Manuel Chavez/ Class 7: Support Networks

by Manuel Chavez

174. In what ways do you perceive relationships with people you knew prior to confinement to evolve over the course of your imprisonment?

People have move on with their lives. All I really have is my immediate family. I’ve also been locked up fro a generation. I will cherish my freedom, family and a job that I love.

175. In what ways have you nurtured support networks during the time you’ve served thus far?

I’ve made hobby crafts and have not missed many holidays without sending a homemade card or a handmade craft.

176. In what ways will the support network you have in place now contribute to your success upon release?

With my family I will have their undying love and support to help me. And with my son in the oilfield business I have a heads up on the job status. “Drill-baby-drill”.

177. In what ways would you build a strong support network while you climbed through years of imprisonment?.

I will have my niece build  me a website and a blog. And to make updates and reach out to people. I would like so perspective of what to expect, because I’m new to the internet and the blogosphere. It is almost scary to me. I need this to help establish the message of my invention and my intentions upon release.

178. In what ways do support networks or the lack of support networks influence prison adjustments?

My family is all that I have. With just them in mind makes this imprisonment more easy. I’m glad for this new opportunity to work towards being out and being a success at what I do.

179. To what extent are the values that those in your support network embrace harmonious with the values you profess to embrace?

They are all God-fearing people like me.  They hold down jobs like I want to do. And they all support one another like family should.

180. What steps are you taking now to build or nurture your support network?

With all of them that support me. I make hand-made goods for each of them and I always make sure to remember their birthdays. With this new support I’m receiving, I would like to promote my invention to the right people that have been hard to almost impossible to catch the attention that I need. I would like help to build my own website and blog. My family can keep it updated for me through e-mails.

181. In what ways can those in your support network facilitate your aspirations?

I aspire to build a career in the oilfield business, either working on a drilling rig as a driller or what I want most, a tool pusher position, or a pipe welder. I read the newspaper from Wy the other day and they are advertising for a rig welder with his own truck to weld on rigs in Wy and N. Dakota. I used to have my own truck and I’m skilled at welding on the rigs. The inventon that I have patented fits into any company’s contingency plan. It is to be easily affordable and is made to be highly adaptable to many situations, such as, unintentional or intentional accidents or disasters. This device is going to be in high demand. All it is going to take is to get the right promotion to the right people.

182. In what ways is your support network helping you now?

My niece is promoting this invention for me with little success. We are all new to this game and we may need the help of an investment team or network to get this promoted. I would rather deal with the oil companies on a personal level. And to make a partnership with a Licensing Agreement.

183. What level of allegiance do you pledge to your support network?

100% of my loyalty. And if this invention does indeed make any money, 80% of the proceeds is for my family to better themselves.

184. What incremental action steps can you to take to bring people you do not currently know into your life?

I would like to start with writing to professors, engineers, or teachers in the petroleum engineering departments of major colleges that have petroleum eng. classes, and people out of the newspapers that are experts in oil well blowouts. I would like to get in touch with such persons i schools in Houston and in Louisiana Tech. These people have a good network of friends and colleagues that are in the business, and could get me help in getting my invention to market, this will save lives and the environment.

185. What thoughts do you have about people who would be most influential to your possibilities for success upon release?

I have very high thoughts for them whoever they may be. And I would like to reward them if at all possible for believing in me and my invention’s potential in the world-wide oilfield market place.

186. Who are they?

My family mainly, and my patent attorneys. I know, I need to write e-mails from in here to certain individuals but when I do put in their e[mail addresses they mostly never get turned on. I need a middleman who could make the first initial call to these people for me and to tell them that the message is not SPAM mail and that CORLINKS is legit. This would help me considerably in breaking the ice with these people that I so desperately need to talk to. And when most people hear “This call is from a Federal Prison they just hang up or delete it and then it’s almost impossible to contact them. This has happened a lot to me.

187. What interests do they have?

My savings, and my family helped me financially with getting this patent and pain the maintenance fees. The others are in the business of intellectual property. I would like to contact Tom Anderson who works for Rocky Mountain Oilfield Testing Center (RMOTC) in Casper Wy. www.rmotc

Direct: 307 261 5000 ext. 5066

Toll Free: 888 599 2200 ext. 5066

Cell: 307 262 8449

Fax:  307 261 5817          tom.anderson@rmotc.doe.gov

And have a phone call conversation with him and to write him a few e-mails to let him know of all the work that I’ve put in to this idea and to let him know of all of the potential this tool has in the safety and integrity of the oil/gas wells.

188. How can you make them aware of your aspirations?

By phone calls letters and e-mails etc.

189. What impression would your adjustment through prison thus far make upon them?

I would hope that they envision an intelligent man with good intentions, ideas, and working values.

190. In what ways are you working to cultivate mentors?

I’m always trying to find a mentor or organization who will help me getting my invention to the right people of an organization that could find monetary support through grants or investments. I’m working through my niece (family) to contact the RMOTC in Casper, WY. The head engineer there is Tom Anderson. I’ wanting to e-mail him and have a phone call with him to have my idea expressed.  (I’VE TRIED MANY TIMES TO GET A HOLD OF A MR BOERNE WHO IS THE HEAD OF THE OCEAN MANAGEMENT OF OFFSHORE DRILLING AND HE WON’T ANSWER ANY PHONE CALLS OR E-MAILS THAT MY FAMILY HAS SENT HIM EVER.) I thought that with all this technology available to contact people and especially an appointed PUBLIC OFFICIAL, it would be easily done. But NO, this person won’t even answer the phone or e-mails until my family has given up in discouragement. It’s all I can do.

191. In what ways does your behavior or activities within prison boundaries influence your relationships?

I have a busy routine each day. I am an artist with painting as my main genre. I use this ability to make extra money.  I do each project to the best of my ability. People see this and then I get more work. The ASOR seen my work and has hired me at a grade one pay to paint murals in the rec. dept. areas. I also join many classes that teach skills and others they see this and then they also want to join.

192. How would you assess the preparations and commitment your closest acquaintances make to a law-abiding, successful life upon release?

Most of them are clueless.

193. If you were to receive a disciplinary infraction, in what way would that influence the support network you’re striving to cultivate?

Of course any disciplinary infraction in prison is bad. It is bad news, and bad news travels fast. It is always on your permanent record and could make you lose good time credits.

194. What relevance does the phrase “It’s not what you know but who you know” have to you?

I understand also, that I need to reach out to professionals in the oil/gas industry. These people here try to discourage me with threats such as; “you can’t run a business from prison”, “be careful, you could get a disciplinary report and lose good time”, etc. I use a third party with Power of Attorney. This is a slow and painful process from prison. That’s why I’m going to use this opportunity of the Michael G. Santos foundation to get noticed.  I know with your help I will be noticed out of the crowd.

195. To what extent would your actions show that you’re conscious of the influence others have on your prospects for success upon release?

With my first invention to protect the environment, precious resources (oil and gas),and people’s lives who work on these  wells from a catastrophic oil well blow out from happening. Getting this to be a reality would insure my true potential as a law abiding citizen and a guy who has really done good for the good of mankind and the environment in which we live.

196. How can a prisoner open more opportunities to broaden his network of support?

By trying to reach certain people i the community with influence. Editrs , friends and family. It would help to use the internet to create a website and a blog.

197. How would your transition to society change if you had a job offer in place before your release?

The “Job waiting for you after being in prison” is a God-send. A job, especially one that you’re after, is one of the hardest hurdles to overcome. With tohe job comes money and with money you have the means of support and freedom.

198. What steps will you begin taking now to broaden, nurture, and protect your support network each week that you remain in prison?

I’m still trying to contact certain people in the oil field industry and I’m getting nowhere as to where I want to be with them. I need to know these people on a personal or business level. Most people shy away from prisoners.

199. How will you hold yourself accountable?

I will keep trying to contact people until i get ” the one ” who can help me. I will continue to collect news about the oil and gas industry and the disasters as they happen.

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