Robert Wilkins (center) accepts the Innovative Star of Energy Efficiency Award on behalf of Danfoss. Also pictured are Representative Paul Tonko (D-NY) who presented Wilkins with the award, and Kateri Callahan, president of the Alliance to Save Energy.

Energy may be considered a fleeting resource by some, but Robert Wilkins, president of Danfoss North America, sees it as a mechanism of change. For his leadership and vision of what the future of the HVACR industry will hold, Robert Wilkins is a 2010 NEWSmaker.

Throughout the years, and certainly through his most recent efforts, Wilkins has championed the cause of energy efficiency in the industry.

“We’re investing in initiatives to raise awareness in our industry of policy issues related to energy efficiency and refrigerants, and I encourage your readers to be active also. It sometimes sounds trite to say ‘write your Congressman’ but developing a relationship with your political representatives is very important as we all play a part in shaping our energy future.”

During 2010, the Innovative Star of Energy award was presented to Danfoss by the Alliance to Save Energy (ASE) at the 18th Annual Evening with the Stars of Energy Efficiency, a black-tie dinner and awards program in Washington, D.C. The event recognized the contributions and innovations of leading companies that have advanced the cause of energy efficiency. Wilkins, a recognized leading advocate for energy efficiency, accepted the award on behalf of the company, at which time he said, “It is an honor to be here tonight among so many people who, like Danfoss, are committed to energy efficiency and believe that, with education, advocacy, and the right technologies, we can make a positive impact on the fate of our environment and climate, as well as energy and financial security, and for that matter our national security.”

Wilkins has been instrumental in the continued success of the Danfoss EnVisioneering Symposia series, the most recent of which was held Nov. 12 in Scottsdale, Ariz. “As the United States faces a continually evolving and emerging power crisis, this EnVisioneering meeting seemed like a natural place to draw together industry leaders and experts to discuss the evolution of the smart grid,” said Wilkins.

The Scottsdale event was the 14th in the series, which began in 2006. According to Wilkins, “We created the EnVisioneering Symposia in 2006 when we recognized a strong need to bring the public and private sectors together to discuss and advance critical industry issues. We have had Congressmen sitting next to contractors and engineers around the same table actively engaged in dialogue on energy and policy.”

Additionally, Wilkins chaired a panel discussion at the prestigious 2010 Energy Efficiency Global Forum and Exposition (EE Global), the only international forum dedicated solely to energy efficiency, and also hosted by the Alliance to Save Energy.

In July, he participated in a panel discussion on energy efficiency at a side event during the Clean Energy Ministerial meeting in Washington, D.C., an event hosted by Department of Energy Secretary Steven Chu, which brings together about 25 energy ministers from around the world.

Wilkins has spent 34 years in the HVACR industry, 18 of which have been with Danfoss. He currently chairs the policy-setting government affairs committee of the Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI), and sits on the board of the Alliance for Responsible Atmospheric Policy.

Robert Wilkins

Sidebar: 2010 NEWSmakers

Name:Robert Wilkins


Company:Danfoss North America


Notable Quote:“Stronger and better enforced building codes that support a systems approach to energy efficiency, an effective building energy rating system, and incentives to encourage the installation of modern technologies - all of these are needed to promote the design and construction of energy-efficient buildings.”

Publication date:12/20/2010