When Jerry Hobelman graduated from high school in Grant, Nebraska, he thought he wanted to be an accountant. He enjoyed math and any task that involved numbers.
After two years of college, he realized that a career as an accountant wasn’t the best fit for him. The idea of sitting at a desk all day was no longer intriguing. Instead, Hobelman took a 180 and went to Northeast Community College to pursue a utility line degree.
“If I’ve learned anything in life, it’s that you just have to laugh,” Hobelman said. “Don’t take life too seriously.”
Being a lineworker involves problem-solving with math daily. He was inspired to become a lineworker after watching his father, a Midwest Electric lineman, and going on after hours calls. He knew the position involved a lot of math along with the benefits of outdoor work.
Hobelman interned in the summer of 1989 at Dawson PPD and was hired as an apprentice lineman after graduation in 1990. Hobelman met his wife, Amy, and together they raised their family in Lexington. He later became a construction crew foreman in 2006.
Wanting to better himself and take a deeper dive into numbers, Hobelman became a staking engineer in 2010. His days were filled with calculations for appropriate pole span length, length of wire needed, and overall cost of the projects – a skill he first learned on the construction crew.
In 2015, Hobelman became the Manager of Purchasing, Facilities and Fleet. He built relationships with vendors, maintained budgets, and found creative ways to bring in necessary supplies when supply chains fell short.
Hobelman says that he is looking forward to retirement with his wife. They plan to travel and spend more time with family and “chase after grandkids.” The couple also enjoys meeting new people while finding and selling antiques at their booth in Grand Island.
Induction cooking is one of the most efficient, safest and most precise ways to prepare food. Unlike traditional electric or gas cooktops and stovetops, no flame or burner is necessary.
Dawson PPD Board President and Nebraska Rural Electric Association Board President
When a major outage occurs, our crews restore service to the greatest number of people in the shortest time possible – until everyone has power.