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Seattle City (spot)Light: Francis Sammy

Seattle City Light’s dynamic employees are the foundation upon which we achieve our public service and power goals. Seattle City (spot)Light introduces you to the great people behind the scenes helping to power Seattle. Meet Francis Sammy, electrical power systems engineer.

Francis has been with City Light for five years. He works with line crews to plan and write work orders for major equipment in the field. Every piece of equipment on a power pole has a purpose, and he helps to decide “what goes where, and why.” Prior to joining our team, Francis spent five years working at Tacoma Power. He grew up in New York and earned a degree in electrical engineering from Howard University in Washington, D.C.

francissammyElectrical Power Systems Engineer Francis Sammy

When I moved here from New York, I didn’t know anyone. I was just looking to get experience. This job helped me stay. With public power, the people always seemed really nice. There’s this comradery and friendship and a sense of duty. I was only supposed to be here for a summer but I got a full-time offer. I also fell in love with the Northwest people. And the different-ness. I know that’s not a word, but I’m talking about the juxtaposition of urban living with being surrounded by so many beautiful mountains, lakes and rivers. Growing up in the heart of Brooklyn, there’s not really much of that. Actually, there’s none of it. I remember as a kid I liked it when my dad would drive us in an RV to the Poconos. I also like to stay active. I play basketball downtown. I bike to work, rain or shine. I’d rather grit my teeth through rain than grip my steering wheel in traffic. And at least I’m expending some energy and getting something positive out of my commute.

I think the day goes by way faster when we can all smile. We can stay focused but still joke and have fun from time to time. I can be pretty witty – it’s a small gift. Witty and helpful, when the opportunity allows. I try to be as approachable as possible and I like to know people. I’m not a ‘reinvent the wheel’ type of person. It’s better to talk to people about what they’ve already done and learn from their experience. It’s weird being at this moment in my life and thinking about what shaped me as a person. There’s a lot of introspection. It’s the 1-month countdown until baby girl Sammy arrives. I think about what my parents gave me and how I can mold a similar life for my daughter. I’m looking forward to my next chapter.