Why Basin: Moving from good to great

Why Basin, Loren Black

After a 30-year-long career of good jobs, Project Control Analyst Loren Black says he has finally found a great one.

Black has held this position at Basin Electric for four-and-a-half years, managing the construction Requests for Information (RFI) procedure used in construction projects, where it is necessary to clarify an unclear detail, specification, or note on the construction drawings and ever-changing site conditions to ensure timely continuation of work.

This position requires working with engineers and contractors to review construction schedules, keeping track of RFI documents that outline the changes to the scope and costs of the many construction contracts that exist in the cooperative, and submitting Contract Change Requests to procurement.

Black says that the best parts of his job are being able to work with lots of people and the fact that “every project he works on has a different twist – different people, different challenges, and different opportunities.”

Prior to joining the Basin Electric team, Black held several positions at the oil refinery in Mandan, ND, working there for 30 years, and under three different owners. While employed there, he was courted by several companies, but most were located outside North Dakota and he didn’t want to move away from Bismarck. “All these offers made me wonder about other job opportunities, so I started looking around,” he says. “I had worked for three good companies, but I was looking for a great one. Then one day, a Basin Electric ad in the newspaper caught my eye.”

Black says it was just what he had been looking for. “It’s a very professional organization that offers so many things that are important to me – work-life balance, a position that challenges me, and management that gives me direction but gives me the space I need to do my job. There is great teamwork throughout the cooperative, an open culture, and it is focused on the future.”

He says this is made evident by the new open-concept office environment that is already in place in the new Headquarters West addition, and will soon be implemented in Headquarters East as it is renovated.

It’s almost as if Black’s career has come full circle, because prior to pursuing a career focused on construction and procurement, he was a boilermaker welder. His first job after trade school was with a company that had the construction contract for the boilers at Basin Electric’s Antelope Valley Station near Beulah, ND.

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