By Michael McWaters, CEO
If you were asked to associate an image or a person with Suwannee Valley Electric Cooperative (SVEC), I bet you would picture a lineworker. Some of the most visible employees of the co-op, lineworkers work tirelessly to ensure our community receives uninterrupted power 24/7.
“Lineworker” is listed as one of the top 10 most dangerous jobs in the U.S. This is understandable as they perform detailed tasks near high-voltage power lines. Regardless of the time of day, having to brave stormy weather and other challenging conditions, lineworkers must climb 40 feet in the air, often carrying heavy equipment to get the job done.
Being a lineworker is not a glamorous or easy profession. It takes years of specialized training, ongoing education, dedication, and equally important, a sense of service and commitment. How else can you explain the willingness to leave the comfort of your home to tackle a challenging job in difficult conditions, when most are sheltering comfortably at home? This dedication and sense of service to the community is truly what sets them apart. That’s why we set aside the second Monday in April to celebrate and recognize the men and women who work around the clock to keep the lights on.
While lineworkers may be the most visible employees at SVEC, it’s important to note that there is a team of highly skilled professionals working behind the scenes. Engineers provide ongoing expertise and guidance on the operations side of the co-op. Member service representatives are here to take your calls and questions. Our information technology (IT) experts continuously monitor our system to help safeguard sensitive data. And these are just a few of the folks who work together to ensure we can deliver the service and reliability you expect and deserve. Without them, our lineworkers wouldn’t be able to light up our community.
Our dedicated and beloved lineworkers are proud to represent SVEC, and they deserve all the appreciation and accolades that come their way on Lineworker Appreciation Day.
On April 12, and any time you see a lineworker, I hope you’ll join me in thanking them for their exceptional service. I also hope you’ll remember that you have a dedicated team of professionals working behind the scenes at the co-op whose commitment to service runs just as deep.