PUD 1’s recently retired director of operations Tracy Colard was presented with the Washington Public Utility District’s Association’s highest honor, the WPUDA Lifetime Achievement Award. The awards banquet was held in conjunction with WPUDA’s annual conference at the Northern Quest Resort & Casino in Spokane, WA on December 5, 2013.
Colard was recognized for his “exceptional leadership and commitment to the philosophy and purpose of the association and public utilities” according to WPUDA. Colard retired this fall after 10 years of service with Mason County PUD No. 1 and an impressive 43 years in the utility industry. He held several positions from journeyman lineman, to union representative and lobbyist, and ultimately transitioned into management where he oversaw the operations of both the water and electric departments for PUD 1before focusing solely on the electric side of the business. His crowning achievement was the completion of PUD 1’s t3ba’das Substation, which was finished on time and under budget.
In his nomination, PUD 1 general manager Steven Taylor cited Colard’s leadership and contributions to the PUD 1 staff and customers stating, “He leads by example and he has gained the trust and respect of his workforce…their primary goal is to keep the power on and provide excellent customer service to our customers and ratepayers.” He added, “This is the true hallmark of Tracy’s commitment to philosophy of public power and of his leadership.” Under Colard’s direction, PUD 1 received honors from the Northwest Public Power Association for safety and the Washington State Department of Health for crossing departmental lines to assist customers during a major water quality incident resulting from a major storm event.
Colard humbly accepted his award and addressed the crowd stating, “I feel like this award should really go to my crews who do all the hard work” and he thanked the association for bestowing him with the honor citing it as “one of the highlights of my 40-plus years in the utility industry”. Colard was one of two recipients of the Lifetime Achievement Award, the other being given to Douglas County PUD Commissioner Lynn Heminger for his 22 years of service as a commissioner.
WPUDA is an industry member organization representing 27 nonprofit, community-owned utilities that provide electricity, water and wastewater services, and wholesale telecommunications to more almost one-million residential, business, and industrial customers in communities across the State of Washington.
### Founded in 1935, Mason County PUD No. 1 was the first public utility district formed in Washington State. PUD 1 provides non-for-profit water, sewer and electric services to approximately 7,100 customers in both Mason and Jefferson counties. The District’s mission is to provide customers with safe, reliable and locally-controlled utility services with the highest possible value at the lowest possible cost.
December 10, 2013/PUD 1 Press Release