Like Father, Like Son: Elmer White on His Partnership with NRS

Elmer White was no stranger to wind energy and the means by which it was created. He’s known this world since he was a child. 

“My father built his homestead here, on the land that I live on, in 1907,” Elmer shared. 

On that homestead, Elmer’s father built a 32-volt electricity wind charger for there home.

As Elmer grew up, he saw firsthand how powerful, reliable, and sustainable wind energy was. It was something he kept in mind throughout the rest of his life. 

One day, Elmer said, his niece’s husband mentioned that he worked for British Petroleum – one of the world’s largest oil and gas companies, and they were installing various wind farms throughout Florida. Elmer met with a representative from BP and she asked if he could find and prepare 10,000 acres.

Elmer stated that he didn’t have 10,000 acres of his own land, but he knew enough people that he could put together a group of people that, combined, would have enough land for the MET (wind measurement) towers. 

“We put up four towers, scattered out about 10 miles apart,” he stated. “And we put some on other people’s land – my brother’s, and Senator Pat Woods (a New Mexico state senator). And we got things going. We put together a group of landowners and all of a sudden, we had about 200,000 acres in this association.”

Now that Elmer and his colleagues had put together this massive acreage of land, they wanted to develop it. To do that, they needed a developer. 

Pat Pelstring, founder and CEO of National Renewable Solutions, was a land developer and, as luck would have it, both Pat and Elmer were looking for an opportunity.

“We talked Pat into coming out and he looked the situation over and liked what he saw,” Elmer revealed. “So then he went to work, and we went to work. My wife had Parkinson’s disease and she couldn’t do much, but she kept up doing the computer work and she did a lot of research. We finally came up with a deal with Pat and it all worked out.” 

Elmer, his bride, and their colleagues all did a lot to ensure that their land yielded the biggest and best results. But, Elmer says, Pat did his part as well. 

“He was really eager to do anything to make it work,” Elmer said. “He would search for all the possibilities. He’s a go-getter. He would work and he would find a way to get things done and if he didn’t know how to do it, he’d find somebody that did know.”

Pat represented NRS in all of the best ways. When landowners partner with NRS, they’re given access to NRS’ vast networks of contacts. Pat and any other representative of NRS work hand-in-hand with landowners, combining their industry knowledge with the knowledge of landowners, because NRS knows that nobody knows these lands more than the people who own it.

“He was a great developer for us and he was very kind to the landowners, putting their interests first,” Elmer said. “I’m so proud of that guy; he just went to bat for us when we knew nothing. We were amateurs. But he got the job done and then, of course, he’s gone on to develop other projects for other people. But we just hit a winner.”

“Next spring will be 10 years since our first project, the Baywa [Brahms] Project, was completed,” Elmer said. “And my wife lived long enough to see the towers go up and to see us get our first check or two, before she passed away. She’s been gone nearly nine years. And in fact, one of the substations in the Pattern Project is called the Broadview Energy/KW – which stands for Kay White.” 

That project serves as a monument to Elmer’s bride and it represents just how much Elmer and his people have invested their time, their energy, and their hearts into wind energy. Elmer is an innovator in this industry – it’s something that was ingrained in him since childhood.

For years, Elmer and his family have understood the potential of wind energy. It’s something Elmer’s dad knew a hundred years ago, and it’s something Elmer himself knows now.

“If you go back – 1907 to 2023 – that’s a long time,” Elmer laughed. “And throughout all that time, it’s generated income. It’s like having oil out there – it just keeps on producing. But oil is depletable; so far, the wind hasn’t depleted.” 

And it never will, which lends itself well to the future of wind and solar energy. To find out more about wind and solar energy, and your potential place in it, visit the National Renewable Solutions website and find out how you can have a hand in a renewable future.