Nebraska Honors 2020 and 2021 Utility Locators and Excavators

CONGRATULATIONS TO two outstanding Utility Locators and two Excavators from the state of Nebraska. They were awarded the coveted Golden Spray Can trophy and Golden Shovel trophy at the 2022 Nebraska Safety Summit in front of 1,250 attendees. Awards for 2020 & 2021 were given this year since last year’s event was cancelled by the pandemic.

In 2015, Nebraska wanted an alternative way of recognizing people that helped contribute the message of damage prevention. “Locate Rodeos and Excavator Rodeos help promote skill but don’t promote communications between locators and excavators. We wanted excavators to nominate locators they appreciate and in return, locators tell us what excavators they appreciate. Communicating between both parties to work together as a team is a large piece of damage prevention,” said Travis Beran from Subsurface Solutions, awards proctor.

Written submissions include an essay from their nominee. All winners are encouraged to speak at the conference and give their real life message of damage prevention, which usually is the highlight of the conference.

Best Locator 2020

Joe Stock – Metropolitan Utilities District, Omaha, NE, 25+ years locating

“Joe goes above and beyond his job description. He believes in communication and accuracy with every job he does!” – Chris Sacco

“Joe Stock has been accurately locating utilities since the late 1990s. He has located everything from water, gas, and electrical; he has also located with directional bore equipment. Joe has a professional attitude and has always taken pride in his job as a professional locator. Joe also shares his skills and experience by teaching locating classes at MUD. Joe has been runner up for the award as locator of the year. It is now time to recognize Joe with the title that he deserves, Locator of the Year.” –Steve Kovar

Best Locator 2021

Shawn Lankton, Magellan Pipeline, Omaha, NE, 25+ years locating

“Located for over 25 years now and advocates for damage prevention 100% of the time.” –Brent Briley

Best Excavator 2020

Hugo Perez, LTU-Water, Lincoln, NE

“Hugo is very experienced in providing a safe excavation. He uses caution and patience when digging in congested areas to limit damage to property and nearby utilities. Hugo sets a great example when preparing the site for excavation as well as during the excavation and post excavation cleanup. His efforts and the experience that he brings every day is very much appreciated.” –Anonymous

Best Excavator 2021

Corey “CJ” Lind, General Excavating, Lincoln, NE

“CJ has shown great ability to operate an excavator. For the last year, he has been a lead foreman at a job site with extensive safety protocols and has had zero incidents. CJ hasn’t had a safety issue or a hit utility for over five years with General Excavating and this just goes to show how great he is at his job. On top of his stellar performance as an operator, he also has the patience and ability to teach his skills and train upand- coming operators, paving the way for a new generation of operators for the underground construction industry.” – Autumn Tate

“CJ takes extraordinary care when doing any and all excavations. Will not dig until clear, will not dig if given no response and uses vacuum excavation when possible. Also takes the time to teach our young employees the importance of 811 and enforces the law!!” – J. Damico DP

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