KISSIMMEE, Fla., April 3, 2014 – After lassoing nine statewide trophies at last weekend’s Florida Lineman Competition, linemen from Kissimmee Utility Authority are in Oklahoma this weekend to compete in the 14th annual Public Power Lineworkers Rodeo.
Hosted by the American Public Power Association and the City of Edmond, Okla., the competitive rodeo will draw top linemen from utilities across the nation to compete in events based on traditional lineman tasks.
The event will begin with a series of lineman safety training courses on Friday, followed by the competition on Saturday. This year’s event will feature 50 journeyman teams and 90 apprentices.
“This rodeo is the ultimate venue for public power lineworkers to demonstrate their skill and knowledge,” said Ken Davis, KUA’s vice president of engineering and operations. “Journeyman and apprentice lineworkers will compete for professional recognition, attend training courses and practice essential skills in a safe environment.”
There are two levels of competition within the rodeo: journeyman teams and apprentice. The journeyman teams consist of three members – two climbers and a ground worker. A qualified journeyman has more than four years of experience within the electric utility trade. An apprentice lineworker competes as an individual and has four or fewer years of experience. Both levels of competition will participate in five timed events.
Representing KUA in the journeyman competition will be:
Team 1 – Brent Davis, Chris Ketner, David Wolfe
Team 2 – Robert Diaz, Mike Taylor, Billy White
Logan Murphy and Willie Simmons will serve as team alternates. Austin Franey and Chad Sullivan will compete in the apprentice competition.
Aaron Haderle will serve as the rodeo’s journeyman master judge.
The competition will be held at J.L. Mitch Park in Edmond, Okla.
Last year’s Public Power Lineworkers Rodeo was hosted in Kissimmee by KUA.
Based in Washington, D.C., APPA is the national service organization for the nation’s more than 2,000 community- and state-owned not-for-profit electric utilities serving 47 million customers.
Founded in 1901, KUA (www.kua.com) is Florida’s sixth largest community-owned utility powering 64,000 customers in Osceola County, Fla.
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Chris M. Gent