EPAC Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Ethanol Producers And Consumers celebrated their 20th Anniversary Annual Biofuel Conference in Missoula in June.

Ethanol Producers And Consumers, EPAC, was organized in 1991 as a non-profit grassroots educational organization that supports the production and use of ethanol as a proven sustainable alternative energy source vital to achieving American Energy Independence. The group has since expanded their mission statement to include all biofuels. EPAC is supported through membership dues; sponsorships and grants.

EPAC has been led by Shirley Ball, Nashua, MT as its Executive Director until 2009 and she is now the EPAC Chairman of the Board. Pam Ost, Glasgow, MT became its current Executive Director in 2009 and Patsy Reimche, Nashua MT is EPAC’s Office Manager and Membership Chair. EPAC is overseen by a Board of Directors that is made up of individuals from across the nation. Current Directors are: President, Gary Schaff, Sidney, MT; First Vice President, Former MT Governor Tim Babcock; Helena, MT, Second Vice President; Phil Madson, CEO KATZEN International, Cincinnati, OH; Secretary/Treasurer, Linda Nielsen, Glasgow Stockyards, Glasgow MT; Dan Schwartzkopf, ICM Inc., Torrington, WY; Julie Ward, RJ O’Brien, Runnells, IA; Mike Allen, Helena MT; Russ Montgomery, REDDI Inc., Harrisburg, PA; Tom Kryzer, Billings, MT; Stan Ozark, Glasgow, MT and newly elected Director Craig Shealy, CEO/President OSAGE Bio Energy, Glen Allen, VA. Babcock, Nielsen and Ball are charter members of the educational organization.

The agenda of the 20th Anniversary Biofuel Conference, “The Biofuel Journey”, followed the ethanol/biofuel industry from it’s inception along its growth path to the latest research and development, governmental policies, mandates, legislation and obstacles.

Senator Max Baucus, Senator Jon Tester and Representative Dennis Rehberg greeted the event with video presentations and Ron DeYong, Director of the Montana Department of Agriculture presented a greeting from Governor Brian Schweitzer and welcomed all attendees to Montana. Conference speakers featured biofuel industry businesses, corporations, agencies, research entities, advocacy groups; governmental policy and infrastructure experts representing LLJ Consulting and Business Development, PRIME BioSolutions, Nebraska Ethanol Board, ICM Inc., Chief Ethanol Fuels Inc.; EPA; Missoula City-County Health Dept.; MT DEQ and DNRC; University of Idaho; Earl Fisher Biofuels; National Biodiesel Board;. Montana Wheat and Barley Committee; USDA ERRC ARS; OSAGE Bio Energy; KATZEN International; ABENER; Canadian Consul; Smallwood Enterprise Program; Abengoa Bioenergy; Novozymes; RJ O’Brien; USDAARC NCARL;The Food Development Centre; Feeds Innovation Institute; Growth Energy; ENTRIX; National Corn Growers Association; MT DEQ Quality Energy and Pollution Prevention Bureau Renewable Energy and Clean Air Program; University of Montana College of Technology; MSU Northern College of Technical Sciences; USDA DOE and Renewable Fuels Association.

One of the many highlights of the anniversary conference was at the anniversary banquet where the former and current Board members were recognized and given a commemorative pin with the EPAC logo. Among the former board members in attendance were: Don Sterhan, Billings, MT; Keith Casterline and his wife Evelyn of Vida, MT and Wanda Zuroff and her husband Ira of Richey, MT. Sterhan and Casterline were also charter members of EPAC. All Board members, past and present were called upon to reminisce and share their reasons for contributing their time to serve on the EPAC Board.

The 20th Anniversary EPAC Biofuel Conference agenda and conference presentations are available at the EPAC website at www.ethanolmt.org