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F


rom the top Max A. Meek, CEO and General Manager Te number of members who remember OEC's


beginnings 76 years ago is declining. In 2012, we lost Clyde Rodolph, a co-op legend who served as OEC's general manger and then a board member for over 30 years, and Fred Chapman, one of our pioneer linemen from our earliest days. Tese men knew firsthand the power of neighbors uniting with a common purpose. OEC's membership is becoming younger and


younger. Tey don't remember how we got here, but they care where we are going. Although we spent most of 2012 looking back on our 75-year history, we have never lost sight of our future. In fact, looking back often helps us focus on what we should be achieving in the coming years. Cooperatives aren't like other businesses in


our community. We're not focused on making a profit–at our core we exist to meet community needs. Tis is an important detail in our being; one we continually remind ourselves of. Too often the assumption is made that excellence is measured in profit margins. Co-ops and OEC specifically are examples of why that correlation does not always ring true. In our Co-op People feature this month, Terry


Henderson unknowingly makes my point as he looks back on all the advancements made in his 33 years here. OEC is on the cutting edge. Where many industries stall before implementing a new technology or upgrades to infrastructure because


of a narrow focus on the bottom line, OEC's focus is on excellence and providing the best and safest possible service. We are proactive in our infrastructure investments. Take our advanced meter infrastructure (AMI) system for example. AMI made Prepaid electric service possible, reducing our uncollectable debt to almost nil. In addition, it automated many business processes leading to more efficient service including engineering and field design improvements. We were ahead of the local IOU on this by years because our priorities are not corporate bonuses. Of course, our fiduciary responsibilities to you,


our member-owners, are always in the forefront of any decision; but, our guiding principles push us to make decisions based on quality of service to you, not on how much money we can squeeze out of you. In this day where it seems everyone is touting


the benefits of buying local and eating local let's not forget it doesn't get more local than member- founded and member-owned Oklahoma Electric Cooperative. We will never go beyond local. We were founded to serve the citizens here in central Oklahoma and that is our only mission. At OEC we take pride in our promise to


provide you with safe, reliable and affordable electric service. But our promise goes beyond that. We are also dedicated to improving the quality of life in the communities we serve. We measure excellence on a different scale.


News Magazine 3


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