Half the world has passed into 2012 as I write this, with only a few hours more remaining before we are celebrating the same.
2011 was a banner year for the biodiesel industry. Promethean enjoyed a record production year as well.
Perhaps most importantly, we came closer to becoming the organization we dream of being; technical experts, more professional, on the road to making real our goal of community-based energy independence.
I write this from a small town in the North of Mexico. As it is at the end of every year, I have spent the last few days in reflection.
When I was a child I attended a very small school for the gifted in North Hollywood California. There were less than 20 children in attendance, and in fact there was not any particular delineation between the grades per se. We all read Gibbonsâ€™ â€œDecline and Fall of the Roman Empireâ€, the works of theoretical physicist George Gamow (his less academic works impressed me the most at the time, e.g., â€œOne, Two, Threeâ€¦..Infinity.â€ where I first marveled at the mathematically challenged â€œHottentotsâ€, but I would later vacillate between awe and confusion at many of his other works as I discovered them, or, more accurately perhaps, as they were assigned during my college years), as well as the classics from Dickens to Hemingway to Hesse. The school also provided my first introduction to programming, using an Old Timex Sinclair, and then moving on to LOGO and basic assembly.
But perhaps the work that influenced me the most at that time was the discovery of science fiction, and authors such as Isaac Asimov, Robert Heinlein, Frederik Pohl, and Arthur C. Clarke. Although the works of these authors were primarily fiction, they allowed me to see the potential and the value of pursuing science as a discipline.Â Asimovâ€™s Foundation series, Clarkeâ€™s seminal â€œA Fall of Moondustâ€, Â and others lit the spark that fanned the flames of my studies through adulthood, as the dream of the potential application of what I was learning took hold and became, in essence, the passionate pursuit of a better future.
2011 has been an extraordinary year for the North American biodiesel industry. It has been an extraordinary year for Promethean as well.
We are putting the finishing touches on our quality management system; we have grown in numbers; we have diversified both our service and product offering. Perhaps, most importantly, we are beginning to understand just how important what we do really is, not just in terms of energy independence, but for the communities and businesses we serve.
I am putting the final touches on our vision and mission statements for 2012 and beyond. They will both better reflect the reality of what we do, the kind of organization we want to be, and the way we plan to be it.
My thanks to all of you, those of us making fuel or supporting the folks making fuel, our supporters in the community ( and quite frankly our Promethean community is in many senses now a global one), and even our â€œcoopetitorsâ€ for their evangelism, focus on raising the bar, and the real social benefit that our services and products provide.
So for the last time this year I write what I always hold as my vision for myself and you as well both for today and throughout the upcoming New Year:
Make it a better place!