Association picks new leadership team | Awards recognize co-op service | Bylaw changes expand board | Foundation notes charitable work


Association picks new leadership team

The executive committee of the Wisconsin Electric Cooperative Association (WECA), elected at the statewide co-op organization’s November annual meeting in Stevens Point, includes (l-r,) Judith Anibas of Eau Claire Energy Cooperative (secretary-treasurer), CEO Mike Wade of Central Wisconsin Electric Cooperative, Diane Zimmerman of East-Central Energy (chair), David Hischke of Oconto Electric, and CEO Dallas Sloan of Barron Electric Cooperative (vice-chair). Also serving as statewide directors are William Fischer of Rock Energy, CEO Jerry Sorenson of Riverland Energy, Roger Wiff of Pierce Pepin Cooperative Services, Karen Newbury of Price Electric Cooperative, and Robert Hess of Oakdale Electric, representing Dairyland Power.

Awards recognize co-op service 

Winning recognition last month for distinguished service to Wisconsin’s electric cooperatives were
(l-r) Mary Kay Brevig, Eau Claire Energy Cooperative’s communications and public relations manager, receiving the N. F. Leifer Memorial Journalism Award for excellence in her co-op’s local pages of Wisconsin Energy Cooperative News; Larry Dokkestul, recently retired CEO of Pierce Pepin Cooperative Services, with the ACE (Ally of Cooperative Electrification) AwardÑthe group’s highest honorÑfor dedicated service to cooperatives surpassing routine performance of duty; and Mary Hodowanic, accepting the Herman C. Potthast Award on behalf of her husband, Jim Hodowanic, the late operations manager of Chippewa Valley Electric Cooperative. The Potthast Award honors conspicuous contributions to job-training and safety education for employees of Wisconsin’s energy cooperatives.

Bylaw changes expand board

The statewide Wisconsin Electric Cooperative Association will have 12 directors instead of the current 10, apportioned among four districts instead of three to make representation more proportional to member populations, as a result of bylaw changes adopted at the organization’s November annual meeting in Stevens Point.

The La Crosse-based generation and transmission cooperative Dairyland Power, previously guaranteed a position on the 10-member board, will compete on an equal footing with the other 24 member co-ops for a seat on the 12-member board.

Elections to fill the new board seats will be held in January.

Foundation notes charitable work

The Federated Youth Foundation, the charitable arm of Wisconsin’s cooperative businesses, gave out scholarships totaling more than $618,000 and other charitable donations totaling more than $223,000 during the 2019Ð20 fiscal year, members learned during the organization’s annual meeting last month.

Held in conjunction with the Wisconsin Electric Cooperative Association’s annual meeting at Stevens Point, the Federation (FYF) saw board President Herman Seebandt of Clark Electric Cooperative reach his term limit and step down, with Member Relations Manager Carol Blaken of Jackson Electric elected to succeed him as a director. Vice President Marian Trescher of Rock Energy Cooperative also stepped down, to be succeeded by Courtney Berner, executive director of the UW Center for Cooperatives.

The organization’s philanthropic activities are financed with unclaimed capital credits, which may be donated by any cooperative business operating within Wisconsin, in lieu of turning over the funds to the state Department of Revenue.