March 2016: Meet Greg, a coach on the job and an umpire off of it
There's an old tradition at TNMP: Sons of linemen becoming linemen with the company themselves. Greg is one of those sons.
"As a little one, it was ingrained in you," he says.
Greg, a West Columbia native with 33 years at TNMP, points out that linemen-sons from his generation are closer to retirement than not, so they play an important role in coaching a new generation to do their jobs effectively and safely. He's not rushing out the door yet, though.
"It's still a great place to work," Greg says. "We've got good people and I've never had a bad boss."
Beyond his regular job as a lineman, Greg has another post that's a labor of love – volunteering countless hours at Needville Little League. He has many assignments, from serving as treasurer to mowing the grass ("10.2 acres," he says) to being a baseball and softball umpire.
"That hat goes 360 degrees," he says. "Whatever has to be done, well, someone has to do it and it might fall back to me. But I enjoy it."
His efforts led him to being named national volunteer of the year by Little League Baseball and Softball in 2012 and to serve as home plate umpire for the Junior Little League Softball World Series in 2010.
"That was the pinnacle of my softball umpiring career," Greg says, "calling the game behind home plate on ESPN."
Working in a utility bucket truck instead of crouching behind a catcher on national TV may not be quite as exciting, but Greg still likes getting and keeping the lights on.
"I don't have to sit in an office all day," he says. "A lot of the work is the same, but it's in a different location every day."