REC Member-Owners Elect Peers to Board
August 23, 2019
Rappahannock Electric Cooperative (REC) member-owners selected three of their peers to serve on REC’s Board of Directors. More than 7,000 member-owners participated in the election by returning their Proxy Designation Card or attending the Annual Meeting Aug. 22 at the Fredericksburg Conference Center.
- In Region I, Michael W. Lindsay was re-elected. This region covers the counties of Frederick, Shenandoah and portions of Page, Warren and Rappahannock.
- In Region VI, Linda R. Gray was re-elected. This region covers Caroline County.
- In Region VII, J. Mark Wood was re-elected. This region covers Louisa County.
All terms are for three years.
Also at the Annual Meeting, Board Chairman Christopher G. Shipe and President and CEO Kent D. Farmer provided updates on the Cooperative's accomplishments, challenges and future plans.
Shipe noted REC’s commitment to listening to and responding to feedback from member-owners. As a result of that feedback, he noted the Board has recently:
- Approved additional funding for the Vegetation Management team so field workers can complete additional tree trimming to reduce the number of storm-related outages.
- Initiated a Governance and Document Center for REC’s website to make it easier for member-owners to find important information about their cooperative.
- Took steps to make it easier for broadband to reach rural areas that are currently underserved. REC’s Fiber Utility Network, an 800-mile network of fiber optic cable - once completed - will make it easier for a third party to extend broadband service.
- Focused more on renewable energy, especially with the launch of Cooperative Sunshare, which allows member-owners to show their support for solar power without installing panels on their homes. REC also worked with state officials to make it easier for member-owners to connect their renewable generation systems to REC through net metering.
Farmer shared with member-owners REC’s continued commitment to community. He explained that employees attend more than 300 local events each year, sharing important information on energy efficiency, electric safety, electric vehicles, renewable power and more.
He also noted the impact of The Power of Change program, which allows member-owners to round up their electric bill each month with the extra change going to local charities. Some member-owners choose to make a one-time contribution or donate a set amount. In all, more than 20,000 REC member-owners make a difference through The Power of Change.
“You, REC’s member-owners, have made the impact we have on our communities even stronger,” Farmer said.
Communities served by REC include 22 counties with nearly 170,000 electric connections. “In the past year, REC has connected nearly 5,000 new homes and businesses,” Farmer said. “It’s not something REC takes lightly.”
“The employees at REC, myself included, get the opportunity to wake up every day knowing that the service we are delivering to you – electricity – is powering your everyday lives, powering your businesses, powering schools, powering hospitals and powering the future,” Farmer said.
He also shared important utility updates at the Annual Meeting, including:
- REC’s power supplier, Old Dominion Electric Cooperative, plans to add additional solar energy to its power supply in the near future.
- REC is examining the benefits of a large battery storage system, which could reduce power supply costs and improve reliability for member-owners.
- The Cooperative has added a second electric vehicle to its fleet and upgraded its website to include robust tools explaining the benefits of driving an electric vehicle.
None of these successes, Farmer noted, would be possible without employees and member-owners working hand in hand to improve the communities we all call home.
“We know so many of our member-owners go through each day without thinking about REC, unless there is a power outage,” Farmer said at the Annual Meeting. “We spend every day thinking about you, because together with our member-owners, We Are REC.”