Seattle City (spot)Light: Michael Ordona, Electrical Construction and Maintenance Supervisor

The Basics
Years of Service: 22+
Division: Utility Operations & Engineering
Role: I supervise crews who maintain and install equipment in substations for system reliability. We also maintain commercial and industrial substations throughout the city, occasionally supporting our generation projects: Skagit, Boundary, Cedar Falls, and Tolt Powerhouses.

Background
Hometown:
Born and raised in Seattle, Washington
Alma Mater: University of Washington (UW), South Seattle College and North Seattle Community College
Discipline/Trade of Study: I graduated from Shorewood High School and went to the University of Washington for general studies before obtaining an associate of applied science degree in multi-occupational trades from South Seattle Community College. I also completed the electrical constructor apprenticeship at City Light, and previously studied industrial electronics at North Seattle Community College. I am also recognized and have my journey worker card with the IBEW union through Local 77. Tell us about your family: Our family is a blended family. I reconnected with my wife Sarah at our high school reunion, but I’ve known her since we were in the same class back in the third grade. It’s amazing to see how we’ve both lived our lives after all these years, only to have it come back around to find each other. Between us, we have five wonderful children, four daughters aging 16-8, and one son who is 13. Our children make it easy on us, and often we forget that we are blended. During the pandemic, it’s been challenging at home with my wife teaching, and all the kids being online with school. When we were able to, one of our favorite things to do is vacation, get away, and explore new places – especially if it included a pool or a spot for the kids to spend many hours in the water! Hopefully we will be able to do it all again soon.

“What I love most about City Light is the ability to see firsthand how we can adjust as a utility to support the needs of the increasing demand of reliable power.”

Just for Fun
Where do you currently live and what’s something you love about the area?
I currently live in Snohomish County in an unincorporated area between Lynnwood and Bothell. What I love most about where I live is sharing the warmth in our house with my family and enjoying the sight of the forested greenbelt from our backyard.

What are some of your favorite activities/hobbies? Golf has to be my favorite activity to get outside, relax, and disconnect from daily life. My son and I have also picked up riding dirt bikes as another hobby that we enjoy. I love to get away and go on trips with my wife, daughters, and son in more normal times.

What brought you to City Light? I come from a family of electricians. They worked primarily in the shipyards and the state ferries, parks and were part of the IBEW (International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers) Local 46 Union. Other family members worked in different departments within the City of Seattle; that led me to complete the electrical apprenticeship at City Light while studying industrial electronics at North Seattle Community College.

What do you enjoy most about working at City Light? What I love most about City Light is the ability to see firsthand how we can adjust as a utility to support the needs of the increasing demand of reliable power. A good example is being a part of the construction of Denny Substation and seeing everything it takes to build a substation in a modern environment right in the heart of Seattle.