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Nic Sun’s Big News

Our very own VP of Engineering Nic Sun recently went through a bit of a name change, or rather a name upgrade.

On August 21st, Nic became officially recognized as a Professional Engineer in the Province of BC. That distinction comes with a new designation abbreviated as P. Eng Nic can proudly add when writing out his full formal name.

Nic is still the same adrenaline-loving aspiring race car driver we know and love. But now, in addition to his Bachelors’s Degree in Integrated Engineer from the University of BC, Nic has another certification to prove that doing consistently good work can take you a long way.

“It was a long process,” Nic says. “But it feels great to have it under my belt now, and I think it will help bring new opportunities to me and my team moving forward.”

Nic’s process to become a P. Eng began even before his graduation from UBC. As an undergraduate, he made the decision to participate in the university’s co-op program, which as it happens, is how he first met the Raven Supply team.

After graduation, Nic registered as a Mechanical Engineer in Training (EIT) and began working as a designer at a Vancouver consulting firm. But soon, he was back at Raven Supply, taking on his first of several roles with our company as a Sales Engineer.

“Nowadays, it seems like an increasing number of projects are requiring us to have more significant involvement and responsibility in the design, installation, and commissioning processes,” Nic comments. “It’s almost like the lines between the consultant, contractor, and equipment supplier are beginning to blur.”

During the past 4 years, Nic has proven his engineering skills and insights by taking responsibility for larger and more complex projects and helping Raven grow across sectors. He eventually assumed the role of VP of Engineering, all while he was completing the steps to obtain his Professional Engineer license.

“I wrote the exam. I completed the seminar. And I provided 34 written examples of my work to prove my competency, each of which had to be validated by another P. Eng,” explains Nic. “After that, everything was accessed by EGBC’s registered committee, and they granted me my license.”

“As Engineers, we’re experiencing more direct involvement with entities like Technical Safety BC and Fortis BC,” Nic continues. “Therefore, it is important that we are not only technically competent but also knowledgeable in the legal and ethical aspects of how we are involved in these projects. These are all things that are learned in the process of becoming a Professional Engineer, so I think there is significant value in attaining this designation as a specialized equipment supplier.”

To find out more about the Professional Engineer in the Province of BC program, swing by the Raven Supply office anytime to congratulate Nic in person.

Fighting Homelessness in Our Community, One Night at a Time

MaryAnne Connor & Merinda Widmer
Merinda presents her check to NightShift Founder MaryAnne Connor.

Surrey BC is a city in a period of growth. The third fastest-growing city in Canada, Surrey welcomes more than 1000 new residents every month. It’s affordable housing prices make it a desirable spot for young couples and recent immigrants to set up their home.

But not everyone is benefiting from this economic boom. In Surrey alone, an average of 600 people sleep on the streets every night, in doorways, makeshift shelters, tents, or dilapidated motor homes without heat or plumbing. This number soars to over 2,000 when you count the entire homeless population of the Greater Vancouver area.

Surrey is also the home of Raven Supply. Our head office is located near the rapidly growing Newton area. Our staff live nearby and know the businesses and community first hand. We also try to do what they can to give back to the city when we can. 

Inside Sales Engineer Merinda Widmer kept this in mind when she chose NightShift Street Ministries as the recipient of her Raven Giving Fund donation. 

“I chose NightShift as my non-profit organization because of the amazing things they’re doing for Surrey’s homeless population,” she explains. “At a time when more than 7,000 people in our province are homeless, their services are more crucial than ever.”

NightShift Kitchen
New kitchen facilities at NightShift.

During a 2018 survey of the homeless population in BC, 58% of individuals surveyed reported that they live with two or more medical conditions, while 44% reported one medical condition and 33% reported a physical disability. When it came to mental illness, the numbers were also sobering, with 40% of respondents battling mental health conditions as well as spending cold nights on the street. 

“It’s always surprised me how many misconceptions people have about the homeless community,” Merinda says, adding that she believes that no one is to fault for ending up without a roof over their head. 

“This organization does fantastic things to help our local homeless population,” she continues. “In 2017, NightShift provided 36,500 hot meals, 3,500 warm blankets, 810 safe nights of sleep for women, and 105 evenings of the car bus. All this and more without any government funding.”

Merinda’s Raven Giving Fund contribution of $250.00 will go towards helping NightShift continue this valuable work. Every year, the Raven Giving Fund gives each of our employees $250.00 to donate to a charity or non-profit organization of their choice. Thanks Merinda for being a great community member and an outstanding member of the Raven team!

To find out more about NightShift, please click here. 

From Iowa to BC, Industrial Steam is here!

Deaerators, boiler feed systems, blowdown separators and more.

Here at Raven Supply, we’re always excited to connect with new suppliers. That’s why we’re thrilled to announce a new partnership with Industrial Steam.

industrial Steam Accumulator
Industrial Steam Accumulator

Industrial Steam is a longstanding engineering and manufacturing company known for their exceptional catalog of boiler heaters and ancillary equipment that includes state-of-the-art deaerators, wet steam accumulators, and feedwater, blowdown, and fuel oil systems.

Jet Spray Deaerator
Industrial Steam Jet Spray Deaerator

Established in 1952, Industrial Steam was born out of a spirit of invention by self-taught engineer Martin “Mike” Bekedam and by Jim Williams, who joined the company early on. Together, they perfected their boiler systems to serve a huge variety of customers that included wineries, meat processing facilities, and tomato processing plants. Together they built and perfected customized boilers, burners, deaerators and chemical feed systems.

It was in this way that from its earliest days, Industrial Steam distinguished itself as an early adopter of technology and an innovator in the industry. So it was no surprise to us that its product line includes some cutting-edge offerings. For example, the one-of-a-kind Industrial Steam Jet Spray deaerator offers new potential for boiler protection by using a 2-stage process to remove atomized water in order to reduce oxygen in boiler systems. And Industrial Steam’s sturdy skid-mounted oil pump sets and day tanks for ring main distribution systems offer built to use filtration systems that automatically filter and chemical treat the fuel to remove water, microbes and solids which are discharged into a containment tank.

Industrial Steam is based in Atlantic Iowa, and we’re sure happy to bring their product line up to our Surrey BC warehouse for our commercial and industrial customers in BC and the Yukon.

 

Linna Luu Picks the Volunteer Grandparents for Her Raven Giving Fund Donation

Volunteer Grandparents LogoGrandparents play a much more substantial role in children’s lives than simply providing free childcare, according to some recent studies. A 2018 study claims that children who have regular interactions with grandparents have less behavioural problems,  and one from 2014 suggests that kids who have regular interactions with a grandparents are less likely to suffer from depression as adults. 

But in Metro Vancouver, where many young families are far from home and extended relatives, children are often raised with once a week Skype calls as their only contact to grandparents overseas. That’s where the Volunteer Grandparents come in. Volunteer Grandparents is a non-profit organization that connects seniors with some spare time to children in our community who don’t have grandparents nearby. 

Linna Luu knows how important grandparents are in a family from personal experience. 

“My grandparents have made a great impact on my life,” explains Linna. These days, Linna is a Project Engineer at Raven Supply. When it came time for her to make a donation to the organization of her choice through the Raven Giving Fund, Linna wanted to help other kids have the same beneficial experiences that helped her become successful. 

Linna Luu drops off her Raven Giving Fund donation at Volunteer Grandparents.

“I’m positive these Volunteer Grandparents will make a significant difference in the lives of many children,” Linna explains. She knows that like any relationship, the one between child and grandparents is a win-win on both sides.

“I think that seniors often get left behind in our society, and this non-profit provides a way for these seniors to share their knowledge and experience with a younger generation while staying connected with their community,” she adds. 

Volunteer Grandparents runs several programs. The Family Match program matches the volunteer with a family with kids aged 3 to 14 looking for the senior to take part in their family community. The School Grandparents Program connects seniors with elementary students, and the Ambassador program gives seniors the chance to volunteer at summer events. 

But like everything she does, Linna had a very specific plan for her $250.00 Raven Giving Fund donation, and made the decision to direct her support to the Volunteer Grandparents’ Florio Bursary Program

“I specifically chose to support the Florio bursary because of the process required to be eligible for this bursary – the Volunteer Grandparents must provide a written explanation on why the grandchild they recommend should receive financial assistance to help fund an activity such as piano lessons or ski lessons,” she explains.

“This process not only provides a screening process for applicants, but also shows the children that their Volunteer Grandparents think of them and care for them as much as a biological grandparent would.”

Thank you Linna for all your hard work, and for doing what you can to make sure more children have the support they need to achieve their own successes. 

To learn more about the Volunteer Grandparents, please visit www.volunteergrandparents.ca.

What do Race Cars and Boiler Technologies have in Common? Nic Sun Explains.

Nic Sun behind the wheel.

Remember Nic Sun? He’s our make-it-happen VP of Engineering with a love of all things high-octane and high pulse rate too (more on that here). 

Well, it turns out Nic is off on another adventure – learning the ins and outs of high speed driving at the Mission Raceway. His specific vehicle of choice to train on is his very own Subaru WRX. 

Nic purchased this 2015 model completely brand new in 2014 following his graduation from the University of British Columbia. Since then he’s been working on upgrades to bring out the best in his vehicle. And like everything else, Nic didn’t just take this task on half way. 

First he changed the air and exhaust ducting, upgraded the turbo controls, and perfected the ECU tuning to improve the engine’s power delivery. Next came upgrades to the brakes, drivetrain mounts, suspension, and differentials.

“These changes came together to bring out the car’s full potential, making it capable of contending with a lot of other higher end sports cars,” explains Nic. “I find it amusing to see the similarities between tuning a forced draft burner and a turbocharged car.”

Looking under the hood of Nic’s 2015 Subaru WRX.

It turns out that these are just a few of the many similarities between streamlining a car’s speed and building a more efficient boiler systems. 

“Efficiency, power output and reliability are all affected by variables like air and exhaust duct diameters, combustion air temperature and pressure, air/fuel ratio, and presence of emissions control devices. The car’s ECU even uses the same data communication protocol that is found in the LMV linkage-less burner control platform!” Nic says, adding “maybe this is why so many burner technicians are also car enthusiasts…?”

All Nic’s hard work came together as he saw just what his newly upgraded and turbocharged vehicle could do on the racetrack. 

Nic and Christina take on the track.

“The track day was loads of fun and taught me a lot about how the car performs at the limit under extreme conditions. It was a very hot day which put a lot of strain on everything so it was a great test of what this Subaru could do ” he says, smiling.

As he pushed that pedal to the metal, Nic’s fiancé Christina also came along for the ride. Used to life at the speed of Nic, she spent the day hanging on for dear life and laughing the whole time. 

The Raven Supply GTM Race Car in action.

Nic shared the track with Tony Pregal of T’N’T Energy Systems. We’re proud to annouce Tony as the driver of a GTM race car sponsored by Raven Supply that proudly sports our logo alongside the logo of Room to Read, a global literacy charity we support with help of our customers and vendors.  We look forward to seeing Tony compete this year, and hopefully take the championship title in 2019.

 

 

 

 

 

Why Ashley Supports The Surrey Women’s Centre

Ashley Donates to the Surrey Women's Centre
Ashley was thrilled to drop off her donation to the Surrey Women’s Center

When it came time for General Manager and Partner Ashley Bouchard to make a choice about how to spend her Raven Giving Fund donation, she knew exactly what to do.

“I chose to donate to the Surrey Women’s Centre- Surrey Mobile Assault response team, because the statistic of 1 out of 3 women who experience physical or sexual assault in their lifetime is too high,” she explains.

“It’s my hope with this program is that women will be able to get out of dangerous situations, and in turn raise healthy, happy, and strong children,” Ashley says. “It’s all about stopping the cycle of abuse and violence. Everyone can use help and these programs help prove that you don’t have to go through this alone.”

Ashley has been a supporter of the Surrey Women’s Centre for the last 7 years. In addition to the Mobile Assault response team, this non-profit organization operates as a crisis centre for women and girls escaping domestic violence, sexual assault and other forms of gender-based violence complete with a drop-in centre, workshops, and legal and counselling services .

Ashley first came in contact with the organization when she was looking for some place to donate clothing and household items and came across the Sharing Closet at their Drop-In Centre location. Immediately, she was surprised and impressed by the selection of services this organization provides to women in need.

“What I love about them is that they do not charge the ladies to take clothing and supplies home. They have shopping days on Wednesday where the ladies can come in to a comfortable environment and get the things they need.” Ashley smiles. “They also take children’s items and personal care items as well.”

Like every staff member, Ashley got the opportunity to drop-in and give her donation to the Surrey Women’s Centre staff in person.

“I felt very fortunate to be able to contribute to such a worthy cause in our local neighbourhood. The team at the centre was so welcoming and eager to share stories about the rest of the work that they do,” she recalls.

The Raven Giving Fund gives each member of our Raven Supply team with a $250.00 donation to give to a community group or non-profit they feel passionate about. It’s just part of our way of staying connected to our community, and also supporting our team members in their interests and passions outside of work. Curious? Read more about it here.