The Association of Louisiana Electric Cooperatives (ALEC) recently announced Thomas Massey will represent the Louisiana electric cooperatives as the 2020-2021Youth Leadership Council Representative. Thomas was chosen in the spring to represent South Louisiana Electric Cooperative Association (SLECA) on the annual Youth Tour trip to Washington, D.C.
After the COVID-19 pandemic forced the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) to cancel the 2020 Youth Tour and the Youth Leadership Council (YLC) activities for the upcoming year, ALEC decided to go forward with the YLC contest and offer the recipient the $1000 Sandy Stockwell YLC scholarship. The scholarship is named after the ALEC retiree who dedicated her career to the Youth Tour and YLC programs.
“It was very disappointing to have to break the news to all the Youth Tour delegates that we would not be going to Washington, D.C. this year,” said Louisiana Youth Tour Director, Addie Armato. Typically the YLC would have received two additional trips returning to Washington, D.C. for the YLC conference and then traveling to the NRECA Annual Meeting next spring. “Despite these unprecedented challenges, ALEC is going to make the best out of this situation by making sure Thomas’s reign as YLC is a memorable one,” promised Armato.
Thomas will be entering his Junior year of high school. He is a home-school student that aspires to attend college. Although he does not have a career path planned at this time, he knows he wants to be a well-informed, educated, leader in his community.
Thomas is certainly making an impact on his community even as a high school student. He volunteers at the National World War II Museum, the Terrebonne General Medical Center, and his local church.
Joe Ticheli, General Manager of SLECA, said, “I’m extremely excited to have a SLECA delegate represent our cooperative and the state of Louisiana this coming year. It’s going to be a very fun and educational experience. The board of directors and employees are very proud of Thomas Massey.”
During the winning video, Thomas highlighted the south Louisiana culture, natural resources, and economy noting that SLECA is one of the backbones of his community. He also talked about the diversity in his area and how everyone lives together to form a great community.
YLC contestants were asked to make a 3-5 minute video about themselves and their community. Delegates were encouraged to be creative. The videos were then scored by a panel of judges.