Alabama Power Lower Coosa Hydro employees are committed to community service. Although community involvement is one of the “people goals” for all of Alabama Power Generation, the crews at Lay, Mitchell, Jordan and Bouldin dams aren’t involved because they have to be.
“We don’t do it because it’s a goal; it’s a goal because we do it,” says Roger Yeargan, Hydro manager for the four dams. “We choose to engage with our communities because that is who we are and not because it is part of our goals.”
Yeargan not only leads his team at work; he sets the pace in the community. He is president-elect of the Rotary Club of Chilton County.
“We raise money each year and give that money back to the community to various organizations because we believe in service above self,” Yeargan said.
One of the most prominent activities the Chilton Rotary supports is the annual Clanton Christmas Parade.
“The mayor asked our club to sponsor this event 10 years ago, and it has grown every year. We had 93 participants in last year’s parade.”
The Jordan Dam crew helps the disabled statewide with maintenance and groundskeeping for three wheelchair-accessible shooting houses on Alabama Power property.
“We plant the fields, Bush-Hog and keep the shooting houses maintained,” said Jordan Superintendent Travis Cheaney. The houses are booked solid through deer season via the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, and Alabama Power Shoreline Management.
On a personal level, Jordan Journeyman Bo Brand teaches Sunday school.
“I teach the class because our Lord Jesus Christ commanded all believers to go make disciples in the great commission,” Brand said. “That is what I enjoy most about teaching the class: if my testimony and past experiences can help spread the word of the Lord.”
At Mitchell, Journeymen Clay Hannah and Lynn Jones contribute to the community in different ways.
“My family and I decorate our golf cart and my kids drive it in the Vida Christmas Parade,” Hannah said. “My wife helps serve food and I help with parking.”
“I’m an assistant youth football coach,” Jones said. “I love the game of football and enjoy coaching it. It’s a sport that builds character in young people.”
Football is also the name of the game for Bouldin Journeyman Charlie Patrick.
“The part of coaching I enjoy the most is watching young people grow and develop,” Patrick said. “Watching a child score their first touchdown or make their first tackle is very rewarding.”
The floodgates are open coaching youth athletics for Lay Dam Superintendent Noel Harrison. He has coached his 11-year-old son’s flag and tackle football, basketball and travel baseball teams.
“It teaches discipline, respect for other kids and grown-ups, and promotes an active lifestyle and teamwork,” Harrison said.
It also teaches sacrifice, which is what it takes for parents to contribute to the community as youth sport coaches.
“This past fall we took off to rest a little bit. As you can see, it gets to be a busy year playing all three sports. It doesn’t leave much down time.”