As we celebrate Women’s History Month, we’re recognizing a few women at AEP Ohio who inspire us. In this Q&A series, we share their stories—from how they joined the industry to their inspirations to their advice to other women.
Kim Crump is a field services supervisor who has worked at AEP Ohio for more than 42 years. She manages a team of 18 specialists who help maintain more than 517,000 electric meters installed in the Columbus area responding to a gamut of service-related issues, from billing questions to meter replacements.
Read below as Kim shares more about herself, her job and advice for those interested in a career in energy.
How did you get into this business?
When I got out of school, I went into office work, and my career just continued to progress. I went from junior clerk to immediate clerk to senior clerk to non-exempt supervisor to supervisor, and I enjoyed each opportunity. Over the years, my colleagues have grown to feel more like family.
In what ways has the industry evolved?
I remember a time when we used to go out and actually read meters. Automation and smart technology has made a big difference in that our workers are no longer put into unsafe situations, like being chased by a dog. Smart meters are a lot better for our customers and our employees, providing more accurate billing and easy management of energy usage.
Who inspires you?
My family. They keep me going. I have had a tremendous amount of supervisors over the years who I have loved and admired, but without my family backing me up, I don’t know that I could make it to work every day. And—I don’t know if it’s OK to say this—but I inspire myself, too. That’s important. Because if you can’t love yourself and do things for yourself, no one is going to do it for you.
What advice would you give to young women looking to pursue a career in energy?
Stick with it. Hang in there. Do all that you can to learn because there’s so much out there. Women can go anywhere. Our Women in Linework program is an example of something that wasn’t around when I was younger, and there are just so many open doors and opportunities available now, so take them seriously. AEP is a great company to work for. You can believe me—42 years later, and I’m still here!