Currents

Rep. Danny Davis gives quick history and civics lesson

A native of Parkdale, Ark., 74-year-old Illinois Congressman Danny Davis (D IL-7), from the west side of Chicago, still remembers reading and doing his homework with a coal oil lamp, before the REA-financed local electric cooperative brought electricity to his home. “I was about 10 years old, it was a new era for us, a […]

Ray LaHood speaks to co-op leaders about bipartisan politics

At the Association of Illinois Electric Cooperatives’ 75th annual meeting held in Springfield at the end of July, former Congressman and Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood asked co-op leaders to ­promote good policies and bipartisan politics. He said co-ops have been ­successful for the last 75 years because of a ­willingness to get into the […]

Illinois pioneers of rural electrification

Raymond Webb Ray Webb of Tunnel Hill was among the incor­porating ­pioneers who joined farm ­advisors to lead SouthEastern Illinois Electric Cooperative, Inc. from concept to reality. Webb called on Johnson County ­farmers to sign them up for the new service – even going as far as paying the $5 membership fee for some of […]

Rep. Hammond receives Illinois Electric Cooperative Public Service Award

At the Association of Illinois Electric Cooperatives’ annual ­meeting in Springfield on July 28, State Representative Norine Hammond (R- Macomb, 93rd House District) received the 2016 Illinois Electric Cooperatives’ Public Service Award. The award was made in recog­nition of Rep. Hammond’s ­dedicated public service to all ­citizens of the state of Illinois and for ­outstanding ­contributions […]

Clean Power Plan creates lasting consequences for the grid

The Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan will have lasting ­consequences for the nation’s electric ­generation mix, which will hasten the need for more transmission and ­pipeline ­infrastructure, says the North American Reliability Corporation (NERC), the nation’s reliability watchdog. NERC noted that the resource changes needed for new electric transmission and gas pipeline infrastructure will vary […]

Co-ops represented at renewable energy conference

Michael Voelker (left), VP Utility Services at Corn Belt Energy, and John Freitag, VP Operations for the Association of Illinois Electric Cooperatives, spoke at the Illinois Renewable Energy Conference at Illinois State University on July 21. The pair ­covered a variety of energy efficiency issues in their presentation of “Things you need to Consider in […]

Creating the best of friends and future leaders

Seven days is all it takes for a group of 64 rural Illinois high schoolers to become best friends. It is because when you get a group of students with the same ­common ­interest, it is easy for them to relate; they all value ­education and leadership opportunity. The Youth to Washington Tour is an […]

Voting is your right and responsibility – exercise it

Rural electric cooperatives across the United States are joining together to launch a campaign to encourage rural ­residents to vote and insert issues of importance to ­cooperatives and their members into the public ­discussion. “Co-ops Vote” is a nonpartisan program developed by the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA), which represents more than 900 private, […]

Illinois pioneers of rural electrification

John Sargent John Sargent of Rushville represented Adams Electrical Co-operative on the AIEC board of directors from 1940 until his death in 1976, and was president of the board from 1949-51. Sargent was an integral part of the formation of Adams Electrical in Camp Point and was an original incorporator and the first board president […]

New co-op CEO understands energy and rural issues

The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) in June announced that ­former U.S. Rep. Jim Matheson has been selected to serve as NRECA’s sixth chief executive officer. NRECA President Mel Coleman says, “Jim will bring to the position a broad knowledge of the issues facing rural America and will be an ­inspirational leader for America’s […]