Each year at the ElectriCities Annual Conference, we recognize individuals for their outstanding contributions to public power. At the 2022 conference:
- Stephen Peeler received the Lifetime Achievement Award.
- Nick Hendricks received the Distinguished Service Award.
- Tyler Berrier received the Rising Star Award.
Let’s give a huge shout of congratulations to the 2022 Public Power Lifetime Achievement Award winner, Stephen Peeler.
The Public Power Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes sustained long-term outstanding leadership, public power service, innovation, and creativity. A role model to many, Peeler has demonstrated all that and more.
When presenting Peeler’s award, ElectriCities board chair Donald Evans said, “I’ve known and worked with Steve for a long time. Anybody who has will tell you that he puts his heart and soul into his work, and that’s to the benefit of many.”
Peeler’s commitment to public power and service to North Carolina public power communities began more than 30 years ago when he joined the City of Lincolnton after 20 years with Duke Energy.
He has selflessly given his time and talent to many community and professional organizations in the City of Lincolnton, Lincoln County, and statewide. He served on the North Carolina Municipal Power Agency Number 1 Board of Commissioners for 28 years and currently serves on the Agency 1 Rate Committee.
In 2019, after serving as Lincolnton’s Public Works and Utilities Director for 30 years, Peeler retired from the City. But he didn’t stop supporting public power. He continued his service on the ElectriCities Board of Directors, even serving as board chair in 2020 and 2021.
At the conference, Chairman Evans said, “Whatever Steve is doing, he’s doing it for the good of everyone.” Peeler has said as much, telling another long-time public power champion, Dan Brown, that his work on the board isn’t only about his community’s interests. It’s about the interests of the group and everyone that group represents.
On receiving the award, Peeler said, “I could have filled that stage with people who had a part in helping, pulling, or pushing me. You can’t soar like an eagle if you’re surrounded by a bunch of turkeys—sometimes you even ride on their wings.”
Congratulations, Mr. Peeler!