Powering Strong Communities
Virtual Course

Overhead Distribution Systems Series

This two-part virtual series features in-depth courses on 1) OHD Principles and Applications and 2) Best Practices in OHD Line Design. Get a comprehensive overview of overhead distribution practices, review industry best practices, discuss real-world examples, and get practical experience by working through line design problems.
September 19 - December 6, 2023

Register now!

Learning Environment

This virtual series — taking place on Zoom — provides the opportunity to interact with instructors and industry peers while earning continuing education credits. Each course features live presentations from industry experts, real-world examples, group discussion, polling questions, quizzes, Q&A sessions, and practical exercises. The courses are applications-oriented and focus on learning by doing.

Series Overview

Overhead distribution continues to play an essential role for most utilities in delivering electric service to end-use customers. This series of two in-depth virtual courses begins with a comprehensive overview of the planning, design, installation, and maintenance principles and requirements that drive today’s overhead distribution practices. Then, in the second course, learn how to review and improve your utility’s overhead line design criteria and construction standards, make better design decisions, and enhance safety and reliability.

Sign up for courses individually or together for a discounted, bundled rate:

All events will be recorded and attendees will automatically receive access to the recordings (accessible for 90 days).

Who Should Attend?

Those who work at all levels of overhead distribution design including:

  • Engineering managers
  • Design engineers
  • Design/staking supervisors and technicians
  • Consulting engineers
  • Crew supervisors and senior lineworkers

Course Level

Varies by class (starts basic, becomes more advanced). No prerequisites; some advance preparation including attending a short orientation session before each course and completing a brief pre-course survey for each class.

This series starts at a basic level and progresses to more intermediate and advanced topics as you move from the first course (on Overhead Distribution Systems Principles and Applications) into the second class (on Best Practices in Overhead Distribution Line Design).


The following continuing education credits will be provided after successful completion of each course (each consisting of 5 virtual sessions), provided all requirements are met (see individual course pages for details):

  • Recommended CEUs 1.4/PDHs 14/CPEs 16.8
  • Field of Study: Specialized Knowledge


minerLead Instructor: R. John Miner, P.E., is an accomplished executive manager and educator with over 45 years of experience in the electric utility industry. He is president of Collaborative Learning, Inc., of Austin, Texas and has been an APPA instructor for more than 30 years and an instructor for the University of Wisconsin for 20 years. Before forming his own company, he worked for the Austin, Texas, Electric Utility Department, Rochester Public Utilities in Minnesota, and as an assistant professor for the University of Houston. John is a Senior Life Member of the IEEE and is a registered Professional Engineer in the states of Texas and Minnesota.

tom black headshotThomas Black, P.E., is an independent consultant and educator in the electric and gas utility industry. His experience includes both municipal and investor-owned utilities across multiple states. His range of experience in the utility industry covers 30 years and includes planning and engineering, standards, construction and maintenance manager, energy delivery general manager and chief energy officer responsible for all aspects of energy supply, electric transmission and distribution and gas distribution. He also has extensive executive level experience, has served on the boards of RMEL and the Colorado Association of Municipal Utilities, and is a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).

tedTed Dimberio, P.E., is an accomplished engineer with over 40 years of experience in electric and telecommunication line design. He is currently President and CFO of Utility Line Design and President of Line Design University. Ted has worked in all capacities of line design including field staking, construction supervision, management, and consulting. He has been an industry leader in developing engineering software for electric distribution utilities that auto-generates profile drawings and required line design calculations to verify and document engineering decisions. He is a registered Professional Engineer in the states of Minnesota and Wisconsin.

ericErich Schoennagel, P.E., is an accomplished engineer and manager who works with Collaborative Learning as a technical consultant and continuing education program developer and instructor. Erich has over 45 years of experience in the electric industry. He is a former manager and engineer with CenterPoint Energy and managed the Transmission Project Engineering group. Erich served for 15 years as a member advisor and chairman of the Underground Transmission Task Force for the Electric Power Research Institute. He has extensive experience in the application of engineering principles and NESC requirements to the design of utility structures and foundations.


Held in partnership with:

Collaborative Learning, Inc., and the Academy for Utility Line Design Professionals

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Register now!

Registration Fees



Bundled Series: Includes Both Courses (Save $200)


Individual Courses


  • Overhead Distribution Principles and Applications


  • Best Practices in Overhead Distribution Line Design


*Non-member rates are double the member rate.

Group Discounts

Save money on each registration when your organization registers five or more people for the same class or the bundled series. The larger your group, the more you save! Registrations must be submitted on the same order (at the same time) to qualify for the group discount; discounts cannot be retroactively applied to previous orders. 

If you need assistance, contact [email protected].

Number of registrants

(per person)












All events will be recorded and attendees will automatically receive a copy of the recordings, in case you can’t attend live.

Registrants who cancel in writing at least 7 days before the first day of a course are entitled to a refund of their registration fee, minus a $50 cancellation fee. Registrants who cancel after that will not receive a refund, but attendee substitutions will be allowed for this event only. Registrants and no-shows who do not cancel at least 7 days before the course start date are responsible for the full registration fee and are not entitled to a refund. 

Cancellation deadlines: 

  • Overhead Distribution Systems Virtual Series (both classes): Cancellations must be received on/before Sept. 12:
    • Overhead Distribution Principles and Applications: Cancellations must be received on/before Sept. 12
    • Best Practices in Overhead Distribution Line Design: Cancellations must be received on/before Nov. 21

Cancellation requests should be made through your My.PublicPower portal, or addressed to: [email protected]


  • 24 hours after registering: You’ll receive a confirmation email within 24 hours of registering, which contains some preliminary information.
  • 24 hours before: 
    • You’ll receive your Zoom login link the day before the first session (sent from the APPA Academy’s Zoom account <[email protected]>)
    • You’ll also receive a final logistics email 24 hours in advance of the first class. 
  • If you don’t receive this correspondence, email [email protected].

Course Access and Materials

  • Zoom Links: Zoom log in credentials will be sent out 24 hours before the start of the first session.
  • Course Materials: Attendees will receive access to course materials the day before each session through the "Documents" section of their My.PublicPower.org user portal. 
  • Recordings: All sessions will be recorded and can be accessed through you r user portal as well (within a week of the last class in the program), in case you can’t attend the live versions. Recordings will be accessible for 90 days after the last session. Note: Continuing education credits can only be issued for attending live sessions.



Earn While You Learn!

Participate in virtual programs to earn Continuing Education Units (CEUs), Professional Development Hours (PDHs) and Continuing Professional Education credits (CPEs). Each course in the Overhead Distribution System virtual series (5 sessions each) is eligible for the following credits:

Recommended CEUs 1.4/PDHs 14/CPEs 16.8
Field of Study: Specialized Knowledge

What educational credits are available?

You can earn the following kinds of continuing education credits for attending live sessions during this event—provided the following requirements are met:

Requirements for Successful Completion

  • For each course: Attendees are required to attend and participate in 90% of all five live sessions—that equates to 215 of the potential 240 minutes of each module—and complete an online evaluation at the end of each.
  • Partial credit cannot be given for partial attendance.
  • Attendance is monitored by an APPA staff member during the event, through an online report log, and upon review of the post-event evaluation data.
  • Completion certificates will be available within two weeks of the last session in a live event (for those who meet the requirements). You’ll receive one certificate for all five sessions.
  • Virtual sessions are recorded (attendees automatically receive access to recordings within a week of the last session), though continuing education credits can only be given for attending live events. Recordings will be accessible for 90 days after the last session.

 IACET logoContinuing Education Units (CEUs): The American Public Power Association is accredited by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET) and is authorized to issue the IACET CEU. For information regarding certification status, attendance requirements and obtaining attendee transcripts, contact [email protected]

CPE logoContinuing Professional Education (CPE) Credits: The American Public Power Association is registered with the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) as a sponsor of continuing professional education on the National Registry of CPE Sponsors. State boards of accountancy have final authority on the acceptance of individual courses for CPE credit. Complaints regarding registered sponsors may be submitted to the National Registry of CPE Sponsors through its website: www.learningmarket.org. Unless noted, there are no prerequisites for the courses offered and no advance preparation is required. Courses are group-internet based offerings at the basic program level (unless otherwise noted). Credit hours and areas of study for the courses are listed on the individual course pages. For more information regarding administrative policies, such as clarification of requirements, complaints, and refunds, please contact [email protected].

Professional Development Hours (PDHs): The American Public Power Association’s educational practices are consistent with the criteria for awarding Professional Development Hours (PDHs) as established by the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES). Course eligibility and number of PDHs may vary by state.


Additional Information

Format and Log-In Information

  • Classes will be offered on the Zoom meeting platform.
  • Each class is presented in five, 4-hour sessions.
  • Courses are interactive, practical, applications-oriented, and focused on learning by doing.


  • 24 hours after registering: You’ll receive a confirmation email within 24 hours of registering, which contains some preliminary information.
  • 1 week out: You’ll receive a more comprehensive logistics/prep email a week out from the start of the first session.
  • 24 hours before:
    • You’ll receive your Zoom log in links the day before the first class (sent from the APPA Academy’s Zoom account <[email protected]>)
    • You’ll also receive a final logistics email 24 hours in advance of the first class.
  • If you don’t receive this correspondence, email [email protected].

Course Materials and Recordings

  • Course materials: Attendees will receive access to APPA’s secure online document portal a week before the course, where the eManuals and other course materials will be made available, allowing you to work with them before, during and after the online sessions.
  • Recordings: The sessions will be recorded and can also be accessed through APPA’s document portal (within a week of the last class in the program), in case you can’t attend the live versions. Recordings will be accessible for 90 days after the last course session. Note: Continuing education credits can only be issued for attending live sessions.

Technology Requirements

  • Zoom Meeting Application: Attendees are required to have strong Internet access, in order to run the Zoom meeting platform. Please see below for more information on downloading the Zoom Web Client.
  • Audio/Webcam: You will need to enable computer audio to listen and speak (alternatively a call-in number will be provided) and you will also need a webcam, so you can fully engage in the small group breakout sessions and group discussions.  

New to Zoom?

If you haven't participated in a Zoom meeting before, please download the Zoom web client from the Zoom Download Center. This will enable you to access all of the Zoom tools and functionality vs. using the web version. Then, visit Zoom.us/test to ensure you are able to join a meeting. 

If you are not able to download the Zoom web client, you can still participate via your Internet browser. We recommend using Chrome for the best results.