David Morin, 47th Civil Engineer Squadron acting asset optimization chief, answers questions about energy conservation from a group of children at the Laughlin Air Force Base Youth Center as part of Energy Action Month Oct. 15, 2012. The Air Force’s Energy Action Month is designed to teach the need to reduce energy demands, increasing energy supply through conservation and change cultural views on energy use. (U.S. Air Force photo/2nd Lt. Daniel Brand)
by Senior Airman Nathan Maysonet
47th Flying Training Wing Public Affairs
10/24/2013 - LAUGHLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Texas -- The Air Force's Energy Action Month is drawing to a close, but Laughlin continues to lead the way in energy efficiency and water conservation with the recent announcement that a Laughlin civilian won the 2013 Department of Energy Individual Federal Energy and Water Management Award.
David Morin, 47th Civil Engineer Squadron base energy manager, was selected for the award from a competitive pool of applicants from across the federal government because of his contributions to the efficient use of energy and water resources here at Laughlin. Morin will receive the award on Nov. 6 in a ceremony in Washington D.C.
"It has been a constantly building process to reach our goals," said Morin. "It's nice to be recognized for what has been accomplished and for Laughlin to receive so much publicity at so high a level. At the ceremony, the top leaders of our nation will see what Laughlin has done and know that even at the far edges of our nation we can have a national impact."
For almost five years, Morin has worked at Laughlin to make the preservation of natural resources a base priority, and he has spearheaded several initiatives making it possible for Laughlin to flourish while saving money and resources.
Some of these projects include: Laughlin's solar panel re-roofing projects, lighting and plumbing fixture upgrades, base-wide leak detection and repair, base power grid improvements, water irrigation reduction plans, and training and educating Team XL.
According to the DOE report, Morin's multiple initiatives, dynamic leadership and $1.3 million in key projects has saved $1.8 million on utility bills, reduced energy usage by 27 percent and water usage by 24 percent here in fiscal 2012.
"I may plan projects both big and small to conserve resources, but it's the constant teamwork and drive of everyone doing the right things in their areas to conserve resources that make everything possible," said Morin. "It's our airmen doing what is right by their own initiative that made these reductions possible."
Morin believes that what has made him so effective here is his no-nonsense approach to conservation.
"I try to make everything fun and sensible," said Morin. "I look at policy from the user side of things, and at what is reasonable and prudent and not necessarily easy for the current situation."
It's this sort of approach that has earned Morin the award and the respect of Laughlin's leadership.
"David Morin has made it possible for Laughlin to make huge strides in our base's resource management," said Col. Michael Wehmeyer, 47th Mission Support Group commander. "He has turned a base in the desert into an energy and water reduction award winner time and time again even as budgets continued to shrink. He has made Laughlin a leader in Air Education and Training Command, the Air Force and now the government."
For Morin, this is only the beginning as more projects are planned and pursued, and he is as determined as ever to better Laughlin.
"I'm not perfect, but I'm driven," said Morin. "I grew up with limited means and it taught me to conserve, being an Army Ranger taught me to push myself, and my faith taught me to work unto the Lord. I have always tried to bring these things with me to my job, but it hasn't always been easy, and it took time to see the effects of what I've worked to achieve, but it's worth it for what has been done here."