The Conference Built Around Your Ideas

By Tom Bryan | April 01, 2013

As we wrapped this issue of Ethanol Producer Magazine, the BBI International content managers were nose down in spreadsheets creating panels for the 2013 International Fuel Ethanol Workshop & Expo. Building the agenda for the world’s largest, longest-running ethanol conference is a task our team accepts with earnest diligence. We’re thankful for the responsibility and we don’t carry it alone.          

The FEW is built around content, which means speakers—or more specifically, speaker ideas—are the lifeblood of the event. Our agenda-building process begins with a worldwide call for presentation ideas six months before the event takes place. This year’s FEW, in its 29th year, will happen June 10-13 at the America’s Center in St. Louis, Mo., where nearly 2,000 industry professionals will gather. Our quest for presentation pitches began quietly last fall and progressively gathered momentum up until the mid-February deadline. When the dust settled, more than 200 presentation ideas were submitted from all over the world. Each abstract was judiciously reviewed, annotated and rated, typically by four or five qualified industry professionals. To our 33 evaluators (you know who you are), thank you. 

At press time, our content managers were engaged in the fastidious process of matching the highest-rated abstracts with similar presentation ideas inside of four distinct tracks that cover production, financial management, coproducts and advanced ethanol. On March 1, I took a sneak peak at the preliminary panels. The groupings look terrific. By the time this issue lands on your desk, the FEW agenda will be complete and online. I hope you appreciate the content and make plans to attend, just as more than 500 ethanol plant personnel and 1,500 other industry professionals did last year. Early-bird registration ends April 29. 

As always, the 2013 FEW will be a fusion of education, networking and what I call “extra stuff” before and after the show. Before the FEW begins, the annual FEW golf outing will take place Monday, June 10, at the distinctive Gateway National Golf Links. And after the proceedings conclude, BBI will facilitate a tour that will include a return visit to the National Corn-to-Ethanol Research Center, which will officially celebrate its 10-year anniversary with attendees Thursday, June 13. To learn more about the center’s decade of collaborative research, check out our page-32 Q&A with NCREC Director John Caupert. 

The FEW is still taking shape, and all the details—panels, awards, tours and special activities—will be featured in next month’s issue of EPM. Until then, please visit www.FuelEthanolWorkshop.com for more information about registration and lodging, as well as remaining opportunities for sponsors and exhibitors. 

 

Tom Bryan,
President & Editor in Chief
tbryan@bbiinternational.com