Tech of the Month — November 2019: Chris Fry
Name: Chris Fry
Title: Commissioning Service Technician
Why He’s Tech of the Month: A team player who fully understands his role with the company and its importance. That’s how Chris Wisniewski, vice president at Integrate Comfort Systems (ICS), describes technician Chris Fry.
As the song says about New York City, “If you can make it there, you can make it anywhere.” That’s Fry’s attitude as he works on residential projects in the city for ICS, a New Jersey-based contractor.
Fry’s family was originally from Florida and moved to New Jersey; Fry went back down south about 13 years ago and started working with his uncle at an HVAC company in Lakeland, Florida, doing sheet metal. Fry worked up to piping, controls, and other more technical work. After working for a number of Florida companies for about eight years, Fry returned to New Jersey to help out his family.
In Florida, his projects consisted of properties like stores, hospitals, and schools. The move gave him the opportunity to pursue a dream: working on the skyscrapers in New York.
“I enjoyed commercial because it was all wide-open spaces, and at the end of the day, you felt like you did a lot of work,” Fry said. “Here in New York City, you may be able to only hang 10 or 15 feet of duct in a day.”
The schedules are as tight as the spaces. A commercial project in Florida could take months. A residential property in New York needs to be done in weeks.
Fry has been with ICS for five years. He started in sheet metal, but moved over to the service side. Fry’s work now includes programing controls from a wide variety of manufacturers. Fry and a project manager are responsible for 15 to 20 jobs at a time.
“I love all the new technology coming out,” Fry said. “I love being able to wire a system to control an entire house.”
Wisniewski shared the story of a time Fry was nearly home from work and received a call from a co-worker who ran into a problem on a job. The co-worker only intended to get some recommendations over the phone, but instead, Fry drove an hour and a half to the job site.
“Chris did not ask to be compensated for his work after hours — he just wanted to make sure his co-worker came out successful in this job,” Wisnewski said. “Of course, we as a company felt like Chris went above and beyond and paid him for the hours he did not report. The co-worker was extremely appreciative and remembers to pay Chris back in any way he can — even now, over a year later, on a daily basis.”
Eventually, Fry would like to manage a service department and share what he’s learned. He enjoys seeing young people learn the ways of the HVAC trade.
“Seeing it in their eyes when they finally understand it is pretty amazing,” Fry said.
See more articles from this issue here!