Rising to the challenge

How Catawba Nuclear Station employees celebrated its 35th anniversary

Despite the coronavirus pandemic, employees at Catawba Nuclear Station rose to the challenge to support York County neighbors in need through their participation in the station’s 35th Anniversary Giving Challenge, part of its celebration of powering the Carolinas since 1985.

Altogether, employees collected approximately 18,759 items that were donated to 34 York County nonprofit organizations.

Starting Jan. 6, 2020, members of Catawba’s various departments and employee engagement groups selected at least one of 35 designated weeks during the year to collect a minimum of 35 items of their choosing to be given to a charitable organization.

Catawba Nuclear Station celebrated 35 years of commercial operation in 2020.

Items and charities ranged from blankets and space heaters for clients of the York County Council on Aging, to canned goods and hygiene items for shelters and food pantries, to tote bags donated to the Foster Care Closet of York County. Recipient organizations were located in Clover, Fort Mill, Rock Hill and York, South Carolina, providing much-needed assistance across the county. 

“Thank you for helping our riders shine and show off their abilities by keeping their horses happy and healthy with the amazing supplies you brought us,” Wendy Schonfeld, executive director of RideAbility, said in a thank you note. “We are so blessed by your donations.”

“Our teammates have a long history of supporting the communities surrounding Catawba Nuclear Station. And given the pandemic, they recognized the needs were greater than ever,” says Tom Simril, Catawba’s site vice president. “Being able to connect our giving challenge to our 35th anniversary made for a great way to celebrate over the 35 weeks in 2020 while helping others.”

Catawba celebrated 35 years of operation on June 29, 2020. The power plant began generating electricity to help meet the Piedmont Carolinas’ energy needs in 1985. During the past 35 years, the station has safely and efficiently produced over 594 million megawatt-hours of electricity.

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