SIDNEY -- After 48 years of service to Wheat Belt Public Power District's customers, Dean Gipfert has decided it is time to retire.

Prior to his service at Wheat Belt, Gipfert worked as a machine operator at Pfizer for their seasonal hops run. He came to work at Wheat Belt in 1975 as an assistant warehouseman. He worked in that position for four years and moved to a Maintenance Equipment Operator position when it came open.

During this time he earned his journeyman lineman certification. In 1995, he became the Sidney Area Maintenance Lineman, and held that position until 2018 when he became the foreman for the Sidney area. Wheat Belt created a PCB Analyst position in 2022, and Dean moved into that position until his retirement.

When asked what he enjoyed most about working for Wheat Belt, he said, “Meeting people! Learning the how and why of the electrical operation. Learning that this business is self-rewarding in that you can learn and do more than just a job. When you go to build or restore power to a customer, they are more than a customer. They are people that you build a relationship with and they know you can get the job done.” Dean also stated, “working at Wheat Belt, you build a bond with the people you work with, it’s like brotherhood and family!”

He plans to fill his retirement days with honeydo’s, traveling and spending more time with the grandkids. Dean’s wife Nancy of 46 years, plans on retiring later in the year also. They have two daughters, Tiffany (David) Vallier, and Megan (Lane) Rathman, their late son Josh and five grandchildren, Addy, Khria, Logan, Brooklyn and Everly.