Cooperative News

Seasoned PEC employee passes down tools of the trade to next generation

Alvin Hernandez chose to train his replacement for one year before retirement

The cooperative has been good to him for a whopping 23 years, and PEC Equipment Operator 2 Alvin Hernandez is ready for his next chapter — retirement. Not wanting to leave the cooperative with a gap in experience, however, he took it upon himself to spend the past year training his replacement, PEC Equipment Operator 2 Donnie Sprouse.

“Alvin is extremely humble and extremely talented with an unbelievable work ethic,” PEC Transmission Maintenance Supervisor Alan Holt said. “He made the choice to stay and train Donnie. Speaking in years of experience, Donnie is now five years ahead of the game, which wouldn’t have been possible without Alvin.”

Alvin Hernandez (right) with supervisor Alan Holt
PEC Equipment Operator 2 Alvin Hernandez (right) with his supervisor, PEC Transmission Maintenance Supervisor Alan Holt.

Hernandez came to the cooperative as an Equipment Operator 1, later advancing to a level 2. His job can be simply described as running heavy equipment, but that only scratches the surface of his daily duties. A typical day consists of driving the cooperative’s largest equipment across our 8,100-square-mile service territory, including boom trucks and portable substations. The work is challenging, but Hernandez is more than happy to fulfill his responsibilities to PEC’s high standards.

“This is always the kind of work I’ve loved doing,” he said. “My time here has gone by quicker than I expected, but I’m leaving this place as a better employee and a better man, and I can’t thank PEC enough for that.”

On Sept. 13, Hernandez will pass the baton to Sprouse, who he has full confidence will take the reins and fulfill the cooperative’s needs. Hernandez is looking forward to his new role, but his crew will never forget his devotion to our membership.

“[Alvin] is the kind of person who wants to see people (and the entire co-op) succeed; his work with Donnie is a testament to that,” Holt said. “It just goes to show you how much he respects the co-op and values the quality of work we provide to the member.”