Discovering the New Wave of Latino Energy
Story By: Arcilia Acosta
Arcilia Acosta is the President and CEO of Carcon Industries and Construction and STL Engineers. She serves on the Board of Energy Future Holdings Corporation and on the Board of Directors of Legacy Texas Financial Group, Inc. to name a few.
Harnessing the potential of a $280 billion energy industry is no easy task. Predicting the tenuous relationship between market shake-ups and corrections is nothing short of palmist’s work.
Yet as the country sits at the crossroads of Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) policy rollbacks, hope for all future domestic energy production is coming by way of alternative sources far removed from the bastions of coal country. Natural gas and solar and wind energy all stand at the precipice of the next century of viable and sustainable options.
But any sea change in the market is founded and capitalized in a workforce that is increasingly Hispanic. Headway for the lack of representation in the industry is already being made by organizations like The Association of Latino Energy and Environmental Professionals (LEEP) and Hispanics in Energy (HIE). For a nation already producing more oil domestically than it imports, something not achieved in roughly 20 years, companies are looking to diversify with the workforce of the future. According to the Department of Energy (DOE), 3.64 million Americans work in traditional energy industries, including production, transmission, distribution, and storage.
Just two years ago, Hispanics comprised 18 percent of all employees in oil and gas extraction. Those numbers were poised to increase as the expansion of drilling and fracking locations ballooned and companies expanded or were formed to seize the moment. But Latinos still lag behind when it comes to managerial or executive level positions in energy companies. For that reason, Latino Leaders Magazine honors those leading the way and showing that the corporate ladder is not an exclusive club, but a reward for years of education, tireless work and singular focus on realistic goals.
For a second time, Latino Leaders Magazine spotlights those redefining success in a field very much in flux.