95 AN ENTERPRISE OF EXCELLENCE CHAPTER FOUR some other NCDC employees. The Cessna was overweight, and as it took off, one engine failed. The plane didn’t have enough power to gain altitude. The pilot crash-landed in a cornfield, mowing down the 8-foot-tall corn like a combine. Luckily, everyone was safe — however, they needed to hop on a tractor to make it out of the field, and then managed to rent a used van from a local car dealer. They drove back to Mandan, arriving the next morning just in time for Dosch’s interview with the NCDC Board for the CEO position. Dosch was a bit rattled, but he won Board approval. Vern Dosch meets with new employees at the NISC Lake Saint Louis office in 2017. Under Dosch’s leadership, NISC has consistently been named one of Computerworld’s Best Places to Work in IT in America, an achievement he credits to the Board of Directors, the cooperative business model, the leadership team and the employees themselves. new ways to track resources during a mass outage, better use of the millions of data points generated by smart meters. Eisenhauer; Wilbanks, NISC’s Vice President of Research, Development and Quality; and Jones, an NISC Regional Business Manager, take notes. “We can’t be successful unless you make us successful,” says Sawnee CEO Michael Goodroe. “We understand both sides of that equation,” Wilbanks responds, letting Goodroe know that NISC’s success depends on its Members as well. Dosch drove 175 miles to the tiny North Dakota town of Golva, in the middle of ranches and prairie near the Montana border, to personally interview Ray Clouse for NISC’s 50th anniversary celebration. He thanked Clouse for his role in creating a strong foundation for NCDC and NISC — and for his mentorship. “Thank you for taking a chance on a guy who was wet behind the ears,” Dosch said. “But he knew where he was going,” Clouse replied.