In addition to volunteering at individual events, many Tucson Electric Power employees serve on boards and committees of various nonprofit organizations, lending their professional expertise in leadership roles.
Some employees connect with organizations through their own networking, while others are recruited by groups that reach out to TEP with requests for volunteer expertise, said Wendy Erica Werden, TEP’s Manager of Community Investment and Philanthropy.
Board officers help the organizations achieve their fundraising and policy goals and address operational issues, including human resources, legal and financial matters.
TEP’s ties to the community are strengthened when its employees serve in leadership roles with nonprofit groups, Werden said. “It’s a conduit for us to share information with these organizations, and it helps us understand how TEP can help them meet their objectives,” she said.
Shannon Breslin, TEP Manager of Land Resources, appreciates the strong connections and impact that result from board service. She serves on the boards of the Friends of Saguaro National Park, Southern Arizona Buffelgrass Coordination Center and the Metropolitan Pima Alliance.
“You get to know a cohort of people over the years. It’s helped me make contacts and build relationships that have really benefited my team and the company at large,” Breslin said. “We’re not just a company that provides electricity. We’re a partner in the community, and a large part of that is making sure the community is healthy and thriving.”
Board service also is popular among employees of TEP’s sister company, UniSource Energy Services, or UES, which provides natural gas and electric service in northern and southern Arizona.
Bill DeJulio, Senior Director of Electric Operations for UES in Kingman, began volunteering on boards a number of years ago to get more in touch with the community.
“It allows all of our employees to be a part of the community, and it’s something we all truly enjoy doing,” said DeJulio, who serves on the boards of the River Cities United Way, the Kingman United Way and the Lake Havasu Partners for Economic Development, in addition to serving as a member of the Kingman & Mohave Manufacturing Association and the Kingman Route 66 Rotary Club.
“Being in a small community such as Kingman or Lake Havasu, you become easily recognized with your organization. UES supports the community in a number of ways, and we are known in the community as an organization that can assist when the time comes,” DeJulio said. “Whenever we can help, whether with donations or by volunteering, we will.”