Governor Bush Honors KUA Employee for 40 Years of Service

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KISSIMMEE, Fla., April 23, 6:30 pm – An employee of Kissimmee Utility Authority (KUA) was honored Wednesday evening for 40 years of service to the utility.
Journey back to April 1963. John F. Kennedy was President, the Beatles were taking Britain by storm, “Lawrence of Arabia” had just received the Academy Award for Best Picture, the Dodgers would defeat the Yankees in the World Series, and a first class postage stamp was 5 cents. And 19-year-old William N. “Bill” Groover went to work as a groundman at Kissimmee’s electric utility making $1.30 an hour.
Back then, the utility had two line crews and one bucket truck which were dispatched out of a makeshift garage located at the back end of the utility’s lakefront power plant. The crews literally knew every customer on the system by name. “If you told us an address, we didn’t know where it was,” explained Groover. “There was a better chance of us finding it if we knew your name.”
Over the next four decades, Groover would work his way up the utility ladder to lineman helper (1964), 2nd class lineman (1965), lineman (1966), foreman (1970), and finally in 1997 to his current position, line crew supervisor. In addition, Groover was honored as the utility’s Employee of the Month in November 1993 and Employee of the Year in 1994.
“KUA’s development and growth have depended upon the contributions made by its employees,” said KUA president and general manager Jim Welsh. “Our success can be measured in part by the effectiveness of employees like Bill who have chosen to remain and grow with the utility.”
Groover, 59, was honored by KUA’s Board of Directors on Wednesday evening and presented with a gift and a framed letter of commendation from Florida Governor Jeb Bush.
“Excellence is always appreciated in any job,” Governor Bush said in his letter, “and I commend you for your dedication to duty. I salute you for this achievement.”
Groover will officially mark his 40th anniversary next Tuesday, April 29.
Founded in 1901, KUA is Florida’s sixth largest community-owned utility serving 58,000 electric, water and internet customers in five Central Florida counties.
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Contact: Chris Gent, Manager of Corporate Communications
(407) 933-7777 ext. 1116