Rural Missouri - April 2016 - (Page 4)
| C O O P E R AT I O N
photo courtesy of John Lowery, Illinois Country Living
Linemen are on duty 365 days a year, ready to handle any problem. To thank them for their efforts, April 11 has been set aside as
Lineworker Appreciation Day by the Missouri Legislature.
On April 11, thank those who go out when the power does
ho-Me Power Electric Cooperative has
named John Richards as its next general
manager. John brings more than 40 years
of experience to his new position with the
transmission cooperative, which supplies power
to nine electric distribution cooperatives in the
He has been the chief ﬁnancial ofﬁcer at ShoMe Power since 1979. He joined the cooperative
in 1975 as an accountant after working for KAMO
Power in Vinita, Okla.
John studied at Missouri Southern State College and the University of Tulsa to earn his bachelor's degree in business administration. He also
earned an MBA from Drury University.
John is a past president of the G&T Accounting and Finance Association and was a member
of the Missouri Electric Cooperatives Employee
Credit Union Board of Directors for more than 25
He replaces Gary Fulks, who retired after
working as Sho-Me Power's CEO from April 2007
until his retirement this past January.
Missouri's electric cooperatives congratulate
John on his new role with the cooperative and
wish Gary all the best in his retirement.
eroes don't always wear red capes. Sometimes, they wear hardhats and Carhartt jackets, go to work
high off the ground and are ready to go out anytime the power does, no matter what the weather is.
We're talking about linemen, of course. On April 11, these normally unsung heroes will be rewarded
for their efforts to ensure the rest of us have electricity when we need it. That day has been designated "Lineworker Appreciation Day" in Missouri by the state legislature.
Electric co-op linemen take Mother Nature's onslaught as a personal insult. They have a motto that sums
up what they do: "When the lights go out, so do we."
They work high atop a pole, held in place by just a safety strap and sharp spikes on their boots. They work
inches away from high voltage lines, trusting their equipment, safety training and experience to stay safe. In
the winter, they are always cold, their hands and faces turned leather hard by the wind, rain and sleet. In
the summer, they do battle with wasps, ticks and poison ivy.
They know their way down every gravel road and can ﬁnd a line by taking a left where the old red barn
once stood. They can back a pole trailer through a gap gate and know how to slip the clutch just right to work
a heavy digger-derrick truck out of the mud.
These people are the front line in the effort to keep the electricity ﬂowing. They do what they do because
they know somewhere along those lines, someone is depending on the ﬂow of power to heat their home,
power their business, milk cows or even to power medical equipment that keeps them alive.
Their labor of love goes beyond the power lines that are their responsibility. When a neighboring electric
cooperative needs help, they pack their bags and go to work, never letting up until the last light is back on.
Missouri co-op linemen have braved the winter cold in Iowa and helped repair the damage from hurricanes
in the sweltering Gulf states.
On April 11, please join Missouri's electric cooperatives in saying thanks to these high-wire acrobats
who ensure we all have electricity when we need it. If you are into social media, you can tag your post with
#thankalineman. We'll make sure they get the message.
And to all you linemen reading this, thanks for a job well done. We appreciate what you do. Please stay
safe as you do your jobs.
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RURAL MISSOURI | APRIL 2016
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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Rural Missouri - April 2016
Rural Missouri - April 2016