YPE Canton Brings Ohio Shale Community Together
Young Professionals in Energy (YPE) is a non-profit energy industry networking organization with over 20,000 members worldwide. The group has more than 20 chapters and is the first and only inter-disciplinary networking and volunteer organization for young people in the global energy industry.
Utica Shale development here in Ohio is often compared to our neighbor in the east — Pennsylvania’s Marcellus Shale. Notably, YPE Pittsburgh was founded in the beginning of 2010 to create an environment for professionals in the industry to learn from one another and facilitate relationships to move the industry forward.
As Ohio’s development began to ramp up, we saw there was an opportunity for Ohioans to do the same. One of the newest chapters, YPE Canton, was founded from our desire to integrate and engage both the community and the growing number of energy professionals in the area.
Although I work primarily within the title department at Purple Land Management North, LLC, I am also responsible for maintaining a positive and professional work environment that will facilitate the growth and development of the next generation of Utica land professionals.
Of course, land professionals are not the only folks who are encouraged to join YPE. From engineers and geoscientists to attorneys and investment bankers, anyone who has a direct professional focus on the global energy sector can benefit from YPE.
While networking social events will be a big part of YPE Canton, our group will have a big emphasis on community service and outreach. The group will promote awareness of volunteer opportunities for its members looking to get involved in community projects. Thus far, companies involved in Utica development have been great neighbors to communities in the operating area and YPEC looks to further that effort.
So why, exactly, is YPE locating in Canton? The biggest reason is that many companies involved in the oil and gas industry have made Canton their home in recent years. Like Carroll County and the Mahoning Valley, Canton and all of Stark County have embraced the coming opportunities from shale development — so much that Canton Mayor William Healy has dubbed the city “The Utica Capital.”
Companies like Timken and Chesapeake Energy have accepted the invitation and are playing a pivotal role in the city’s economic revival. Timken broke ground on its $225 million dollar expansion at the Faircrest steel mill not far down the road in Perry Township. Chesapeake chose nearby Louisville for its 291-acre, multi-building Utica headquarters. Canton has also seen a multitude of other energy or service companies like Rettew Associates and Caiman Energy move into the region, invest in the community, and create new local jobs.
This has also helped spur other jobs connected to the energy industry. Law firms have opened offices in Canton to help businesses and landowners adjust to the growing industry. The Canton Regional Chamber of Commerce has held multiple business seminars focusing on shale development, and several groups in the county even created their own organization — the Stark County Oil & Gas Partnership.
Due to these types of investments (and many more), Stark County is bound to see a significant increase in sales tax revenue and drops in unemployment, not unlike other parts of Ohio benefiting from responsible shale development. In 2012, 38,000 jobs were created in Ohio due to shale development, and Canton workers have certainly been among the beneficiaries.
In that sense, YPE’s Canton chapter is a reflection not only of what shale development has meant to this region, but indeed what it will continue to mean for the community for decades to come.
YPE Canton hopes to bring together an industry that will eventually span all of Ohio and benefit all Ohioans. Our Canton group is dedicated to community outreach in an effort to educate and engage both members and non-members through social, educational and civic service oriented events. The YPE Canton chapter welcomes anyone that is passionate about the energy industry and the future of this community.
To become a member, please go to ypenergy.org and click on the “Become a Member” tab, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.