Investing in our youth

January 1, 2018

 • BY Ron Holcomb

Tipmont REMC sends high school students on the Indiana Youth to Washington, D.C., each summer.
Tipmont REMC sends high school students on the Indiana Youth to Washington, D.C., each summer.
Tipmont REMC sends high school students on the Indiana Youth to Washington, D.C., each summer.
Tipmont REMC sends high school students on the Indiana Youth to Washington, D.C., each summer.

I am continually astonished at the breakneck pace that our world continues to change. In just a few years, many of today’s youth will have jobs that don’t even exist yet. How do we prepare these young people for a future that is so dynamic?

No matter the specific skill required for a particular job, the formula for achieving success is generally the same. Every person who has succeeded in their career did so because they figured out how to show up, how to care and how to be open to new experiences. They define themselves not by their pedigree or natural abilities, but by their resilience, their effort, and their attitude. Often, those who have this drive just need someone to shine the light on what’s possible for them.

Tipmont is in a unique position to provide valuable opportunities for young people in the communities we serve. We define Tipmont as an essential services provider. Our role is to enable our members and our communities to pursue their goals, to tee them up for success. That’s why we sponsor two annual youth programs that provide a meaningful, and in some cases, a life-altering experience.

The first is Touchstone Energy Camp, a three-day outdoor experience at Camp Tecumseh for sixth-grade students. The other is Youth Tour, an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington D.C. for high school juniors. Tipmont has proudly led the state of Indiana in the number of students we’ve sponsored over the years. Applications for each program are currently open. If you know any students eligible for these experiences, please encourage them to apply at tipmont.org.

I’m also proud of how Tipmont’s staff volunteers their time to chaperone these experiences. Member Service Representative Traci Mountcastle and Journeyman Lineman Curly Jasheway served at Touchstone Energy Camp last year. Communication Director Rob Ford and member service representative Tracey Miller were chaperones on last year’s Youth Tour.

Operation Round Up and EnviroWatts, our two grant-giving programs, have distributed thousands of dollars to supporting youth development. Recent grants have provided children’s books, school supplies, community theater lighting and sound equipment, LED lighting for child care facilities, and scholarships to Ivy Tech’s School of Energy Technology. I encourage you to visit tipmont.org to learn how you can help support these important programs.

We will continue to support opportunities for youth in the communities we serve. I’d love to hear your thoughts or feedback on how we are doing, or your ideas on how we can continue to foster youth development in our communities. Send me an email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or write me at P.O. Box 20, Linden, IN 47955.

Ron Holcomb

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Ron is a 30 year veteran of the electric utility industry with extensive experience in power supply, advanced grid technologies, essential service operations, economic development and value-driven growth initiatives for combined electric and telecommunication utilities. During his career, he has led three utilities as President/CEO and provided management consulting to utilities across the country. Ron joined Tipmont REMC as CEO in summer 2013. He holds a B.S. in Physics from Austin Peay State University and an MBA from Murray State University.
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