CUSP Governing Board

Meet the dedicated board serving the Certified Utility Safety Professional (CUSP) organization.
The CUSP Governing Board is the oversight body for the Certified Utility Safety Professional (CUSP) credential and reports to the Utility Safety & Ops Leadership (USOLN) Board of Directors. It is a separate body in order to ensure the objectivity and impartiality of all decision-making and every aspect of the operations of the certification program. The CUSP Governing Board is responsible for making policy decisions, ruling on any disputes and assessing the effectiveness of the CUSP certification.

CUSP Governing Board

Chris Grajek

Chris Grajek,
Exam Development & Canada

CUSP, CRSP | HSE Director | Allteck Line Contractors, Inc.
As Allteck’s Director of Health and Safety since 2006, Chris manages and coordinates health, safety, work method and environmental programs and initiatives. Chris leads a team of trades trainers and field safety coordinators for local and international construction and maintenance activities. He is a CRSP and CUSP with extensive experience in heavy construction, high voltage transmission/distribution/substation projects, remote and heavy terrain environments, air and marine logistical operations, and various specialized work methods for electrical utility sector. Chris is involved with a number of transmission and distribution partnership task teams and a trainer in a number of utility sector disciplines. Chris was named the recipient of the John McRae Safety Leadership Award in 2017.
Michael Stremel

Michael Stremel,
CUSP Application Review

CUSP | Training Manager | Midwest Energy
Michael Stremel is Training Manager at Midwest Energy Inc., a customer-owned cooperative that services 50,000 electric and 42,000 gas customers in northwest Kansas. He has nearly 43 years of experience in the electric industry, including assisting in disaster relief efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and numerous ice storms and tornadoes. Michael serves on the Advisory Board of four Kansas vocational-technical schools and is a member of the Midwest Energy Association Safety and Training Committee. Michael was named the recipient of the John McRae Safety Leadership Award in 2012. He has been part of the International Lineman's Rodeo in Kansas City for over 18 years.
Don Adkins, CUSP | Safety and Training Manager | Davis H. Elliot

Don Adkins

CUSP | Safety and Training Manager | Davis H. Elliot

Joining Elliot in 1999, Don worked as an Apprentice Lineman, Journeyman Lineman, and served as Field Safety Director until his promotion to Managing Director of Safety and Training in 2005. He attended business administration courses at University of Kentucky and holds a wide range of certifications, including Certified Loss Control Professional, Green Certified Utility Safety Professional, Certified Environmental Safety and Health Trainer, Safety Management Specialist, Construction Safety and Health Technician, and Occupational Health and Safety Technologist. Don has over 22 years working in the Transmission and Distribution industry.

Nathan Boutwell

CUSP |Director, Health & Safety | Avangrid Networks.

Nathan has been with AVANGRID since November of 2014 and is currently the Director of Health & Safety for Avangrid Networks, a group of eight regulated utilities in New England and New York. He has 13 years of experience in the Health & Safety field, previously holding roles with Vermont Electric Power Company and General Electric. As an adult he earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Johnson State College in Vermont and is currently pursuing an M. Eng. In Advanced Safety Engineering and Management at the University of Alabama Birmingham. AVANGRID is working hard to become a utility of the future by investing in smarter and cleaner energy and solutions for their customers. Nathan’s role in this transformation is helping Avangrid Networks form a common safety culture that focuses on human and organizational performance, learning from events, and building resilience into normal operations. Nathan holds multiple certifications including the CUSP Green. He lives in Maine with his wife and children.

Tim Vassios

Tim Vassios

CUSP | Lead Instructor | Missouri Valley JATC

Tim is currently a Lead Instructor for Missouri Valley JATC. Previously, Tim was with Michels Corporation as power technical trainer for nearly three years. At Michels, Tim was the instructional designer, curriculum developer and instructor trainer for Michels’ Transmission Live Line Barehand Program. His other duties included the Grounding, Bonding and EPZ Field Training Program. He was also the administrator for his organization’s T&D PowerSkills Learning Management System. Prior to that, Tim taught pre-apprentices, apprentices and journey-level lineworkers, substation technicians and electricians through the Wisconsin Technical College System at Chippewa Valley Technical College (CVTC) in Eau Claire, Wisconsin. As Tim taught at CVTC, he was also completing an advanced degree in adult technical education while working part-time as a journeyman lineman with Michels Corporation. Prior to his current role blending his passions at Michels, Tim worked at Muscatine Power and Water, MidAmerican Energy, Colorado Springs Utilities and several additional contract employers on multiple utility property projects throughout the U.S. Tim also spent nearly 19 years at the City of Naperville/IBEW LU 09 outside of Chicago, where he first earned his journeyman status. Regardless of a person’s employer or position, Tim has a passion for helping others remain safe while they learn to become more productive electrical workers. Tim identifies himself as a humble journeyman lineman with refined soft skills just out helping to be his brother’s keeper. When he is not on the road teaching and training across North America, he is at home with his wife and their children. Time with family is what Tim cherishes most and is what drives his passion to lead others safely.


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