Writing for Distributed Wind Energy Association (DWEA) in 2014 was an incredibly fun project. I was tasked with telling the stories behind a difficult industry, and I interviewed individuals across the United States who manufactured, installed, used, and advocated for wind turbines.
“Elizabeth has the ability to take an industry that is historically seen as very technical and bring it to life. She writes the stories of the people behind our organization, providing relatable narratives. This has proven invaluable with our political initiatives and in gaining support from the public. The stories have been great. I love them. I want more.” – Jennifer Jenkins, Executive Director of Distributed Wind Energy Association
As a child growing up without electricity, Polito built small wind turbines out of old motors and scrap wood. His experiments were a success and he was able to produce a small amount of electricity. “I was excited [to learn] how to make more. I wanted to learn how to build better wind turbines and make better electricity,” said Polito. “We had kerosene lamps for light and a hand pump for water out of the well and an outhouse instead of indoor plumbing, and you can imagine how cold that is in the middle of winter in Maine to go outside to use the outhouse. Electricity was this magical technology that I knew was out there that other people had that we didn’t have because we were so far outside of the beaten path.” Read more.
Kevin, Ed and Rich Doody grew up on the dairy farm their parents established in 1949 with 35 cows and fewer than 80 acres. The farm, now home to 350 cows, is 12 miles south of Syracuse, NY, in a small town called Otisco. The brothers’ parents also grew up in the area, going to local churches and schools. Their father, Larry, passed away six years ago, and their mother, Avis, continues to take care of the farm’s accounting. “It’s been in our blood our whole life,” said Ed. Read more.
Hach’s experience with renewable energy began when he was a child. In 1977, his father started selling wind turbines, and Hach remembers seeing them sit, temporarily, in the front yard before being transported to a client. In the 1980s, his father began working with larger turbines and following projects all over the nation. The Hach family left their farm in Iowa and traveled to Colorado, Maryland and Illinois before returning to Iowa. There, Hach began learning more about the field, and in 2002, he and Tara started their company. “Growing up, there were always people interested in generating their own electricity. They own it, it’s theirs, and they don’t have to pay for electricity again,” said Hach. Read more.