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Generation wins DesBarres Award

by on April 16, 2013

(Story by Ann Marie Keifer)

Generation has been recognized with the 2012 John P. DesBarres Safety and Health Excellence Award by [Nick Akins], AEP president and chief executive officer, the AEP Executive Council and the AEP Board of Directors.

The John P. DesBarres Award for Safety and Health Excellence.

The John DesBarres Award, named after a former AEP board member, is awarded to the AEP organization that best meets performance criteria that exemplifies the attributes of a sustained Zero Harm culture. It reflects DesBarres’ personal commitment and passion regarding safety.

“Generation demonstrated a personal commitment to safety through their achievements and the belief that Zero Harm is attainable and sustainable by their improving rates over the last six years,” said Akins. “I commend Generation employees for focusing on safety every day, every job, every time and moving our organization from a culture of compliance to one of personal commitment.”

Some of Generation’s notable safety accomplishments in 2012:

  • Generation sustained a consistent improvement in rates over the last six years.
  • Generation’s Fossil & Hydro and Engineering, Projects & Field Services organizations experienced their best safety year ever.
  • It was the fourth straight year that Cook Plant ended the year with a recordable rate under 0.20 and a severity rate of 0.00.
  • In 2012, there were 25 Fossil & Hydro facilities, 42 of 46 major projects, and three of five Fuel, Emissions and Logistics facilities that had no recordable safety events.
  • A Safety Culture team was created to advise the organization on improvements needed to move Generation from a culture of compliance to one of commitment.
  • Generation demonstrated a proactive commitment to prevent harm by developing and implementing a leading indicator process to assure the highest focus and accountability for accident prevention and HPI processes. 
Past DesBarres Winners2009 – Transmission

2010 – Generation

2011 – Utilities

2012 – Generation


“So many people have worked very hard to drive a culture that is passionate about sending everyone home safely at the end of their shift. It is very gratifying to see their efforts rewarded,” said Mark McCullough, executive vice president, Generation. “They are rewarded by the reality that many more people are working injury free and can enjoy the healthy lifestyle at home that they strive to achieve. Additionally, they are recognized at the very highest level of the company for their persistence and commitment to working safely, and for driving the safety culture of contractors and visitors to our sites.

“I am very proud to be associated with such a talented and committed group of people,” continued McCullough. “We know that there is no finish line when it comes to safety, so we accept this recognition with the commitment to continue to improve our processes and habits in demonstration of our commitment to Zero Harm.”

“This is the fourth year we have given the DesBarres Award and each year the decision is a hard one, but this time was the most challenging,” said Ken Frazier, vice president, Safety and Health. “It was difficult because both Transmission and the Utilities group did a very good job of improving their safety and health performance in 2012. Transmission had its best ever recordable rate, and the AEP Utilities group had its lowest employee severity rate since 2005. This is a good problem to have because it means we are moving closer to our desired culture of Zero Harm.”

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