With nearly 40 percent of the nation's energy workforce either eligible for retirement or departing their jobs because of attrition during the next five years, electricity and natural gas companies and the nuclear power industry are facing a potential worker shortage. Meanwhile, many military veterans are returning home after tours of duty without a clear path toward jobs or ready access to apply skills learned in the armed services.
On Monday, July 11, Dominion Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Tom Farrell will unveil the national launch of an important new initiative, Troops to Energy Jobs, which will be designed to create an accelerated transition for returning veterans into civilian jobs in the energy sector nationwide.
Farrell will be joined on the program by U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu , Sen. Mark Warner , D-Va., and Rep. Ed Whitfield , R-Ky., chairman of the House Subcommittee on Energy and Power.
The program is part of the national Center for Energy Workforce Development (CEWD) and is designed to establish an ongoing process of outreach, recruiting, education and training to create a pathway for military personnel to transition from the service into civilian careers in the energy field.
Farrell, who also is the current chairman of the Edison Electric Institute, the U.S. association of investor-owned electric power companies, will provide an in-depth preview of this initiative.
"The extensive military training, strong work ethic and leadership skills endemic to success in the military make veterans highly desirable employees for energy companies," Farrell said. "The goal of the Troops to Energy Jobs program—working with five pilot electric companies—is to develop and perfect a robust national model for more quickly and effectively connecting this stream of qualified veterans to jobs that will be opening up in the energy sector."
Representatives of the five pilot energy companies involved in the initiative – American Electric Power, Dominion, Southern Company, Pacific Gas and Electric Company, and Arizona Public Service – as well as the Center for Energy Workforce Development, also will be on hand for the launch.