Why Basin? All employees contribute to co-op success


There once was an intern who knew he was on to something big the moment he set foot at the Great Plains Synfuels Plant near Beulah, ND.

That intern’s name was Ed Dillman, who is now a reliability engineer at the plant, which is part of Dakota Gasification Company.

In fall 2009 and summer 2010, when Dillman was an intern with the rotating reliability engineering group, he made it his mission to learn everything he could about Dakota Gas and its parent company, Basin Electric. Dillman learned he and every one of his fellow employees play a crucial role in making the co-op thrive.

“Working with that many different people and each one of them giving advice along the way was really helpful for my career,” Dillman says. “I was exposed to a wide variety of disciplines within this organization. In my time here, everyone has been very friendly and always willing to help me out or answer my questions.”

Dillman was excited to be part of projects that involved the combined efforts of upper management and maintenance staff. With one supervisor wielding more than 40 years of experience, Dillman knew access to such expertise would help him grow the company, and grow within it.

“He definitely promoted my interest into improving reliability on an industrial scale. He also introduced me to the business side of how a facility like this operates,” Dillman explains.

Dillman is a man interested in building a positive future, both at work and at home. When he made the move to work at the Synfuels Plant, Dillman was thrilled to bring his family closer to where he grew up.

“Along with being closer to home, I enjoy the outdoors,” he says. “The terrain and changing landscape here matches more of what I was used to on the farm.”

The family farm, near Watauga, SD, is where it all started for Dillman. His love for machinery maintenance emerged during his youth, when he regularly fixed farm equipment. Today, he applies those valuable skills at the plant he’s come to know and love.

“I found an interest in repairing equipment and trying to figure out a way to make it better,” he says.

Providing better service is what co-op employees like Dillman do every day. Everyone plays a part, and everyone has the opportunity to step up to the challenge of strengthening their skills. Dillman continues to grow, and it’s something he enjoys.

“It’s definitely going to be a challenge, but it will be worth it in the end,” he says.

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