Alumni Stories

HeatSpring Alums are some of the most interesting, talented professionals on the planet. Whenever we can scrape together some extra time, we enjoy learning and writing about the exciting things they do. Have a story to share? We’d love to hear from you. Please send a note to Abby Thompson, HeatSpring’s Product Marketing Manager, at abby(at)

Alumni Profile: Virgil Bellini & the Growth of California Solar Thermal

California Solar Thermal (CST) is a San Diego-based solar installation business on pace to do 42 solar thermal projects this year.  According to California Solar Statistics data they are the #1 solar thermal company in southern California, and are currently in the middle of installing the biggest non-utility system in the state.  Who are these […]

Renewable Energy is Making the Trades Sexy Again

Although I went to Babson College, a relatively conservative business school, I grew up in rural Maine working on farms and doing carpentry. I find huge value in craftsmanship and hard work and its why guys like Gerry Wagner are awesome to me.

Gerry came to HeatSpring’s IGSHPA geothermal training a few years back and is now an IGSHPA Accredited Trainer. He works through his company ESPCO Training to provide contract product training for manufacturers and distributors of solar thermal and geothermal products.

Gerry is proficient in both geothermal heating and cooling and solar thermal. After talking with Gerry, I realized he has installed the northern most Sunnovations pump package on his home.

Needless to say, Gerry is super cool, and has a great perspective on the industry. It’s great to speak with someone who has been in the trades his whole life, loves it, and is now applying his mastery to these new technologies. So, I decided to give Gerry a call and get his perspective on the industry.

Here is our conversation

Question – Chris : What’s your story in the renewable energy industry?

Answer – Gerry: I’ve been in the HVAC industry for 30 years. I got into it by necessity, I was looking for a job that would pay for college and I responded to an ad for a boiler company in New Jersey. At the time, I didn’t know a boiler from a furnace, from a washing machine.

In the process, I fell in love with the business, I read all the literature and I was lucky enough to get mentored from a bunch of older guys in our shop. Two years ago, I got burned out and turned my knowledge into training. I provided technical assistance and training with a manufactures rep. I wasn’t inspired anymore and really wanted to learn again. I felt I wasn’t learning anything new and just relying on the skills I learned when I was younger.

I first got involved in solar thermal and it sparked a new fire in me. I then got into geothermal. Geothermal has made me feel young again because I’m learning so much and its such an exciting technology.


October 12th, 2011|Categories: Alumni Stories|Tags: , , , , |

Commercial Developers Begin to Seek Solar Expertise

Chad Gessin, VP at Chatham Energy Solutions, took HeatSpring’s “Solar Installer Boot Camp” in June 2011 while he was developing the solar division in a third-generation construction development company. Read below for the full story and join HeatSpring facebook page:, to keep up to date with more case studies.


August 18th, 2011|Categories: Alumni Stories, Solar|Tags: , |