FORT LAUDERDALE-DAVIE, Fla. — Nova Southeastern University (NSU) has honored the memory of Hill York’s Robert S. Lafferty Sr. by naming its Central Energy Plant — one of the largest in the United States — after him. A pioneer in the air conditioning industry, Lafferty had the vision of air conditioning South Florida’s high-rises and hotels back in the 1950s. Hill York and the Lafferty Family Foundation have made a significant gift to the university.

“The Lafferty family has been working with NSU for more than two decades,” said NSU’s President and CEO George L. Hanbury II, Ph.D. “Hill York has been part of NSU’s design, development, and construction team as the campus has grown and they continue to be at NSU every day to keep us cool.

“This generous gift, which includes the Charles W. Daniels Endowed Scholarship Fund to benefit NSU undergraduate students, demonstrates Hill York’s continued commitment to a bright future for NSU students,” Hanbury said.

Charles W. Daniels was the father-in-law of Robert S. Lafferty Jr., chairman of Hill York. The first scholarship recipient is Lauren Alfino, a freshman from Denver, who is studying marine biology.

“My dad was known for his innovative ideas,” said Lafferty Jr. “Look around Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach counties at all the high-rise apartment buildings. Probably 95 percent of them, starting with the Kenilworth House in 1956, used my dad’s design. That is quite a feat.”

“Charles W. Daniels, whose nickname was Chip, taught me about relationships, and doing deals based on trust,” said Chip Lafferty, chief executive officer of Hill York. “It’s not a coincidence that this is how we do business at NSU. For 25 years now, we have worked together, through a maturing relationship and trust.”

NSU’s Robert S. Lafferty Sr. Central Energy Plant was designed and built for the university and recognized as one of the largest energy storage systems in the United States. The three-story, state-of-the-art structure is expected to save the university more than $500,000 annually or $17.3 million over the life of the plant. It provides cooling that is both energy efficient and, at the same time, environmentally friendly.

Hill York is a commercial HVAC contractor providing installation, maintenance, and repair as well as energy efficiency solutions. For more information, visit

Publication date: 5/11/2015

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