HVAC Faculty and Subject Matter Experts (SME)


Chris Compton, CMHE

Certified Master HVAC/R Educator
CEO, Founder, and Director

Chris, a 20 year HVACR instructor at North Idaho College, saw a unique opportunity in online education (high quality education anywhere and anytime via the Internet) to help new students and anyone already working in the Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning, Refrigeration and or Building Performance industry to:

1)    enter the HVACR trade

2)    move up the career ladder

3)    re-train for a career change

4)    refresh knowledge and skills

5)    succeed in achieving industry certifications

6)    earn Continuing Education Units for re-certification

From that idea, HVACRedu.net grew.

Chris has become the specialist in online curriculum development for the trades, the psychology behind online learning, creating web pages, use of video and simulation instruction, and learning through the web. Chris is the CEO, Project Director, and Content Development Manager (as well as chief cook and bottle washer) of HVACRedu.net.

Chris brings 37 years of experience in the HVACR field as a student, technician, contractor, and instructor.  He has been certified at the Installation and Service level in all five of the NATE certifications.  In 1998 he was selected as one of the top 10 outstanding Trades and Industry Educators in the U.S. by ACTE (Association of Career and Technical Education), formerly AVA (American Vocational Association).  He received the Imperial Award from RSES for Commercial Refrigeration in 1997, and is a CMS member of RSES.  Chris has achieved the CMHE (Certified Master HVACR Educator) status from HVAC Excellence. In 2014 he was selected as the Teacher of the Year by the ACHR News.  Chris serves as an educational consultant and advisor to HVACR and Building Performance online learning efforts around the Globe.

Chris loves the outdoors – especially when he’s fly fishing, driving his “brand new” 1948 Stinson 108-3, playing horseshoes, working the Blue C Ranch, singing bluegrass or trolling for silvers in the Straits of Juan de Fuca. 

Chris can be reached at ccompton@hvacredu.net 

Scott Oakley, CMHE, NATE

Certified Master HVAC/R Educator, Faculty, Subject Matter Expert, and Q Program Liaison

My start in the HVACR industry was the same as yours is now. I attended Universal Technical Institute (UTI) in Phoenix, Arizona and graduated in 1976. A technical education is crucial to your success. Through the years, I have been involved in every single facet of the industry from Technician, Contractor, Facilities, Sales, Business Owner and Instructor.

After I graduated from UTI, I immediately went to work in the commercial refrigeration service field. Within a few years, I moved on to become the Service Manager of a large commercial air conditioning firm in the Arizona area. Ambition soon called, after 8 years, to business ownership and I relocated to California. This new firm specialized in new construction installation and maintenance service operating throughout the State of California. I have been involved in companies as a single service technician, to others with 150 employees.

Over the past recent years, I have been working as both a face-to-face and online, blended HVACR Instructor. I am the author of Commercial Ice Machines…only (available on Amazon), focusing on the ice industry, the ice machine and ice maker all the way through health department compliance. Commercial ice makers and commercial ice machines require specialized knowledge to master details involved in ice machine repair and ice maker installation. Commercial Ice Machines…only is the single authoritative resource that devotes much of the material to ice type selection, hygienic practices, health department compliance, water treatment strategies, the refrigeration cycle particular to the ice machine, electrical and refrigeration controls specific to the ice machine and other topics needed to master the Ice Machine industry.

I am a contributing author of the new book entitled Electricity for the HVACR Technician. Published by CDX Learning Systems, written by a group of experienced HVACR service professionals, Electricity for the HVACR Technician emphasizes the practical, essential information that technicians will use on a day-to-day basis and allows new technicians to apply their knowledge and skills from the classroom in successfully troubleshooting and repairing electrical problems in the field.

I am a firm believer in the evidence of credentialing and certification because they both show the world that you can do the task and that you understand the science and purpose of the task. For Instructors, the credential is the Certified Master Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Educator (CMHE). The CMHE encompasses Technical Training, Heat Pump, Electrical, Air Conditioning, Light Commercial Air Conditioning, Electric Heat, and Commercial Refrigeration. In addition to the CMHE, I am NATE (North American Technician Excellence) certified in Heat Pump and Air Conditioning Service and Installation. I have been state licensed as an Air Conditioning Contractor, Commercial Refrigeration Contractor and General Building Contractor.

The world is rapidly changing requiring that technicians understand system automation and possess in-depth technical knowledge. I am here to help you achieve the goal of confidently working in this industry.

Scott Oakley can be reached by email at:  scottoakley@hvacredu.net

By phone at: 888-655-4822 x1103.

Ron Auvil

Building Automation Systems Instructor and Subject Matter Expert


Ron Auvil is the guy that ‘wrote the book’ on Building Automation Systems and a leading voice in today’s movement toward operational excellence.  He is the author of, “HVAC Control Systems” by American Technical Publishers.  As a lead instructor for a major controls manufacturer, Ron designed and taught a program for brand new technicians on installing and troubleshooting mechanical systems and BAS.  He also spent years working as a senior technician, troubleshooter, and project manager.  He has worked with some of the world’s largest and most quality-conscious companies, providing custom training on how to improve the operations of their environmental systems. His clients have included NASA, the Pentagon, the University of South Carolina, and others.  You can be his next.


Ron will be teaching a sequential series of live courses combined with blended learning sessions (a combination of online anytime and real time face to face), and several online only courses.


Walter Nelson

Online Faculty and Subject Matter Expert


My name is Walter Nelson.  I am honored to be one of the online instructors here at HVACRedu.net. I am excited to have you here and I am looking forward to working with you.  I have over 35 years of in field service experience.  I started my career as a Design /Application engineer at a Major refrigeration manufacturing plant.  I was given the opportunity to go into the field to see my design/application work in the physical world.  Well, that was all it took; I was hooked!  I became a journeyman through the Union, and the rest they say is history!  My specialty is Commercial/Supermarket service, install, but I’ve done it all, including owning my own business and teaching apprentices on the worksite for years.


The trade you are embarking on is one of unlimited opportunities! 

You can reach me at:  wnelson@hvacredu.net


Bryan McCrea

Online Instructor and Subject Matter Expert

I started my HVAC/R career while in the Air Force as an apprentice in 1993.  With that solid foundation, I have continued to learn and build my career.  I’ve worked as a Stationary Engineer in several facilities engineering departments at Medical Centers that were over 1.5 million square feet each.  I have been a Journeyman Instructor and problem solver in San Francisco; been the CEO of a Facilities Maintenance company; worked for the second largest printing company in the world; and worked for several pharmaceutical companies with an emphasis on ultra-low refrigeration (cryogenics).  I’ve even owned my own Refrigeration, Heating, and Air Conditioning company, repairing the air conditioning for the top rated resort in the world, multi-million dollar homes, and performing warranty work for Beverage Air/The ALI Group.  I am also a licensed 3rd class Boiler Operator. My favorite equipment to work on is refrigeration: to include -86 deg. C freezers, ice machines and controls (Building Automation) and Air Balancing (especially for isolation rooms).  My career was built by learning everything I could, whenever the opportunity presented itself.  Now, it is my pleasure to bring my 25 plus years of education and work experience to technicians learning online at HVACRedu.net.  

I’m looking forward to making your learning experience life-changing. 

I can be reached at: mccrea@hvacredu.net