College Picks Southern Company Unit as Corporate Citizen of the Year

Bishop State Community College in Mobile, Ala., has named Southern Company as its 2000 Corporate Citizen of the Year for its contribution to workforce development in the area and in the state of Alabama.

Specifically, Bishop State singled out Southern Company's generation group, which represents 6,000 of the company's 30,000 employees. Southern Company operates more than 66 power generating plants across the Southeast, meeting the energy needs of more than 11 million people.

Bishop State President Dr. Yvonne Kennedy praised Southern Company Generation's commitment. "Over the past year, Southern Company Generation contributed greatly to workforce development in the state of Alabama and, in particular, the Mobile area," said Dr. Kennedy, "by partnering with Bishop State and other selected community colleges to offer job readiness skills training to prospective applicants."

Dr. Kennedy added that the efforts of Southern Company Generation in the Mobile area alone will "surely enhance opportunities for persons to become employed."

"We are honored by this recognition," said Charles D. McCrary, president of Southern Company Generation and the company's chief production officer. "We've always taken seriously our responsibility to not only meet the energy needs of the people of Alabama and across the Southeast but also serve the communities in which our people live and work in other ways as well. As a company, we like to say we generate growth by generating the electricity needed to meet a growing demand. But we know that as a corporate citizen we must also help generate growth in people by participating in efforts that enhance their personal skills and abilities. It's good for them, it's good for the community."

McCrary would like to see other businesses and industries support such programs. "It's important not only for Southern Company but also important for the state and region that people have the basic skills they need to become employed," said McCrary.

The job readiness training sponsored by Southern Company Generation includes a 16-week program that focuses on skills such as applied mathematics, applied technology, reading, life skills and career development, among others. Much of the training is also computerized, which helps participants develop proficiencies in computer use. To date, 36 people have completed the program, with some 60 people in Alabama and Georgia currently participating.

Southern Company is an international energy company that operates more than 48,000 megawatts of electric generating capacity worldwide. It is the largest producer of electricity in the United States and one of the world's largest independent power producers. Southern Company subsidiaries and their affiliates serve 12 million retail customers worldwide and millions more through the wholesale market. Based in Atlanta, Southern Company is the parent firm of Alabama Power, Georgia Power, Gulf Power, Mississippi Power and Savannah Electric.

Through its Southern Energy Inc. subsidiary, Southern Company has operations in 13 countries on five continents and has a growing presence in North America with assets in the Northeast, the Midwest, California and Texas. Southern Company also provides energy-related marketing trading and technical services in the United States and Europe and offers Southern LINC wireless telecommunications.

SOURCE: Southern Company

Contact: Lynn Williams of Southern Company, 205-257-2630, or
pager, 800-204-8584, or