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Meet The Team: Our Exceptional Engineers

Nic, Bennett, Linna, and Merinda of the Raven Supply Engineering Team

Taking a look at our team of engineers, you could easily mistake this bright crew for a group of students. But proving the adage that age has no bearing on one’s success, Raven Supply’s tight team of talented engineers may be young, but offer the right combination of experience and knowledge to stand out as industry leaders.

Shortly after graduating from UBC Integrated Engineering program in 2014, Nic Sun joined our team in the role of an Outsides Sales Engineer. Nic first got to know Raven Supply as a company during his 2012 rotation as our coop students, but these days he’s known around here as the VP of Engineering.

That means that Nic is always in motion- visiting engineering and contractor offices and also working with our clients one-on-one to determine their unique needs. But if you can catch him mid-action, the skills he’s gained through extended service training as well as hands on experience on the job site are a treat worth watching, and his success proves that he’s guiding the engineering team in the right direction.

Nic’s fast upward trajectory speaks to the importance of Raven Supply’s policy on employee growth. Here at Raven Supply, we do the best we can to give our employees the opportunity to flex and grow into the right position for their skills and talents.

Bennett Lee is another example of rising talent that has become an invaluable part of our team.  Bennett Lee came to our company as a coop student in 2007, and then joined our team full time in 2008 after graduating from UBC’s Bachelor of Commerce program.  Initially working with our clients as a Venting Estimator, Bennett quickly graduated to VP of Venting Sales. Now days, Bennett is the one training our incoming co-op students as well as our entire team on the latest and greatest in venting products.

Linna Luu stepped into her role as an Inside Sales Engineer in 2016 after completing her Chemical Engineering degree at the University of Alberta. Linna joined the team at the perfect time, just as we needed a capable new individual to round out our Venting Department. Since then she’s excelled in a series of roles at Raven Supply, demonstrating exceptional technical abilities and close attention to the important small details. Currently in the essential position of Project Engineer, Linna is extremely valuable to our team and to our customers, offering adaptations for each project’s unique needs flawlessly and with ease.

Merinda Widmer also comes to us from the University of Alberta’s Chemical Engineering program. The most recent addition to our Engineering Team, Merinda joined us in 2018 as an Inside Sales Engineering. First hired to support after the needs of our many venting customers, Merinda had proven herself to be a valuable all around team member. Now her responsibilities extend to design projects, tanks, and other parts. This quick learner with a keen eye for detail also brings a lovely outgoing personality. We know Merinda is destined for great things, and we can’t wait to see what her future here at Raven Supply holds.

Truly, Raven Supply wouldn’t be the company it is today without these bright and ambitious individuals. A big THANKS to our Engineering Team- we couldn’t do it without you!

Bennett Lee Tests the Potential of the Electric Car

The team at Raven Supply is big on new technology, so when it came time for Bennett Lee to get a new car, it was no surprise that he decided to make the leap and test out the potential of electric vehicles.

Bennett has been driving his 2005 Honda Civic to our Surrey office from his home in South Vancouver since he joined the team in 2008. However, lately, his trusty vehicle has been showing signs that it’s ready to retire to the great compactor in the sky as it trudged along with one working electric door lock and a whopping 300,000 km of driving distance under its hood.

That’s how Bennett came to be the proud owner of a 2019 Chevy Volt, a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle.

Bennett’s new Volt can be found at its charging station in the back of Raven Supply’s office.  He can count on 85 km of driving distance on the battery alone but don’t worry; the vehicle has a gas backup of 500 kms for all the venting site reviews with our customers that they have come to count on & appreciate!

If you’re ever in our neighbourhood and need a charge, please stop by. Bennett will be happy to share his charger along with his enthusiasm for the potential of the electric car market.

Supporting Rural Healthcare, One Boiler at a Time

Cutaway of the Weishaupt WM-G20/3-ZM Gas Burner

Raven Supply has secured the boiler supply contract for Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital with heating contractor West Kootenay Mechanical. This retrofit project is engineered by top-tier global design firm Stantec.

A Bryan boiler with a Weishaupt burner in action

Located in Trail, BC, between Grand Forks and Nelson, Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital provides core physician specialties, 24 hour emergency and trauma services, Level 2 laboratory, acute and obstetrical care, psychiatry, and chemotherapy services for the West Kootenay region, covering Kettle Valley, east of Castlegar through to Nelson.

We will be supplying a Bryan RV700 high pressure steam boiler with a Weishaupt WM-G20/3-ZM High Efficiency Gas Burner. The reliability and efficiency of the burner is imperative for the Interior Health Authority on a project in such a remote area. The Weishaupt linkageless burners are virtually service free after being commissioned. Additionally, Bryan boilers are known for their long lasting, fully field serviceable units which allow any contractor to remove and replace boiler tubes with ease.

Due to the tight installation required for these particular units, the boilers will be shipped as “knock down” boilers, directly from the Bryan Steam Facility in Peru, Indiana. While the section block will be fully assembled, all of the trim and jackets will be left off and assembled on site. Raven Supply will be flying a technician along with Raven’s Project Engineer Linna Luu and Inside Sales Engineer Merinda Widmer to supervise the disassembly of these units to ensure the project continues smoothly once these units are on site.

We are looking forward to working with Stantec and Interior Health on another fantastic project.

Raven Supply Aims Its Sights High on Fundraising Efforts for Room To Read Nepal in 2019

Female Nepalese students study at a Room to Read school

At Raven Supply, we’re excited to gear up into another year of fundraising for the outstanding literacy non-profit Room to Read.

Last year, thanks to the support of our customers and vendors, we surpassed our original fundraising goal of $20,000, reaching a total of $24,000 raised, bringing our total amount raised for Room to Read since 2013 to $170,000.

This year, we have our sights set on raising another $30,000 to provide 75 Nepalese girls with scholarships through Room to Read Nepal. Today the charity’s Literacy and Girls’ Education Programs in Nepal continue to make a tangible mark on the educational well-being of Nepali children, although there are still many challenges.

Nepal is a small, landlocked country wrought with political instability and widespread poverty. About 40% of students drop out before finishing the primary grades, and a third of children aged 5 to 14 work instead of attending school. Additionally, the 2015 Nepal earthquake destroyed school buildings across the country, leaving one million students without a place to learn.

Plaque on Room to Read School in Nepal mentioning the support of Raven Supply and its valued suppliers.

Young girls in Nepal face additional barriers to their education because they’re at a greater risk of dropping out due to financial limitations of families and the pressure to marry early. 40% of girls will marry before 18, and this is one reason that the country’s female population is 22% less likely to be literate than their male counterparts.

The only organization in Nepal that focuses solely on literacy and gender equality in education, the Room to Read’s Girls’ Education program has supported nearly 5,000 girls since 2001. The charity has piloted an early warning system to identify students in the program who are at risk of dropping out, allowing for early intervention and support. Early detection allows for social mobilizers in Nepal to visit these girls at home, mentor them, and tutor them on the content of missed classes.

So far, over $2000 has already been raised in 2019 between Raven Supply and our community of customers and vendors for Room to Read Nepal. We couldn’t do it without you!

Room to Read students host visitors at their school in Nepal.

That’s why we love sharing updates and news about just how many scholarships have been raised out personalized thank you letters to our customer and vendor supporters. Additionally, Megan Davies here at Raven Supply will visit the Room to Read Nepal project this year to take photos and report back on all the outstanding work happening there, and we’ll sure to keep you updated here.

Raven Supply Takes on Chicago

Our team in front of the Weishaupt facility.

Recently, the Raven Supply team went to Chicago to learn more about the latest advances in burner technology.

Our trip to the Windy City gave us a chance to do some hands on training at the SSC Combustion for Siemens Controls and Weishaupt USA facilities. The four of us- Bennett Lee, Nc Sun, Merinda Widmer, and Linna Luu- spent time at each facility, touring and learning all we could about various new models on the market.

“The Weishaupt model installed inside the SCC Chicago office was very impressive,” recounts Bennett. “Seeing a red burner on a brochure versus feeling the substantial heft of the material and seeing light bounce off that shiny finish in person is worlds’ apart.”

“We even got the opportunity to ‘service’ the burner where we swung open the burner head hinge. It was very enlightening to see the ease of service and now I understand why service technicians love this aspect of the Weishaupt design,” he adds.

Merinda also appreciated the up close and personal experience that comes with visiting a facility in person.

“At SSC, we spent a lot of time just playing around with the demo machine. It taught me how to navigate the control system and troubleshoot,” she says. “David Lehrer was a fantastic instructor. We learnt A LOT in two days and got to ask question

Cutaway of ignition electrode assembly at Weishaupt USA.

after question!”

Nic was struck by the accuracy and ease of the newest burner technology to hit the marketplace.

“Siemens’ stepper motor actuators have redundant position feedback sensors, accurate to 0.1 degrees of rotation. Because there are 2 sensors, the actuators never require recalibration,” he enthuses.

In addition to our training, we spent some time enjoying the sights of Chicago, and even put in some time trying our luck at the lanes at the famous Pinstripes bowling alley.

“I was surprised by the number of bowling alleys in Chicago, and how up-scale they were!” continues Bennett. “It was fun hanging out with the team and having an upscale dining experience at a bowling alley. Almost placed #1 in the overall bowling score with a 2nd half run but unfortunately I couldn’t complete the comeback!”

Here at Raven Supply, we’re always doing our best to stay up to date on the latest and greatest in burner technology, so that we can bring you the best service possible. Stay tuned for more news on our next adventure!

All In A Day’s Work: Fun, Laughter, and Friendly Competition at TBC Go Karts

Like any crew of friends, the tight knit team here at Raven Supply enjoys trying out new things together.

We often get together to share meals for birthday and holidays. But our most recent excursion took us a bit further out of our comfort zone.

Switching our office chairs for the driver’s seat at TBC Go Karts in Richmond, we set out together for a day of relaxing and mostly safe fun. But we soon discovered another thing we have in common- a competitive streak that comes out alongside the urge to break speed records on the Go Kart track!

We were joined on this adventure by Tony Pregal from T’N’T’ Energy Systems. Tony has earned himself an honourary spot on our team, helping us out on a daily basis. We appreciate the hard work he’s put in performing the majority of our boiler start-ups, and were thrilled he could join us for a fun afternoon out. 

After two hours showing off our skills on the track, we were sore, tired, and covered in soot. We took a break to regain our strength trackside for some pizza before our final exciting race. Tony walked away in first place, cashing in on the hours he’s put behind the wheel in his BMW at Mission Raceways, with Nic and Merinda squeezing in at a close second and third in the final lap. 

All in all, the day included some pretty dramatic drifts, a few tires left on the sidelines, and tons of laughter. Our entire team enjoyed the experience, and can’t wait for our next big adventure.The Team

Here at Raven Supply, our team has doubled from 4 to 8 in the past five years. As we continue to grow, we know just how important it is to find memorable ways to bond as a team, get to know one another, and make our office a place people look forward to coming to each day.

We hope that our happiness and pride in our workplace team is something our customers enjoy too, and always welcome you to stop by and say hello when you’re in the neighbourhood!