Secrets to success from Smalltown USA

Utah State professor Michael Glauser cycled 4,000 miles this summer, visiting 100 entrepreneurs across the country. Here's a snapshot of how they grew their businesses.

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Benny and Julie Benson, owners of Energyneering Solutions
  • Business: Energyneering Solutions
  • Location: Sisters, Ore.

California-based engineers Benny and Julie Benson discovered Sisters, Ore., in 2006 -- and moved there ten days later.

They began a renewable energy firm called Energyneering Solutions out of a spare bedroom in their new home.

The Benson's rented space out of Sisters Eagle Air Airport so Benny could fly his private plane to see clients. Soon after, they moved Energyneering Solutions to the airport as well.

The company grew organically, from designing small-scale power plants around the country to constructing them, to then owning and maintaining the plants (which they can mostly do remotely from Sisters). They now employ 60 full-time workers.

The Bensons even bought the airport in 2011 (but it's still used by other non-commercial planes).

"We grew pretty significantly over the years because of our access to a lot of different sites and the fact that we could just move around," said Benny.

- Last updated August 29 2014 08:58 AM ET
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