Community Engagement

Chelan recognized for work with Uganda power company

Washington State’s Chelan County PUD on May 23 received the 2019 Corporate Volunteer Award from the United States Energy Association (USEA) for the utility’s work with the Ugandan Electricity Generation Company, Ltd (UEGCL).

Two PUD staff traveled to Uganda in 2018 to collaborate with UEGCL on a range of energy issues. Janel Ulrich, PUD generation and asset program manager and John Yale, PUD hydro engineering manager, were sponsored by USEA to make the visit possible.

During the exchange, the PUD staff helped UEGCL assess its asset management strategies and improve operations and maintenance procedures. Ulrich led a team at UEGCL headquarters to certify employees in ISO 55000, an international standard that covers asset management.

“It was an eye-opening opportunity for me,” said Yale, who has decades of hydro engineering experience. “We were awe-struck by the extraordinary level of education of many UEGCL staff.”

The two organizations also have met for tours and information sharing at Chelan PUD facilities, briefings at the Bonneville Power Administration and during an international Asset Management Conference in California.

“We have all learned so much through the relationship between Chelan PUD and UEGCL,” said Ulrich. The goal is that the peer-to-peer relationship will continue into the future.

Ulrich was joined by Garry Arseneault, President of the Chelan PUD Board of Commissioners, at the USEA’s Annual Membership Meeting and Public Policy Forum in Washington, D.C., where they accepted the award on behalf of Chelan.

The USEA is an association of public and private energy-related organizations, corporations and government agencies. USEA represents the broad interests of the U.S. energy sector by increasing the understanding of energy issues, both domestically and internationally.