REI is evidence that one man can make a difference.
Paul Fournier, REI’s Chairman, recognized that the region had many underutilized strengths that could be leveraged to rebuild an economy struggling to grow jobs and provide for a hopeful future. The nation and southeastern New England had been hit hard by the economy.
Despite an economic downturn that crippled the nation and southeastern New England in particular, Paul recognized that energy could be used as a tool to rebuild the region’s economy and increase business competitiveness. In addition, establishing an industry around energy issues would grow jobs and strengthen the economy. A core group of like-minded individuals began meeting for lunch in 2008 before formalizing an organization with a set of bylaws and board of directors in 2010.
Today the organization delivers services through its web site, through formal training and through informal member networking events that features speakers addressing industry technologies, public policy and success stories.
The value proposition for REI is its fellowship focus on members working together to help one another achieve their personal best.