As people plan in-person events following the pandemic-induced isolation the past two years, some are circling calendar dates for a familiar favorite — from their electric cooperative.
Many electric co-ops are planning their annual meetings following canceled, scaled down, or virtual events during the COVID-19 pandemic. Some co-ops have returned to hosting in-person member events, while others have scheduled virtual meetings this year. Whether in-person or virtually, you can receive several benefits from attending your co-op’s annual meeting.
Meet. Eat! Be Entertained: If your electric co-op hosts an in-person event, it can be a great chance to meet and catch up with friends and neighbors. Annual meetings are community events, which means everyone is welcome. They likely will offer some of the best food around, and there are often family-friendly games and activities.
Learn: No matter your age, you should learn something new every day — and your co-op’s annual meeting will help you reach that goal! You will learn about your electric co-op’s accomplishments over the past year, as well as future opportunities and potential challenges. You also can learn more about the programs that your co-op offers to benefit families and businesses.
Win! Many electric co-ops offer bill credits or prizes for participating in their annual meeting. Register and vote when you arrive, stay for the meeting, and you may be eligible to win. You don’t want to miss it!
Vote: The annual meeting is your chance to have a direct impact on how your electric co-op is governed. You can vote for members running for positions on your co-op’s board of directors. The board creates policies that directly impact you and all co-op members. Democratic participation is part of the foundational bedrock of all cooperatives, and voting is one of the cooperative principles!
As a member of an electric co-op, you also are part owner. And that means that your co-op’s annual meeting was made for you! Many annual meetings feel like a casual gathering with friends and neighbors that include food, family-friendly games and activities with a brief meeting involved. Even virtual meetings feel like they are sessions for catching up with neighbors. Plan to participate in your co-op’s annual event and have a say in how your co-op operates.