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News Southwest Rural Electric Association November 2015 Volume 62 SWRE.


Tom Boyd has seen many changes during his years at When his career began 46 years ago as a Tipton lineman


the job came with special challenges – a small operations crew, limited resources, and technology that was crude by today’s standards.


Boyd will retire in January as SWRE manager of operations, leaving a co-op that is far different than the business where he was employed in 1969.


In the late ‘60s, he says, climbing poles was an everyday


job, field communications with the central office and other workers was often difficult, SWRE members read their own meters, and few folks had even heard of computers. Today bucket lifts provide easier access for line repairs, automatic meters report power usage, and computers are a fundamental part of all co-op operations. “In the early days,” Boyd says, “the co-op’s entire work fleet


was made up of six half-ton two-wheel drive pickups, one digger derrick and one basket truck to do construction work. The crew was so limited that very little maintenance work could be done in those days and sometimes members even helped our crews with a repair or installation.” That was a dangerous situation then, and would never be


allowed today. As a matter of fact, the change that Boyd is most proud of during his career is the adoption of strict safety guidelines. “Today, high levels of training and safety standards are the most important parts of a lineman’s job,” Boyd said. “Safety is more important than anything.” Boyd’s co-op career began in 1969 when he was hired by


SWRE as a lineman. He worked at the Tipton co-op for only 18 months, though, before moving to Oklahoma Electric Cooperative (OEC) where he worked as a lineman at Chickasha for three years, then at Newscastle for six years as district lineman. Boyd returned to the Tipton area in 1979 to farm, but continued to do electrical contract work for SWRE and OEC. In


Reception Honoring Tom Boyd


on his Retirement from Southwest Rural Electric Cooperative.


Thursday, December 10, 2015 4-6 p.m.


Hillcrest Country Club 4400 Country Club Road Vernon, Texas


Safety, Service, Satisfaction... One Member at a Time! Number 11


Boyd plans retirement from SWRE


Tom Boyd


1985, he joined the SWRE staff again as electric superintendent in Texas and moved with his family from Tipton to Vernon. He has held the position of operations superintendent and Texas district manager since 1991. To many SWRE members, especially those in Texas, Boyd is the most recognizable face of the co-op. He knows the co-op’s territory well and always likes interacting with people. Boyd and his wife Phyllis, both avid golfers, built


their


retirement home several years ago on the Hillcrest Country Club Golf Course in Vernon. Phyllis retired recently from her career at Waggoner National Bank. Their retirement plans are to play a lot of golf, do some traveling, and spend time with family. The Boyds have two sons and one daughter. They have eight grandchildren.


One fun retirement goal that combines travel and golf is to play golf in each of the 50 states! The Boyds love Vernon and both plan to remain active in community organizations. They are members of Vernon’s St. Paul Lutheran Church. SWRE will honor Tom Boyd’s years of service to the co-op with a come-and-go retirement reception on Thursday, December 10, 2015, from 4-6 p.m. at the Hillcrest Country Club in Vernon. SWRE members are encouraged to attend to offer appreciation for his service and extend best wishes to Tom and Phyllis in their retirement.


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