Senior Hourly Trader (Retired)
Thomas McCarley is a Senior Hourly Trader at ACES. After an extensive career in the energy industry, including more than 20 years of service at ACES, Thomas will be retiring in March 2022.
Thomas’ career has taken many turns. After completing high school, Thomas was drafted to serve in the U.S. Army in Vietnam. Upon completing six years of service in the Army Security Agency (of which one year was spent in Vietnam), he went to school and earned a degree in electronics engineering. After earning his degree, Thomas accepted a position with Carolina Power and Light (now Duke Energy) as an Instrumentation and Control Technician. In this position, Thomas performed maintenance at various plants, including Roxboro, Darlington County, and Cape Fear. Thomas became a member of Sandford Relay Maintenance, which was responsible for the Harris Switchyard and generator protection and
because of these responsibilities was in the control room of the Harris Nuclear Plant the night it first synchronized to the grid.
Thomas then shifted his focus toward operations when he took a position as a System Dispatcher for the Skaale Energy Center before joining North Carolina Electric Membership Corporation (NCEMC) to help them implement various systems. In 2001, ACES opened its East Regional Trading Center and assumed responsibility for NCEMC’s 24×7 operations. As part of this transition, Thomas joined ACES as an Hourly Trader.
Thomas says that he’s enjoyed his time on ACES’ Hourly Desk. “ACES has been a great company to work for,” Thomas says. “The shift work of an Hourly Trader has suited my lifestyle well, and I never had a desire to leave the Hourly Desk. The hours and schedule have allowed me to travel and pursue interests, hobbies, and various activities that I may have struggled to find time for otherwise,” he adds.
One of the ways Thomas utilizes his time is by giving back to his community and doing charity work. He often visits with people who are in nursing homes and helps them get various items that they need. “There are a lot of people that have wound up in unfortunate circumstances. It doesn’t take a lot of effort to just show people kindness and try to make them smile,” Thomas says.
Reflecting on his upcoming retirement, Thomas is looking forward to pursuing additional charity work, learning to play guitar, restoring and racing cars, and spending more time with his children, grandchildren, and wife. “My wife is an incredible table tennis player and I’m looking forward to spending more time helping her pursue her passions and hobbies and watching her compete in local and regional competitions,” Thomas says. Thomas is also looking forward to having more time to travel. “My wife and I love to travel. Prior to COVID, we’d been all over the U.S., traveled to England, Turkey, and Japan, and would try to go to China once a year to see my wife’s family. Unfortunately, international travel has been difficult with all of the various restrictions.
We hope conditions improve and we are able to make up for the travel we’ve missed over the last few years,” Thomas says. When asked if he has any final thoughts on ACES and advice to give employees, Thomas says, “ACES is a great, dynamically growing company that offers opportunities for career advancement to those that want it. ACES’ services have expanded beyond what I could have imagined
and the people I’ve worked with are always striving for perfection. It has been an absolute pleasure to work alongside everyone at ACES. ‘Excellence in Energy’ isn’t just a tag line, it’s something we all believe in and strive for. There are always opportunities to learn something new and anything is possible if you set your mind to it.” Thomas also stresses the importance of balancing work ambitions with other areas of life, reminding us that, “The most valuable asset you have is time. You can own the universe, but you can’t buy a second of time. Use your time wisely.”
ACES would like to thank Thomas for his dedication and contributions to ACES over the past two decades. We wish him well in his retirement.