Martin Ludwig ‘54 Ph.D., the CEO, along with business partner and COO, Louis Bani, have been perfecting and improving their Energy Management Artificial Intelligence (AI) Software, EYE Chart® System United States Patent and Trademark Office # 5,732,680 with various organizations for nearly 10 years. HelloEnergy, LLC., is an NJ company offering energy management consulting solutions for commercial properties using our EYE Chart® System an energy audits and efficiency model, LED Lighting, Solar, and, Cogeneration System while continuing to improve its AI energy efficiency model, the Eye Chart® System (Engineering Your Energy) for commercial businesses while being environmentally friendly.
HelloEnergy’s LED Solutions have proven to save 40%-80% on lighting costs. HelloEngergy worked with Admiral Farragut Academy’s lighting upgrade project which included replacing over 1,142 lighting fixtures throughout the campus and generating an annual savings of over $112,000 per year. Before the LED upgrade, Farragut used 47.7% of its overall energy on lighting. After the upgrades, Farragut had a 65% reduction in lighting kWh use. With electric rates rising during the past 5 years, going from $0.110 per kWh to $0.158 (a 43.6% increase), having installed a new LED system was a huge benefit and significant cost savings to the Academy.
With the increases in energy costs and the impending mandate for NJ businesses over 25,000 sq. ft. to improve energy efficiencies, HelloEnergy services are in high demand. The company is a trade ally of PSEG, Jersey Central Power and Light, and The NJ Clean Energy Program. A Utility Bill Audit of past usage identifies significant opportunities for each client’s unique load profile using the EYE Chart System.
Nationally, energy costs have continued to rise steadily since January 2020. With some moderation off their highs, energy costs are forecasted to rise continuously as Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) and Environmental, Health, and Safety (EHS); continue to influence energy markets. These pressures along with inflationary expenditures increase operational costs and decrease bottom lines across industry sectors.
According to U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), non-seasonally adjusted U.S. City averages reflect an upward trajectory. Since April 2020 Natural Gas prices rose 35.5% / therm and Electricity up 10.5% / kWh.
Ludwig exclaims; “Our propriety Eye Chart® System, through the utilization of AI, will reduce and continue to deliver lower kilowatt usage (kWh) and gas therms, while lowering costs. The more electricity and gas you use, the higher the bill. We can reduce both.”
The Company’s Energy Procurement Program strategically determines the lowest pricing and best sources for commercial electric and natural gas supply needs. These consulting services identify energy buying strategies for any business organization and can deliver 100% green energy where required.
In a strategic partnership with Tecogen, a Cogeneration Equipment Manufacturer, their solutions create electricity from a variety of fuel sources and provide heat as a byproduct for applications such as hot water, air conditioning, or building heat. The technology provides critical protection against future blackouts or brownouts, and increases energy efficiency, depending upon needs, from 30% for a central utility power plant to around 80% for a Cogeneration System. It’s environmentally friendly, efficient, and virtually eliminates NOx, CO, And Hydrocarbons.
According to Ludwig, “As a first step in managing your energy, LEDs reduce energy consumption and immediately help offset electricity rate increases. Commercial LED lighting installations reduce HVAC requirements, waste less energy, and are highly cost-effective.” If you have LEDs installed Solar and Cogeneration are an excellent second step.
Ludwig’s time at Admiral Farragut Academy was critically important in his preparation for collegiate studies in engineering at Fairleigh Dickinson University and ultimately it guided him into a lifetime of studying the energy issues we face both then and today. Admiral Farragut was instrumental in training Ludwig in due diligence and the proper pursuit of any problem he faced while in attendance at the Academy. It forged a solid foundation that he recalls fondly, and thanks the Academy for helping shape him as a man and a successful contributor in the energy field. After my time at the Academy, he majored in engineering, and after college, he enlisted in the Navy and served in the Chaplain’s Corp during the Koran War and after the war on the Carrier USS Essex. The Navy further shaped my life helping me to always be professional and thorough in my deeds.
Today’s energy issues have quickly accelerated as fossil fuel sources have become demonized in short order. Ludwig shares that the world’s commitment to green energy is fragmented but it is imperative to move forward whether it’s ready for prime time, or not. During such volatile times, energy has become weaponized, and Ludwig’s company considers itself at the forefront of its development in providing efficient and common-sense energy solutions. HelloEnergy has become a leader in the field, and we are proud to bring our knowledge to the business community.
Steve Lieber came from Missouri and graduated with the class of 1966 from the southern campus. After graduating from Farragut, Lieber attended college and spent time serving in the Army. At 22 he returned to his father’s full-service gas station. After his father’s sudden passing, Lieber began his legacy from gas stations to helicopters. Lieber created the largest lessor of helicopters to the domestic electronic news gathering (ENG) industry in the United State Helicopters Inc which also provides to other customer segments such as utilities and to the U.S. Army.
Corky Newcombe ‘66S, his Farragut classmate states; “for any of you who might think Steve was fed from a sliver spoon, think again. He paid his dues just like many of us.”
After serving in the Army, Leiber returned to his hometown to assist his father with his full-service gas station and unfortunately had to work with the sudden death of his Father. Lieber took over the business and decided to buy another gas station, and another, and ended up with five stations. In the late 70’s several stations were converting to self-serve and Lieber was ahead of the trend. His savvy business sense along with his Farragut and Army training told him full-serve gas stations were not the vision of the future. Noting the change, he demolished his stations and became a pioneer in the self-service industry. His actions proved to be very successful. So successful, that within 10 years, Texaco took notice and bought out his entire operation.
Perhaps by flying in helicopters to search for gas station locations, Lieber’s helicopter interest peaked. After the sale to Texaco, Lieber bought his first helicopter. It was the beginning of what is now the largest ENG service in the country. It began in 1981 when he founded Helicopters Inc. based out of St. Louis, MO.
When Lieber started Helicopters Inc., he, along with engineers, took a Bell helicopter and retrofitted it to be equipped to handle broadcasting for news sources. He started with one chopper and within weeks he had news sources from all surrounding areas asking for service. From traffic to breaking news Lieber’s outfit could handle all your media needs. His company provided all aspects to make reporting safe, reliable, and successful. Helicopter Inc. coordinated all aspects from flying condition weather reports to news station call letters painted on the choppers- Helicopters Inc. did and still does it all.
Steve started with a small staff, including his younger brother Jeff Lieber. They only used Bell helicopters making service & style consistent. This simple, reliable approach proved to be successful- today they offer over 60 ENG helicopters engineered to serve the media industry, 150 ENG pilots, as well as 75 photojournalists, and ariel photographers, and serve every major market in the US.
Helicopters Inc. also provides Powerline and Pipeline control services for various utility entities across the country and contracts with support solutions for the US Government. The company also offers leasing of the choppers, as well as helicopter maintenance, and catered charters.
With over 1,000,000 flight hours as a company, Lieber & Helicopter Inc. lives up to its tagline; Above it All. The mission statement echoes the foundation of Admiral Farragut Academy. Lieber explained, “Above it All means putting you, the customer, above everything else. It means embracing the perspective that only comes from seeing the world from the sky. And it means that we, as a company, will always provide the most memorable experience possible, in the best aircraft, with an unwavering commitment to safety every time we lift off. Living this Above it All mentality is our mission, and we’re glad you’re a part of it.”
In 2017 Lieber transitioned the company to employee ownership. He was quoted as saying “Many of the employees and members of our management team have over 25 years of tenure with the company. It was important to me to create a succession plan that would allow me to step away from the day-to-day operations while rewarding the folks who helped me build the business.”
Lieber’s company has supported government agencies, and local communities reporting on traffic to national disasters to coverage of the Olympics and other significant events such as 9/11.
Lieber is an example of a leader who serves others for a cause greater than oneself, a true Farragut leader. A kind, hard-working man, Lieber credits Farragut for his success and gives of his time and treasure back to his alma mater. He is responsible for refurbing the Garden Theater, and aviation department and supporting immediate needs to enhance the Farragut mission and experience.
Repost Article from The STREAM published on November 21, 2022
Tom Sileo ” ‘I Am More Scared of Being Nothing Than I Am of Being Hurt’: A Be Bold Excerpt”
Stream contributing senior editor Tom Sileo’s new book tells the true story of how U.S. Marine Corps Major Megan McClung broke barriers for women at war.
Megan McClung wanted to be a U.S. Navy fighter pilot. Like millions of American kids who lived through the ’80s, she saw the original Top Gun and wanted to serve her country by flying fighter jets through enemy combat zones.
To reach her ultimate goal, Megan believed the U.S. Naval Academy was her best path. She also knew that becoming an officer in the U.S. military would be extremely difficult, and not just because her first Naval Academy application out of high school was denied. It would be tougher because she was a woman.
The first time future Maj. Megan McClung made history was in 1990, when she became the first female cadet ever admitted to the Admiral Farragut Academy Preparatory School. While Megan’s journey would eventually lead her to the U.S. Marine Corps instead of flying fighter jets in the Navy, I hope the below excerpt from my new book Be Bold demonstrates just how hard Megan McClung and other young women had to work to join the ranks of the Armed Forces. Their tireless efforts and huge sacrifices paved the way for current and future generations of military women.
Chapter 3: A Few Good Women
There is no chance, no destiny, no fate that can circumvent or hinder or control the firm resolve of a determined soul.
—Ella Wheeler Wilcox
In the summer of 1990, just as President George H. W. Bush declared that Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait “will not stand,” Megan McClung became the first female cadet ever accepted to Admiral Farragut Academy. While the Naval Academy Foundation helped her secure a spot, there was no doubt Megan earned her historic admission largely on the strength of her gymnastics prowess.
Before she ever stepped foot on the prep school’s campus in Pine Beach, New Jersey, she was being actively recruited by the Naval Academy’s head gymnastics coach. All Megan had to do was get through one year at Admiral Farragut and she would not only accomplish her dream of becoming a Navy midshipman, but an athlete.
It also took tremendous guts for Megan to even apply to Admiral Farragut given the institution’s prior track record of excluding young women. On September 7, 1990, her landmark accomplishment was noticed by New Jersey’s largest newspaper, the Star-Ledger, which ran a story about Admiral Farragut’s momentous change.
“First it was, ‘Oh my God, what’s happening to my school?’” said Commander Michael A. Pitch, then the academy’s director of public relations. “Then, ‘Well, it’s the ’90s.’”
Megan McClung and two fellow female students—a sixth grader and an eighth grader who were admitted after her historic acceptance—were extensively profiled by the newspaper in a piece headlined “The First Female Cadets.”
“McClung is a post-graduate student preparing to attend the Naval Academy in Annapolis next year,” Deborah Coombe wrote. “When McClung was awarded a U.S. Naval Foundation scholarship, she was told she required additional academic work before going to the academy. McClung hopes to be a Navy pilot.
“She said being the only girl in weightlifting classes helped prepare her for being the only female in her class at Admiral Farragut,” the article, which noted Megan helped “change Admiral Farragut’s all-male history,” noted. “McClung said she took weightlifting classes to help her with gymnastics, which she intends to continue while she is boarding at Farragut.”
Megan was quoted several times in the article.
“They [the physical requirements] are not a real struggle for me,” she told the newspaper.
Even so, Megan had to adjust to a lifestyle even her Marine Corps father couldn’t fully prepare her for.
“Cadet Commander Bradley D. Moses said physical training, known as PT on campus, begins soon after rising at 5:30 a.m.,” the article explained. “Cadets report to the field for a 30-to-45-minute workout.”
Megan, who was only in her second day of classes when she spoke to The Star-Ledger, was undeterred.
“The hard part is over . . . getting into the military way of life,” she said.
As the first and oldest female cadet, Megan felt an extraordinary sense of responsibility to set an example for not only her two much younger classmates, but those who would follow in their footsteps.
Upon her arrival, Megan McClung immediately told every commander who would listen that she wanted to be treated exactly like her male counterparts. She quickly learned no matter how much she protested, that wasn’t always going to be the case.
“The upper floor of the building housing the infirmary is being renovated to accommodate 30 girls,” the newspaper noted.
While Megan didn’t know it at the time, her father had not only asked the school to build separate female living quarters, but to have a special lock put on the door to keep boys out. Having served in the Marine Corps at around the same age, Mike knew what some guys could be like and didn’t want anyone sneaking into his daughter’s room at night.
As male students were screamed at for folding their underwear the wrong way, instructors looked at Megan with incredulity as she folded her panties and hung up her bra. While admitting a woman was a much-needed first step, it was immediately obvious Admiral Farragut hadn’t quite thought things through. Most of the time, Megan would just laugh when it was clear how unprepared some of the commanders were willing or able to join the public relations director in saying “Well, it’s the ’90s.”
Behind her sense of humor was the enormous weight she carried on her shoulders for that entire year. Megan believed if she asked for one special privilege, it would give the academy the only excuse it needed to ostracize or even expel female cadets. She also knew if she failed, not only would her dream of becoming a Navy pilot evaporate, but so might the chances of future young women who wanted to follow the trail she was trying to blaze. The patriotic fervor sweeping the nation in the run-up to the first Gulf War only strengthened Megan’s resolve to succeed.
The copper red-haired cadet’s underlying seriousness was immediately noticed by her new 1st Company commander, Sean Rankine.
“She means business,” Sean remarked to a classmate upon witnessing the frenetic pace of Megan’s first workout.
In addition to fulfilling Admiral Farragut’s rigorous physical requirements, five days a week Megan boarded a bus bound for Lakehurst, which is about twenty minutes from Pine Beach. There she practiced gymnastics, which was getting harder and harder as her body kept evolving. While continuing growth is obviously normal for a teenager, it can be distressing for gymnasts trying to follow specific and complicated routines. While Megan kept competing at a high level, she was getting frustrated with not always being able to twist and turn like she could in her younger years.
Adapting to East Coast life wasn’t easy for someone born in Hawaii and raised in California, either. There was a lot more fried food on the menu, which gave Megan the only excuse she needed to eat less and less. While she did make a “deal” with the kitchen staff to make her special plates full of fruit and vegetables instead of meat and potatoes, Megan was starting to develop a pattern of not eating enough to support her demanding exercise and training routine.
In Megan’s mind, eating less would counteract a changing physique and help her keep excelling in gymnastics. In reality, she was in the early stages of developing an eating disorder.
The pressure was real and constant, even if others couldn’t always see it. As one classmate put it, Megan was received with a “mixed bag” in that most of the cadets and faculty welcomed her with open arms, while some were true traditionalists who simply didn’t want girls at Admiral Farragut or anywhere near the U.S. Armed Forces.
Even as more than 40,000 female service members were busy deploying for Operation Desert Storm, the role of women in the military was still very much a hot-button issue in the early 1990s. A July 25–26, 1991, Gallup poll—taken just a few months after the U.S.-led Gulf War victory—found 47 percent of Americans didn’t think women should be required to register for the draft. Just 26 percent thought women should automatically get combat assignments on the same terms as men, with 53 percent responding “only if they want to” and 18 percent “never.” A similar November 10–11, 1992, Gallup poll found 42 percent still opposed allowing military women into combat jobs.
Megan knew some people didn’t want her at Admiral Farragut or the Naval Academy, but did her best to ignore it, at least in public view. In Megan’s mind, even one episode of whining or complaining would amount to victory for those trying to keep her down. Megan and her company commander even developed special code words to use if some of the guys were giving her a hard time — not to get anyone in trouble, but just to confide in Rankine something was bothering her. Other than the few good men who had her complete trust, be it the company commander or her dad, Megan didn’t want anyone else knowing someone or something was getting her down.
When male students or instructors picked on Megan, especially in her first few months at Admiral Farragut, she occasionally became so overwhelmed with stress she pulled out strands of her beautiful copper-red hair. During that challenging year in New Jersey, Megan often found the best way to deal with the stress — and prevent early hair loss — was to sleep with socks on her hands.
Other than those socks, the only other solution Megan saw was giving 100 percent at all times. That tendency could sometimes rankle others around her, including a female cadet who was admitted to the academy later in the year. Megan wasn’t trying to show anyone else up with her fierce work ethic, but in an intense and competitive setting built to closely resemble the military, jealousy and wariness would sometimes come between the cadets.
Close bonds also developed, including between Megan and her company commander. During Christmas break, she called Rankine for almost three hours to do a cross country “play-by-play” analysis of the 1991 Rose Bowl Parade. When they finally hung up, Sean realized Megan probably would have stayed on the phone for another three hours had he been able. While having “zest for life” can be a cliché, it was completely accurate in Megan’s case.
Like millions of fellow Americans, Megan celebrated with her friends as the American-led coalition quickly marched to victory over Saddam Hussein’s troops in what no one could have predicted would be the first U.S. military conflict with Iraq. Speaking about the historic events with her dad, who had long agonized over his and the country’s experience in Vietnam, helped Megan grasp what the Gulf War victory meant, not only to the troops who were fighting but those who fought in previous conflicts. She yearned to join that revered fraternity of American warriors.
On April 15, 1991, the biggest moment thus far in Megan’s journey finally arrived in the form of a thick packet with an Annapolis, Maryland, return address. As she tore open the envelope, she knew the fate of her future dreams rested on what was written on the papers inside.
Addressed to “Miss Megan McClung,” the cover letter was typed on official U.S. Navy letterhead from the Chief of Naval Operations:
Congratulations on your receipt of an offer of appointment to the United States Naval Academy, Class of 1995. Should you accept this offer, you will be taking an important first step toward becoming a commissioned officer in the United States Navy or Marine Corps.
Your four years at the Academy will challenge you both academically and physically. You will experience a special camaraderie with your fellow midshipmen and a proud sense of accomplishment. You will receive an education which will prepare you for a career as a leader in the world’s most capable and technologically advanced Navy. You will be given every chance to realize your full potential as you gain the knowledge and acquire the skills needed to be a leader on our Navy/Marine Corps team.
You have already demonstrated an outstanding ability to excel. The Naval Academy will offer you the opportunity to expand that ability even more.
I extend to you my sincere congratulations and best wishes for continued success.
Frank B. Kelso, II
Admiral, U.S. Navy
Megan McClung was one of five Admiral Farragut Academy cadets to gain acceptance to the United States Naval Academy in 1991. She was the first to receive official word.
While Megan promised herself she wouldn’t celebrate in public, she couldn’t help herself upon reading the letter. With almost no control over her mind and body, she leapt as high in the air as any young gymnast was capable and let out a celebratory shout.
A cadet named Spencer, who would soon become one of the “Farragut Five” accepted to Annapolis, was initially jealous. That was until he realized that Megan, as the first woman to not only get into Admiral Farragut but jump from that academy to the legendary one in Annapolis, earned every right to rejoice.
“She’s proud,” Spencer told a classmate. “And she darn well should be.”
Inside the 1991 Admiral Farragut yearbook is a picture of the first woman ever to attend the prestigious academy, which is now located on a single campus in Saint Petersburg, Florida.
“If it wasn’t for her example, the women at Farragut never would have been able to do what they did,” Megan’s company commander Sean Rankine later said. “That program wouldn’t have survived.”
Next to Megan’s yearbook picture are her nicknames at the school: “FC, Giggle B and Sinead,” most likely a reference to pop singer Sinead O’Connor. The description also notes her participation in gymnastics, love of her home state of California, apple juice and “codes”—undoubtedly referencing the secret system she maintained with her company commander. It also lists her ambition as “test pilot, U.S. Navy,” since women were still two years away from being allowed to fly combat aircraft in combat zones.
The description’s last line is the cadet’s personal quote.
“I am more scared of being nothing than I am of being hurt,” Megan McClung wrote.
Admiral Farragut Academy is pleased to name a new Chair of its Board of Directors. Ashley Patterson Beaty will succeed Christian Wagner who is leaving the board after 10 years of dedicated service, 7 of which as Chair.
Patterson Beaty takes the helm as not only Farragut’s first female Chair but also its youngest. The historic college prep academy is confident in Beaty’s fresh ideas and strategic vision for the future of Admiral Farragut Academy. Ashley’s appointment comes as AFA embarks on a new strategic plan.
Outbound Chair Christian Wagner said, “Ashley is a proven achiever and leader, she is passionate about our school and its mission. Ashley is exceptionally well prepared to lead Admiral Farragut Academy into the next chapter of its storied history.”
Ashley has 15+ years of experience spanning government relations, policy, and communications. Prior to Ardeidae Group, she was Vice President of Government Relations and Public Policy at Ameresco (NYSE: AMRC) and served on its Disclosure Committee. Earlier in her career, she was a press secretary in the U.S. House of Representatives and worked as a television news producer covering the White House and Congress for the Washington Bureau of Belo Corp. Ashley is also a recognized leader in national clean energy trade associations.
“As a Farragut alumna, I am honored to be appointed as Chair of the Board of Directors and to continue a legacy of success led by fellow graduates Christian Wagner ‘82 and George Michel ‘49. For more than two decades, I have felt a deep and abiding passion for Admiral Farragut Academy. It is a privilege to serve the Farragut community and to help steward our unique mission to educate and prepare young leaders for tomorrow,” said Patterson Beaty.
Ashley also served as the Vice-Chair of the Board of Directors and is on the Board of Trustees of the Farragut Foundation. In 2020, she co-led the international search for the new President and Head of School.
Patterson Beaty is a native of Treasure Island, Florida, and attended Farragut as a boarding student from 1996 to 2002. Ashley was among the earliest of young women to enroll after the school became coeducational in 1990. During her senior year, she served as Battalion Commander and was presented the MacArthur Cadet of the Year Award by the General Douglas MacArthur Foundation. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Communications and a Master of Science in Broadcast Journalism both from Boston University. She resides in Washington, D.C.
Steeped in history, with alumni in the White House, on the surface of the moon, and in leadership positions around the world, Admiral Farragut Academy focuses on elite academics and outstanding personal leadership development.
Admiral Farragut Academy is a private, coed, international prep school located on the water in tropical St. Petersburg, Florida, close to beaches and a vibrant downtown harbor.
Dear Farragut Family,
I am pleased to be able to share with you details of a new partnership with the St. Petersburg Police Department. You may have noticed the new signs around the entrances to the school indicating that we now house a “Police Resource Center” on campus. As a result, you may see police officers on our campus including marked and unmarked police vehicles in assigned parking spaces. Read more
We’ve had a fantastic beginning to the 2021-2022 academic year in best boarding school. Our beautiful 40-acre campus is bustling with positive energy, students are enthusiastic, teachers are excited, and the AFA staff is fully engaged. But most importantly, over the past month, our students have been outstanding members of our community! They have carried themselves with the flexibility, intelligence, and respect that all young leaders must possess. I am very excited to closely watch their continued development towards excellence over the course of the school year.
We are delighted to announce that Col. Robert Sprague, USMC (Ret.) has joined best boarding school the AFA community as our new Commandant/Dean of Students starting Monday, September 13, 2021. The Commandant/Dean of Students position is a vital leadership role. The person in this position is responsible for the alignment of the mission of Farragut and all student activities including student behavior, well-being, character development, and disciplinary process for students in grades 8 through 12.
Col Sprague joins us with an extensive background in best boarding school leadership and many years of dedicated service in the United States Marine Corps. In recent years, Col Sprague was Commandant at the Marine Leadership Academy in Chicago, and a Senior Marine Instructor at D.D. Eisenhower High School in Illinois. Previously, Col Sprague served in the United States Marine Corps for more than 23 years, including time serving as a Marine Officer Instructor for Navy and Marine Corps Reserve Officer training, and a Judge Advocate. Col Sprague also served as Chief of Operations, Joint Operations Center, U.S. Central Command where he supervised the Joint Operations center for more than 20 countries. Col Sprague has a B.A. in Political Science and American Literature from Manhattanville College, and a J.D. from Villanova University. Col Sprague will be an outstanding addition to our faculty and school community.
We would like to take a moment to thank Mark Buzby, RADM, USN (Ret), David Arms, CAPT, USN (Ret), and Garrett Gummer, CAPT, USN (Ret) for their guidance and advice through the hiring process. Serving as an advisory board, their all-important best boarding school experience and Farragut alumni status has been invaluable throughout.
Thank you to the following educators and staff members who have dedicated their lives to our institution and our students. #WeAreFarragut Read more
The campus has been buzzing with campers who have attended Admiral Farragut Academy’s Little Captains Summer Camp and Basketball Sports Camp, along with other camps that rented our facilities. Also coming up is Farragut’s boarding camp called Summer Signature Series which starts on July 11th. Read more