Business Briefs

FROM THE SEPTEMBER ISSUE: BIO restructures to add public affairs executive vice president, Nelson Engineering undergoes name change, and Midwest AgEnergy's 12-year safety record.
By Ethanol Producer Magazine | August 09, 2019

BIO hires new public affairs executive vice president 
The Biotechnology Innovation Organization has hired Rich Masters as its new executive vice president for public affairs, a restructured position that will focus on developing and implementing an integrated communications, branding and marketing strategy for the organization.

“I am thrilled to announce that Rich Masters will be leading a restructured and expanded communications function within BIO, to enhance our ability to tell the inspiring biotech story in a compelling manner and to help us advance the interests of our members,” says Jim Greenwood, BIO president and CEO. “Our companies are fast, innovative and game-changing in their technologies, which are literally saving lives, feeding the world and powering the planet. BIO must have a public affairs operation that matches those efforts. Rich brings a wealth of public affairs experience from the private and public sectors that is as varied and creative as it is deep. I’m confident he will bring the same energy and drive to BIO that our membership brings to their life-changing innovations.”

Masters comes from Qorvis Communications, a public affairs firm. Masters is recognized as one of America’s top political and media relations experts and has developed a method for delivering complex policy and political messages that resonate with middle America and audiences around the world. His media training program for political debate messaging has been featured in Businessweek, the New York Times and Atlantic Monthly. He was an award-winning political journalist in Louisiana, joined the campaign of U.S. Senator Mary L. Landrieu, D-La., in 1996, and served as her legislative and communications director for her first term.

“Working for BIO is an opportunity of a lifetime because the companies that are BIO are the epicenter of every single life-saving innovation we will see for the rest of my life,” Masters said. “I will fight to ensure that political leaders understand that they can either work with these companies and be partners in innovation or they can be roadblocks that could delay or even kill that innovation. I’m excited to join Jim and the entire BIO team to tackle this critical challenge head-on.”

As part of this restructuring and transition, BIO’s current senior vice president for communications, Ken Lisaius, is leaving the organization.

Nelson Engineering reveals new name
Nelson Engineering Inc. has changed its name and is now Nelson Baker Biotech Inc. An engineering, procurement and construction firm in the industrial biotech space, Nelson Baker Biotech has expanded into additional industrial biotechnology applications in recent years, including biomass processing, biochemicals and biogas. The new company name now better reflects its expertise.

For the past 12 years, the company has partnered with innovators to design and build projects within the biofuels industry.

“While we will continue to serve the biofuels industry, our team has developed expertise in other industries as well,” said Tiffany Trottman, business development manager. “As a full turnkey engineering, procurement and construction firm, we concentrate on projects from beginning to end, not just the engineering. We decided a company name that reflects this expertise was best.”

Midwest AgEnergy celebrates safety records
Midwest AgEnergy, the parent company to Blue Flint Ethanol, near Underwood, North Dakota, is pleased to announce its employees have surpassed 12 years of safely working without a lost-time accident. A lost-time accident is defined as time lost when an employee is injured on the job and cannot return to the next regularly scheduled shift.

Dakota Spirit, a Midwest AgEnergy biorefinery near Spiritwood, North Dakota, that opened in June of 2015, has never had a lost-time accident.

“It has been great to be a part of such a dedicated and passionate team,” said Adam Dunlop, director of regulatory and technical services for Midwest AgEnergy. “We have gotten here because the group genuinely holds safety as a core value. Of course, what got us here may not be enough to get us to the next level. We recognize we need to continue to find ways to improve each day.”