In June, emerging lineworkers from across the nation gathered in Grand Rapids, Michigan, for the 2024 Lineworker, Safety, Training & Leadership Conference – hosted by Michigan’s own Great Lakes Energy Cooperative. This unique event showcased individuals nominated for their influential roles in enhancing the safety culture within their utilities. The aim was to educate, collaborate, and engage with peers in the industry.

“Our group of skilled and resourceful lineworkers from various states exemplifies our strength through collaboration and shared experiences,” said Joe McElroy, Director of Safety & Loss Control at MECA.

This principle has been at the heart of Quad State Instructors since its inception nearly 60 years ago when safety professionals from four Midwestern states came together to exchange challenges and ideas. Today, the organization includes representatives from across the country.

The intimate setting of this year’s conference allowed participants to not only discuss issues but also share solutions. “Building a tight network of colleagues enhances communication and saves time and resources,” McElroy noted.

The successful selection process, engaging speakers, and enthusiastic participants contributed to the conference’s positive reception.

Special thanks to the organizers – Dan King (GLE), Travis Mix (GLE), Kady Gracik (GLE), and Derek Maki (GLE) – for creating such a transformative experience for future lineworker leaders, including representatives from Michigan co-ops: Thomas Ulatowski (MECA), Dave Depew (GLE), Kevin Forbes (GLE), Jason Tanner (GLE), Matt Monroe (Wolverine), Troy Tiernan (Alger Delta), Joe McElroy (MECA), Trevor Stratton (Wolverine), Jason Ebbesen (Alger Delta), Jennifer Wilson (GLE), Joe Contreras (Wolverine), and Evan Bressler (MEC).