EGIA Contractor University™
The Contracting Industry's Dream Team of Educators
EGIA Contractor University has assembled the most accomplished faculty ever put together. Our faculty members have personally built some of the most successful contracting companies in America and are among the preeminent thought leaders in the industry. You won’t find a more knowledgeable, dynamic and successful group of educators, trainers and consultants anywhere else. Get to know our incredible team of experts by reviewing their personal bios and videos below.
Drew Cameron, America’s Most Sought After Sales & Marketing Strategy Adviser to Home Services Contractors, is president of HVAC Sellutions & Energy Design Systems, Inc.; the premier alliance providing industry-leading marketing planning, budgeting, content and support; sales recruiting, education, coaching, consulting and performance enhancement for Home Services Contractors; and design and economic analysis sales software for HVAC and Home Performance companies. Drew’s 40 years of experience in all facets of running a residential contracting business helps contractors implement effective lead development strategies and build multi-million-dollar profit-generating home services companies. Drew is a renowned author, educator, coach, consultant, inspirational/educational/”irritational” speaker, software developer, industry philanthropist, and a Tom McCart International Consultant Award Winner as well as a Board member, a Foundation Board Trustee, and a Contractor University Founder & Faculty member for Electric & Gas industries Association (EGIA); a Service Roundtable Consult & Coach Partner & Preferred Vendor; and an Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA) member.
Mark Matteson is an international speaker and best-selling author of 15 books. He has been called “The Oracle of Optimism”, “A Superlative Street Scholar”, “An Intense Idea-Reporter”. Mark travels 250 days a year around the globe delivering 75 “Edu-Training” Keynotes, Seminars, Panel Discussions and Workshops a year. Mark is a gifted storyteller, using self-effacing humor, high levels of interaction and powerful and proven business principles to inspire audiences to the highest levels of productivity and profit. Mark leaves audiences wanting more…he began his career in HVAC in 1976.
New York Times Best Selling Author & Creator of the HVAC Sales Academy
Weldon Long is a successful entrepreneur, sales expert and author of the NY Times bestseller, The Power of Consistency – Prosperity Mindset Training for Sales and Business Professionals (Wiley). In 2003, he walked out of a homeless shelter and built an Inc. 5000 company generating cumulative sales of over $20,000,000 within just 60 months. In 2009, his company was selected as one of Inc. Magazines Fastest Growing Private Companies in America.
Today, Weldon Long is one of the nation’s most powerful speakers and a driven motivator who teaches others the Sales and Prosperity Mindset philosophies that catapulted him from desperation and poverty to a life of wealth and prosperity. Weldon has been featured on numerous national and regional television programs, including Fox News Network, First Business Network and Chicago’s own WGN.
Mr. Long has successfully used his signature program, The Power of Consistency, to help hundreds of companies and thousands of sales professionals radically improve their sales results. Weldon holds a Bachelor’s Degree and an MBA in Management. He is honored to have served some of America’s finest companies, including Federal Express, The Franklin Covey Organization, Tom Hopkins International, Dex Media, Wells Fargo Bank, Pre-Paid Legal Services, Direct Energy/Clockwork Services, Mitsubishi Electric, Rheem, Goodman Manufacturing and the Carrier/Bryant Corporation.
President, EPC Training
Gary Elekes is serial entrepreneur with a passion for helping others become more successful by sharing what he has learned during his 20+ years working closely with all facets of the contracting industry. During his career, Gary has held senior management positions at Lennox and Service Experts. In 2000, Gary moved into entrepreneurship and started his training and consulting business EPC. Today, EPC continues to support growth oriented businesses aspiring to reach 20% EBIT. He also designed the very first web based learning platform for the residential contracting industry, which acts as a support system for training and learning in HVAC and plumbing trades, and has over 5,000 subscribers.
In 2003, Gary began acquiring contracting firms with a focus on developing turn-around opportunities. He also opened and operated several start-up businesses. In 2010, he added web design/SEO and online marketing to his company portfolio starting Imarket Solutions as a co-founder. Gary graduated from Ohio State University with a BSBA and also holds a Master’s Degree in Business and Finance.
Brigham Dickinson is president and founder of Power Selling Pros, a leading coaching and training firm dedicated to teaching businesses to wow more customers. Brigham started Power Selling Pros when he saw that call handlers needed assistance consistently converting calls to bookings. As a result, Brigham answered the need by creating the Pattern For Excellence, a sequence of principles that guides call handlers through all stages of a call, from greeting to closure. Since 2009, Power Selling Pros’ growth comes through referrals alone, thanks to the proven call-handling process and their high level of customer satisfaction.
James R. Leichter
President & CEO, Aptora Corporation, Mr. HVAC LLC, RA Tax and Accounting Inc.
James is a successful entrepreneur and master mechanic whose accomplishments include being the founder of MrHVAC.com, the CEO and founder of Aptora, the President of RA Tax and Accounting and a partner with ProAmerican Investments.
James’ company MrHVAC.com is a website dedicated to improving the lives of contractors. It includes industry articles, specialized HVAC calculators, forms, templates and one of the most extensive operations manuals in the country. As the founder of Aptora corporation, he has created some of the most popular software programs in the service industry including Flat Rate Plus and Total Office Manager.
James is well known for his burning passion to help contractors and it shows in his unique speaking style. He has hosted management workshops all around the United States and has conducted onsite consulting since 1996 with hundreds of contractors.
The HVAC Sales Coach
Mike brings experience in the contracting industry as a sales manager and comfort advisor for one of the largest and well respected residential heating and air conditioning contractors in the United States. He has personally worked with over 150 contracting companies across North America conducting training and consulting in the areas of sales, sales management, business management, customer service and technician lead generation training. His background consists of 35 years in sales and sales management bringing expertise, knowledge, techniques and strategies proven in the contracting industry to increase sales.
Mike’s diverse background includes movies and entertainment, public speaking, fitness and over 20 years in HVAC. As a talent agent in Hollywood, Mike had actors on television, commercials and movies. Running his own company, Mike lead his team to become the largest aerobic certification agency in the United States with a nationally recognized fitness magazine that was the first national publication specifically for the aerobic fitness community. With six motion picture credits to his name, Mike also brings film management and production to the table. What does that mean to you? It simply means that Mike knows how to entertain each and every audience plus organize training and consulting programs so you get what you pay for and walk away with the value you expect from such a performer.
Tom Wittman has been an HVAC Speaker, Instructor, and hands-on/on-site implementation specialist for over 16 years. He has helped countless HVAC professionals transition from the “daily grind”, to designing a life and HVAC Business that is consistent, predictable and scalable.
Tom has held many positions in the HVAC Industry; from Installer and Service Technician, to Comfort Advisor and Sales & Service Manager. As a General Manager of a large HVAC company, Tom lead his team to transition the business from 80% RNC to 70% Residential replacement, and improved net profitability from mid-range single digits to solid double-digits, all within three years.
With an HVAC bachelor’s degree and a residential and commercial contracting license under his belt, Tom keeps his eye on the industry by partially maintaining ownership of several select organizations. This insures that what he teaches and advises is relevant, practical and actually works.
Ellen nearly sank her husband’s plumbing company after his partner died unexpectedly. Boy was she humbled! It seemed like lots of money was moving through the company, but at the end of the month there was never any money left. In desperation, Ellen figured out how to make lots money and turned the business around. She inspires thousands, in workshops, presentations and online, to make business un-complicated and live life un-leashed.
Ellen is also a successful franchisor, helping launch a plumbing franchise to 47 locations and $40 million in sales in under 2 years. Now, she is the president of Zoom Drain and Sewer, LLC. She is a columnist for Huffington Post, PHC News, Springfield Business Journal and an “in the trenches” contributor to many business and trade magazines. Ellen is a popular, high-energy TV Celebrity who has been on over 50 news programs, encouraging people to make their own money.
Best Selling Author and President of Becoming Your Best Global Leadership, LLC
Steven Shallenberger understands the contractor world. He founded Synergy Companies in 1981, a successful energy services contractor, with offices throughout the State of California and is on the National Association of Energy Service Companies Board of Directors.
He has more than 40 years of experience as a successful business owner, trusted senior executive, professional corporate trainer, and best-selling author. He is the founder and president of Becoming Your Best Global Leadership. Steve and his team provide award winning training and keynotes helping teams and leaders tackle some of their greatest leadership challenges around the world. As a young entrepreneur, Steve successfully built numerous organizations from the ground up. During those years, he continued his education at the Harvard Business School. Steve was also a trusted advisor for Stephen R. Covey. Steve was a key leader in Covey’s organization who helped build the world-renowned Covey Leadership Center. He led a stalwart team and was responsible for the development and distribution of the original Covey planner.
CEO and Senior Consultant, Becoming Your Best Global Leadership LLC
Rob is the CEO and Senior Consultant for Becoming Your Best Global Leadership LLC. Rob served as an officer and fighter pilot in the United States Air Force for over 11 years. He was selected as one of a handful of United States Air Force representatives to handle the movement of Air Force One. He handled the delicate coordination between local officials, the United States Secret Service, Embassies, White House Staff, and Foreign Governments.
Since leaving the Air Force, Rob has become a top-rated speaker. He has delivered keynotes and led workshops for Fortune 500 companies around the world. Rob is the author of the acclaimed book How to Succeed in High School. His company also recently released a #1 National Bestseller titled Becoming Your Best: The 12 Principles of Highly Successful Leaders. The tools, processes, and principles shared in these books have been lauded by leaders around the world.
Owner of EPS Consulting Services
Gary Oetker has over 45 years of experience in the HVAC and plumbing industries. His mission is to help contractors Execute Profitable Solutions (EPS). Much of his career was spent with a major HVAC manufacturer where he held positions in training, marketing, dealer development, dealer consulting and sales. Upon retiring in 2004, Gary wrote for an HVAC internet support site, continues to conduct training and consults with individual contractors. His particular expertise is financial management and in operations. He excels at relating financial statements to operating practices and finding ways to improve financial performance. He has taught hundreds of seminars on subjects ranging from financial management, service department management, business planning, pricing, and process improvement. He has also spent many years conducting detailed Business Reviews with contractors to help them improve financial performance.
Russ Horrocks emerged as one of the most successful Comfort Advisors in America in the mid-90’s. Russ quickly took to sharing his unique knowledge of buyer psychology with sales forces across the country. He turned his profession into a passion, educating and coaching in-home sales and service advisors to understand the critical skills necessary to achieve results far exceeding personal mindset limitations and corporate expectations.
Most trainers preach about product and process. Russ teaches and coaches his sales and service protégés not only about what to do in the home and how to do to it, but more importantly, why. Why leads to a purpose allowing the people his students serve to build a strong connection based on a position of trust, confidence, competence and credibility. When matched with the creative execution of a process built to work with human nature and how people want to buy, it yields explosive growth.
Having mastered the sales process, in 2011 Russ joined with business development specialist, Drew Cameron, as Vice President of HVAC Sellutions to help clients enhance the performance of their entire business, and transcend growing one person or department at a time. Together they work in the trenches with their clients in every facet of building successful home services businesses.
Clients embrace Russ’ detailed holistic approach to assessing a company’s people, present state and potential. Drawing a blueprint for success, he collaborates with clients onsite, online, and on-the-phone to achieve operational excellence with a hands-on strategic approach to growing people and implementing profit-based processes and systems. Clients benefit from Russ’ 20 years of knowledge and national experience, along with his relentless pursuit of building happy, effective, top-performing professionals and developing a culture of success and achievement.
Stephen Dale brings over 15 years’ experience as an operations manager in the home services industry. Working for two large MEP companies in the Dallas, Texas area where he grew up. Stephen has been a Coach and Trainer with PSP for over two years. Having experienced the training from PSP as a contractor, Stephen believed in the program so much, he reached out to Brigham seeking to partner with PSP. Stephen’s diversified empirical knowledge is derived through extensive training from the following operations: Nexstar Network, Service Nation Alliance, Business Development Resources, Anthony Robbins Corporation, Airtime 500; just to name a few. Stephen holds a MBA from Texas A&M and a B.A. from Abilene Christian University. Stephen’s training style is unique through his ability to connect with others at all levels through humor, knowledge, and class participation. Stephen’s passion for the Home Services Industry illuminates through his ability to discover client’s pain points and help provide solutions for success together.
After a 15 year career creating online marketing strategies, building retail websites, and creating lead generation funnels, Andrew sold his web development firm in Vermont to his employees. At this firm, Andrew helped Gary Elekes build ePL Residential and Net.Prophet, both gold standards in the HVAC software industry.
Andrew is now focused on creating software solutions and teaching best practices around web design, graphic design, digital strategy, eCommerce, and online marketing (search engine optimization and search engine marketing) through his work as the Founder and President of SWIM.systems. SWIM.systems provides online and interactive training/education and individual consulting focused on the set up and maintenance of all Digital Assets including websites, social media, and lead generation systems.
Also co-founder and (very) part time CTO of a rapidly growing HVAC focused lead generation firm called www.iMarketSolutions.com.
Vice President of Contractor Services, EGIA
Eric is the Vice President of Contractor Services at EGIA and is the primary point person for ensuring EGIA is delivering the programs and tools member contractors need to grow their business and become more profitable. Eric is also the architect of EGIA’s GEOSmart Financing Clearinghouse which has facilitated the financing of over 200,000 residential and business projects valued in excess of $1.7 billion.
Recognized as one of the preeminent thought leaders for consumer financing programs within the contracting industry, Eric routinely speaks at many of the major contractor events throughout the country and works closely with several of the largest equipment manufacturers and distributors to introduce financing programs and best practices to their dealer networks. With nearly two decades of experience training contractors on how to successfully integrate financing into their sales process, Eric also consults with many of the leading financial institutions to help them tailor their programs to better meet the needs of contractors nationwide.
Independent Industry Educator, Consultant & Thought Leader
As a knowledgeable resource for EGIA’s Contractor Marketplace and Consulting Services, Mike helps EGIA bring educational and consulting services to EGIA members through EGIA’s enhanced classroom training offerings. Mike focuses on delivering exceptional educational options to EGIA members along with supporting individual contractor business reviews and onsite consulting. Mike has been the owner of, and consultant to, HVAC, Plumbing and Electrical contracting businesses for over 25 years, was the President of one of the industry’s first HVAC training affinity groups, led the development of the first Vendor Rebate program in the HVAC industry and was a founding developer of EGIA’s Contractor University. Mike has a undergraduate degree in Computer Science and Accounting from Utah State University, is a CPA and has an MBA in Marketing and Finance from the J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University.
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