Veteran industry professionals join crews in Durango and Pagosa Springs
Veteran Journeyman Linemen Bill Holtsford and Gregg Smith have joined the Operations team at La Plata Electric Association (LPEA). In the electric utility industry, linemen are responsible for constructing and maintaining electric power transmission and distribution lines and facilities.
Based out of the Durango headquarters, Holtsford has been in La Plata County for the past 15 years working for a variety of electric contractors. Most recently he served as a lineman with WESODI, LPEA’s wholly-owned line construction subsidiary.
“I’ve been in the business doing the same kind of work going on 36 years, in 20 different states,” said Holtsford who is originally from North Carolina, where he did his lineman apprenticeship. “Having been with WESODI, I know almost everybody here at LPEA. It’s an easy transition.”
Smith, who hails from the Midwest, is based out of LPEA’s Pagosa office. He earned a diploma in Electrical Power and Distribution from Manhattan Area Technical School, Manhattan, Kan., in 1989 and his Journeyman Lineman in 1993. He comes to LPEA from Norris Public Power District in Nebraska.
“We were in Silverton 2006-2008, and we’ve always been connected to the area,” said Smith, who worked with San Miguel Power Association during that time. “LPEA is a good company, great camaraderie. It’s like a family.”
“It’s important that we have skilled and experienced linemen in place,” said Steve Gregg, manager of operations. “Our linemen are the ones who are out there literally on the front lines getting the power back on in all types of conditions. It’s great to have Bill and Gregg on the team.”
LPEA, a Touchstone Energy Cooperative established in 1939, provides to its more than 30,000 members, with in excess of 42,000 meters, safe, reliable electricity at the lowest reasonable cost, while being environmentally responsible. For further information, visit www.lpea.coop.