Co-op, members celebrate 80 years

Posted on Jun 23 2019 in Kankakee Valley REMC

We often hear how one’s past helped to shape his/her future. It is the lessons learned, the risks taken and the power of strong leaders that makes one’s past a success. At your cooperative, we believe this to be true. Our founders decided years ago that rural northwest Indiana needed the advantages of electric power and that decision was the power behind the formation of the co-op today. For this reason, “Honoring our Past. Powering our Future” was fitting for our 80th-anniversary theme. 

This year’s annual meeting celebration was a time for our member-consumers to reconnect with friends and neighbors, meet their co-op leadership team and enjoy good family fun. Over 600 registered member-consumers joined the cooperative at the beautifully renovated Porter County Expo Center. Moving the event to June this year gave us the opportunity to change the format, allowing for an open house style event. 

Prior to the meeting, member-consumers were able to vote in the board of directors’ election online or by mail. The certified results accounted for 2,338 ballots cast prior to the meeting, yielding a participation rate of 12.68%. Voting was also made available at the meeting for those who preferred to vote in person. 

At the meeting, member-consumers were greeted at the registration area with an extension cord gift and a $5 bill credit. They also enjoyed a catered meal of pork chops and Italian Beef by Birky’s Catering. This year’s entertainment included musical group 45 RPM and children enjoyed everyone’s favorite puppet-grandfather, Granpa Cratchet. Glitter tattoos and balloon art were also a highlight. For those interested in electric cars, the co-op’s new Chevy Bolt was on display.  

To close out the evening, a short business meeting was held to announce the results of the board of directors’ election and to award cash prizes. Chris Birky, District 1, was re-elected for another three-year term. Dean Moretton was voted to serve as District 2 director. During the new business portion Dennis Weiss, retired CEO, addressed the membership. He thanked member-consumers for their support while serving as CEO, and the board of directors and employees for their commitment to the cooperative. Dennis retired last August after 33 years with the cooperative. 

Thank you to everyone who came out to this year’s event. We value your voice in the cooperative and one of the ways you can get involved is by attending this meeting each year. We made a lot of changes to this year’s annual meeting. We would welcome your comments and feedback on the meeting. 

As we forge ahead into this new and exciting year, I am excited to be leading our exceptional employees to build upon our strong history and foundation to power our future.