MASSENA - Enbridge St. Lawrence Gas celebrated their 50th birthday in a big way.
During a Greater Massena Chamber of Commerce Business After Hours on Thursday, company officials presented the Massena Memorial Hospital Foundation with a $50,000 check.
We deliver more than energy. We deliver on a promise to help make the community a better place to live, Enbridge St. Lawrence Gas President Richard Campbell said.
He noted that in the north country they donate annually to a number of organizations which in the past have included Hospice and Palliative Care, the Ogdensburg Boys and Girls Club, American Red Cross, rescue squads and fire departments in their service area, Neighborhood Centers in their service area and scholarship funds at SUNY Canton and SUNY Potsdam.
We announced this year that our annual Community Investment Program will continue. This year we wanted to do something extra, Mr. Campbell said.
He said that Massena Memorial Hospital broke ground this week on their new Medical Office Building, which will be located across the street from the hospital on Maple Street, and their check could be put to good use by the MMH Foundation, which raises funds to purchase new equipment, provide staff training and education, and provide capital support.
The check was presented by Kim Baxter, the companys Community Investment Committee chair, to MMH CEO Charles F. Fahd II and MMH Foundation Executive Director Julia R. Rose.
I thank Enbridge St. Lawrence Gas. We really appreciate this incredible donation. It will go a long way in assisting with the project, Mr. Fahd said, estimating the total cost for the Medical Office Building would be $4.4 million.
While Enbridge St. Lawrence Gass commitment to the community has remained steady over the years, Mr. Campbell said the world has changed much since they were first incorporated in 1957 and began serving their first natural gas customer in 1962.
The top 40 music hits in 1962 were by Dion, Chubby Checker and Elvis Presley, but the Beatles hadnt arrived on the scene yet, he said.
You couldnt buy a Ford Mustang in 1962. You had to wait until it went into production in 1964, according to Mr. Campbell.
It was also the year that Tom Cruise and Sheryl Crow were born and Marilyn Monroe died. And locally, one of the biggest infrastructure projects... the St. Lawrence Seaway... had just opened, he said.
In 1962, 2,000 miles of pipeline was constructed in Canada, and paving the way for Enbridge St. Lawrence Gass journey to its 50th anniversary.
There were seemingly unlimited supplies of natural gas. There was a lot of excitement bringing new supplies of natural gas to as many communities as we could, Mr. Campbell said.
Their first customer in 1962 was in Ogdensburg. Today the company, which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Enbridge Gas Distribution, one of Canadas largest gas distribution utilities and one of the fastest growing in North America, serves more than 15,000 customers in the north country, including Beaver Falls, Canton, Croghan, Gouverneur, Heuvelton, Lisbon, Madrid, Massena, New Bremen, Norfolk, Norwood, Ogdensburg, Potsdam, Raymondville and Waddington.
Altogether, Enbridge Gas Distribution and its affiliates serve about 2 million customers in central and eastern Ontario, southwestern Quebec and parts of Northern New York. Delivering energy for over 160 years, Enbridge Gas Distribution added more than 40,000 new customers in 2010.