For 20 years, Appalachian Power employees have celebrated Read to Me Day by sharing a special read aloud book with students in elementary schools across West Virginia, Virginia and Tennessee. It is an Appalachian Power tradition.
This year, the company has selected the book, “Someone Builds the Dream,” by Lisa Wheeler, for the program. The book, read by Aaron Walker, Appalachian Power vice president distribution, was added to the company’s read-aloud collection of 21 videos on YouTube, and a copy was donated to each school library.
The YouTube video playlist was provided exclusively to all 450-plus elementary schools in the company’s West Virginia, Virginia and Tennessee service territory for educational use.
“Read to Me Day is a way that we can show every school we serve that we value education and support what they do,” said Chris Beam, Appalachian Power president and a volunteer reader. “We are looking forward to the day when we can visit our local schools and read in-person, but our YouTube playlist has been well received and allows educators the ability to access the reading of great read-aloud stories year-round.”
The company started participating in Read to Me Day in 2001 and estimates that it has read to 280,000 students and donated about 7,500 books since then.
It has 1 million customers in Virginia, West Virginia and Tennessee (as AEP Appalachian Power). It is part of American Electric Power, which is focused on building a smarter energy infrastructure and delivering new technologies and custom energy solutions. AEP’s approximately 16,800 employees operate and maintain the nation’s largest electricity transmission system and more than 223,000 miles of distribution lines to efficiently deliver safe, reliable power to nearly 5.5 million customers in 11 states. AEP is also one of the nation’s largest electricity producers with approximately 30,000 megawatts of diverse generating capacity, including 5,500 megawatts of renewable energy.