Wood pellet producer named Entrepreneur of The Year
November 22, 2021 | 10:54 am CST
John Keppler named Entrepreneur of the Year

John Keppler named Entrepreneur of the Year.

BETHESDA, Md. – Enviva Partners LP, a producer of industrial wood pellets, announced that John Keppler was named an Entrepreneur of the Year 2021 National Award winner by Ernst & Young LLP. Keppler is the co-founder, chairman and chief executive officer at Enviva.

Recognized as one of the most prestigious business award programs in the world, winners of the EY National Award are chosen after being evaluated on their entrepreneurial leadership, talent management, financial performance, societal impact, degree of difficulty in navigating and overcoming obstacles to make their companies successful, and originality, among other core contributions and attributes. 

“I am deeply honored to be recognized by EY as a National Entrepreneur of the Year award recipient,” said Keppler. “The core of Enviva’s value proposition is our commitment to fighting climate change and decarbonizing economies around the globe. I am proud of the hard work and dedication my colleagues bring to our company every day, and this award underscores that their efforts are being noticed on a national scale. However, combating climate change remains the biggest global challenge of our time, and there is still a lot of work to be done. I look forward to working alongside many fellow entrepreneurs in this program to collectively make a significant impact in the fight against climate change.” 

Looking to fundamentally change the complex equation of energy and the environment, Keppler co-founded Enviva in 2004 to produce a renewable energy source from low-value woody biomass that could help decarbonize the global energy and power supply. John and his team saw the tremendous value of sustainably sourced woody biomass as a low-carbon, cost-effective, dispatchable energy source for use in power and heat systems. 

Today, Enviva is a $4 billion company that owns and operates more than a dozen plants and terminals across the southeastern United States that sustainably produce approximately 6.2 million metric tons of wood pellets per year. 

“In an unprecedented era for business, all of our national winners showed an exceptional level of resilience, agility and innovation,” said Andrew (AJ) Jordan, EY Americas Entrepreneur of The Year Director.

“These national winners demonstrate the true spirit of entrepreneurial leadership, pivoting as necessary to keep their commitment to society at the forefront, while also continuing to build companies rooted in uplifting their employees and community stakeholders.”

This year marks the 35th anniversary of the EY Entrepreneur of the Year awards program. 

Have something to say? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.

Profile picture for user larryadams
About the author
Larry Adams | Editor

Larry Adams is a Chicago-based writer and editor who writes about how things get done. A former wire service and community newspaper reporter, Larry is an award-winning writer with more than three decades of experience. In addition to writing about woodworking, he has covered science, metrology, metalworking, industrial design, quality control, imaging, Swiss and micromanufacturing . He was previously a Tabbie Award winner for his coverage of nano-based coatings technology for the automotive industry. Larry volunteers for the historic preservation group, the Kalo Foundation/Ianelli Studios, and the science-based group, Chicago Council on Science and Technology (C2ST).