The FEW Scholarship program is dedicated and named in honor and memory of Kathy Bryan.
Kathy Bryan was President of BBI International until July 2009 when she died of ovarian cancer. To many, Kathy will be remembered as the visionary and matriarch of the world’s largest, longest running ethanol conference, the International Fuel Ethanol Workshop & Expo (FEW). Her name became synonymous with the event over the past two decades. She was associated with the FEW since its inception when colleague Bob Sutthoff started it in 1984 when they were colleagues at Gist-brocades. Indeed, she helped make the FEW a sort of compass for the future direction of the industry.
Kathy had over 24 years involvement in the ethanol industry. She had a hands-on production facility on her Minnesota farm in the 1980s with help from her first husband and their six children; she chaired the Minnesota Ethanol Commission for five years during the late 80s; she spent years lobbying for state and national programs and was a conduit for sharing information and keeping track of what was once a small group of people. It was her practice to generate good will and camaraderie across the ethanol industry.
Kathy’s passion and dedication did not go without notice over the years. In fact, former Minnesota Governor Rudy Perpich, recognizing Kathy’s tireless work, created a “Kathy Bryan Day” back in the early days of ethanol when the Minnesota Model was being created. She had that kind of impact on people. And she had that kind of impact on the ethanol industry.
In 1995, Kathy co-founded BBI International with her husband Mike Bryan. She was long-time, editor-in-chief of Ethanol Producer Magazine
and co-founder of the Energy Independent Newsletter
that preceded it. Kathy was the co-author and editor of the Ethanol Plant Development Handbook
and she contributed to the quality and integrity of BBI International’s publications and conferences in innumerable ways over the years. Her leadership, guidance, and her vast industry connections were invaluable to the success of the company and to everyone she worked with over the years.
She was a respected consultant and global ambassador to the biofuels industry—playing an integral role in the planning and facilitation of dozens of ethanol events around the world over the past two decades—she traveled from Hungary to China to Australia (and just about everywhere in between) spreading the word about ethanol.