Since 1935, Indiana Statewide Association of Rural Electric Cooperatives has existed to help member systems offset costs and reduce staffing needs by providing services in government relations, job training and safety, regulatory compliance, benefits, cooperative relations and development, community outreach, youth programs, and various forms of communication including a statewide publication, Electric Consumer.
The strength of an electric cooperative is not poles and wires – but instead the engaged employees who support member-consumers and partner with the communities they serve. Indiana’s electric cooperatives employ over 1,500 skilled men and women in a variety of professional areas, including line work, customer service, executive management, accounting, communications, member services, information technology, and engineering among others. In addition, nearly 350 member-consumers serve on the board of directors for their electric cooperative. Each board consists of knowledgeable and experienced business people who are elected by the membership to establish policies and provide direction to ensure the success of the cooperative. Indiana’s electric cooperatives offer an environment of personal contribution and high quality leadership – and where employees and directors are recognized as the organization’s greatest asset.
Indiana’s electric cooperatives are non-profit electric distribution utilities owned by nearly 500,000 member-consumers. They serve from 1,500 to 33,000 meters on homes and businesses in 89 of the 92 counties. Two generation and transmission cooperatives maintain approximately 58,000 miles of distribution line and have invested over $2.1 billion in system infrastructure across the state.
Since the first pole was erected for Boone REMC in 1936 – the first electric cooperative in the U.S. – electric cooperatives have led the energy industry in providing affordable and reliable electric service to members. Today, local systems face mounting challenges as a result of increasingly stricter environmental guidelines and the need to find cleaner sources of power generation. As they have proven throughout their history, Indiana’s electric cooperatives will be on the forefront in providing energy efficient rebate programs and account management services to members, while promoting renewable energy sources to ensure future generations.