses. Gil was a rare individual, who was “at one” with the system he was evaluating. He could answer ANY question about a fluidics problem and could back up his answer with the math to prove it. But when asked how he instinctively knew the answer, he would reply “it FELT like the right answer”. I was told the story about how the Bell & Gossett System Syzer came into being. Gil was working in his office on some system problems when an individual from marketing came in to ask a question. He noticed the cardboard back of a paper pad with another circular piece of a pad held in place by a rivet, similar to a circular slide rule. He asked Gil “What is that device?” Gil responded “Just a little short cut I made up to deal with fluid flow.” Gil had not even considered the potential of such a device. Gil chain smoked and everyone in the audience would watch the ash on his cigarette grow to incredible lengths before falling to the floor. Gil never seemed to realize how much in awe we were of his incredible knowledge, he was always completely humble and would spend whatever time it took to answer some of the most fundamental questions. Every time the seminar was held, I made a point to be there and each time I learned something new. I came to know Gil and as time went on, he would flatter me, if during the course of a seminar, someone would ask a question pertaining to a chiller application, by referring the question to me. He called me his resident chiller expert. Such praise from such an individual overwhelmed me. Great men are like that, unaware of their standing. He was truly one of the giants of our industry.

Click here to learn more about Ron Spencer the historian.


One time colleague Bob Dilg shares this, “Gil believed in the power of education, and encouraged others to be all they could be. “I had no degree and Gil wanted me to progress,”, “He constantly encouraged me to further my education by taking night courses. When I told him that any degree would be years away, he just smiled that unique smile and said, 'But you'll be smarter every day!'” So is the legend of Gil Carlson.


This is one of Dan Holohan's favorite stories about Gil. Dan likes to share it with others every April 28th, the day Gil passed away. I always enjoy it and so will you.

Here's another...Not Pumping So Hot, June 2013


If you have any archived stories about Gil we love to make them available. Please send them to info at healthyheating.com and we'll post them here.

Visit Dan Holohan's website www.heatinghelp.com to appreciate what this incredible man does for the industry.

Be sure to also sign up for award sponsor, BNP Media's publications and e-newsletters.

See the contributions of Gil Carlson, visit Bell & Gossett's Little Red School House.

Ongoing Project:
Record of people who have made a financial donation for a photo opportunity with the Wheel.


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