Cooperative News

PEC journeyworker reflects on serving country and community

Employee receives NRECA’s “Rising Star” award

As a distribution operations technician, Justin Lundgaard serves in one of PEC’s most critical roles: making sure the cooperative’s mapping and outage control centers are synced, correcting outage issues, and investigating their causes to help prevent future ones. But when he’s not serving his community, Lundgaard serves his country as a Master Sergeant in the U.S. Air Force Reserves.

Journeyworker Justin Lundgaard

This Veterans Day, as Lundgaard reflects on his work in the military and at PEC, he shared his gratitude for both careers.

“I think the military shapes you for the better,” Lundgaard said “They give you discipline, leadership, and an incredible set of skills. There are no days off in the military, you just go to work every day and give your best.”

Lungaard says the camaraderie at PEC is also familiar to his experience in the service.

“Rain, shine, or winter storm, we’re serving our members because of our commitment,” he said. “My team is like family, so you protect them just like you would on the front line, only here we’re doing storm work and ensuring that all the work is done safely so we can all get back home to our families.”

Jason Murray, PEC director of Cedar Park Operations describes Lundgaard as someone who always gives their all, “Justin’s commitment to excellence and dedication to his coworkers and our members, as well as to his fellow soldiers is inspiring,” Murray said. “He performs both jobs at an extremely high level, and endeavors to make everything useful.”

Lundgaard’s work ethic and determination has even caught national attention. He was recently named a “Rising Star” by the National Rural Electric Cooperative (NRECA) and featured in Rural Electric magazine’s September issue. Lundgaard received the honor for helping to identify and correct more than 2,000 defects on PEC’s Cedar Park operations map, which led to significant improvement in the district’s system-wide accuracy and response times.

Patriotism runs in Lundgaard’s family, and he grew up knowing the meaning of service; both his mother and father served in the U.S. Military during the Vietnam War era. Lundgaard expressed his gratitude for the unique opportunity to live a life of service.

“You don’t always think about it, but it’s such an honor to serve my country and also my community,” he said. “And PEC does so much to support the veterans who work for them, so that we’re able to have a life of service for both.”

We are PEC proud of Justin and the many employees who serve our country and communities each and every day. Thank you for your service!