SMG announces 2012 award winnersPaul Holum from Elk River, Minn. has been named the winner in the National Fire Protection Association’s (NFPA) NEC Challenge– a competition that pits electrical professionals and experts against each other in a test of National Electrical Code® knowledge and experience.

Holum will take home a grand prize of $5,000. The other two finalists, Steve Carter from Phoenix, Ariz., and Jim Walker from Sonoma County, Calif., won runners-up cash prizes of $2,500 and $500, respectively. The three competed in a live webisode championship consisting of three rounds of gameplay, including a head-to-head final round challenge between the top two contestants.

The NEC Challenge is an annual, interactive competition that began in 2013 and has since spread across the country online and to electrical trade shows, providing professionals the chance to prove their superior code knowledge.

A serious topic, but...

“Electrical safety is a serious topic. The NEC Challenge combines competitiveness and fun that ultimately draws attention to important elements of the code,” said Lorraine Carli, vice president of Outreach and Advocacy for NFPA.

Unique to this year was the launch of, giving electrical professionals everywhere the opportunity to test their NEC IQ online and be a part of the NEC Challenge.

The NEC sets the standard for safe electrical installation and inspection to protect people and property from electrical hazards. It is one of the most widely used codes for the built environment in the world. NFPA has been the developer and publisher of the NEC since 1911. The new 2014 edition provides the latest updates to further electrical safety.

About the National Electrical Code®

NFPA has been the developer and publisher of NFPA 70®, National Electrical Code® (NEC®) since 1911. The NEC continues to be the most widely used code for the built environment in the world, establishing the standard for safe electrical installations. The code has been adopted in every state in the U.S., in many territories, and in several countries. For more information about the 2014 edition of the NEC, visit

About the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)

NFPA is a worldwide leader in fire, electrical, building, and life safety. The mission of the international nonprofit organization founded in 1896 is to reduce the worldwide burden of fire and other hazards on the quality of life by providing and advocating consensus codes and standards, research, training, and education. NFPA develops more than 300 codes and standards to minimize the possibility and effects of fire and other hazards. All NFPA codes and standards can be viewed at no cost at