Veterans Bios

Springfield Program Veterans

  • Michael Wright is a U.S. Army veteran living in Illiopolis, IL. His civilian experience in building O&M includes working as an HVAC/R Technician for All Seasons Mechanical in Springfield, IL and an independent contractor for residential and commercial properties. While serving in the Army from 1999 to 2003, he was exposed to BOC concepts through inspections of ventilation and generator systems in emergency evacuation shelters in Hawaii. His certifications include Level I Building Operator Certification® and ESCO EPA Universal HVAC Technician. He completed the HVAC/R Universal Technician program, as well as coursework in facility engineering, at Richland Community College in Decatur, IL. Mike is currently working part-time at Lowe’s and pursuing full-time employment opportunities in building and grounds maintenance or HVAC/R.

DuPage Program Veterans

  • Hector Ayala recently retired from the U.S. Marine Corps after 20 years of service in domestic and international locations. Hector brought a wealth of transferable skills and experience to BOC training from many Maintenance Operations Manager positions within the Marine Corps, in which he became experienced in use of diagnostic equipment to troubleshoot mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, electrical, and fuel systems. Based in Aurora, IL, Hector is seeking full-time employment in facilities management and related fields that will utilize his 12 years of supervisory experience. He holds a B.S. in Management/Computer Information Systems from Park University, MO, Level I Building Operator Certification®, and many managerial and technical certificates and military awards and honors.  

  • Alex Dawson served as an aircraft electrician in the U.S. Army from 2009 to 2012, including one year of service in Afghanistan. He currently lives in Arlington Heights, IL and serves in the Wisconsin Army National Guard. Alex was able to apply his military experience in BOC training, as many of the control systems and safety devices used on aircraft are similar to those used in building systems. He holds Level I Building Operator Certification® and many military certificates and awards. Alex is currently pursuing an Associate in Applied Science degree in Energy Management and Renewable Energy at Elgin Community College in Elgin, IL.  After earning his Associate degree, he plans to pursue a bachelor’s degree and a career as a Stationary Engineer.  Alex is currently seeking part-time employment opportunities in the field.

  • Paul Gawley is a U.S. Navy veteran living in Downer’s Grove, IL. He served as a heavy equipment operator with the U.S. Navy Construction Battalion or “SeeBeas” for three years during the Vietnam era, working on projects such as new roads, airport runways, sewer treatment facilities, and other utility infrastructures. Paul has held many positions in the construction profession and currently works as an independent construction consultant providing project management services to real estate developers and building owners. He pursued the Building Operator Certification to advise owners of the benefits of building energy efficiency and sustainability from the planning and design phase through construction and building operations and maintenance.  Projects vary from capital and tenant improvements to renovations, new development and re-development. Paul holds a B.S. in Construction Technology from Pacific Western University, CA, an Associate in Applied Science degree in Building Construction from the College of DuPage, IL, and Level I Building Operator Certification®.  Paul is currently seeking full-time employment as well as consulting opportunities.