It is truly rare when you find a company that is more interested in helping others than helping itself. It takes a leader who believes in paying it forward, and knowing that having a corporate reputation as a company that gives back to the community will pay off in so much more than money.
That’s been the case at Light Tower Rentals (LTR) pretty much from day one, when founders John Avary and Ted Hogan started the company.
Light Tower Rentals created its philosophy of doing business before it created its products. Hogan and Avary founded LTR in 1994 as a company that rented self-contained lighting units for Permian Basin oilfields. Over the past 22 years LTR has expanded their product line and their company, which is now one of the largest independent power generation rental companies in America. LTR provides both diesel and natural gas generators to drilling, completion, workover and production sites, and still has over 1,000 light towers all around oil-producing regions.
“This company was built on teamwork and a family structure,” said Hogan. “Our employees are loyal because of the way we treat them, and the way we treat the communities we operate in. Not only are we out there building our business, but we are giving back to our communities with time, effort, and money. Whatever we can do together outside of the company helps build a better team inside the company.”
Hogan said that the employees, from the boardroom to the war room, are carrying on the culture of community service and engagement that was started back in 1994. And it just keeps getting stronger as the company continues to grow.
The success of LTR has enabled its executive team, including President and COO Pat Bond, to make sure that the ”teamwork” spirit lives in every LTR employee in every location, each and every day.
“It’s our goal to be good community neighbors,” said Bond. “Not just to support the communities we work in, but to support causes that are important to our clients as well.”
Bond believes that when employees work as a group outside of the office, everyone becomes part of the team. LTR conducts regular team building exercises internally, but Bond feels that it’s a combination of both internal and external engagement that is responsible for the successes LTR has enjoyed.
LTR is involved in many charitable organizations as well, including a couple of groups which are unique to the energy industry. Spindletop Charities (www.spindletopcharities.org) has been one of the primary charities for the energy industry since 1966. Since that time, over $20 million has been raised to aid such programs as child abuse prevention, pediatric medical research, drug and alcohol abuse prevention and rehabilitation, education and scholarships, residential and educational centers, after-school programs and family health.
Another area that attracted LTR’s attention was finding a cure for Cystic Fibrosis (CF). And to Pat Bond, it was very personal.
“My nephew Nicky passed away from the disease,” Bond said. “He struggled his whole life. It was a never-ending, nonstop battle that controlled what he could and couldn’t do, what he ate, and how he lived his short life.”
For the past seven years, LTR has participated in an event called Energy Giving Back that raises money for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation in Houston. This year, Bond met a man named Austin Faught, and his story resonated.
Faught is a former All-American pitcher for both the University of Houston and the University of Louisiana-Lafayette, who was eventually drafted in 2003 by the MLB Texas Rangers. Now a managing member of Southpaw Realty, Faught and his wife Kyra have a two-year old son Jack, who suffers from CF.
“The team at LTR and Pat Bond in particular have been amazing,” said Faught. “We were all at a function sponsored by the CF Foundation where they had a silent auction. Unbeknownst to us, Pat bid on a humongous teddy bear, which he won. He immediately gave the bear to Jack, and now every single morning Jack goes up and hugs the bear. It’s just so amazing to see him smile with everything he’s going through.”
Jack’s battle is an ongoing one, and more than likely, one that will last a lifetime. But his lifetime will be longer thanks to ongoing research and developments in treatment for the disease.
“This is the first year in history where more adults with CF are alive than kids,” Faught said. “Previously, kids rarely made it to adulthood. In 1955, life expectancy was around six years. By 1982 it was 16. Now, it’s into adulthood. So when a company like LTR and their team rallies around a cause like CF, it’s very important to our family.”
In July, LTR helped to host the annual Fiesta for Cystic Fibrosis where they raised over $55,000 for the CF Foundation.
But that isn’t all that the LTR team members have been involved in. They helped raise over $13,000 for organizations dedicated to preserving habitat and conservation projects in western North Dakota as part of the Oil Can Fishing Derby on Lake Sakakawea. And LTR and team members have donated time and money for organizations in Norman, OK; Artesia, NM; Odessa, TX, to provide gifts and food to those in need over the holidays. LTR also recently provided flood and hurricane relief by delivering equipment to those stricken areas.
It all goes back to what founder Ted Hogan believes is the credo of Light Tower Rentals. “We are all responsible for the world around us. We have to make a difference in our communities. I’m just very proud that we have such dedicated and giving employees within the LTR family. It’s the right thing to do, and we’re going to keep doing it,” Hogan said.