ARLINGTON, Va. - The Air Conditioning Contractors of America's (ACCA's) "Heat the Country" program has won the Associations Advance America Award of Excellence from the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE).

Heat the Country sprang from a community service project, Heat the Town, initiated by ACCA's North Texas chapter in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. Last fall, ACCA members in some 14 chapters around the country volunteered their time and services to repair or replace heating systems for low-income, elderly, and disabled homeowners in their local communities. The chapters worked with public and private social service organizations to identify families who need help.

"Our member companies are community-based in the best sense of the word, as Heat the Country shows," commented Paul T. Stalknecht, ACCA president and CEO. "The 2004 effort was just our first on a national scale; we expect that the program will grow to serve more and more families in the years to come. We are very proud of participating members and grateful to ASAE for recognizing their commitment."

Now in its 15th year, the Associations Advance America (AAA) awards program recognizes associations for innovative projects in education, skills training, standards setting, business and social innovation, knowledge creation, citizenship, and community service.

"ACCA's program truly embodies the spirit of the Associations Advance America campaign," said David Gabri, 2004-2005 AAA committee chair and president and CEO of Associated Luxury Hotels International. "It is an honor and an inspiration to showcase this activity as an example of the many contributions associations are making to advance American society."

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Publication date: 04/25/2005