Aron Ralston

“127 Hours: Between a Rock & A Hard Place”

Aron Ralston’s story is unforgettable. Subject of the Oscar-nominated film 127 Hours, Ralston had been an avid rock climber and outdoorsman when, during a climb, a boulder broke loose and pinned his arm to the side of a canyon. After five days with no food, water or hope of being rescued, he made the impossible decision to sever his arm in order to seek help. Ralston will take attendees on a riveting journey in which courage, perseverance, and the human spirit will defy the inevitable outcome.


Karl Rove

“America’s Challenges: Analysis & Predictions about America’s Future”

Karl Rove, an iconic political strategist and one of the most sought-after political pundits of our time, is best known for his provocative and robust knowledge of the major political issues of the day. As the “Architect” of President Bush’s 2000 and 2004 campaigns and a regular contributor to the Wall Street Journal, Rove will share his unique perspective on the election and provide his take on one of the most tumultuous political landscapes in recent history.


Alan Beaulieu

“The Economic Forecast”

Alan Beaulieu returns as one of the most anticipated speakers of the conference. As HARDI’s Chief Economist, Beaulieu’s ability to entertain and captivate is matched only by his industry expertise. He will share the latest economic trends and background and provide the forecasts that he and his savvy team at ITR Economics produce with astounding accuracy.



Jeff Ma

“21 and Other Numbers That Changed My Life: Harnessing the Power of Analytics”

Jeff Ma won millions in Vegas playing blackjack using a sophisticated card counting technique that he developed. He was the inspiration for the best-selling book Bringing Down the House and the hit movie 21. Since then he has launched and sold multiple startups and served as a consultant to large organizations, helping them make better decisions using data in analytics. With stories drawn from sports and from Vegas, he helps people better visualize how a more rigorous approach to numbers will improve results in everything from sales to HR to strategy.


Bluff Brothers

“Top Marketing Strategies to Successfully Grow Your Business in 2017”

The Bluff Brothers will crack the nut on the difficult subject of marketing throughout the HVAC supply chain in 2017and beyond. Drawing from their own industry research as well as other industry experts, they’ll develop a mock marketing plan for distributors, discuss the skills and budget needed to implement it and provide templates for use throughout the campaign.


Marc Dunkelman

“The True Roots of Gridlock in Washington”

Marc Dunkelman’s writing has appeared in the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, the Los Angeles Times, the Chronicle of Higher Education, Politico, and National Affairs, among other publications. Author of the book, The Vanishing Neighbor: The Transformation of American Community, Dunkelman will look past the filibusters, gerrymandering and lobbyists to discuss the real causes of dysfunction in Washington.


Sid & Aaron Strickland

“Using Data in Hiring”

Sid and Aaron Strickland of Strickland Associates combine for 50 years of HR-related experience. Founder Sid Strickland has had senior roles in sales, operations, administration, human resources, logistics, and more. As leaders at the management consulting firm, they know the hiring process inside and out and will share with attendees how to use data to help attract, select, engage, and retain top talent.


Marty Clarke

“Leadership Land Mines”

Marty Clarke has more than 25 years of experience in training and consulting. He’ll provide real-life examples and highly substantive discussions that center on strategies enabling professionals to make a dramatic improvement in their leadership capability immediately. With his energizing presence and ability to motivate, Clarke will help attendees drive their enterprises forward through key aspects of world-class leadership.


Karl Manrodt

“Metrics, Benchmarking and Best Practices: Increasing DC Productivity & Efficiency for Better Logistics”

Karl Manrodt, professor of logistics and supply chain management at Georgia College and co-author of five books on the subject, presents the annual Warehousing Education and Research Council (WERC) DC Measures study, which helps attendees understand and track the metrics that produce the best return for their companies.


Rajan Rajendran

Refrigerant & Energy Regulations Update

Rajan Rajendran, a vice president at Emerson Climate Technologies and who leads operations at The Helix, will lead an in-depth discussion on refrigerants. Rajendran serves on several HVACR industry committees, including the Air Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute’s (AHRI) Low GWP Alternative Refrigerants Evaluation Program Task Force, and participates in Underwriters Laboratories’ (UL) Working Groups for A2L Refrigerants.


Sofie Miller

“True Cost of Energy Efficiency”

Sofie Miller is the Senior Policy Analyst at The George Washington University Regulatory Studies Center. Her regulatory research portfolio includes economic analysis of energy efficiency standards, analysis of regulatory benefits, retrospective review of existing rules, regressive effects of regulations, and the efficacy of public participation within the rulemaking process.


Jon Melchi

“Political Year in Review”

Jon Melchi is HVACR distribution’s stalwart for all things regulatory and advocacy related. Widely respected for his knowledge and insights on what the industry can expect from the government, he encourages and assists HVACR companies in strengthening relationships with elected officials.

Nick Reuhs

“Cyber & Product Liability”

Nick Reuhs is a partner in the Business Litigation Group. He concentrates his practice in complex litigation focusing on supply chain, products, business and land use litigation. His session will consist of two parts. In the first part of the presentation, we will explore potential exposure faced by distributors for product liability as well as techniques for minimizing that risk. In the second part of the presentation, we will explore current cyber-crime and cyber liability threats as well as techniques for minimizing those risks.


Daniel E. Beederman

“Getting the Most of A Sales
Representative Agreement”

Daniel E. Beederman is a member of the Chicago law firm of Schoenberg Finkel Newman & Rosenberg, LLC. For over 35 years Dan has counseled independent sales representatives on legal matters that are unique to their profession, including negotiating, preparing and reviewing rep agreements, as well as buy-out and operational business strategies and succession planning for rep agencies.