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’m Vice President of Suzlon Wind Energy Corporation. It’s Can you mention any teachers or courses at ASIJ that
the US subsidiary of a company from India, which is the fifth influenced you?
largest worldwide supplier of commercial turbines that generate Like many alumni of my generation, I cite Margaret Noble from
electricity from wind. These are huge turbines which extend a junior year English. She gave us priceless instruction in how to
football field high. We’ve installed or planned over 1,000 turbines, organize thoughts and write persuasively under time pressure.
primarily in the US Midwest and Pacific Northwest. Each turbine I was a budding engineer at ASIJ. But Bill Ricketson cast me as
supplies enough renewable electricity for about 600 families. I a lawyer with the ASIJ Players, and told me to prepare for the
handle technical and commercial issues. I still climb turbines, part by thinking about what a lawyer does and how a lawyer

Mind-blowing Ken Glazier ’67 on his work

on wind power
sometimes several times in one day, by means of a ladder inside
a tower extending 20 stories high. It’s amazing to work on
equipment 250 feet in the air, particularly when the temperature
behaves. A seed planted that germinated at Harvard Law
School? Perhaps.

in the Minnesota winter is minus 30. Maybe those laps I ran for What inspires you?
Coach Lou Mannara 40 years ago are keeping me going. A task well done by a talented person or group. The task can
be a business deal, an artistic performance, an invention, or
How did you get started in this business? anything else worth doing.
A friend asked me to help him negotiate his employment
agreement with Suzlon. That was successful, so he suggested How green are you at home?
that I consider joining Suzlon myself. I’m conscious of my use of resources. I recycle, take public
transportation, and try to live a lifestyle that others can sustain
What influenced you to choose this field? into future generations.
I’ve spent much of my career in energy businesses, starting with
oil and gas. It’s becoming increasingly clear that the world can’t One piece of advice for current students:
continue burning more and more hydrocarbons to generate more Be broad and bold. You have no idea what you’ll be doing in 40
and more energy. But the world can’t tell people in developing years. Seek out a variety of educational and life experiences to
countries—presently Brazil, Russia, India and China known as enable flexibility as things change.
BRIC—that they can’t aspire to the energy-rich lifestyle that is
common in the US. I think people like me with a background
in energy have an obligation to consider how the world will
provide energy in developing areas while restructuring energy
use in developed areas.

What is the biggest challenge for you in working in this

Inconsistent governmental policies. Most politicians are “for”
the environment but regulate, tax, and spend incoherently. The
result is starts and stops in many inconsistent directions.

Where do you see this business/area heading in the next 5 –

10 years?
Expansion. The world needs energy, much of it from renewable
and alternative sources. Wind, solar, and other sources to be
invented by some smart student now at ASIJ need to be part of
the mixture. Japan is a good candidate for renewable energy,
having expanding energy needs, limited hydrocarbons, and
strong emotions about nuclear power.

How has the field changed since you began working?

Expansion. Renewable energy has become mainstream. Ken Glazier at his office in Minnesota

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