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Rickey Stokes

Viewed: 2849

Posted by: RStokes
Date: Jun 04 2019 6:32 PM

“Our linemen are the face of our industry,” Hammett said. “When people think about electric utilities, they think about linemen.”


Wiregrass Electric Cooperative on Monday held appreciation day for the lineman who serve the members of Wiregrass Electric Co-op. For more than 80 years, 1939 - 2019, Wiregrass Electric has been serving this area.

Each year they treat their employees and family to a day of recognition followed by great food. Then they are told to take the remainder of the day, with pay, and relax.

Monday's event featured Kip justice, who had open heart surgery. He described the chain of events of his health journey. He urged everyone to know your bodies and listen to your bodies. When your body gives you warning signs, LISTEN.

Wiregrass Electric Cooperative has a nine member Board of Trustees. They are elected by the membership at large on a three year rotating basis. President - Donna Parrish; Vice President - Tracy Reeder; Secretary - Debra Baxley; Doanny McNeil; John Clark; Kip justice; Donald Ray Wilks; Greg McCullough; David Winstead.

Les Moreland is the Chief Executive Officer of Wiregrass Electric Cooperative and Brad Kimbro is the Chief Operating Officer. 

Wiregrass Electric Cooperative lineman and staff maintains 24,000 meters and serve 17,000 members. WEC services 3,100 miles of line with 67 full time employees. The corporate office is in Hartford and district offices in Dothan, Samson and Ashford.

Les Moreland described WEC as a family.



Opelika Power Services hosted the fifth annual Lineman Appreciation Day, sponsored by the Energy Institute of Alabama (EIA). The event recognized the men and women tasked with providing electricity to Alabama residents every day, even in dangerous conditions and after severe weather strikes.

“In good weather we love them, but in bad weather, we sure do appreciate them,” Opelika Mayor Gary Fuller said as he welcomed attendees. More than 80 linemen and guests were in attendance for today’s event.


Lineman Appreciation Day began as a statewide celebration following a resolution sponsored by Representative April Weaver, R- Alabaster, which established the first Monday of June by the state legislature as a day to recognize these important individuals. Rep. Weaver spoke today about her own grandfather serving as a lineman and the personal sacrifices she has witnessed first-hand that linemen make every day to serve the citizens of the state. Linemen are celebrated nationwide on April 18, following a 2013 resolution passed by Congress.


Dothan Utilities generates around $ 50 million per year in gross revenue. A lot of the projects the Dothan City Commission are able to undertake are because the forefathers of Dothan had a vision. That vision was for the City of Dothan to be in the utility business.

Each year the Utilities Manager Billy Mayes and members of the Dothan City Commission bring one crew to stand before the royal thrones of which the Mayor and Commissioners sit and recognize them. Only one crew.

Several years ago a retired lineman contacted Dothan Commissioner Albert Kirkland about feeding the lineman for Lineman Appreciation Day. Commissioner Kirkland told him they were to busy and could not do that.

That lineman contacted a individual all upset about how Commissioner Kirkland and the others felt about the lineman and did not do anything to recognize them.

The individual contact Tim Reeves of Hunt's Restaurant to get a cost on feeding the Dothan Utilities Staff on South Park. When Tim found out it was for the lineman and utilities department he quickly said he would feed them for free.

After Tim said he would feed them the individual who arranged it called Dothan City Manager Mike West and instructed him to have the lineman and staff at the South Park Plant on the appreciation day and what time. West was not given an option but given an instruction.

Hunt's Restaurant staff cooked on premises. Dothan was going to make Hunt's get a permit to do so. Until the individual who contacted Tim challenged them.

Guess what? Dothan Commissioner Albert Kirkland made sure his feet were planted under that table for the free meal from Hunt's. 

Commissioner Kirkland and Utilities Manager knew who made contact with Tim Reeves. A few days following the event they saw the person. They said nothing to that person. All Albert wanted to do was choke the person.

Since that time the Dothan Commissioner have done nothing except bring one crew to stand before the Commission at a public meeting where the Mayor and Commission could beat their chest looking like they did something.

Someone said next week they were feeding them pizza. Hello - Lineman's Appreciation Day is this week!


The real deal, the citizens of Dothan Alabama support and thank you for your dedication. It is expected that when the switch is flipped for power to come on. And when the switch is flipped and no power, the customer flips. 

It is you that make it happen. No matter the weather conditions, you are there. And we appreciate you.

First Funeral

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