TID linemen power to the top at rodeo

A team from the Turlock Irrigation District placed first in the journeyman category at the Public Power Lineworkers Rodeo in Omaha, Neb. The team -- Mark Pickens, Dustin Krieger, Josh Klikna and alternate Aaron Baker -- topped 38 other teams. They were tested on skills such as changing out switches, repairing downed lines and the simulated rescue of an injured co-worker. The 10th annual event, held March 26-27, was part of a technical training conference sponsored by the American Public Power Association. Pickens and Krieger were part of a TID team that placed first last year.

The Stanislaus County Commission on Aging released its list of Senior Award winners for this year, representing each of the five supervisorial districts. They are Frank Clark of Oakdale from District 1, Bob Endsley of Turlock from District 2, Kathryn Seamon of Modesto from District 3, Dionicio Daniel Cruz of Modesto from District 4 and Ernest and Norma Munoz of Patterson in District 5. They were nominated for their volunteer work in community service, humanitarianism, leadership, political advocacy or being a good neighbor. They'll be recognized by the Board of Supervisors at the May 18 meeting at 6:30 p.m. at Tenth Street Place, 1010 10th Street in Modesto.

Modesto Junior College's forensics team brought home 10 medals from the California Community College Speech and Debate Championships March 18-21 in Concord. They placed second out of 31 community colleges. Joshua Wardtook first in impromptu speaking and in parliamentary Lincoln-Douglas debate. Twin brothers Robert and Richard Birlew took first in parliamentary team debate while Christopher Yerzy and James Birlew medaled in parliamentary team debate. Other medalists: Robert Birlew, second, and Richard Birlew, third, in extemporaneous speaking; Phillip Azevedo, second in prose interpretation and duo interpretation; Jessica Medina, third in persuasive speaking.

Max Ottersbach, a member of the logging team at Modesto Junior College, placed second overall in a competition last month at Colorado State University.

Ottersbach of Ceres was MJC's entry in the Stihl Western National, held during the Western Forestry Clubs Logging Conclave. He finished with 34 points, four behind winner David Green of Central Oregon Community College.

Ottersbach will be an alternate at the Stihl International Contest in Salem, Ore., in August. Coach Katherine Kellogg-Campbell also will attend.

MJC was among 15 two- and four-year colleges at the conclave. They competed in the use of hand and power saws, ax throwing and other skills related to logging and forestry.

Ottersbach was fifth in birling, which involves balancing on a floating log, and fifth in the ax throw. He and teammate Michael Copeland of Turlock placed third in double bucksaw.

Susan Baker of Modesto and Eric Hermosillo of Denair also competed for MJC at the event. It was the third and final competition this year for the MJC team, which was revived two years ago.

Honors, appointments and commendations by the Stanislaus County Board of Supervisors:

• Employee Service Award and Retirement Resolution for David Ingersoll, director of Child Support Services

• Appointments of Jose Aldaco, Rich Holmer, Farrell Jackson, Bob Martina, Sam Cuellar and Mary Mendoza to the Stanislaus Economic Development and Workforce Alliance; Steve Boyd to the county Planning Commission; Ritta Sudnikoff to the Mental Health Board; Mark Fahlen to the Community Health Center Board; George Boodrookas to the county's Economic Development Action Committee

• Commended Sharon Cummings upon retirement from the county counsel's office.

• Accepted the resignation of George Gaekle and approved the appointment of Matthew Machado to the San Joaquin Valley Rail Committee.

Submit items for "Success & Service" to