NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) today named Ohio’s 24 electric distribution cooperatives the winners of the William F. Matson Democracy Award.
The Matson Award recognizes outstanding accomplishments and service to rural electric cooperatives through political action, political education and participation. Ohio’s electric cooperatives are leaders in the Action Committee for Rural Electrification (ACRE®), NRECA’s political action committee. Ohio raises $256,000 or more annually in support of state and federal elected officials, comprising 13 percent of the national ACRE® budget.
“Ohio’s electric cooperatives have fully embraced their role as active participants in state and federal politics,” said NRECA President and Tri-County Electric Cooperative Director Phil Carson. “In doing so, they have demonstrated extraordinary dedication to advancing electric cooperative priorities by leading the nation in ACRE fundraising. I applaud their commitment and look forward to their continued involvement in our ACRE efforts.”
Ohio’s electric co-ops have built political strength with a strategic focus on local grassroots connections. Every spring, Ohio co-ops involved in ACRE® sponsor an event to connect their political action committee members with elected officials. Those events allow members to engage their representatives on issues that impact Ohio’s electric cooperatives.
More than 6,000 representatives from electric co-ops across the nation are attending NRECA’s annual meeting, which runs from Feb. 25-28 in Nashville and sets NRECA’s organizational and legislative agenda for 2018. Co-op representatives also hear from NRECA officials, key public figures and business experts about issues affecting electric cooperatives and their consumer members. The annual meeting is held in conjunction with TechAdvantage, a technology learning event and expo that features more than 300 exhibitors showcasing their state-of-the-art technologies, equipment and services.
The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association is the national service organization that represents the nation’s more than 900 not-for-profit, consumer-owned electric cooperatives, which provide service to 42 million people in 47 states.