American Transmission Co.

Helping to keep the lights on, businesses running and communities strong®

Blog | American Transmission Co. - Part 30

Nesting platforms a major component of our Avian Protection Program

Nesting platforms are used by 87 percent of Wisconsin’s breeding Osprey population.

It is cold and snowy in most of American Transmission Co.’s service area, and though many birds have flown south for the winter, they will be back before we know it to begin spring nesting.

Bird nests on utility equipment can pose safety problems for the birds and jeopardize the reliability of the transmission system. We have more than 100 nesting platforms located on or adjacent to our transmission structures to protect birds and support successful breeding. We also partner with other agencies, organizations and individuals to erect platforms in other areas away from transmission lines.

Watch this video to learn more about our Avian Protection Program and how it supports our environmental commitment and the reliability of our electric transmission system.

Milwaukee Bucks’ 3-pointers greening up Wisconsin schools






The Milwaukee Bucks are halfway through the 2018-19 season, and their current record has the Bucks stampeding to the top of the Eastern conference. Their 3-point shots are on the rise too, having scored 316 at home thus far.

“As an organization, I think we watch the Bucks home games a little differently than other fans,” said ATC Director of Corporate Communications, Anne Spaltholz. “For every 3-point shot they make, we see a tree that will be donated to a Wisconsin school.”

This is the third consecutive year ATC and the Bucks have teamed up for Trees for Threes. During the 2016-17 season, ATC awarded 355 trees, and last season we awarded 343 trees to 83 schools across our service area. To date, over 100 schools have applied for the program and the number keeps rising – along with the Buck’s 3-pointers.

“We care about the communities we serve, and this is an incredible partnership because it directly benefits children and schools in those communities.” said Spaltholz.

You can keep score on how many Buck’s 3-pointers will be turned into trees by visiting the Trees for Threes web page. Schools may apply for tree funding until April 8, 2019. Visit our website for additional details.

ATC’s top 12 of 2018

It’s the end of the year, and everyone is making their top 10 lists. We’ve had a great year, so we’re not about to miss the opportunity to share our top memories of 2018. Since we can’t stop at just 10, here are American Transmission Co.’s top 12 community-minded memories of 2018:

  1. We installed a solar-powered, streaming video camera to provide views of the Pheasant Branch Conservancy in Middleton, Wisconsin, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. all year long.
  2. We introduced a new Pollinator Planting Program to provide funding for the purchase of low-growing, native perennials that can be planted within transmission line rights-of-way.
  3. We welcomed four high school students to our Pewaukee office from Cristo Rey Jesuit High School as part of the school’s work-study program.
  4. We welcomed more than a dozen nesting pairs of Great Blue Herons to a Rookery we installed at one of our substations this spring.
  5. Our CEO co-chaired the United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County 2018 campaign, a record-breaking 50 percent of our employees donated to the United Way, and we achieved a new fundraising record on behalf of ATC for the United Way.
  6. We collaborated with Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary to create a book highlighting 100 birds in our service area and distributed them to Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary 4K students.
  7. We completed our sixth year of the Community Planting Program, bringing the total amount of funds awarded to eligible municipalities and counties to nearly $300,000.
  8. We sponsored the planting of a new tree in Wisconsin for every 3-pointer the Milwaukee Bucks hit at home this season through the Trees for Threes program. We’re at 224 for the 2018-2019 season, and counting!
  9. We avoided burning 2,226 gallons of gas and emitting 43,160 pounds of CO2 by driving our fleet of electric vehicles for business travel this year.
  10. Our employees volunteered more than 700 hours in 2018.
  11. We gave back to the communities we serve with monetary contributions totaling more than $900,000.
  12. We once again helped meet the electric needs of more than 5 million people in the Upper Midwest.

Want to learn more about our environmental and community commitment? Be sure to check our Environmental, Social and Governance Report to keep track of our efforts year-round.

Dane County employees get into the giving season with drives for local groups

Tom, transmission planning, drops off donations at the giving tree in Madison.

Each holiday season, employees across the company team up to contribute time, funds and resources to organizations in the communities we serve. This year, employees from our Madison and Cottage Grove offices grabbed tags for Domestic Abuse Intervention Services most-needed Wish List items and placed them under our giving tree.

“I’ve been very blessed – I have a great job, family, friends and a safe home,” said Tia, American Transmission Co. local relations. “I donate to help those in need.”

More than 35 sets of new children’s pajamas, along with tote bags, socks, hats and gloves will be delivered to shelter residents.

Madison and Cottage Grove employees also contributed to the Second Harvest Foodbank NBC15 Share Your Holidays to eliminate hunger campaign. The offices contributed the equivalent of about 1,100 meals.

Wisconsin Electrical Utilities/Department of Military Affairs partnership awarded by U.S. Army

The Wisconsin Electrical Utilities/Department of Military Affairs Public-Private Partnership was recognized with a 2018 Army Community Partnership Award during a ceremony held Dec. 4 at the Pentagon in Washington.

The award, presented by the Department of the Army Office of Installation Management, recognizes the Department of Military Affairs’ success in collaborating with private partners in the electric utilities field throughout Wisconsin to mitigate risk to the power grid, identify opportunities to improve incident recovery, and develop practices that demonstrate an “all hazards” approach to cooperation between government and private entities.

Seven U.S. Army installations and neighboring communities were selected for demonstrating partnerships that enhance Army readiness, modernize Army processes and improve business reform while building stronger community relationships.

The Department of Military Affairs and Wisconsin utility companies have worked collaboratively on a number of exercises incorporating physical and cyber threats to the state’s power grid as well as the state’s response to long-term power outages.

The public-private partnership brings together the Wisconsin Department of Military Affairs, which includes Wisconsin Emergency Management and the Wisconsin National Guard, and the following utility companies: Alliant Energy, American Transmission Company, Madison Gas and Electric, WEC Energy Group, WPPI Energy and Xcel Energy.

Photo caption: David Wilson (center), manager of corporate security at ATC, was on hand in Washington to accept the award on behalf of the partnership, along with Brig. Gen. David O’Donahue, deputy adjutant general, Wisconsin Department of Military Affairs; Brig. Gen. (Ret.) Mark Michie, chief of staff, joint staff, Wisconsin Department of Military Affairs; and Lt. Col. G. David Brown, deputy director, domestic operations, Wisconsin Army National Guard. The delegation is flanked by Jordan Gillis (far left), acting assistant secretary of the Army for Installations, Energy and the Environment; and Lt. Gen. Gwen Bingham (far right), Army assistant chief of staff for Installation Management.