The Year 2020 has challenged us in ways we never could have imagined. From a global pandemic to national political unrest, to a rare derecho weather event, INTREN has had to navigate with a new awareness and improved agility. We have been forced to accelerate and deepen the conversations we were having about diversity, equity, and inclusion and we have learned to pivot instantly when regulations and guidance changed related to keeping our teams safe. Through it all, we have emerged stronger, more connected, and more committed.
Given that INTREN’s normal work includes emergency disaster response, it shouldn’t be surprising that INTREN started its COVID-19 preparation even before the virus had a name. We started briefing our nearly 2,000 employees on social distancing and other steps outlined by the CDC to prevent virus transmission in February. We did what we needed to do to keep our field crews working from coast to coast, supporting the critical electric and gas infrastructure work needed by our utility customers during this pandemic.
INTREN’s efforts were led by an experienced team for pandemic preparedness, including members who worked on a utility’s pandemic preparedness team, managed utility operations during an infectious disease outbreak, led a state-wide respiratory health organization and directed response teams for disaster responses. We have now had a limited number of positive cases (all well), and we have kept all our essential workers working.
When many of the cities we do business in experienced the effect of protests, from Baltimore to St. Louis to Philly to San Francisco, our teams listened with compassion and continued to maintain electric and gas infrastructure. When asked about our position during the midst of unrest, we simply stated “We Stand for Love.” While that might not be a typical corporate term, we thought it captured what we saw from coast to coast—workers who didn’t look alike working side by side, employees stopping to help neighbors in new and creative ways, courageous support for our customers and each other. I just finished a three-month company-wide tour, and I was proud to witness the INTREN spirit in action in each and every office I visited.
Today, we all proudly wear our declaration of #INTRENSTRONG in honor of what we have done and will do together to serve our customers and our communities. While the world may continue to present unprecedented situations, we know that our planning, our execution, and our spirit will provide the foundation for meeting each new demand with optimism, resolve, resilience and respect.