4 minutes with.. George Poch, President, Hiawatha Valley Resource Conservation and Development Council

June 11, 2015 |

Tell us about your company and it’s role in the Advanced Bioeconomy.

Helping in the process of finding underutilized bio-mass materials

Tell us about your role and what you are focused on in the next 12 months.

Our Annual plan does consider bio-mass material as one of its elements. Most of this bio mass is in non-farmed areas. When not utilized become a nuisance to our national waterways. It is important to find ways that we can use these bio-materials. Your organization has already played an important role in this process. We work closely with the local units of government and our organization is just in one of the ways that we can accomplish this utilization.

What do you feel are the most important milestones the industry must achieve in the next 5 years?  

Keep focusing on the market elements that you have been doing. That is the way that the more local people will beck

If you could snap your fingers and change one thing about the Advanced Bioeconomy, what would you change? 

The local people, especially their leaders, have to be come more involved, especially in the production of the bio-mass material to be processed. The business and technology part is important, but just to understand what is going on, I had to dig out my old organic chemistry books. Think of the people void of this understanding.

Of all the reasons that influenced you to join the Advanced Bioeconomy industry, what single reason stands out for you as still being compelling and important to you?  

We live in a high-tech world and in spite of ones age, we all can keep going. The harvest of fossil fuels just seems to harming our landscapes, especially in mining the sandstone needed for this tracking process. The beauty of the bluff lands is really taking a hit.

Where are you from? 

SE Minnesota and part of that beautiful Driftless area. It is quite capable for producing vast amounts of bio-mass and still retain its beauty. Leveling its area simply to remove the sandstone for “tracking” is not the answer.

What was your undergraduate major in college, and where did you attend? Why did you choose that school and that pathway?

I specialized in Soil Science and at one time prepared Soil Surveys for the NRCS. Since retiring from that I became a Soil and Water Conservation District Supervisor and also now chair the HV RC&D

Who do you consider your mentors – could be personal, business, or just people you have read about and admire. What have you learned from them?

My mentors are the people that preceded me in soil conservation work. Many of them began their careers in the early 1930’s and their experiences taught them a lot and they were very happy to share what they learned.

What’s the biggest lesson you ever learned during a period of adversity?  

Just keep plugging on and don’t let your guard down.

What hobbies do you pursue, away from your work in the industry?

Music has always been a part of me and I was able to pick up an accordion which I play today.

What are 3 books you’d want to have with you, if you were stranded on a desert island

I read a lot of Holy scriptures. I like books relating to some of our political leaders and many of them had much to offer.

What books or articles are on your reading list right now, or you just completed and really enjoyed?  

I read the Journal of the Soil and Water Conservation Society and much of what is written about them I can relate to. I read environmental magazines to some extent also.

What’s your favorite city or place to visit, for a holiday?

I like the towns in Northern Europe and much of the USA

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Tags: ,

Category: Million Minds

Thank you for visting the Digest.