(Story by Carmen Prati-Miller)
The winner of this year’s Oglebay Park Mini-Vacation Contest is Shaun Lopez, planner II at Amos Plant.
“I was extremely shocked to hear the news that I had won the contest,” said Lopez. “In fact, I am quite certain I’ve never won any kind of prize before.”
Lopez and a guest will be treated to three days and two nights deluxe lodging, breakfast for two each morning and a dinner for two at Wilson Lodge’s beautiful Ihlenfeld Dining Room, as well as park admission passes for boating, fishing, miniature golf, tennis and swimming. The lucky winner has 12 full months from which to schedule his getaway.
This is the 19th year employees and retirees were invited to participate in the contest and, by far, the best year yet for responses. With more than 2,400 entries, the contest drew interest from all 11 states served by AEP, as well as North Carolina, Florida and Missouri.
Retired Ohio Power Company T&D director Lee Kelvington and his wife, Joan, are the benefactors of the annual getaway. It is the Kelvingtons’ love of Oglebay Park and fond memories of AEP that keep the contest alive.
“My wife and I will celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary this year, so it is a timely win for us,” said Lopez. “With having four young children at home, we are both looking forward to the getaway, provided we find a brave and willing babysitter. We sincerely appreciate the Kelvington’s generosity.”
AEP has been named to Fortune magazine’s 2014 World’s Most Admired Companies list in the electric and gas utilities sector. This was AEP’s first year participating in the survey, which measures nine attributes related to financial performance and corporate reputation.
Overall, AEP ranked seventh in its sector. The company’s highest rankings were in the areas of people management, quality of management and use of corporate assets.
“AEP’s inclusion on the World’s Most Admired Companies list reflects employees’ commitment to improving the customer experience and creating value for our shareholders as we transform our company to meet the energy needs of the future,” said Nick Akins, AEP chairman, president and chief executive officer. “Employees are proud of our history of innovation. And I am proud of the work everyone is doing to ensure we can continue providing customers with safe, reliable and affordable power for decades to come. Being named to Fortune’s list of most admired companies is proof that employees’ efforts to improve the health of our culture and to continuously improve in general are paying dividends.”
Each year, Fortune surveys top executives, directors and financial analysts about the companies in their industry based upon the nine criteria: financial soundness, people management, quality of management, long-term investment, quality of products/services, innovation, use of corporate assets, social responsibility and global competitiveness. A total of 692 companies from 30 countries were surveyed to arrive at this year’s list.
|Once revived, the distressed ducks are brought back to Cook Plant and released among friends in the plant absorption pond. Photo by Kyra Richter.
This winter certainly has taken its toll on all of us. The cold, snow and ice have seemed to come in relentless waves. Knowing how each trip outside makes us feel, one can only imagine what it’s been like for area wildlife.
|Cook Plant Environmental Supervisor Kyra Richter assists a struggling duck at the plant site. Photo by Scott Rose.|
Their normal food, water and shelter have been minimized or eliminated and the shortages are taking their toll. At AEP’s Cook Nuclear Plant, an increasing number of water fowl and animals have been found around the 650-acre site showing signs of severe distress.
But help is available. Cook Environmental Supervisor Kyra Richter and others in her group are coming to the rescue.
“We’re getting a steady stream of calls about distressed animals,” said Richter. “You can tell they are really hurting because in many cases, the ducks are allowing us to walk right up to them and pick them up.”
Richter worked with Kip Wells, a biologist at the Love Creek Nature Center, and two bird rehabilitators who agreed that she was qualified to try and help. So she established what she calls, “The Richter Home for Tired and Confused Ducks” in her house.
|Another site resident, a raccoon, has found that the warming huts at the plant road security check-point make a nice place for a nap. It even climbs up on top of a ladder to be closer to the heater. Photo by Dave Lefor.|
With her bathtub serving as a warm and sheltered pond, some cedar chips for a nest and cracked corn to eat, the sickly ducks are quickly recovering, usually in a night or two. Once revived, she brings them back to the plant and releases them among friends in the plant absorption pond.
Another site resident, a raccoon, has found that the warming huts at the plant road security check-point make a nice place for a nap. It even climbs up on top of a ladder to be closer to the heater. Since a raccoon in the wild is not an animal that you should approach without precaution, the Environmental group has had to make several trips out to the check-point. They carefully ease the raccoon back to the woods and reclaim the warming hut for its intended inhabitants – security officers.
It has to get warmer and quit snowing sometime … doesn’t it? In the meantime, the Cook Environmental group is helping to bridge the gap to spring for a few neighbors in need.
Even though he has traded his tennis racket for a cane, AEP retiree Charlie Hurme is still going strong.
|AEP retiree Charlie Hurme, who won a national tennis tournament at age 89, recently celebrated his 101st birthday.|
Hurme, who worked for AEP in New York from 1930 to 1975, recently celebrated his 101st birthday and is one of the company’s oldest living retirees.
As part of his birthday celebration, Hurme received a personal birthday greeting from Nick Akins, AEP chairman, president and chief executive officer.
In 2002 at the age of 89, Hurme won the SnackWells USTA Men’s National 90s tennis championship at Mission Hills Country Club in Rancho Mirage, Calif. It was his first national championship since taking up the sport in 1932.
“To me, it’s just natural,” Hurme told a reporter from Newsday after the tournament victory. “I don’t know what the big fuss (from many media outlets) is about. Being 89, you’re not supposed to die, are you?”
Hurme’s activity also extended well beyond tennis. He loved to golf, snorkel, play competitive volleyball, travel and was very active in his New York community. He’s been to numerous events sponsored by Elderhostels, the world’s largest educational and travel organization for adults 55 and over.
An engineer in the Army during World War II, Hurme currently resides in Huntington Station, N.Y. His mother also lived to be 100.
“It’s like I’ve always said: Life may not begin at 40, 50 or even 60, but it doesn’t have to end there either,” Hurme was quoted as saying in a 1995 AEP publication.
AEP River Operations
Pamela Lovely, 58, AEP River Operations-Paducah, died Jan. 20.
Darrell Stover, 66, AEP River Operations, died Dec. 29.
AEP Service Corporation
Jane Denick, 64, AEP Headquarters, died Jan. 2.
Wanda Gradijan, 68, retired, AEP Headquarters, died Jan. 15.
Rita Pino, 94, retired, Rockefeller Center, died Jan. 11.
James Robinson, 83, retired, AEP Headquarters, died Jan. 3.
Michael Athey, 59, Sporn Plant, died Jan. 18.
Claude Breeding, 66, Amos Plant, died Jan. 10.
Russell Fedonick, 55, Amos Plant, died Dec. 31.
Everette Fields, 71, retired, Kingsport Service Center, died Jan. 7.
Alzella Johnson, 84, retired, Huntington Office, died Jan. 21.
Roy Martin, 90, retired, Stuart Office, died Jan. 4.
Lisa Pais, 90, retired, Bluefield Office, died Jan. 20.
John Thomas, 69, retired, Reusens Hydro, died Jan. 6.
Charles Whorley, 75, retired, Roanoke Service Building, died Dec. 31.
Columbus Southern Power
Rodney Bookman, 78, retired, Columbus Southeast Service Center, died Jan. 6.
William Cox, 81, retired, Athens Service Center, died Jan. 13.
Paul Crock, 58, Conesville Prep Plant, died Dec. 28.
James May, 94, retired, Picway Plant, died Jan. 14.
Elmer Robison, 89, retired, Chillicothe Office, died Jan. 16.
Indiana Michigan Power
Maurice Carr, 87, retired, Spy Run Service Center, died Jan. 10.
Rudolph Weil, 97, retired, Breed Plant, died Dec. 31.
Norman Wenger, 85, retired, Decatur Service Center, died Dec. 12.
Ralph Anderson, 87, retired, Lancaster Office, died Jan. 9.
Martha Beeney, 84, retired, Zanesville Service Center, died Jan. 15.
James Carpenter, 76, retired, Gavin Plant, died Jan. 27.
Ann Chesebro, 103, retired, Lima Office, died Jan. 28.
Arlene Farnham, 98, retired, Canton Eastern Regional Office, died Dec. 15.
William Gatchell, 86, retired, Cardinal Plant, died Jan. 17.
Walter Johnson, 76, retired, Mitchell Plant, died Jan. 7.
Thomas Jones, 90, retired, Cardinal Plant, died Jan. 18.
Roger Luman, 93, retired, Cardinal Plant, died Dec. 5.
Richard Meffley, 93, retired, Lima Office, died Dec. 29.
Ray Milner, 76, retired, Central Ohio Coal Company, died Jan. 17.
Thomas Pollock, 83, retired, Canton Eastern Regional Office, died Jan. 16.
Paul Seevers, 89, retired, Belmont Service Center, died Jan. 22.
Jack Wagner, 81, retired, Muskingum River Plant, died Jan. 17.
Alvin Walton, 90, retired, Belmont Service Center, died Jan. 19.
Public Service Company of Oklahoma
Charles Burgett, 93, retired, Tulsa General Office, died Dec. 29.
Bess Dill, 86, retired, Tulsa General Office, died Jan. 8.
Alfred Green, 84, retired, Tulsa General Office, died Jan. 5.
G. W. Standridge, 90, retired, Tulsa General Office, died Dec. 28.
William Warner, 65, Mid Metro Office, died Dec. 27.
Soutwestern Electric Power Company
Glendon Amason, 76, retired, Shreveport General Office, died Jan. 19.
Lena Humphrey, 77, retired, Shreveport General Office, died Jan. 1.
Larry Saunders, 74, retired, Vivian Service Center, died Jan. 10.
Paulo Alva, 104, retired, Corpus Christi Office, died Jan. 2.
Howard Black, 83, retired, Corpus Christi Office, died Jan. 26.
Graciela Garza, 79, retired, Corpus Christi Office, died Dec. 23.
AEP River Operations
Jerome Robinson, Elmwood Convent Fleet and Repair, retired Jan. 13 after 13 years of service.
Oscar Dodier, Lipan Service Center, retired Jan. 18 after 45 years of service.
Hugo Pruneda, Pharr North Service Center, retired Jan. 8 after 35 years of service.
Linda Puentes, Harlingen Service Center, retired Jan. 5 after 29 years of service.
Douglas Villarreal, Western Division Office, retired Jan. 1 after 39 years of service.
AEP Utility Operations
Ira Bunch Jr., Rockport Plant, retired Jan. 8 after 29 years of service.
Michael Coyan, Southern Ohio Coal Company, retired Jan. 8 after 35 years of service.
Willie Day, Mitchell Plant, retired Jan. 1 after 32 years of service.
Philip Defalco, Cook Nuclear Plant, retired Jan. 18 after 14 years of service.
Rodney Foster, Cook Nuclear Plant, retired Jan. 4 after 30 years of service.
Janet Haire, Central Operations Center-Groveport, retired Jan. 19 after 25 years of service.
Ronald Hicks, Oklaunion Power Plant, retired Jan. 10 after 25 years of service.
Billy Jessee, Rockport Plant, retired Jan. 10 after 28 years of service.
Brenda Johnson, Tulsa General Office, retired Jan. 1 after 12 years of service.
Ronnie Kellehan, Welsh Plant, retired Jan. 3 after 29 years of service.
Larry Mitchell, Northeastern Station 1&2, retired Jan. 1 after 33 years of service.
Edward Pennington, Central Machine Shop, retired Jan. 8 after 28 years of service.
Policy, Finance and Strategic Planning
Michael Burkhart, New Philadelphia Service Center, retired Jan. 1 after 40 years of service.
Rosalinda Perez, Rio Pecos Power Plant, retired Jan. 8 after 32 years of service.
Southwestern Electric Power Company
Robbie Laffitte, Natchitoches Service Center, retired Jan. 25 after 34 years of service.
|This photo depicts heat leaking from a typical house in the winter. The white, yellow and red colors show heat escaping.Source: Energy.gov.|
(Story by Deborah F. White)
WELLSVILLE, Ohio – Linda L. of Wellsville is a single mom raising a 13-year-old daughter. Like a lot of families in Ohio affected by the economic downtown, Linda lost her job a couple years ago. Although she had been working on-call as a substitute teacher until she was able to obtain a full-time job, she struggled to pay her bills.
Linda also struggled with keeping her home warm during the bitterly-cold wintry months.
The home she lives in is a large two-story structure that is difficult to heat. During a one-year period the home consumed 1700 cubic feet of natural gas. At today’s rates, that amounts to about $816 per year. According to Columbia Gas of Ohio, the average home uses just under 800 cubic feet. Linda’s home used more than twice the average amount of natural gas, an indication that energy is being wasted through air leaks.
Through AEP Ohio’s Community Assistance Program (CAP), Linda was able to obtain free energy efficiency improvements and repair services for her home, helping to make it much more comfortable while saving her money on energy costs.
“We are really trying to get the word out to the community that there is assistance and funds out there for those who need help,” explained Janet Rehberg, program manager for AEP Ohio’s Community Assistance Program. “Customers who are income-eligible and enrolled in a payment assistance program can qualify to receive a home energy assessment, attic and wall insulation, air sealing, appliance replacements and other energy-saving improvements to help make their homes warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer. These improvements help customers save on their heating and electric bills, freeing up money to spend on other necessities.”
After applying and being accepted into the program, an in-home energy assessment was conducted to determine where Linda’s home was losing energy and what improvement measures should be implemented.
As part of the assessment, a blower door test which was performed in the home revealed a reading of 8309, confirming extensive air leakage. Caulking was placed around the home’s walls and windows and insulation was added to the attic and interior walls. Linda’s home also received energy efficient lighting and a new furnace, hot water tank and sump pump.
According to Rehberg, the weatherization process takes about 2 to 3 days. After all improvements were made, a final blower door test indicated a reading of 3325, demonstrating a 60 percent decrease in air leakage — a significant improvement in energy efficiency of the home.
|Ron Rees, executive director – Corporation for Ohio Appalachian Development, presents Janet Rehberg of AEP Ohio with an award recognizing AEP Ohio for its outstanding leadership in energy efficiency. Senator Joe Schiavoni, Senate District 33, who passed a resolution acknowledging AEP Ohio for providing assistance to low-income families in the Southeastern Ohio region and Carol Bretz, executive director of Community Action Agency of Columbiana County also are present.|
“Based on past studies, it’s possible that these weatherization measures will help reduce Linda’s home energy use by as much as 50 percent and save her up to $400 per year,” Rehberg noted.
Last year, AEP Ohio, along with the Community Action Agency of Columbia County, the Corporation for Ohio Appalachian Development (COAD)* and other regional partners, provided weatherization services to more than 88,000 low-income families in the Southeastern Ohio region.
In recognition of the company’s leadership in improving energy savings, safety and comfort to families in the region, AEP Ohio was honored by COAD with the Outstanding Industry Leadership in Energy Efficiency award.
Senator Joe Schiavoni, Senate District 33, named October 2013 as Energy Action Month and paid tribute to AEP Ohio by passing a resolution recognizing the company’s Community Assistance Program for improving the quality of life for low-income families in the Southeastern Ohio region by providing comfort, reducing energy costs and eliminating health and safety hazards.
“AEP Ohio is honored to receive this recognition because this is a program that provides a win-win situation for everyone,” Rehberg said. “By making someone’s home energy efficient, not only do we help customers, but also we help create jobs and stimulate the economy. And by reducing energy consumption, we also help the environment.”
Learn more about income requirements for AEP Ohio’s Community Assistance Program.
To participate in the program, customers should contact their local community-based agency or AEP Ohio’s customer operations center at 1-800-672-2231.
Follow-up info on Linda L.:
Linda’s home was part of a weatherization showcase held in Wellsville to demonstrate the benefits of weatherization and explain how the process works to the community. During the showcase, Linda presented her resume to Carol Bretz, executive director of the Community Action Agency of Columbiana County, who also was in attendance. Bretz ended up hiring Linda as the lead teacher at the East Liverpool Head Start. According to Bretz, Linda is doing well and likes working for the agency.
* COAD is a private, non-profit community-based organization serving rural, mostly Appalachian, counties in eastern and southern Ohio. It is made up of 17 Community Action agencies that serve a 30-county area.
Due to inclement weather, AEP’s Roanoke-based Human Resources Service Center (HRSC) is closed today, Thursday, Feb. 13.
Employees needing HRSC services should leave a voice message and calls will be returned as soon as possible upon the center’s reopening.
Roanoke city officials have asked that people stay off the roads unless it is “an absolute emergency.” The HRSC closing is in compliance with that request.
Everyone’s patience is greatly appreciated.
|AEP’s websites allow you to manage your account information, make payments, view usage consumption, compare your last 12 invoices, report outages and more.|
You can do so much more with your smart phone!
Are you an AEP customer? Have you registered your account online? If you haven’t, what are you waiting for?
AEP’s websites allow you to manage your account information, make payments, view usage consumption, and compare your last 12 invoices, report outages and so much more!
It has never been easier to manage your AEP account from your desktop or smart phone. You can even enroll in paperless billing from your phone!
*Please note — There may be restrictions to accessing your account using an AEP-provided wifi.
A coalition of more than 130 employers, including AEP, that had a goal of hiring 100,000 U.S. military veterans by 2020 has announced it surpassed that mark by the end of 2013.
The 100,000 Jobs Mission announced that its coalition members hired a total of 117,437 U.S. military veterans by the end of last year, surpassing the group’s original goal seven years early. The 131 companies now involved have now revised their pledge, to hire 200,000 veterans by 2020.
“AEP is dedicated to recruiting, hiring and supporting military veterans, and we are pleased that this effort has been so successful and that it will continue,” said [Scott Smith], AEP senior vice president – Transmission Grid Development & Portfolio Services. “Military veterans and reservists compose about 11 percent of AEP’s workforce throughout our 11-state service territory.”
AEP has also been recognized for many years, including 2014, as one of the nation’s top 100 “military-friendly” employers by G.I. Jobs Magazine.
“Reaching this important milestone is great news for veterans and employers alike,” said Maureen Casey, director of Military and Veterans Affairs at JPMorgan Chase, a founding company in the 100,000 Jobs Mission. “We have been able to make a difference in the lives of so many of our nation’s veterans, and those veterans bring tremendous skills and experience to the workplace.”
In early 2011, 11 companies launched the mission to hire at least 100,000 veterans by 2020. Since then, 120 more companies, including AEP, from nearly every sector of the U.S. economy have joined forces. The companies also have pledged to share best practices with other coalition members; many are on the 100,000 Jobs Mission website, JobsMission.com.