Whitlow Smoke School  Nation

How to Choose a Smoke School

Why you should choose Whitlow Smoke School

Just like buying a new car. Find out what the others have to say about the dealer.

What Others are saying about Whitlow Smoke Schools EPA Reference Method 9 Visible Emissions Opacity Training




My momma always used to say, "Every picture tells a story. don't it." Do you see what I am saying? This story is for all of you first timers who are veterans of the smoke school dread from the other providers. Been there, done that, took a picture of it. Look at these smiles. Have you in your wildest imagination ever dreamed of walking away from smoke school feeling so happy? That's what I'm talking about. Need I say more?




If you attended a Whitlow Smoke School and you liked it, then tell everybody. If you did not like us, then don't tell nobody. That is what my Momma Always used to say. Click here to make a comment about our smoke school training. Click here to make comments about our web page. I will post good comments here on the web page. I will listen to the bad comments and try to make changes to suit our customers. While you are thinking about it, and about how good we really are. You can earn a discount or a free t-shirt Refer a Friend to Smoke School

Over the years there have been a select few people that would have made some bad comments about Buck's Smoke School, but we let Amos Moses use them for Alligator Bait. Since then, we haven't heard a negative word. Like my momma always use to say, If you like us tell every body, and if you don't like us don't tell nobody.

Catch my drift, son?

These are the good comments:

A professional letter of recommendation from one my friends Union Tank Car UTLX Ville Platte Louisiana- Gary Fontenot whom I have trained every 6 months since 1995- Download this professional recommendation in Microsoft Word.

I remember back when I was going through an awful divorce, I wanted to move from Indiana to Ville Platte. I sent Gary an email asking if he thought I could change my name to Boudreaux, speak with a French Cajun Accent, learn how to cook a gumbo, buy a house on Bayou Teche, pass for Cajun, and open a bait shop like my favorite book character, Dave Robicheaux, created by my mentor New Iberia Louisiana Author James Lee Burk . Gary sent me a reply- learn how to cook steak and move back to Baton Rouge.

Name :   Jay Bozman
URL :   
Company Name :   Maryland Dept. Environment
Chief products :   Air inspections, air permits for the State of Maryland; Dept.of Environment
Location :   Salisbury, Maryland 21801
email address :   
Comments about the web site :   Very good. It made me smile and a smile is always good for you!!
Comments about smoke school :   I have been an environmental inspector for the state of Maryland for 27 years and your smoke school is the best. I learned more about smoke reading 0%-50% than in any other smoke school ( and I have been to many smoke schools over the years) and for the first time I enjoyed


Thank you for your prompt response and flexibility with our team the last (2) weeks in aid of accommodating the July 28 Method 9 training here at the Plant Vogtle project. We enjoyed the training as we always have as when we have traveled to you for training. Your crew was very proficient not to mention made the training session enjoyable. We look forward to seeing you for the next training class in January . I will send the next attendees as that information becomes available.


Thank you once again,


Brenda Reed


EH&S Specialist 2

Shaw Environmental Health & Safety

Nuclear Services / Construction

Vogtle Units 3 & 4
7828 River Road
Waynesboro, GA 30830

ShawTM a world of Solutions


Dear Mr. Whitlow,


I recently took the Method 9 training in W. Monroe.  It was quite an experience that I really enjoyed!  I also learned a lot. 


The meal was delicious.  It was the first time that I’d ever had deer meat. 


So far, I’ve attended Smoke School held by 2 separate companies, including yours, and I liked yours the best.


See you in six months.


Thank you.




Sheila D. Danzell

Environmental Manager


·       Name:  Gina Facca

·       company name:  Gateway Energy and Coke Company

·       · Your position in the company:  Environmental Manager

·       Desk phone number:  No desk phone yet

·       Current smoke school provider:  We are currently shopping for a provider

·       A brief description of your requirements to use EPA Method 9 to read opacity for dust or smoke:  We are required to do daily, weekly, monthly readings at our coking plant.  Currently our plant is under construction, but we want to have our people trained prior to start up in October 2009

·       Why you want a box of chocolates:  Chocolate is one of the 4 main food groups which the FDA states should be eaten every day.  As such, by providing my team with a box of chocolates made in a cornfield from our neighboring state of Indiana, you are ensuring that the Gateway Energy team is meeting it daily recommended requirements.  Or you can just have one sent as a bribe so we pick your company to provide us with the necessary training.

From: ToddM.FOSTER@usa.messier-bugatti.com <ToddM.FOSTER@usa.messier-bugatti.com>
Subject: smoke school comment or question
To: smokeschool@yahoo.com
Date: Tuesday, May 4, 2010, 7:09 AM

Hello all!

I was at the smoke school the other day in Frankfort, KY at the Buffalo Trace Distillery - GREAT training environment by the way!

Anyway, one of your guys cooked-up some of the best white bean soup I've ever tasted.  Now, because I married for looks and not kitchen skills, I do all the cooking for our family of four, and I have developed some tasty dishes over the years.  And on occasion, I share my concoctions with family and friends.  Since I've been attending your smoke school for several years now, do you consider me close enough kin to share that recipe with me?

If not, I completely understand.  Take care, and I'll see you in 6 months.


Todd M. Foster  QEP, CHMM, CSHO
EH&S Risk Manager


Uncle Buck replies: Thanks for the favorable comments and the flowers. I have always known that Dave and his crew 2 do an excellent job, but is still is good news to get someone to take the time to send us great comments. We are always experimenting with new things to cook for our friends and customers. We know you have a choice of smoke school providers. We like to think that you chose us because we are the best. We do try harder. It is all about customer service, the same thing that I wish I could get at Lowes or Walmart. This is probably why I would rather shop at the local grocery store or hardware store. I have a few hardware stores that will load up my hay and horse food while I am standing in line to pay for it. They see me coming, they know what I need and load it into the back of the truck. All of our recipes are posted on our webpage. Recipes Cajun and Southern Cooking Thanks again, be well do good work and stay in touch.  

--- On Thu, 5/6/10, Rampulla, John B. <JBRAMPUL@southernco.com> wrote:

From: Rampulla, John B. <JBRAMPUL@southernco.com>
Subject: VE cerification - Mobile, Al 04-20-2010
To: "smokeschool@yahoo.com" <smokeschool@yahoo.com>
Date: Thursday, May 6, 2010, 9:44 AM


I attended smoke school at the Mobile, Al session April 20th.  The April 20th session was the 3rd time I have used Whitlow as my smoke school training.  Thank you for making smoke school enjoyable.  I have been attending "smoke schools" for over 10 years and you guys make certification a pleasure to attend.

I recently performed a VE and need my certification to include in the report to our state agency.  A .pdf copy will be fine or it can be faxed to 850-444-6751.

Thank You,
John B. Rampulla
Environmental Affairs - Gulf Power


We always love to attend your smoke school and hear your stories.

You’re the best!!! 

Thank You, 

Randy Coleman

Planters Cotton Oil Mill, Inc

From: George Lesnak <cgtlesnak@sbcglobal.net>
Subject: I like the web page the way it is
To: smokeschool@yahoo.com
Date: Wednesday, February 10, 2010, 6:36 PM


You guys are great! I’ve been coming to your smoke school for several years now ( Cleveland Ohio ) and I think the guy (That would be me- Uncle Buck) that talks while we’re taking the tests is hilarious. Don’t change your website-it’s great. Thank goodness for companies like you to put a smile on everyone’s face.


View contact details
"'Whitlow Smoke School EPA'" <smokeschool@yahoo.com>

I just love people like you George…and I couldn’t let the day go by without me telling you so.  Have a great day…you just started mine off right!


I like the web page the way it is

Sunday, October 4, 2009 8:18 AM
"smokeschool@yahoo.com" <smokeschool@yahoo.com>

Best guitar pickin' I have heard in a while!!

Danny Smith
MPC Plant Daniel


--- On Tue, 6/2/09, Angie Atkins <aatkins@severstalms.com> wrote:

From: Angie Atkins <aatkins@severstalms.com>
Subject: I like the web page the way it is...
To: smokeschool@yahoo.com
Date: Tuesday, June 2, 2009, 2:22 PM

Sounds like someone needs to lighten up. Wish I had time to worry about professionalism of a web page. As long as I get the info I need it doesn’t matter to me. If I have the time I catch up on the latest Whitlow news if not I just click to what I need which is generally the schedule.


PS. I had a gentleman who was unable to make the class yesterday in Birmingham . Can I transfer the payment to the Jackson Ms class scheduled in July?


Sara Sills

Senior Environmental Services Technician

UOP A Honeywell Company

1 Linde Drive

Chickasaw, Alabama 36611

By the way, this was a great smoke school.  The crew was very professional.


--- On Tue, 6/2/09, Doug Broussard <Doug.Broussard@trin.net> wrote:

From: Doug Broussard <Doug.Broussard@trin.net>
Subject: RE: Whitlow New Services Video Productions for Safety and OSHA training
To: "Whitlow Smoke School EPA" <smokeschool@yahoo.com>
Date: Tuesday, June 2, 2009, 2:16 PM


I've been attending your smoke schools forever 5 years now, and have held a method 9 certification for over 20.  Anyone complaining about your teaching methods needs to attend some of the smoke schools from the early 90's.  I suspect the complainers don't know what they are talking about.  I'm trying to keep this civil since I don't like to put anything in a email I'd mind seeing on the Times Picayune front page, but there are some good Cajun phrases that would probably accurately describe their attitude and personality.  I think it translates to something like the south end of a north bound horse.

Good luck on the new concrete and construction business. 

Doug Broussard

Environmental & Safety Rep.  Trinity Marine Products Plant 48


USAF Academy Class of 1968


On Tue, 6/2/09, ECI Co-Gen <ecicogen@earthlink.net> wrote:

From: ECI Co-Gen <ecicogen@earthlink.net>
Subject: I like the web page the way it is
To: smokeschool@yahoo.com
Date: Tuesday, June 2, 2009, 7:31 AM

Keep it !   Looks friendly.  Many company websites look very "professional" but the companies aren't worth two cents.

--- On Mon, 6/1/09, Andrews, David <dandrews@ipr-us.com> wrote:

From: Andrews, David <dandrews@ipr-us.com>
Subject: I like the web page the way it is
To: smokeschool@yahoo.com
Date: Monday, June 1, 2009, 3:21 PM

I think the web page is fine just like it is. Most “professional people are usually a pain in the butt!  

David Andrews

ANP/Coleto Creek Power Station

P.O. Box 8

Fannin, Tx 77960



Don’t change a thing.  There ought to be more good natured people like yourselves in this world.  I’m sure if there were the world would be a much better place to live.  You have taken a very stressful situation and  turned it into something that is enjoyable.  Trust me I know, I would not rest for days knowing that my re-certification was around the corner, now I almost look forward to it.  Love your web page.  Keep up the good work.  See ya in November.    Mike DelGreco,   Nucor Steel Marion Ohio.

On Mon, 6/1/09, Reilly John <John.Reilly@aksteel.com> wrote:

From: Reilly John <John.Reilly@aksteel.com>
Subject: I like the web page the way it is
To: "'smokeschool@yahoo.com'" <smokeschool@yahoo.com>
Date: Monday, June 1, 2009, 12:37 PM

Keep up the good work ---- and keep passing me if possible! 

John Reilly

Staff Engineer - Environmental Control

AK Steel - Butler Works

PO Box 832

Butler PA 16003-0832

(724) 284-2334 office

(724) 822-9505 cell

John.Reilly@AK Steel.com

On Mon, 6/1/09, Neal.Osullivan@conectiv.com <Neal.Osullivan@conectiv.com> wrote:

From: Neal.Osullivan@conectiv.com <Neal.Osullivan@conectiv.com>
Subject: I like the web page the way it is
To: smokeschool@yahoo.com
Date: Monday, June 1, 2009, 9:22 AM

I very much enjoy the web page and would not like to see it changed to a more "professional" format.

Neal O'Sullivan

On Mon, 6/1/09, Philip White <pdwhite@cableone.net> wrote:

From: Philip White <pdwhite@cableone.net>
Subject: I like the web page the way it is
To: smokeschool@yahoo.com
Date: Monday, June 1, 2009, 8:23 AM

Definitely, not the usual corp. website but; therein lies the redeeming virtue

 Philip D. White                                                                                                                         Pastor, Behling & Wheeler, LLC

Senior Scientist                                                                                                                         2407 Moores Lane

Pastor, Behling & Wheeler, LLC                                                                                              Texarkana,  Texas ,  75503-1607



There is nothing wrong with the web page. I actually like the stories and some of the music. You’re school is the best that I have attended in the last 15 years or so and believe me, I have attended more than one. The other schools I attended always tried to skip around and make you fail, and I don’t think that is the purpose of smoke school at all. Thanks for running a good clean straightforward school with no games. The other three employees that I bring with me also agree that your school is the best. We will continue to come to your schools.


Billy Ferguson

Arkansas Steel Associates

Environmental Manager

You said:

I had a complaint about the web page being unprofessional. The complaint made tears form. I was writing web pages for fun and entertainment years before I ever thunk about starting smoke school business. There is a link on www.smokeschool.net at the top for your opinion. Like always I will follow the majority- so vote.

I did not see the link, but here is my vote:

I will tell you what Butch; some people just have no sense of humor. There are people out there that are so smug, you could flip them a quarter and they could buy a better personality than they have now. I walk down the street and I speak to everyone; hello there, good morning, and how do you do? Many people return the greeting, but there are also many people so smug and self-righteous they just stick their noses up. I cannot figure out why they think they are so much better than everyone else is. Maybe their face would break if they smiled, I don’t know; but I greet them anyway. Those are the kind of people that would not like your website, which happens to be a true work of art. I love the songs, the characters, and the humor. A normal person just has to love it. Do not feel bad; no matter how hard you try in the world, someone is not going to like you; but that is just their loss. When Jesus did his first miracle on earth and turned the water to wine at the wedding feast, if these self-righteous smug people were there; they would have complained to Jesus, too; I wanted imported wine. Yes, Butch, you can be proud of a very professional web site that picky people can only be jealous of.

Robert E. Counselman
Area Manager, Power and Utility Maintenance
Business Unit Leader for Power and Utilities
Campbell Soup Supply Company L.L.C.
Office Phone and Voice Mail: 419.599.6794
E-mail: robert_counselman@campbellsoup.com
Homepage: http://robertcounselman.spaces.live.com/

I just loved your story about how you used to take smoke school in the rain and cold over and over. That brought back a lot of bad ETA memories. I remember the last time; I was trying to read smoke with ETA standing across a road with traffic driving in between us and the smoke stack. People stopping while we are trying to read and saying, what are you all doing. That was when I drove off half way through the test and never went back. And those holier than thou sacred ETA people think they are so great. What a bunch of ….

Contributed by Robert Conselman E H S for Campbell's Soup  


From: Gracie, Chuck <Chuck.Gracie@rollcoater.com>
Subject: smoke school comment or questionl
To: smokeschool@yahoo.com
Date: Tuesday, April 14, 2009, 8:04 AM


My compliments to the crew who did the Smoke School at Pittsburgh yesterday (4/13/09). It was cold and overcast and not the best day to read smoke, let alone pass a certification test. They were patient and professional, repeating the standards as requested.

You have a great group of people performing a difficult job under nasty conditions. Although I thanked them for their help, please pass this along to those who need to see it.

I have been attending your Smoke School since 2005 and look forward to it. You folks are interested in the students learning how to read smoke (compliance), rather than focusing on failing everybody to try to prove something to the regulators. Common sense prevails - finally.


Chuck Gracie
EHS Coordinator
Roll Coater, Inc.
4502 Freedom Way
Weirton, WV 26062

My Reply to these generous email:

I am extremely honored and humbled by your comments. Thank you so much. Before 2001 I had conducted this school for Louisiana DEQ. Before that I was an inspector on your side of the smoke machine and I took the hard test over and over again. They did not do any teaching, just banged into it as if you had been taking the test for years. There were a few years that I took it about 15 times and just could not pass. One particular day I stayed taking the test to the very last minute, did not pass, and had to rush across town for a deposition in a court case. I helped cause a 5 car accident during the 1 PM rush hour on interstate 10 over LSU Lake. Except for the grace of God I would have been killed easily. I was not hurt, but the ongoing traffic investigation and paper work with the state vehicle delayed the deposition until the next day and I never did take the test again. Since I was not certified I had to find another means of occupying my work time other than doing opacity readings during inspections. It would be 6 months until I was able to try again.


This was one of the straws that broke the camels back. I guess I was led to this smoke school, my new calling. As a direct result of my testimony several career industrial plant EHS and one operator with 20 years on the job lost their jobs as a simple result of a mistake by not putting the wet scrubber on manual mode while the operator was washing a truck. We happened to be there at midnight investigating a complaint during a class action law suit involving a hazardous waste plant. The 9 million dollar award and the 4 million dollar penalty and the firing of all of those workers shocked me.


I was bound and determined after all of this to teach compliance and the importance of compliance. I was also determined to teach how to pass the test and teach people how to make opacity second nature. I have tried to select employees that would exercise the same philosophy and be team players. To be honest finding good help is hard to do. I am very pleased and self assured that people like you inform me that my employees are doing a good job.


From: Fielder, Greg D <Gregory.Fielder@valero.com>
Subject: smoke school comments and suggestions
To: "smokeschool@yahoo.com" <smokeschool@yahoo.com>
Date: Friday, April 17, 2009, 6:24 PM

I attended your smoke school today in Delaware City.  I have been attending ETS classes for years and I have always dreaded the twice-yearly certifications.  No more!!  Your guys were awesome and turned what had been an awful chore into something fun. Thank you so much,

Greg Fielder

Refinery Shift Supervisor

Valero Delaware City 

Oh, and I love your web site.

On Dec 12, 2008 Robert Conselman of Campbell's Soup emailed me this Company News Letter that he composed about our open enrollment smoke school we hold every 6 months at their plant in Napoleon near Toledo. I appreciate Robert and his very nice comments and you will too.


I just attended your smoke school yesterday, 2/19/08, for the first time. I
had been going through someone else before.
I must say that I am extremely pleased with the way you handle your
classes. I was made to feel welcome which in turn made me relax.
A friend of mine from another mill recommended you to me and I will
certainly come back and will tell anyone else about you.
Thanks again for the effort that you put into making us all feel welcome
enough to relax and get it done.

Thank you,
Franklin Lumber


smoke school comment or question

Wednesday, November 5, 2008 12:38 PM
Add sender to Contacts
"smokeschool@yahoo.com" <smokeschool@yahoo.com>
George:   I just completed the smoke school at Otter Creek Park near Louisville Ky.  I want to tell you what a wonderful job Dave and his crew did.  I like the way he conducts his training session.  To any one who ask I tell them your schools are a learning experience in opacity reading. 
     Due to my up coming retirement this was my last class.  Keep up the good work!       James K. Kennedy


Richey LaGrone <richey.lagrone@husqvarna.com> wrote:

I enjoy the e-mails and stories, keep them coming.  You're field classes are the most enjoyable classes around, I have been to other smoke classes and you are the best.

Richey LaGrone
Environmental Technician
Husqvarna Outdoor Products Inc.
870 845-6817


Hope all is well

Missed you in Frankfort last time

Make a great day


Bruce N. Fergusson, PE
Air Source Technology, Inc.
160 Prosperous Place, Suite 201
Lexington, KY 40509

Phone: 859-299-0046
Fax: 859-299-0494


lsadkins@aep.com wrote:

I read the stories, downloaded the music, voted for Ralph Nader (or was that Oprah-Obama), watched a C-5 fly overhead, and then ran outside to make sure the incinerator was not set in manual without an operator causing black smoke to spew.   Now it's time to go fishin'.

smoke school stories and family stories
Keep 'em coming.

Les Adkins
Ceredo Generating Station

Dear Larry the Cable Guy


I read your e-mail and I like your stories.

Still waiting for your school to come down to Texas.


Anthony L. Sauceda

Group Leader

Material Flammability Section

Fire Technology Department

Southwest Research Institute

San Antonio, Texas USA


office   210-522-3718

fax      210-522-3377

email  anthony.sauceda@swri.org


Dear Whitlow Smoke School,


First off, your crew did a great job yesterday here in Cranston. The school instructors were professional, informative, and funny. The class was good, the day was sunny, and the food was great.  Keep up the good work.


On another note; please send me an invoice so I can get you paid. I did not have a check the day of the school as I thought I would.

You can mail it to the below address.  Attention accounts receivable.


Thank You!


Scott C Goodinson

Operations Supervisor / Safety Coordinator

VWNA / Cranston WPCF

140 Pettaconsett Ave

Cranston, RO 02920

Phone (401) 467-7210 x 2012

Fax (401) 781-5260

Your web site is very educational and full of a lot of good STORIES and MUSIC!!!!

And I love the pictures with all of the funny sayings over the top/bottom of them!!!


 Randy L. Coleman

Planters Cotton Oil  Mill, Inc.

Production Office

Supervisor Trainee/


From: Lee Ann Roberts <lee_roberts@us.aflac.com>
Subject: Your website
To: smokeschool@yahoo.com
Date: Wednesday, November 25, 2009, 1:03 PM

Hello, my name is Lee Ann and I just finished reading your website.  I am an Aflac agent in Lake Charles and I saw your sign on the side of the road the other day and wanted to find out what smoke school was.  I am originally from Arizona, copper mine country, and have lived in Louisiana for just over a year now.  I had no idea what smoke school was.  After reading your website I know now what y'all do (kinda).  I will probably never have a need to go to smoke school and a lot of the information was over my head but I couldn't stop reading.  Your website is fun.  I think that's the best word to describe it.  It's not stuffy or conforming and I wanted to let you know that I enjoyed it.  Being an Aflac agent I am always looking for new companies and individuals to talk to about our policies.  You may or may not offer Aflac to your employees.  If you do - that's great.  If you don't...well, I'm sure you know where this is going!  I would like the opportunity to talk to you about !
our policies and how they could compliment any benefits package you may already have in place.  Our policies don't cost your business anything - 100% employee funded - and the value they can add is huge. 

Again - great website!  If I ever have the opportunity to talk to anyone about smoke school - I will definetly tell them about your site.  It would be great if you let me know how you feel about Aflac.  Kinda like you - no pressure from here - I believe in Aflac and want to give everyone the opportunity to know about it.  Thanks for reading my email and thanks for the great stories and information!
Lee Ann Roberts, Aflac
337-474-0984 (fax)


From: Tietje, Leslie <Leslie.Tietje@northstarbluescope.com>
Subject: RE: Delta, Ohio Private School - October 5, 2010 (C2)
To: "Whitlow Smoke School EPA" <smokeschool@yahoo.com>
Date: Sunday, April 11, 2010, 2:03 AM


 Thank you for the smoke school this past week.  As always it was a good experience followed with great food. October 5th should work out wonderfully for the next round for smoke school.  If there any problems or questions that may arise before then please let me know.  We look forward to working with you again.

Les Tietje

Safety Officer / RSO

North Star BlueScope Steel LLC


As you can see, not too many people have made comments. Sort a reminds me of the old joke. Little Johnny was born and did not cry. The doctors were amazed. Little Johnny made 10 years old and had never cried or uttered a word. The doctors were amazed. They said he is physically able to talk, he just don't talk. Well one fine day Johnny's momma was late for work. She did like my momma used to to. She threw some buttered toast in the oven and forgot about it. My momma used to scrape the black stuff off the toast and serve it. Best toast ever is blackened toast. I was 40 years old before I learned you could make toast any other way. That is the truth.

Well Little Johnny was not satisfied with the blackened toast. He threw the toast on the floor and yelled, "Momma, You done burnt the heck out of this toast."

His momma was amazed. "For 10 years, you have never uttered a word."

"Up to now, everything has been fine."

My Bragging about the smoke schools.

My daddy used to say, "Don't brag too much."  I have been taught that all my life. Then I find out when you run a business that is nationwide, it is just a little difficult to get the word out. People clear across this great nation are seeing this web page and learning about about us. Most of you have never met me. You really just don't know what to expect. My momma used to say, "Life is just like a box of chocolates, You never know just what you are going to get." It is kind a like the first time I purchased something from the Sears and Roebuck Catalog. I would rather go down to the corner store, pick it up, feel it, check it out and then buy it. Sort of like kicking the tires on a new Chevrolet truck. That is just the way I am. The absolute truth is we run circles around the other smoke schools out there. I have been doing this 20 years. I could beat the others blindfolded with half my brain tied behind my back. That's just a fact Jack.

Most of my life, I was either in the US Air Force  or working for the state of Louisiana. I did not hear very many supervisors tell me that I was doing a good job. I guess the supervisors more or less took it for granted that I knew I was doing a good job. I try to  remember to tell my employees everyday, that they did a good job. My supervisors did come close at Louisiana DEQ. I was laying under a portable building that we were going to use for a new air sampling ozone monitor site. I had finished removing the building from the flatbed truck, and was leveling the building. I was about to run the electricity and anchor the building. My boss lay down on the ground next to me and said, "I don't know what we are going to do when you retire." Well, they hired four people to take my place. I guess that is a compliment.

I have been doing this smoke school training now since 1984, most of that time I was working for the Louisiana DEQ.  Sometimes I trained over 500 people at a time. Nearly all of them came up after the training shook my hand, and said I did a great job or that they had fun. Boy let me tell you what. That made my whole day. In fact smoke school generated about the only praise I got as a state employee. My bosses always said they got lots of phone calls from yawl that attended smoke school. Yawl told them that you love the school. Thanks for the calls.

I put just as much heart into smoke school way back then as I do now. Gave it a 110 percent effort. Still do.  Looking back to my childhood, I guess I was influenced by Dizzy Dean and Pee Wee Reese. I grew up watching the Baseball Game of the Week, listening to Dizzy slaughter the King's English telling stories about his life and about the players on the field. A few years later, I was announcing play by play at the Monroe, Louisiana Little League Baseball park. The great comedians, Justin Wilson and Jerry Clowers also influenced my personality. My stories just seem to leak out at smoke school. The stories seem to melt away the stress of taking the test.

Since starting this family owned and operated smoke school business on guts and a few credit cards back in September 2001, we average about 30 people at each school. Most of these fine people keep coming back every six months and they always say they had fun, they loved the stories, they learned a lot, they loved the catfish,  and that we did a good job. That continues to make my day. I appreciate your comments. Thank you very much. I guess I am just a natural. Maybe you love being at smoke school simply because I love being with you.

Lindsay Moore, Chief Inspector of the Little Rock, Arkansas DEQ asked me to take over the contract for training state employees and industry for the Arkansas DEQ. After our first school, he said he got a ton of phone calls all praising their department and our smoke schools. Before us, he said he got a ton of complaints.

One particular person seemed to sum up all of the comments I have heard about our training program. He just walked up beside me after the school and walked on down the trail with me. When he said what he said. well- I just had to say thank you and walk away and cry in gratitude. He worked for a coal-fired electrical power plant in the Ohio River Valley in West Virginia. This is what he said.

" I have been attending smoke school since 1988. I dreaded it, I hated it. Then I went to your school last year. I loved it. This year, when they asked me if I wanted to go to smoke school, I asked them if Whitlow was going to be there. When they said you were conducting the school for our association, I said that I would not miss it. Butch, you have the best smoke school ever. I love it. You are fair and honest. You don't try and trick us up. You make it interesting, you make it fun. I love the stories you tell during the test. I love the fried catfish. You give good instructions, we know exactly what to expect. You take your time during the test, you don't rush us. It is easy to keep up. You do a wonderful job."

Well, that is what he said. And I am proud and grateful.

I WANT YOU to come to smoke school.







The Whitlow team includes 5 retired Louisiana DEQ employees and other very qualified team members dedicated to routine maintenance, quality control, and customer service. With over 100 years combined experience in environmental protection and smoke school we are the experts. We choose locations with your comfort in mind. Each location has a convenient classroom, clean restrooms, a shelter form sun and rain, and a contrasting background for reading smoke. We serve you free hot coffee, fresh donuts, cold bottled water, sodas, and a great lunch at each location.  We desire to make you feel at home. We calibrate our equipment electronically and visually with the human eye before, during, and after each smoke school. We check the zero drift before and during each test run. If the zero is off, everything is off. We take our time giving the test, so you can keep up. We give precise instructions on how to take the test. If you pay close attention and bring a positive attitude, you will pass sooner than later. If you are having difficulty understanding what to do prior to the actual test, please ask for assistance. We are prepared to stay at each location until you certify to become a smoke reader. Remember, patience and attitude are everything. Be prepared. The first test run each day will take a little longer because we take the time to teach you how to take the test. Additional test runs will be quicker. Historically, most people pass by the third run because of our exceptional teaching skills. If necessary, we will retest until dark.

We would love for you to try Whitlow Smoke School and see the difference. If you have previously registered for, and paid for another upcoming smoke school by another provider, then send in a copy of your receipt along with your registration and you can attend your first Whitlow Smoke School free. What a deal!

We always provide hot coffee, fresh donuts, ice cold water, soft drinks, and great tasting lunches at each location. If you prefer a certain type of food please let us know before the school and we will try to accommodate your tastes.

Initially, we will choose smoke school dates compatible with previous smoke school providers. Eventually, we will provide additional dates in the hope of milder weather.

Welcome to Whitlow Smoke School and welcome to customer service. We are a Disabled Veteran owned and family operated small business and we are a member of the Better Business Bureau.

Please pass all of this information to your employees. Thanks for coming.

Lets go Pilgrim,

we are burning up daylight.                            



Uncle G Artie Whitlow
My Novel A Smoke School Prize worth keeping. 



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