War Dam Engineer


I have the opportunity to work in the
most beautiful places in our state. I consider myself very fortunate. It’s
almost like every day is a vacation. My name is Herbie Johnson, I’m the general
manager for Southern ompany over their hydro generation. My father and
grandfather built houses, so I always had an interest in construction and that
ultimately led me to civil engineering. I toured the schools and I felt Auburn
really had one of the best programs. I feel very fortunate to have started my job 25 years ago in hydro at Alabama Power Company. I managed other plants within our system, I had a chance to do some large
construction projects and prove the ability to transfer my skills of civil
and project management to a large scale and I had the opportunity to come back
into our hydro organization as their general manager and support this great
team of people that it takes to keep our fleet running. My work routine is varied.
There’s hardly a day that I have to repeat the same task so it’s always an
interesting challenge. I’ve had the opportunity to be president of the
National Hydro Association for the past two years. And in that process we really
work on legislation to keep the process of Licensing and relicensing as
efficient as possible. This is the first green energy of the state, it was the
first type of plant built at Lay Dam 100 years ago. This energy source is
flexible so how you manage it for the ratepayers and the customers use is very
interesting and very valuable to offsetting higher cost of generation at
peak times of use. That’s one of the primary purposes of this and the value
it brings. One thing I really enjoy about this work
is it’s not just a five-year twenty-year look, you’ve got to really think out in
the future. I got to pull that civil engineering background and foundation
that Auburn gave me. I consider myself the luckiest man Alabama Power Company to have the chance to manage this resource for them.

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