Supporting the Future of America's Linemen

Nov. 20, 2020
The ILRA has been awarding scholarships to students in lineman training programs for nearly 20 years. Here are the 2020 winners.

Nearly 20 years ago, the International Lineman’s Rodeo Association (ILRA) began awarding scholarships to well-deserving aspiring line program students. Today, the ILRA has given out $100,000 in scholarship money to future linemen nationwide. Each and every one of the recipients so far has had a successful career in the line trade, said Dennis Kerr, scholarship chair, which makes him proud of what the ILRA has accomplished through the scholarship program.

“Many of the scholarship recipients have competed at the International Lineman’s Rodeo,” Kerr said. “For example, one of the first winners works for Evergy, and for the last three years, he and his team have walked across the stage receiving many awards. One year, they were number one. It makes you feel good when you see that, and it said a lot about the program.”

To apply for the scholarship, the candidates must submit a resume, personal essay and two letters of recommendation. The Scholarship Committee, including Kerr, who is retired from DTE; John Bircumshaw, retired from Rocky Mountain Power; Lawrence Kazmierski of Quanta Services; James Lake of Ameren Illinois; and Larry Aguayo of CPS Energy, then score the applications and select the winners.

When the scholarship program first began, Kerr expected to get all the applications from one school. Through personal outreach to many of the line school programs nationwide, however, he has received applications from across the country. For 2020, the ILRA even awarded scholarships to students from new programs, Kerr said. The following photo gallery showcases the nine winners for 2020 in the ILRA Scholarship Program as well as the sponsors for each scholarship. 

About the Author

Amy Fischbach | Amy Fischbach, EUO Contributing Editor

Amy Fischbach is the contributing editor for the Electric Utility Operations section of Transmission and Distribution World. She worked for Prism Business Media (now Penton) for eight years, most recently as the managing editor of Club Industry's Fitness Business Pro magazine. She is now working as a freelance writer and editor for B2B magazines. Amy earned her bachelor's and master's degrees in journalism from Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kan.She serves as the national vice president of the American Society of Business Publication Editors. She can be reached at [email protected].

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