Business Briefs

FROM THE NOVEMBER ISSUE: Pacific Ethanol joins Advanced Biofuels Business Council, Edeniq president joins BIO board, and more.
By Lisa Gibson | October 13, 2017

Pacific Ethanol joins Advanced Biofuels Business Council
Pacific Ethanol Inc. has joined the Advanced Biofuels Business Council.
Pacific Ethanol owns and operates nine ethanol production facilities—four in California, Oregon and Idaho, and five in Illinois and Nebraska. The plants have a combined production capacity of 605 MMgy.

“Through the commercial production of cellulosic ethanol at our Stockton facility, we have taken an important step forward in our strategy to increase production yields at our plants and our mission to be the leading producer and marketer of low-carbon renewable fuels,” says Neil Koehler, Pacific Ethanol’s president and CEO. 

“We are very pleased to be working with Pacific Ethanol,” says Brooke Coleman, executive director of the ABBC. “The cellulosic biofuels industry is breaking through at commercial scale, and it is critical for the industry to work together when it comes to how we engage on policy and regulatory matters. Pacific Ethanol is the perfect example of the natural bridge between first- and second-generation biofuels, and the renewable fuel industry’s ongoing commitment to producing the cleanest and most sustainable motor fuels in the world. We look forward to working with Pacific Ethanol on strategies that will put the industry in a position to succeed in 2017 and beyond.”

Edeniq president joins BIO IES board
Edeniq Inc. President and CEO Brian Thome has been elected to the Biotechnology Innovation Organization Industrial and Environmental Section governing board. Thome joins other industry leaders to help set the organization’s policy and guide other priorities that will help facilitate growth of the biofuel and renewable chemical industries.

 “I am thrilled to join BIO’s IES governing board,” Thome says. “BIO is a leading trade association that plays an essential role in advancing policies that help facilitate the investment, development and use of biofuels and renewable chemicals in the United States. I look forward to playing a leadership role in these efforts that are so important to the industry, and to helping to grow U.S. energy independence and security on the whole. Especially at this time of increasing advanced and cellulosic biofuel commercialization, it is crucial that the industry work together in a unified way to ensure continued growth of the entire value chain of biofuels and renewable chemicals.”

Nelson Appointed to Nebraska Ethanol Board
Taylor Nelson, who farms near Jackson, Nebraska, joins the Nebraska Ethanol Board as the corn representative. He was appointed by Gov. Pete Ricketts on Sept. 8.

Nelson earned his agriculture economics degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He returned to the family farm in 2012, and produces corn and soybeans in Dixon and Dakota counties with his father, Doug Nelson, and uncle, Jim Nelson. Along with his wife and parents, Nelson also operates the Jackson Express convenience store.

Nelson joins current board members: Mike Thede, chairman, Palmer; Jan tenBensel, vice chairman, Cambridge; Mark Ondracek, secretary, Omaha; Randy Gard, Grand Island; Tim Else, Belvidere; Scott McPheeters, Gothenburg; and University of Nebraska-Lincoln Chemical Engineering Professor Hunter Flodman, who serves as the board’s technical advisor. Members of the Nebraska Ethanol Board are appointed by the governor to serve four-year terms.

White Energy names new president, CEO
Biofuels, feed and food ingredient producer White Energy has appointed Greg Thompson as president and CEO.

Thompson, 44, is one of the founders of Verdesian Life Sciences, a North Carolina-based agricultural technology company specializing in nutrient use efficiency technologies. As president and chief operating officer, he led the acquisition and integration of six companies to expand Verdesian’s global market presence.

“Greg is a proven leader with the experience and passion to take White Energy to the next level,” says James Continenza, chairman of White Energy. “He is a strategic thinker with a strong track record of successfully implementing business strategies and process improvements to grow businesses. We are excited to welcome him to the White Energy team.”

“The growth of America’s biofuels industry presents tremendous opportunities for White Energy,” Thompson says. “Given the quality of our employees and the strength of our production capabilities, we are well-positioned to play a significant role in the future of this industry. I’m looking forward to helping White Energy take full advantage of new and existing market opportunities.”

Thompson spent the first 10 years of his career with BASF. He later assumed leadership roles with a number of successful startup companies where he worked closely with private equity investment firms to grow revenues and build value. He is a 1995 graduate of Pennsylvania State University and has completed executive leadership courses at Harvard University, Columbia University and other leading academic institutions.