This is the third in a series of articles on the new Radiant Professionals Alliance (RPA). Go to to read the first two parts.

It was my intention to interview the interim Technical Director of the new RPA. I had planned on talking to him about his visions of where the new RPA was headed as it pertained to the technical details of the organization. Interestingly enough, between my second and third articles on this most excellent organization, it came to my attention that the position of technical director was being offered as a full time position. The job description and associated tasks were very detailed, and I suddenly realized that I was qualified for the offered position.

I thought it over for quite some time before approaching my wonderful bride to get her two cents worth. We talked it over, and looked at the positives and the negatives, and weighed them against each other. One big negative was the requirement to have to relocate to Illinois. My roots are set very deep here, and as most of my followers know, I have numerous residences that I have to care for here in Colorado.

Another negative is that I am self employed, and have a burgeoning consulting business here in Colorado that gives me a lot of freedom, and I get the opportunity to travel quite often. One big negative within my consulting practice is that I do a lot of work for attorneys who are usually in pursuit of basically nice trades people that are good at soldering, but really don’t know what it is that they are doing when it comes to hydronic heating systems and especially radiant heating systems. Doing this kind of expert witness work leaves a bad taste in everyone’s mouth. I feel that there is a definite need to educate the masses as it pertains to hydronics and radiant comfort.

After many sleepless nights and long conversations with the wife and with the powers that be at IAPMO (parent organization for the new RPA), I decided to go forward with applying for the full-time job of technical director of the Radiant Professionals Alliance. I did so, and after some intense negotiations (I’m working from Colorado), I am glad to announce that I was accepted for the job, and I have accepted the position and the title of technical director.

This is a huge lifestyle change for me. It means having to completely shut down one business, parceling out work to good associates that have similar talents to mine, and clearing my desk of work for the new position within the RPA.

But after many hours of contemplation, I honestly feel that it is the best thing for all parties concerned. The organization is in need of my talents, and quite honestly, I am getting to that point in life where I need to start concentrating on working smarter, not harder. The benefits well outweigh the detractors in this situation. I can honestly say that I look forward to working hard for the organization, and helping to move this most excellent industry forward. I have been given a very aggressive agenda by the board of directors and the general membership, based on a survey that was done of participating RPA members. I will be using my writing skills on a regular basis, writing for the numerous publications that the RPA has within their organization, as well as writing for the IAPMO magazine. This means one thing. I will no longer be able to write my monthly “Eatherton on Hydronics” column for Contractor magazine. A sad moment for me and you, the reader. That is the only bad news associated with this change.

The good news is I will continue writing for Contractor Magazine, except that it will be under a new title. The title of the new column will be “From Where I sit.” This new column will chronicle the workings of the RPA, and trust me —there is a lot of stuff going on.

It has been a fantastic journey, writing about all things (and some things not) hydronic, but it is time to move on. If memory serves me correctly, I’ve been penning this article for around 13 years. At 800 words per month, I have showered you with no less than 125,000 words. Thank you for taking the time to read my musings. Lastly, thank you to the fine folks at Penton Media for allowing me to educate and entertain you the reader and express myself over the years.

Please join me at my new column, located within the covers of this magazine next month, and absolutely, consider joining this most credible organization, The Radiant Professionals Alliance. See you next month wearing a new suit — sporting a new article.

Until then, happy Radiant Professionals Alliance hydronicing!

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