• La Plata Electric Association names college scholarship recipients


    Academic achievements of seven area high school seniors recognized

    Recipients of the 2012-2013 La Plata Electric, John Voelker Memorial, Basin Electric Power Cooperative and the Tri-State Generation and Transmission scholarships have been announced by La Plata Electric Association (LPEA).

    The 28th Annual LPEA College Scholarships, two four-year scholarships (up to $7000 annually or $28,000 for tuition, books and fees) have been awarded to Jade Gutierrez, a senior at Bayfield High School, and Silas Thompson, a senior at Pagosa Springs High School. Gutierrez will attend the University of Colorado Boulder, majoring in marketing. Thompson is heading to Fort Collins to study civil engineering at Colorado State University.

    Brittney Benavidez, a senior at Ignacio High School, and Daniel Rowley, a senior at Durango High School, have been awarded LPEA’s 12th Annual John Voelker Memorial Scholarships for vocational, technical school or junior college. Benavidez will study business at Pueblo Community College, while Rowley will attend Eastern Arizona College with a pre-engineering major. LPEA’s John Voelker Memorial Scholarship is named after LPEA board member John Voelker, who was instrumental in creating the scholarship that awards up to $5,000 per year to students planning to attend a vocational, technical school or junior college. Voelker perished in the Egyptian Air plane crash in October of 1999.

    Amanda McAliney, a senior at Durango High School, received the $1,000 Basin Electric Power Cooperative Scholarship. With plans to attend either the University of Wyoming or UC Santa Barbara, McAliney will pursue a degree in chemical engineering.

    Amanda Urban, a senior at Durango High School, and Ryley Gardner, a senior at Pagosa Springs High School, each received $500 scholarships from Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association. Urban plans to study business/economics, and colleges under consideration are Rice University, Stanford University and University of Denver. Gardner will attend Missouri University of Science & Technology, and major in civil engineering.

    “We had a tremendous response to our call for applications this year,” said Jeannie Bennett, coordinator of LPEA’s scholarship process. “All of our scholarship recipients are great students with exciting potential. At LPEA we are proud to be able to offer these educational opportunities to help build for the future.”

    Scholarships are offered annually through LPEA, with recipients selected by a volunteer committee representing communities within the cooperative’s service territory. The 2012 committee included Sheri Rochford Figgs, executive director, Durango Arts Center (Durango), Peter Marshall, general manager, Doubletree Hotel (Durango), Vaughn Morris, executive director, Boys & Girls Club of La Plata County (Bayfield), Betty Jo Quintana, Ignacio School Board – retired (Ignacio), Lara Moore, executive director, Pagosa Springs Center for the Arts (Pagosa), and Tim Moore, co-director, Thingamajig Theatre, Pagosa Springs Center for the Arts (Pagosa).

    In addition to their financial awards, scholarship recipients have the opportunity to attend the week-long electric cooperative summer Leadership Camp. Scholarship winners are also asked to attend the LPEA Annual Meeting as well as a regularly scheduled LPEA board meeting to personally meet the directors.

    For further information or for questions regarding future scholarship opportunities, contact Jeannie Bennett at 970.382.3505, or jbennett@lpea.coop.

    LPEA, a Touchstone Energy Cooperative established in 1939, provides to its more than 30,000 members, with in excess of 42,000 meters, safe, reliable electricity at the lowest reasonable cost, while being environmentally responsible. For additional information, contact LPEA at 970.247.5786 or visit www.lpea.coop.

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