Shelbyville Power, Water, and Sewer System hosted a retirement reception event Tuesday for seven of their longtime employees. Combining the number of years the seven retirees worked at Shelbyville Power equaled to a total of 217 years.
Shelbyville Power, Water, and Sewer System hosted a retirement reception event Tuesday for seven of their longtime employees.
Combining the number of years the seven retirees worked at Shelbyville Power equaled to a total of 217 years:
-Purchasing agent and safety director Tony Brown – 47 years.
-Wastewater supervisor Bert Troxler – 44 years
-General manager David Crowell – 37 years
-Engineer and supervisor of electrical department Pruitt Marshall – 35 years
-Foreman of water and sewer construction Cliff Carlock – 22 years
-Wastewater plant driver Billy Story – 18 years
-Serviceman George Parham – 14 years
“The system is for sure losing some valuable experience with this group,” said David Crowell, Shelbyville Power general manager. Crowell will also be retiring after 37 years. “But it has good young people ready to step in and to continue leading the system toward the future.”
Crowell graduated from Middle Tennessee State University in 1983 with an accounting degree. He worked with the State of Tennessee as a sales tax auditor and for the local accounting firm Winnett Associates.
Crowell started work at Shelbyville Power, Water and Sewerage System as the office manager/account and was promoted to General Manager in 2001.
“The most rewarding part for me has been keeping the system on solid financial footing while maintaining and upgrading the system’s assets to keep up with the pace of growth and other challenges in Shelbyville,” he said.
Over the years, Crowell has seen the SPS industry change as both technology and rapid growth have pushed Shelbyville into a new phase of development.
Crowell said the City’s growth has created some challenges for the system. He said SPS has stayed ahead of the growth with construction of electric substations, of a new wastewater plant, as well as the expansion of the existing water treatment plant.
“There are still challenges ahead for the system on the north part of the sewer system as the city expands in that direction,” Crowell said.
The total gross revenue for all three utility systems (power, water, and sewer) has grown from $26.6 million in 2001 to a total gross revenue of over $43,5 million for fiscal year ending June of 2021, according to Crowell.
One of the biggest changes to come to the industry has been technology, which has helped aid in adapting to the growth.
“Several years ago, we deployed AMI (Advanced Metering Infrastructure) for both electric and water that allows us to more efficiently read the meters and almost instantly be aware of outages or other disruptions of service,” Crowell explained.
He also mentioned the expansion of their monitoring capabilities with the operation of their system assets in the field and at their water treatment and wastewater treatment plants.
But what has kept him in the industry, in addition to the fast-paced developments, are the people.
“I have been blessed to work with some of the finest folks in this industry that taught me the value of what a local public utility brings to their community,” Crowell said. “The public utility industry is so important to the well-being of the community it serves and has given me great satisfaction and kept me at SPS for all these years.”
Now SPS will be preparing for the next set of workers.
“Not everyone will find a career that they love, but I think it is important to find one that will give you personal satisfaction and contribute to a long career,” he said.
For now, Crowell said he plans to enjoy retirement by spending more time with family (especially his three granddaughters), playing more golf, and traveling more with his wife Tammy.
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