A Thank You Tour Like No Other

Eastern Service Area lineworkers received thank you cards from Winthrop Charter School students - Madelyn Bouton, Dino Terzic & Olivia Bouton pictured above in red - and homemade cookies from Brandon Academy students, Daniella & Logan Llerena.

After Hurricane Ian, the outpouring of support and gratitude toward Tampa Electric and our partner utilities has been tremendous. From local schools and nonprofit youth organizations to businesses and health clubs, the ‘thank you’ notes are pouring in.

So, when 7-year-old Madelyn Bouton found out her second-grade class at Winthrop Charter School was making special thank you cards for Tampa Electric, she immediately told her teacher where her mom worked. “Maddy came home from school and said, ‘Mommy I told my teacher you work at TECO,’” recalled Jaime Bouton, Residential Energy Audit Supervisor. “They were making letters for lineworkers so they sent them home with her to see if I could pass them out.”

Madelyn Bouton
handing a thank you card to Line Worker Marie Tarlecky.

Of course, with 20 years under her belt at TECO, Jaime knew exactly who to reach out to and her colleagues were eager to make it happen! Madelyn, joined by her little sister, Olivia, and schoolmates Dino Terzic and Mason Bornfleth (also children of Tampa Electric team members) recently made two special visits to express their gratitude.

Eastern Service Area (ESA) was the first stop on the thank you tour. The gracious group of Winthrop students were joined by a few Brandon Academy students, Daniella and Logan Llerena, who brought the lineworkers homemade chocolate cookies. One-by-one, the kids handed out thank you cards and a personal letter from Ms. Anna Shirina, Madelyn’s teacher, stating, “Thank you for working tirelessly to ensure power was restored...we appreciate you all more than you’ll ever know!”

Second grader Dino Terzic handing out high fives and smiles.

“That made our day,” expressed ESA Manager of Distribution Operations Matt Connatser.

“I think it is just amazing that even kids recognize how much work TECO does for our community and how impactful we are,” said Dino’s mom, Sana Terzic, Regulatory Compliance Analyst. “I am very proud to work for TECO especially because of the pride it brings to our kids. It was a great experience for my son to meet those who are on the front lines and just say thank you.”

Central Service Area lineworkers received thank you cards from Winthrop Charter School students – Madelyn & Olivia Bouton and Mason Bornfleth (pictured above in red), and Koa Biandudi (pictured above in blue holding sign) from the Boys & Girls Clubs of Tampa Bay.

The very next day, the Winthrop crew visited Central Service Area (CSA) where they were joined by 6-year-old Koa Biandudi, who had dozens of thank you cards to pass out on behalf of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Tampa Bay. “We value our partners and saw all the hard work TECO employees, especially lineworkers, have put in the last few weeks preparing for the storm and quickly restoring power to all our Clubs.” said D.J. Gothe, Chief Financial Officer for Boys & Girls Clubs of Tampa Bay. “We wanted to say thank you from all our kids, families and staff.”

Kindergartener Olivia Bouton passing out cookies to show her appreciation.

The entire experience not only makes Jaime proud to be a part of TECO, but equally proud to be Madelyn’s mother. “This is definitely a proud mommy moment,” said Jaime. “She knows Mommy has to work long hours during a storm. It’s very heartwarming and she just has a huge heart, so it made me really happy to see her be so excited about this and want to share it with everyone.”

“Mason loved passing out the cards to my team members at Central Service Area,” said Tiffany

After expressing their appreciation, the kids got to explore a TECO bucket truck, receive a custom tour of CSA and try on some new lineworker headlamps. “They were spoiled today,” said Jaime although we’re pretty sure ESA and CSA crews feel the same way about their special visitors with notes of gratitude, tasty treats and warm smiles.

We love hearing from our neighbors are honored to serve this great community!